It’s no secret that weddings can be costly, which is why we’ve rounded up some eco-friendly alternatives for you to consider. With pricey trends and the desire to secure a dream wedding, you could go over budget without even noticing. The average cost of a wedding cost is currently around $32,000 and rising. For that price, you can buy a car, go on multiple lavish vacations, or even pay a year of college tuition.
Instead of splurging on centerpieces, venues, and even your gown, you can save in these areas while still having a beautiful and memorable wedding.
Whether you are an environmentalist looking to reduce your wedding’s carbon footprint or you simply want to cut costs for your big day, we are sure to have a an eco-friendly alternative for you. We have compiled different ways that you can save money on your wedding, while also remaining friendly to the earth.
Instead of choosing the traditional paper invitation route, you can opt to go digital. By emailing your requests, you can eliminate the total cost of stationary, postage, and wasted time digging through your address book. Emails are an environmentally sound way of inviting your guests, as they use no paper. You can simply create a template, fill in the name, and then send out your letters with the click of a button.
Traditional weddings often have elaborate floral arrangements in the middle of each guest’s table. While these pieces are beautiful, they also tend to be costly and temporary.
If you want to keep the customary centerpieces, then why not mix it up. Use self-picked wildflowers instead that are free and decorative. You can also mix wildflowers along with store cut flowers to reduce the quantity and price spent at the florist, while still keeping aesthetics.
Perhaps you are looking to stray from the old-fashion route of flowers in a vase. Try potted flowers instead. Not only will they be less expensive than a trip to the florist, but also they will last longer. Your guests can take these beauties home to enjoy and care for long after the wedding. If you are looking to get even more creative, then swap out the flowers for some little succulents. These plants are trendy and a great way to include a more natural feel to your wedding. The best part? They are available all-year round, so you don’t have to worry about seasonal pieces.
For a fun addition to your tables, include potted herbs that complement the served dishes. Your guests will enjoy picking a custom garnish for their meal.
Avoid messy waste removal by setting up compost bins at your wedding. Including a compost option is an excellent way to minimize any additional costs from your caterer, while also reducing the amount of unnecessary garbage in a landfill.
Along with composting, you should also discuss with your caterer the portions of food you want for the guests. While you don’t want to starve your friends and family, you also don’t want to see piles of food in the trash. Be reasonable with the amount you plan to serve—and avoid buffet style if possible.
Most women have a vision of their perfect wedding dress, and often that garment is expensive. The good news is you don’t have to lose this vision to save money. Try talking with family and seeing if your mother or great grandmother has a wedding dress that you can carry on the tradition of wearing. If you want a more modern look, you can always have the dress tailored. These adjustments are less costly than buying a whole new dress and reusing is a guaranteed way to be more earth-friendly.
If you aren’t feeling your family’s wedding dress style, then turn to a consignment shop or even rent a dress. A consignment shop could have the dress of your dreams at a fraction of the cost for a new gown. Again, you can always work with a seamstress to alter the dress to your liking.
More than likely you won’t wear your wedding dress again. Browse around online for stores where you can rent a dress—some companies even have sustainable lines with fabrics made of cotton, silk, and hemp. Additionally, you could rent dresses for your bridesmaids or even coordinate for them to wear clothes they already own.
Food is the heart of any celebration, but you don’t have to sacrifice taste or quality by going green. Many weddings and events are joining the farm-to-table movement, meaning it’s easier to access healthy and eco-friendly food.
Organic food tends to be more costly, but buying locally grown and in-season products, you can keep the costs down. Individual vendors may also be able to locally source ingredients for the cake, bread, and even the main courses. Since you’re buying local everything is fresh and nearby, which means less fuel for transportation.
Some Quick and Eco-Friendly Tips for Saving Money:
-Use digital prints and don’t print all of your photos—just the favorites.
-Borrow, rent, or reuse jewelry.
-Repurpose chairs, tables, lights, tents to avoid rental and purchasing costs.
Your wedding will be one of the most memorable days of your life surrounded by family and friends, but that doesn’t mean it has to be expensive. It is possible to avoid the hefty price tag, while still having an amazing and eco-friendly ceremony.
Consider some of the ways we’ve provided for you to save money on your big day. Start by looking at your budget and comparing how these methods would reduce the overall costs. Even by switching to email invitations you are already saving money that could be used for a vacation, house, or even another part of your wedding. With these methods, you are not only mindful of your finances, but you’re also thoughtful and eco-friendly to the environment.