Smart Eco-Friendly Swaps for Your Wedding Day

Let's face it: a wedding can generate a ton of waste. Here's how to reduce your wedding's carbon footprint.

Start with the invitations. "Nowadays, there is a wide variety of recycled and tree-free paper, including handmade, colorful, and artistic materials. Ask your stationer if they can print your invite using soy-based inks, which put less pollution into the waterways. By using reply postcards and nixing the inner envelope and tissue, you'll use less paper altogether while saving on cost. You can also consider going entirely digital. Here's to 'inviting' a greener future through eco-friendly wedding invitation choices!" —Jenna Miller, Creative Director of Here Comes The Guide

eco friendly wedding invitation
Invitation by Little Green Paper Shop via Etsy

Rent instead of buying items you'll only use once. "You can have the wedding of your dreams and reduce its impact on the environment. We were all taught to reduce, reuse, and recycle. Those simple rules can help you plan your eco-friendly wedding too. One easy way to 'reuse' is to rent your formalwear instead of buying it. When you and your wedding party rent your suits or tuxedos, you'll all look great for the big day, and you'll simply send it back so another couple can reuse that great look for their wedding. And renting is a lot cheaper than buying, so it's a win-win for you and the planet." —Matt Ramirez, SVP of Marketing, Generation Tux

wedding tuxedos
Photo: Deyla Huss Photography via Bridal Bliss


Choose options that are re-wearable whenever you can. "One of the most important days of your life can end up being one of the days where a number of items are used only once. Gifting your bridal party with a high quality PJ set that they can wear again and again will remind them of the lasting memories from your special day. Even better, opt for those made from a fabric such as linen or viscose for an eco-friendly benefit." —Kristy Breed & Helen Semovski, Director & Designer, Le Rose Stories

le rose stories bride bridesmaid pajamas
Photo: Le Rose Stories

Choose organic fabrics & dyes for your attire whenever possible. "At Poémia, we exclusively use fibers such as organic cotton and biodegradable cupro to produce effortless and romantic wedding gowns. These materials are fully biodegradable and will break down safely over time. We also encourage brides to find ways to wear their gown again after their wedding day, which is why our Ever After package is included with the purchase of any Poémia bridal gown. The Ever After package gives brides the option to send their gown back to us after the wedding to have it converted into a dress that can be worn every day, with the option to shorten as well as naturally dye their dress. Poémia makes the choice of making an eco-friendly swap on your wedding day a simple one." —Katie Rieben, Co-Founder + Head of Product, Poémia

poema wedding gown
Gown by Poémia / Photo: Kotaro Kawashima 

Host your wedding at a nonprofit or green venue. "Most historical societies, art galleries, and museums also operate a charity — which means your rental fee will go toward supporting their organization. Some of these venues stay afloat through donations and volunteer work, so you can rest assured the money you're spending is going to a good cause. You can also choose a green wedding venue that practices sustainability, or simply let Mother Nature provide your wedding backdrop! Having your ceremony in the midst of rolling meadows, botanical gardens, or forested hillsides means minimal décor and less waste." —Miller

outdoor wedding
Photo: Brandi Image Photography