Totally Non-Traditional and Totally You: Eco Friendly Alternatives

Stocked picnic basket for blanket reception

Image source: Tinywaterblog.com

Tradition is great. It gives us a sense of history and provides guidelines for planning. But sometimes traditions just get in the way of a couple making their wedding their own. They may feel beholden to tradition and afraid their families or guests won’t understand their alternative ceremony, decorations, or theme. Some families are pretty extreme: my friend’s mom wasn’t involved in her daughter’s planning and she actually hired a private investigator to make sure the wedding plans were acceptable (seriously). It’s so sad when a couple gives up on their dreams for their wedding because of what other people will think. Instead, consider modifying traditions or do away with them all together! Your wedding should reflect just exactly what you want.

 

Forget the Formal Sit-Down Meal

Who says you have to have carefully decorated tables with place cards, favors, centerpieces, napkin rings, and the kitchen sink? While it’s nice to serve food (especially if your wedding is a multi-hour affair) you don’t have to create a restaurant-like atmosphere. Instead have a potluck with picnic tables or blankets on the lawn, or serve finger foods (shish kebabs are great, and filling). If you don’t want to worry about setting up a food table, consider hiring an organic food truck. They’re worry free—everything the chef needs is already in the truck—and after the wedding, they just drive away. No cleanup required!

 

Wear Comfortable Shoes!

Bridal party in matching rain boots

Image source: Ethicalweddings.com

Ditch those stilettos and wear your hiking boots instead! Or perhaps you’re the rubber boots type? Maybe you’d prefer some good old-fashioned sneakers (Chuck Taylors, anyone?) If your wedding is outdoors—in the backyard, on a farm, or on the beach—embrace the terrain. Being fancy just isn’t that much fun for everyone. Besides, your dress can still be luxurious if you have your heart set on some glamour.

 

Write Your Own Crazy Ceremony

Pavilion ceremony

Image source: Ethicalweddings.com

As long as you get the legal stuff out of the way, your ceremony can be absolutely anything you want it to be. When I got married, we wrote everything ourselves. We had a few eco-friendly readings (The Giving Tree was a crowd favorite) but the rest of it was weird, wacky, and totally original.

 

You Hate Cake!

There are a lot of people out there who just don’t care for cake (my little brother is one of them!) So, why would these people have cake at their weddings? In many cases, it’s just out of respect for tradition. If you want to respect it, go right ahead, but if you don’t, don’t let it cramp your style. Consider alternatives like pies, fruit tarts, chocolates, lollipops, and popsicles instead.

Read more green wedding blogs

The Green Bride Guide has everything you need to plan a green wedding. We've got a site full of inspiration -- from real wedding stories to eco-friendly wedding day items to organic gifts -- and offer the largest green wedding directory in the country!