Are you hoping to create a zero waste wedding (or let's face it, low waste)? You've come to the right place! Here are a few tips to get you going.
PAUSE BEFORE YOU BUY
Beg, borrow and hire as much as you can. Buying things new can seem appealing and can sometimes amount to the same as hiring. But, if every couple kept doing that we would acquire endless clutter and waste! Check Gumtree, hiring websites (like Enamelware Events) and ask around on social media – you might well have friends or neighbours with unused crafty bits, table decor, fairy lights and all-sorts that they'd be glad for you to use. The bottle in the photo (by Matt & Esther Photography) was one out of a box load that I collected from the wonderful Emmeline Bristol. They had a little sign up in their shop to say anyone was welcome to their used glass bottles. They just happened to be beautiful ones like Lemon Aid and ChariTea. I used Festoon in Bristol for our Festoon lights.
Check out the recycling setup at your venue in advance. It may be basic, e.g. if you're at a farm, so create your own! Even just sticking on bits of paper to different buckets (bringing them with you if need be) to say 'recycling' and 'compost', and so on, will help your guests sort it out for themselves as they go. Set this up as soon as you arrive at your venue. If there are no facilities to recycle or compost on site, find a friend to take the waste home with them.
Set up a water station to keep your guests hydrated, avoiding water bottles. I'm in love with this enamel one from Crow Canyon Home *cue wishlist*. Supply cups – we're a bit biased, but we'd recommend enamel ones – and if you really can't face extra washing up, choose biodegradable cups. Little Cherry have some great options. If you're sending out digital reminders for your wedding the week before, you could even encourage your guests to bring a cup or bottle to use for water refills.
SAVE THE DATES
If you can, why not send out the save the dates online to save on extra paper and resources. Paperless Post did it for us. This method allows you to keep your guests updated while you prepare the invitations (which could also be paperless, but we know how lovely an opportunity it is to create your own 'real' invites!)
Choose your suppliers carefully. The Natural Wedding Company has a carefully curated directory of suppliers in the UK with eco credentials from caterers to photographers to stylists. And don't be afraid to ask your supplier to do something they don't normally do. If you're having a mobile bar, check what the drinks will be served in and if they're recyclable and/or biodegradable. Find out if they will take the waste back with them to be sorted or reused.
PART 2 COMING SOON
I've got to the end with much more to say, so I will do a part 2 soon!
Please do email me or send an Insta message if you're planning/have had your own green, eco-friendly or zero waste wedding. I would love to hear your top tips and answer any questions! And just shout if you'd like to use Enamelware Events for your wedding.
PS I haven't been paid to mention these suppliers and brands – they are just personal recommendations.