HAVE A LOOK AT WHAT INSPIRES US AND WHAT WE ARE THINKING ABOUT.
Organic Weddings, inspired by Organic September
With the arrival of Organic September we have fresh inspiration for eco-friendly wedding celebrations, which have a positive impact on the special couple, their guests and the planet. In addition, the IPCC’s latest climate report shows us we have little time to spare when it comes to reversing the damage we’ve done. It has been predicted that the globe will warm by 1.5 degrees by 2030, a decade earlier than previously expected. So in the knowledge that the wedding industry is high up on the list of climate culprits, we’re keen to inspire a change. For reference, the Green Bride Guide states that the average wedding produces 400 lbs of garbage and 63 tons of CO2. That’s as many emissions as 4 average people would emit in a year, emitted on one single day.
Our simple solutions to these big problems should help you plan a more sustainable and eco-friendly wedding, whether it’s going ahead in September or any time of the year!
01 SUSTAINABLE FLOWER SOLUTIONS
Seasonal flower solutions are the quickest way to reduce the carbon footprint of your wedding. Selecting a local supplier will also solve issues like mileage, and you can ask about imports to make sure your florist sources their stock from the UK.
In September alone, there are a range of stunning flowers in season: orchids, dahlias, daisies, peonies and hydrangeas are just a select few on offer at this time of year. If you’re celebrating a bit later in the season, you could go for anemones, lilies, delphiniums, roses or carnations.
Translating this floral message throughout the bride and bridesmaids bouquets, buttonholes, table flowers, and any installations, will reduce the carbon footprint as extravagant flowers are not being shipped in globally. You should also seriously consider where these flowers are going to end up post-event – you could compost them, or give them to wedding suppliers or family members as a thank you.
Another alternative here, and a real Marble Private fave, are dried flowers. These keep for such a long time that they can even be distributed as wedding favours at the end of the ceremony for a sweet reminder of a special day (more on this later!). Being dried, there is also more choice for flowers that are out of season – simply dry a bouquet of gorgeous flowers in summer and they’ll be ready for your autumn wedding!
02 SEASONAL CATERING
Similarly to flowers, catering can be selected by seasonal in order to reduce your wedding’s carbon footprint. Marble Private works with suppliers up and down the UK, so we usually select a local caterer who can provide well thought out food that leaves less of a mark on the planet.
Again, try to research ingredients that are in season around the time of your wedding and work with your catering supplier to build a menu that creatively uses those ingredients. If they’re sourced locally, they’ll be even fresher and more delicious too!
In September, you have plenty of choice in seasonal ingredients: aubergines, butternut squash, blackberries and courgettes are just some examples. Whether it’s a cool canape or the main course, cutting down on imported ingredients and also food waste can have a huge difference when it comes to wedding sustainability. You should also take a look at how you store and display the food – there’s absolutely no excuse for disposables anymore.
03 ECO-FRIENDLY WEDDING FAVOURS
Thinking about wedding favours creatively goes beyond simply reducing plastic; if you can give a gift which isn’t single use, or has at least some longevity, then you will not only be reducing your carbon footprint but also giving guests a way to remember your special day.
Some sweet eco wedding favours we’ve seen at weddings we’ve organised include glass bottles of limoncello (at an Italian-themed wedding); mini dried flower bouquets dispersed from the wedding flowers (as we mentioned earlier); and even ‘thank you’ cards made from cardboard and seeds, so that guests can plant them in their gardens and have a beautiful reminder of the event. Even simply avoiding paper in this way can help the environment massively.
04 CHOOSING WASTE-FREE ALTERNATIVES
In a similar vein, weddings are notoriously wasteful, so Marble always take logistical planning to the next level in order to reduce as much waste as possible pre- and post-event. We’ve heard the term ‘paperless’ for years now, but what does this really mean? And how can it be implemented into wedding planning when traditionally, there is so much paper used across the event?
Some finer details then you may not even consider when thinking about how to reduce waste include table name place cards. Instead of paper, why not get creative and use something like a tambourine to write guests names on? (They can later be used during the live music set so everybody feels involved!)
Digital alternatives are also now all the rage, from digital invites to QR code maps showing guests around the wedding site (which can all be designed by an illustrator and given some interactivity). These solutions are also extremely useful when it comes to Covid, as they make the process relatively touch-free.
Overall, we recognise how wedding traditions are important to couples. But in an industry that produces so much waste and has a huge carbon footprint, we want to find creative ways to make the celebration more eco-friendly. The beauty of the day doesn’t need to be compromised – but the environment will thank you!
Photo by Marble Private, Words by Hattie Creese