Sustainability has been a growing movement for not just the fashion industry but has spread to weddings. The Wedding Academy Global’s International Wedding Trend Report 2019 declares sustainability as one of the top trends for this year. The trend called "Creative Conscious" means being creative in planning your wedding within the confines of remaining environmentally responsible.
So much attention goes towards the planning and creating of an eco-friendly wedding. Regardless of how sustainable, however, all the planning - event decor, wedding party outfits, and food are all for one day. Fortunately, flowers, dresses, suits, and meals are general enough to reuse, re-worn for another event or occasion, donated, etc. (Ever heard of plantable biodegradable invites? Botanical Paper Works has seeds in them!)
A large post-wedding issue, while not always a pressing matter for some, is what to do with the wedding dress - one of the biggest parts on your big day. You don’t wear it again for another event, and while there are plenty of articles and blog posts of suggestions on sustainable wedding options, there’s less attention on the leftovers of a wedding, and in particular, the dress. For the eco-conscious future brides, here are some solutions/ideas for your decor, dress, etc. in promoting/ensuring minimal waste for your "I Do" day.
1. Repurpose the Wedding Dress
For many, it’s the most glamorous piece of clothing you’ll ever wear, and it’s for one day. As much as we’d love to wear it around the house and feel like the princess we did on the wedding day, it will most likely sit in a box at the back of our closets or storage space. Finding a new purpose for your beloved wedding dress is easy nowadays with creative trends
likewrecking your dress, donating it, storing or repurposing it like what we do at Unbox the Dress. Unbox the Dress is the first business of its kind!
Unbox the Dress Robe
Donating doesn’t just stop at wedding dresses. This upcycling/repurposing movement not only promotes sustainability but has created a flourishing market for new businesses like Repeat Roses or Random Acts of Flowers that repurpose your floral arrangements from your corporate or social events! These companies donate to charities, local nursing homes, or people in need of a little floral surprise in their lives.
Random Acts of Flowers
“[Repeat Roses has]..
.diverted more than87 tons of waste from landfills and delivered over 50,000 floral arrangements to people in need (Repeat Roses).”
Donation of food
is often not acceptedat some rescue centers or homeless shelters because of certain food standards, but it never hurts to contact food rescue programs and know their requirements as sometimes they may accept fresh leftovers. Being proactive and letting your food caterer know minimal waste is one of your priorities/choosing a meal style for your wedding that portions food can help in reducing excess leftovers.
- Couples can also opt for donations to charities or nonprofit organizations as a part of their registry.
3. Alternatives to wedding favors
- This goes along with donations, but a good way to eliminate waste (and extra spending) is to rid of wedding favors altogether. Sometimes that money can go towards better bar options (open bar anyone?), potted plants, guests’ choice of charity to donate to or letting family & friends take home leftovers and cake. Edible wedding favors are becoming popular for a reason: they’re a great treat and guests don’t have to worry about the fuss of taking home (or often leaving them sometimes).
4. Source locally
- A huge step in guaranteeing low-cost, high-quality particularly for food or floral arrangements is sourcing locally. Having the meals made from local fresh produce requires less packaging,
processing,will taste better and less impactful on the environment.
- Floral arrangements can also require significant transportation from different locations nationally or sometimes even globally. Finding arrangements from within a reasonable distance or from nearby farms helps lessen your carbon footprint, as suggested from Brides.com.
any one-use purchases for your wedding day. Rent where possible for details! This can include glass vases for your floral arrangements (often these come with your hired florist), rented dishware instead of plastic cups, table linens or runners, the list goes on!
6. GET RID OF PLASTIC
- With the aforementioned, GET RID OF PLASTIC! No straws (but if you must, stainless steel straws can come in bulk and in cheap! Not to mention a great wedding favor).
- Choose glassware to replace any plastic
drinkwarefor cocktails, champagne, etc. There are options to rent colored glassware as well for that fun pop of color.
The possibilities are limitless when looking for little ways to make a big difference to make your wedding more sustainable!