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Bride Guide, Part 1: Green Your Wedding

May 23, 2012

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For many of us, the summer means wedding season, and IIN is here to help! Whether you’re planning your own big day or generously pitching in for a friend, our Bride Guide is stocked with tips to make the most of that walk down the aisle.

First up are some timely tricks for eco-friendly brides: How to Green Your Wedding.

Something old, new, borrowed, and…green?

As you know, weddings are usually much bigger than your average party (and have a ton of moving parts), so they can create a lot of excess and leave a hefty carbon footprint. Use these tips to keep your affair green and earth-friendly:

The Dress: It’s important to feel beautiful on your big day, but you don’t always need a brand-new dress to look like a movie star. These days, many chic and earth-conscious brides are opting for vintage dresses. Consignment shops and thrift-stores often carry classic, pre-worn looks, and you never know—you might just find this season’s style at discount prices.

The Invitations: There are a few ways to make your save-the-dates and invitations eco-friendlier. Consider using recycled paper goods or invitations with detachable response cards to cut down on waste. You can also list directions, registry information, and other relevant details on a wedding website. (While we understand why some brides prefer traditional invitations, others have cut paper out of the equation by sending invitations and fielding RSVPs exclusively through email!)

The Flowers: Instead of having cut flower arrangements, consider using potted herbs or plants as your reception accents and centerpieces. Guests can take them home, replant them, and think of your special day as they grow.

The Favors: Jordan almonds are a nice thought, but these traditional favors can easily turn into clutter that gets forgotten or left behind. A great way to honor your guests is to make a small donation in their name to a charity close to your heart.

The Food: Caterers around the country have gotten on board with green, sustainable practices and organic foods, so it’s fairly easy to find companies who can source local foods, adhere to recycling standards, generally cut down on waste. Some brides—especially those having more intimate events—have even turned their receptions into potluck dinners!

What’s your favorite tip for having a green wedding?