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How to Have an Ethical and Sustainable Wedding: Tips for Engaged Couples

Weddings are one of life's most beautiful and joyful celebrations, but they can have a significant impact on the environment and society. From diamond mining to single-use decor, the traditional wedding industry often promotes practices that are neither ethical nor sustainable. As engaged couples, however, you have the power to create a wedding that reflects your values and helps minimise your ecological footprint. In this blog post, we share tips on how to plan an ethical and sustainable wedding that respects people and the planet.

Be intentional

Being intentional with every decision means taking the time to research and understand the impacts of your choices. Instead of opting for the easiest or most readily available option, consider alternatives that align with your values. In the excitement of planning a wedding, it's easy to get swept up in traditional practices or what everyone else is doing. However, to have a truly ethical and sustainable wedding, it's crucial to research and explore all your options.

Start with your values

Before you start planning your wedding, take some time to clarify what matters most to you. Is it reducing waste, supporting local businesses, or prioritising social justice? By identifying your values, you can design a wedding that reflects your priorities. For example, if animal welfare is important to you, consider a vegan or vegetarian menu and avoid wearing animal products such as leather or fur. If social justice is important to you, choose small businesses or business run by marginalised communities.

Choose a sustainable venue

Choosing a wedding venue that shares your values can make a big difference in the sustainability of your wedding. Look for venues that have implemented environmentally-friendly practices and projects, like planting native plants, installing solar panels, or having water-saving systems. You can also choose a location that is close to both your ceremony and accommodations to reduce transportation needs.

At Foxcombe Hall we prioritise our natural woodlands. It has been carefully maintained to preserve its vibrant biodiversity. Nestled within the onsite woodlands, you can find a rich variety of wildlife including rabbits, deer, and frogs, adding an element of charm and natural beauty to the venue. Bird enthusiasts will be delighted with the abundance of bird species in the area, which includes a variety of different birds. Notably, the presence of Red Kites, majestic birds of prey, has inspired the name of our business. These creatures' grace and vitality reflect the ethos of our business, symbolising our commitment to sustainability and respect for nature.

Impact not glamour

Rather than focusing on grandeur and flamboyance, you can embrace the beauty of simplicity. Instead of large floral arrangements, consider simple greenery or locally-sourced wild flowers. Remember, the goal isn't to impress others with lavish displays, but to create meaningful, shared experiences that will be cherished for a lifetime.

From tablecloths to flowers, wedding decor can generate abundant waste and carbon emissions. Consider using rented decor, rather than buying single-use items, or invest in items that you or your guests can reuse. Some ideas include potted plants centerpieces or candles that can brighten up your space and later be taken home by your guests.

Rethink your wedding attire

Looking your best on your wedding day does not have to come at the expense of our environment. When selecting your attire, consider second-hand or vintage items, sustainable fabrics. Instead of investing in a dress or suit that you'll only wear once, consider selecting outfits that can be re-worn for other occasions or modified for everyday wear. If purchasing new, opt for designs that are timeless and versatile.

If buying a new outfit seems wasteful or out of your budget, remember that there are plenty of rental options available. Renting can also offer the opportunity to wear a high-quality designer piece that might otherwise be unaffordable. 

Give back to your community

Your wedding can also be an opportunity to support and benefit the community around you. Consider donating to charitable causes that reflect the values you hold dear or asking guests to consider donating to a charity in place of wedding gifts. You can also consider sourcing products like wedding favours and guestbooks from local artisans or business owners.

As a small business, we are deeply committed to making intentional choices about who we collaborate with. We believe in cultivating partnerships that reflect our core values of sustainability, community, and ethical practices. This means we strive to work with other small businesses, local artisans, and suppliers who also prioritise these principles. By doing so, we not only ensure that every aspect of our operations aligns with our ethos, but we also contribute to the growth and success of like-minded businesses within our community. Through these meaningful collaborations, we are proud to create a positive and lasting impact, both locally and on a broader scope.

Planning an ethical and sustainable wedding shows that it is possible to have a beautiful wedding that reflects your values of creating a better world. We hope these tips inspire you to make your special day an act of love and commitment to our planet and future generations. Remember, small steps can make a big impact. Happy wedding planning!

Written by Red Kite Love
Learn more about our wedding services here.

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