We were thrilled to team up with Cheryl Fenton from Boston Magazine to explore ways in which brides can reduce waste and stay eco-friendly on their wedding day.
(Reported from Boston Magazine)
With this year’s Earth Day being April 22, we tapped Mandy Connor, owner of Hummingbird Bridal and Events, for a few ways to making Mother Nature her guest of honor.
With at least half of her brides considering themselves “eco-chic” or “eco-conscious,” she let the little birdie out of the bag with ideas on how to be a an Earth Day bride. Here are a few simple of how Connor plans her gorgeous events while focusing on taking care of our planet.
Using floral farms located within 150 miles of your florist’s studio “not only allows us to focus on locally sourced and in-season florals, but it gives us the opportunity to support local farmers,” says Connor. Added bonus: locally sourced, in-season flowers are less expensive than those shipped in from exotic locales. New England is so beautiful, why not tap into its bounty? “Using local blooms also cuts down on transportation waste and really allows us to reflect the local fauna in a beautiful New England setting,” she adds.
For a more obvious Earth connection, purchase small trees that can be used throughout your celebration. “You can use two large ficus trees with small hanging glass lanterns to create a natural archway for your vows. It’s not only breathtaking, but it’s eco-friendly,” she says. At the end of the day, have the trees delivered to your home, where you can plant them. “It’s the ultimate in ‘eco-conscious giving back,’ and the trees serve as an ongoing reminder of how your love grows over time.”
Explore caterers who also make use of local and seasonal ingredients. Caterers like Season to Taste use ingredients that must be sourced within 150 miles of their kitchens, while ForkLift Catering is a scratch kitchen that uses local farms and fisheries. “This cuts down on transportation waste, and allows the kitchen to create dishes that fit the season and embody local flavors, while supporting local farmers and butchers,” says Connor.
With all the trees we’re trying to save, suddenly your wedding suite doesn’t seem so sweet. Opt to go paperless entirely with sites like Appy Couple and Paperless Post, where you can email fully customized save-the-dates and invitations. As a bonus, guests can RSVP directly through the apps, allowing you to quickly and easily manage your guest count and dinner options. If you still want in-your-hand invitations, have them printed on seed paper, a heavy stock recycled paper that’s embedded with tiny flower seeds. After the wedding, you can bury the pieces of paper and watch as they sprout beautiful wildflowers.
For Connor, the name of the decor game is reclaimed and reusable. In creating a wedding day that tells the story of each couple, she and her team use eco-friendly decor and styling elements to tell a visual story of who the couple is, how they came to be, and where they are going. “In planning a wedding for a local brewer, we’re using beautiful wooden barrels from the brewery to create table tops and bars. We’ll also make use of strands of freshly grown hops, and vintage lanterns to light up the night. For the bonfire after-party, we’ve collected an array of cozy blankets from various family members, which will be returned after.”
This is a great place to donate to your favorite charities, letting your guests know that you have contributed in their names. But if you really want to give guests a tangible gift to remember your wedding day, consider having family members participate in making batches of family recipes as favors. Think: grandma’s famous fudge or a beloved aunt’s special cookies, anything that shares an intimate part of your family history. Package the treats in recycled craft paper bags with the recipe and thank you note attached.
As it turns out, it’s quite easy being green.
Photo courtesy of Lorenz Photography