Ten Ideas for a Green Wedding

An organic dahlia fountain by The Flower Ladies of Boulder Creek, CA

An organic dahlia fountain by The Flower Ladies of Boulder Creek, CA

by Jorie Henrickson for VideoWeddingGuide.com

Plan a Monterey Bay wedding with a smaller, friendlier footprint! Here are eco-conscious ideas in ten categories of wedding planning.

1. Wedding rings – Ensure that the symbol of your love is free of bad karma. When choosing your wedding rings, use heirloom metals and stones or buy rings from a jeweler who ensures that gems are produced ethically. You can read an excellent article about gemstone mining and get a list of ethical wedding ring vendors at greenamerica.org.

2. Invitations & save-the-date cards – Some brides and grooms use email only. At Video Wedding Guide, our romantic side prefers old-fashioned, tangible wedding invitations. They look better in a scrapbook :-). You can choose invitations that are printed on recycled paper or hemp paper with vegetable-based inks.

A local Monterey Bay wedding vendor to meet: Crescent Moon Paper Company. They have beautiful recycled paper options. Crescent Moon is available by appointment at the Old Sashmill near downtown Santa Cruz.

3. Food & drink – Hire a caterer who specializes in organic and locally-grown food, artisan-made products and sustainable seafood.

Choose organic wines — and if you’re getting married in the Monterey Bay, support a local winery! The Organic Wine Trail in the Santa Cruz Mountains includes Alfaro Family Vineyards, Cooper-Garrod Estate Vineyards, Silver Mountain Vineyards and Vine Hill Winery.

Want help choosing organic wines for your wedding? Contact VINOTEMPO Professional Wine Services at 831.713.0246 for a consultation with a classy Santa Cruz sommelier.

4. Wedding cake – Choose an organic bakery or ask a baker to use organic ingredients. Hoffman’s Bistro and Patisserie in downtown Santa Cruz is known for sourcing only local and high-end goods.

5. Welcome gifts for out-of-towners – Give whole foods like fruits, nuts and organic chocolates. Include local wine or bottled water from a responsible source.

Package the contents in reusable bags or baskets. You can find new baskets locally at World Market or Ross, or use white spray paint to revive old baskets from a Santa Cruz thrift shop.

6. Bridal party gifts – Some ideas for eco-friendly gifts include tree saplings, seeds, jars of organic jellies and honey, and homemade candles. Check out the Santa Cruz farmers markets for local products.

Tree saplings as wedding favors or bridal party gifts. Image from libbyjamesblog.com.

Tree saplings as wedding favors or bridal party gifts. Image from libbyjamesblog.com.

7. Flowers – Hire a florist like The Flower Ladies who grows all or most of the blooms they use. Request to avoid foreign-grown flowers. To reduce waste and cost, transfer flowers from the ceremony to the reception.

After the wedding, donate the floral arrangements to a retirement home or hospital.

8. Bridal attire – Wear vintage recycled fashions, rent bridal attire, or choose eco-conscious dress and suit designers. Hemp-silk blends are gorgeous, pesticide-free, and very Santa Cruz!

9. Transportation – Provide a shuttle, a horse-drawn carriage or bicycles to help guests move between sites.

10. Lighting – Use solar lanterns or beeswax candles for beautiful lighting and ambiance.

Just adopting a few green wedding ideas makes a big difference. Happy wedding planning!



Do you have more tips for a green wedding? Please share them below!

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