Reuse & recycle.
All phrases you'll have heard before, & for good reason. We're all responsible for creating a better & safer world for future generations & now more than ever, it's becoming apparent what an important subject this is to address.
Now, you'll be forgiven for thinking that as both an events organiser & wedding planner, this subject may not be something that I address very often. However, you'd be wrong! And here I am to explain just how they affect me on a daily basis.
At my wedding shows - whether they're Anti Wedding Shows or Classic Venue Open Days - I give out goody bags & gifts.
The goody bags are made of recycled material & are made to be reused as much as possible, before being recycled.
The gifts are all made to either be recycled (such as the notebooks, with paper or cardboard covers - not plastic) or reused then recycled, such as the pens which - to the best of my knowledge - are all able to be recycled.
The presentation boxes that I have introduced this month as additional gifts in goody bag are made of recyclable materials (cardboard) & filled with shredded paper. The box & paper can be reused several times, then be recycled.
Additional gifts are now a mix of consumables & reusable then recyclable.
Oh, & the box is tied with cute ribbon that's again reusable then can be recycled.
I don't give out magazines any more. SHOCK HORROR right? Well, here's the thing... I don't think many people read them! Instead they take up space in people's houses then fill the recycling bin. Think of all the trees we could be saving!
So instead, I encourage you all to look online for your ideas, use search facilities like Pinterest etc to gather ideas.
Also make connections with exhibitors via their social media & follow their businesses in this way.
I also encourage (although don't force) exhibitors to only give out their cards & leaflets to couples who stop & chat, rather than putting into EVERY bag. Personal preference on that one.
So, that's the skinny on the goody bags, what else do I do?
As a planner, I steer people towards things like natural confetti (dried petals, leaves, etc) or biodegradable confetti.
No more plastic sprinkles! We already had this rule over at Flaxbourne Gardens, as it damages the gardens & lawns, plus pollutes the ponds.
So I decided to make it part of my own recommendations too.
Instead of confetti, how about bubbles? Even prettier!
I encourage people to hire their decorative items for the big day.
Sure, you wanna do everything yourself & be the boss of wedding DIY.
But what are you going to do with all those bits afterwards? Sell them on & get half your money back? Keep them in storage until they go manky & you throw them into landfill? NOT have storage space for them & chuck them out straight away?
None of these make financial & economical sense, so no. Not on my watch!
Hire items in from the experts - you'll know they're top quality, the cost will be lower, there's no issue about space & storage afterwards... meaning less chance of landfill!
Flowers next. Now, flowers are by their nature environmentally friendly already - given that they eventually rot down & become lovely compost. But you can help the sustainability even further, by only choosing locally grown flowers.
Not only will their carbon footprint be lower, but they'll also last longer because they've not travelled anywhere near as far as the more exotic blooms. WINNER!
Well I think this is enough to be getting on with. I guess what I'm trying to say - in a rather roundabout way - be mindful of your choices. Get rid of the single use plastics, buy local, recycle & resuse where at all possible...
I hope you've found this interesting & useful, what else would YOU add to this list of ideas? I'd love to know your thoughts! Email firstname.lastname@example.org
PS for some lovely choices that are environmentally friendly and sustainable, then check out www.appletreeandavalon.co.uk - you can get bit bits for home & garden, the kids, your toiletries... even bits that are suitable as wedding favours. I LOVE their choices :)
I'm a qualified wedding planner dedicated to designing & creating weddings for alternative couples. Because everyone deserves a wedding as unique as they are