Eco-conscious Wedding Planning
What makes someone or some company ‘eco-conscious’? Anyone can say they are eco-conscious or eco-friendly, but science tells us our behavior determines who we truly are, not our words. Loving nature and our planet is one thing, but making even the smallest adjustments to better serve them, is a horse of a different (beautiful) color. This Earth Day, we wanted to share with you our passion for eco-conscious event planning, ways you can make your event more eco-friendly, and simple everyday changes you can make to help preserve this gorgeous rock we call home.
When it’s all said and done, weddings and other events can leave behind a ton of excess waste. Much of this waste can and should be up-cycled, but isn’t due to time constraints on the couple / hosts and their families. Who wants to plan an entire wedding or big event for months on end, just to find out the work doesn’t end when the music stops? Well, we do! One great thing about hiring an event planner is the work is done for you. And, if you go with a planner that is committed to the environment as well as your vision, you can reduce waste and the environmental impact of your event
Here are some ways you can make your next event an eco-friendly one:
Always, always, always request reusable catering supplies from your caterer. Single-use plastics and other products create a world of hurt for our planet in a myriad of ways. Also, try to hire a caterer that donates leftover cooked food to shelters and leftover raw / unprocessed food waste to community composting / gardening organizations, like Seedleaf in Lexington, KY.
Rent or buy used e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g. We aren’t in love with vintage furniture and decor just because it’s pretty. Buying or, even more so, renting vintage or used goods for your event reduces the need for further manufactured furniture and decor. This, in turn, reduces carbon emissions, deforestation, and energy consumption. Scope your local Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore, Goodwill, Salvation Army, flea markets, and Craigslists for used tableware (chargers, plates, flatware, centerpieces, etc), seating, and other decor. Or, just hire us and we’ll take care of all that for you! Not to mention, vintage aesthetic is really pretty 🙂
Use dried flowers instead of cut, or purchase seasonal cut flowers from local organic farmers. Purchasing local, organic cut flowers and hiring farmer-florists like Bellaire Blooms in Versailles, KY, reduces toxic pesticides, energy costs, and carbon emissions. Pro-tip: Donate your unused cut flowers to people like us! We are obsessed with drying floral arrangements and offering them up for other events, which tend to not only be cheaper than fresh flowers, but also help further reduce the before-mentioned environmental impacts of flower production.
Skip the balloons, glitter, confetti, and other plastics. The days of throwing rice at newlyweds are over (we hope), but a lot of the alternatives are micro-plastics that wind up in our rivers and oceans, and inevitably, the stomachs of innocent wildlife. Even some of the supposed ‘biodegradable’ alternatives can harm the environment by taking too long to deteriorate. Pay attention to the ingredients and make sure whatever you use is water soluble. Dried floral confetti is an aromatic, environmentally-friendly alternative that is gaining a lot of well-deserved attention, lately.
Donate or sell your unused goods and decor! There will always be a need for event supplies and decor. Anything you bought new or used that is still in decent shape has just as much of a use to someone else as it did to you. Take the time after your event to list the items for sale, if you want to earn back some of the money spent, or donate it. We (and hopefully other wedding and event planners out there) can help with this, too!
Sometimes, single-use plastics are unavoidable. We get it. We’ve been there. But when this happens, be sure to recycle the items yourself unless the venue you are using is truly committed to doing so on your behalf.
Some of these eco-conscious alternatives can be employed in your everyday life, too, with just a little bit of initial effort on your part. If you have to order online, use your Amazon Smile to donate to an environmental preservation organization and tack-on reusable alternatives to plastic and paper products to your order. For example, buy camping flatware (portable spoon, fork, and knife) to keep in your purse, car, and desk at work. Even better, use some of your already purchased silverware! Mention, “No to-go-ware, please” when placing a food order. Purchase reusable straws if you live in a city that still allows plastic straws, and tell your server “No straw, please” each time you place a drink order (even if you forget your reusable straws all the time, like me). Recycle. Recycle. Recycle. Pay close attention to your localities’ recycling policies, and just do it. Commit to these small but impactful changes, and pay attention to what science is telling us about the environmental impact of our existence. The need for sustainable change goes far beyond these everyday pledges, but as individuals, this is a damn good start.