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Waste Less At Your Wedding

Weddings are truly special occasions, filled with moments of joy and happiness, good food and friends, but unfortunately they can also come with a lot of waste. Plenty of single-use items are used or purchased solely for the big day and no one bats an eye, because, let's face it, it's one of those times in life to splurge! If, however, you're wondering how to be a little more eco-conscious without going without, we're here with a few creative ways to waste less at your wedding.

1.) Purchase items made or grown in proximity to your venue. Not only does that support your local economy and favorite small businesses, but it also staves off the CO2 emissions from having things shipped across the country or around the world. 

Flowers, for example, are typical for bouquets and decor on the tables, but also, typically $$$, wrapped in plastic, and shipped to the florist from far away before even getting to you. Some people opt out of flowers as a way to green their wedding (ironically), but why not source your florals locally instead? If you're lucky enough to live near a farm or farmers' market, chances are they sell their seasonal blooms!

Photograph by Par La Mer Photography

2.) Re-think single use items. There are So. Many. Things at a wedding that are one and done. Bridesmaid's dresses, seating cards, centerpieces -- you name it. Some of these things end up in the trash after the night, others will end up in the closet after only one use. Guys can get away with renting their tuxes, so why do the gals get stuck having to buy their dresses? The fashion industry is one of the most wasteful in the world, so think about asking your bridesmaids if they'd consider renting their dress instead of wearing only once. 

Photograph by Par La Mer Photography


As for seating cards or table numbers, ditch the throwaway paper and opt for something way more creative! Have a calligrapher write everyone's name and table number out on wine bottles or beer growlers. If you want a two-for-one, let Noteworthy Chocolates engrave your escort cards in chocolate so they double as a favor! These won't get thrown out at the end of the night, guaranteed!

Photograph by Par La Mer Photography


3.) Ditch the plastic. Up your game on party essentials and opt for glass or china cups, reusable, washable cutlery, and recycled paper appetizer plates instead of wasteful plastic alternatives. By doing this, you support a circular economy with items that are reused and repurposed, versus a linear economy where products designed for a single use get trashed immediately and added to the ever-growing landfill or ocean.

4.) Edibles are always a hit. Consumable favors never get left behind at the reception and they won't collect dust on a shelf at home either, making them the perfect waste-free option to thank your guests. Bonus points if they're housed in biodegradable packaging or glass jars!

Treating your traveling guests to something sweet upon arrival is also an opportunity to make some of these sustainable swaps. Custom engraved chocolate and some local goodies stashed in their welcome bag will truly make them feel welcome.

 

Just remember it's not about planning the perfect zero-waste wedding, in other words it's not 100% or nothing. Success is built on the individual steps we take to get where we're going and not the leap from start to finish. Even making one swap towards a less-waste wedding is a big win!