Eco-friendly wedding - The Ultimate Guide

Eco-friendly wedding - The Ultimate Guide

Planning a wedding is a joyful journey filled with excitement. With an eye out for eco-friendly practices, we are seeing an increase in the number of sustainable, zero waste weddings

With wedding season right around the corner and you’re looking to make conscious decisions every step of the way, we’ve put together a handy-dandy 10 step eco-friendly wedding guide for you! 

1. Initiate with intent: 

If one is naturally inclined to ensure the wellbeing of the planet, then it quite naturally extends to every aspect of life. Right from choosing a bamboo toothbrush to choosing sustainably made clothes and hosting zero waste events. When one’s daily life is designed keeping earth friendly choices in mind, hosting an sustainable wedding is a no brainer! 

Check for how you can succinctly communicate the intent of the wedding being zero waste in nature. Everyone is on their own sustainability journey, and sustainable weddings are only growing now, prior to this it was all about glam. So don’t be hard on your wedding planner or designer, instead, explain your vision, your goals and see how aligned and open-minded they are to the idea of a sustainable wedding and try to help you achieve your goals as much as possible. 

So say a good, eco friendly intention and get down to planning!

2. Greenwashing getting in the way? 

It’s super easy to get caught in the web of greenwashing, without intending to. To avoid greenwashing in sustainable weddings, we must genuinely look at all aspects of what one is trying to do, from sourcing to use to how many uses to finally end of life. 

Terms like ‘locally sourced’ or ‘organic’ are loosely thrown around without proper certification. Don’t hesitate to ask your vendors about their sustainability initiatives and certifications. If not for certifications, schedule calls with all of them and understand their views, and if they are aligned with what you are striving to achieve, ask for examples as well. 

3. Innovative Invites: 

Make your invitations sustainable by using seed paper, recycled paper or embrace  e-invites since everyone is so tech savvy now! And hey, what happened to  old school phone calls to invite your loved ones? 

  • 4. Mindful Decor
  • During your visit to the venue, walk around the space to understand how best you can reuse tables, lanterns and lights, rather than sourcing it fresh. Working with your decorator to pick one larger theme, can help reuse the decor in various ways. It’s super cost effective too! [See, sustainability doesn’t always have to be so expensive :)] 

    Speak to your decorators if they can source locally and use seasonal flower based decorations, that would minimise carbon emissions. 

  • 5. Pre-Loved is also Love: 
  • Choosing to wear one of your loved one’s attire to the wedding can make a super special addition to any event! Most families have heirlooms, jewellery or clothes (sarees, gowns, dupattas) that’s crafted so artfully. Incorporating your heritage into the wedding, only makes it more precious, setting a zero waste precedent for generations to come. 

    6. Waste Management: 

    A critical component of hosting green weddings is managing the waste. If the waste isn’t segregated and disposed of properly, then it completely defeats the purpose of hosting a green wedding. 

    Bifurcate your waste management into two categories: 

    • Waste management prior to the event 

    Make enquiries with your caterer, decorator, venue partners for the waste management practices in place. If they don’t have any in place, then work with them in tandem to communicate your vision and the facilities they have to ensure a smooth waste management. 

    Simple things such as providing live stations rather than a buffet means that guests are consuming truly how much they require. 

    Communicating via posters or signages can help spread the message amongst guests and ensure that they are in congruence with the overall intent of the wedding.  

    • Waste management post the event  

    Planning and implementing effective waste segregation stations around the venue will certainly help guests to dispose their waste responsibly 

    Untouched food leftovers can be donated to NGOs around the venue 

    Waste management is holistic because it includes not only food waste, but also ritual waste, decor waste, amongst others. Opting for zero waste alternatives for all, ensures that there is no waste generated in the first place 

    7. Zero waste catering: 

    Traditionally, most Indian weddings are zero waste by design in all components. We typically serve food on plantain leaves, which by design can be composted, resulting in waste being diverted from landfills. 

    Speak with your caterers to segregate the fruit/vegetable peels and other food waste from dry waste. Thereby, when it comes to finally disposing of the waste, it is smoothly achievable. 

    8. Minimalist Gifting: 

    Choosing to gift essential, everyday use items, which guests can use in their lives, will help ensure that gift items do not go to waste. Adding local snacks, handicrafts and with a personalised note printed on recycled paper makes for a heartfelt gift for your guests. 

    Replacing plastic gift wrappers with more sustainable gift wrapping options such as jute bags, seed paper bags are an effortless way to go zero waste in your gifting endeavours. 

    And if you need help with putting together zero waste wedding gifts, hit us up! Our Bare Goodies make for great gifts and are a great way to support local and small suppliers and vendors along with creating stable green jobs such as our women run manufacturing team.

    9. Customise the celebrations: 

    There’s so much to learn from the past, which we can continue to implement. At the same time, we can always look towards new and innovative concepts in weddings. Couples looking to have wedding ceremonies that are in alignment with their value systems are refreshing and allow scope for the wedding to be personalised. In bringing newer customs in, we can design them in a manner that they are innately sustainable. 

    Having your loved ones like your siblings, best friends, family  sharing advice on love, marriage, companionship, friendship, importance of kindness, humour and equality in a relationship adds deep meaning to the rituals, while making them feel included. 

    10. Sustainable Transportation: 

    Perhaps one of the lesser spoken aspects of planning a wedding is the transport! 

    If most of your loved ones and guests are coming from different cities or counties, there is one unavoidable factor - travel

    To tackle this, choosing a venue that is not far from the airport, ensures commute distances are short. Creating a carpooling plan to ferry guests from between the airport and the venue, further reduces carbon footprint. 

    Furthermore, the carbon and environmental footprint of travel is inevitable and to mitigate it, carbon footprint can be offset via Climes