Eco Friendly Wedding Tips for a Smaller Budget and Less Waste

If you are working with a small wedding budget and hope to get married soon, these eco friendly wedding tips should be a big help!  Did you know that the average cost of a wedding has risen to almost $30,000 in the United States? Considering the pressure many couples are under to throw an elaborate wedding, many people are left wondering how they can afford to tie the knot. However, there are many ways you can save money and still have a beautiful, luxurious wedding. Thanks to recent research and advancements in technology it is now easier than ever to live an eco friendly lifestyle and that includes your first day as a married couple!

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Eco Friendly Wedding Tips for a Smaller Budget and Less Waste

 

Eco Friendly Wedding Tips

Planning an eco friendly wedding can be fun and leave you with a feeling of satisfaction for a your minimal impact living.  It won’t be quite as easy as calling your local wedding planner, unfortunately.  Here are a few tips to get you started on your road to your low carbon footprint married life!

Sustainable Wedding Tips

5 Things You Need for a Green Wedding

Many green wedding supplies will be bought second hand or borrowed from friends and family.  There are, however, a few items that you might want to buy new.  Choosing eco friendly wedding items will seriously reduce your carbon footprint.  Here are a few of my favorite suggestions:

  • Biodegradable confetti.  Don’t throw things on the ground that wont biodegrade, even if you ARE getting married!
  • Paper straws are a great alternative to plastic for your beverages.  No straw is great too, but, some people really do love those things!
  • Eco friendly paper lanterns.  You can find ones that are 100% biodegradable which I think is totally cool.
  • Disposable Wedding Plates made from sustainable materials.  Find compostable tableware free of dyes, bleaches, or other harsh additives.  A great alternative to single use plastic.

Eco Friendly Wedding Tips for a Smaller Budget and Less Waste

Plan a Recycled Wedding

Thanks to many eco-conscious and economical brides, there has been a recent boom in websites that allow brides to “recycle” parts, or all of their wedding. Brides who have just recently said ‘I do’ often sell their gently used decorations, wedding invitations and even their wedding dresses. Second hand clothing is the cornerstone of eco friendly fashion!

Browse through the offerings on places like eBay and Craigslist and find huge savings on everything you need for your wedding. Thanks to the internet, you can incorporate beautiful secondhand pieces into your own wedding. This saves you money and prevents these good-as-new items from simply becoming trash.

Eco Friendly Wedding Tips for a Smaller Budget and Less Waste

Select an Eco-friendly Wedding Venue

An eco friendly wedding venue saves you a great deal of money.  It also drastically reduces the carbon footprint of your wedding. Many large venues, including hotels, banquet halls and reception areas, require a large amount of electricity. All the lighting, sound systems, heating and cooling are not a great choice for the environment. Host your reception outdoors to reduce the need for constant lighting and energy usage.

Sustainable WoodHoneymoon Travel Journal, Record-Book Trip Together, Save All Experiences On This Memory Album, A Just Married Present or Gift Like No Other. Anniversary Gifts for Him and Her.Green Wedding: Planning Your Eco-Friendly Celebration

You can also host your ceremony and reception at the same venue. This way,  guests don’t have to waste gas traveling from one location to another. This is not only on my list of green wedding tips but also on my list of ‘make everyone’s life easier’ tips!  If you must host the ceremony and reception in two different places, consider renting a shuttle or other form of eco friendly transportation to take people between the venues. This will mean less vehicles on the road and a decrease in harmful emissions.

Eco Friendly Wedding Tips for a Smaller Budget and Less Waste

 

Consider Registering for Donations

Simplest of all the eco friendly wedding tips I want to share is to ask for money for a green cause! Committed to making a difference to the environment? Have guests make donations in your name, instead of purchasing gifts for you through a registry. Many charities offer donation cards that you can fill out and send to wedding guests, which indicate that you would like them to make a donation in lieu of giving a gift.

There are plenty of great eco friendly charities that focus on protecting the environment and earth’s species. Some of my favorites are the World Wildlife Foundation, Rain Forest Action Network, Conservation Fund, American Forests and Greenpeace.

Eco Friendly Wedding Tips for a Smaller Budget and Less Waste

Donate Leftover Wedding Food

When it comes to weddings, the mentality is often that it is better to have too much food than too little. With hors d’oeuvres, cocktails,  appetizers, entrees and deserts, there is often a large quantity of food left over after the reception. Choose local food and donate leftovers instead of simply wasting it.

As food decomposes it releases methane gas, a toxin that is 20 percent more harmful than carbon dioxide. Help cut down on methane release by donating food to organizations such as America’s Second Harvest Food Bank, City Harvest or other local food kitchens.  Food waste is a huge problem in this country, however, there are many ways to reduce your garbage output and prevent your wedding from contributing to it.

Eco Friendly Wedding Tips for a Smaller Budget and Less Waste

 

Purchase Eco friendly Wedding Rings

The amount of money and human labor that goes into supporting the precious metals and diamond industries is immense. Many diamond-mining organizations have come under fire for the mistreatment of their workers. Natural resources are slowly becoming depleted as more  people want to own precious stones.

Promote sustainability and the proper treatment of workers by purchasing wedding jewelry made from recycled materials. This jewelry is often more affordable than other diamonds and wedding bands. Upcycle an old family heirloom. Have an old piece of jewelry that has been passed down your family for generations?

Reuse parts of old heirlooms, including gems, diamonds, and metals, to create a piece of jewelry with a unique family history.

Eco Friendly Wedding Tips for a Smaller Budget and Less Waste

Is a Green Wedding Right for You?

See a real green wedding and find out if it is right for you!  Watch the video below from My Green Closet.  She has some great eco friendly wedding tips to share!

Plan a green wedding to save money and the environment. You can promote sustainability by finding innovative ways to reduce the carbon footprint of your big event. It is easy to incorporate eco-friendly elements into your wedding. That way, you and your soulmate can start off on an eco-friendly life together.  I hope these eco friendly wedding tips will help you in planning your own special day!

Check out Bridal Guide for more wedding planning tips!

Have Any Other Green Wedding Tips to Share?

 

 

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Diane has a Bachelor’s degree in Microbiology with a Minor in Health Management and Policy. She spent many years working in cancer research, academics, and biotechnology. Concern over the growing incidence of human disease and the birth of her children led her to begin living a more natural life. She quickly realized that the information she was learning along the way could be beneficial to many others and started blogging as a way to share this knowledge with others. While passionate about health and the environment she can’t quite give up her favorite Cheetos and Diet Coke!

Comments

  1. You gave some great suggestions and ideas. We did not have a super expensive wedding. Our bridesmaids wore very simple black dresses that they could wear again. We made our own invitations as well. It was very budget friendly.
  2. My wedding was small and intimate, we had all we could ever use and it was very nice. I loved that we were eco-friendly and it did not cost us an arm and a leg!
  3. I LOVE this! I had a biggish wedding, and I'll never do that again. In fact, the way I feel after the divorce I recently got, if I ever DO get married again, the biggest expense is going to be the recyclable Dixie Cups and and Plates that we use for the reception.
  4. I love these tips!! My daughter is getting married and my son just got married, they worked hard to keep their costs down thankfully.

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