Flowers can be, and commonly are, a huge part of a wedding. There’s your bouquet, and your bridesmaids’ too. Corsages for the Moms. Boutonnieres for the men. Don’t forget the flower girl and ring bearer too, if you’re choosing to have them. Centerpieces, flowers for the ceremony – the list goes on and on.
Often, flowers are flown in from other countries leaving behind a sizable carbon footprint and likely, they were grown with toxic fertilizers and pesticides. And then, of course, we throw them away. Don’t cringe, you’ve got options.
If real flowers are a must, choose local, in-season blooms and a florist that grows organically or sources from farmers that do. Consider using potted flowers and plants for your centerpieces that you or your guests can take home. Line your aisle with potted trees, plants & flowers as well. Use fresh herbs for boutonnieres. Also consider dried flowers. If you have a fresh flower bouquet and want to preserve it, choose a preservation company, like Good Old Days Eco Florist in New Windsor, NY, who does the job without the use of harsh chemicals and purchases carbon offsets to balance their energy consumption.
If you’re open to some non-floral ideas, you have plenty to choose from.
Silk flowers for your bouquets, corsages, boutonnieres and even your hair, are a great alternative. Emici Bridal makes gorgeous pieces. Stephanie, owner of Clark and Diversey on Etsy, also makes beautiful floral hair accessories made from eco-friendly fabrics.
Brooch bouquets were a big trend and are still a very beautiful way to replace the fresh flowers. I love the bouquets from Nicolasa Cicero on Etsy. Do you have heirloom pieces that you can add to your bouquet? This is a really nice way to honor your family’s history. Having an outdoor wedding? Have your bridesmaids carry pretty vintage umbrellas and parasols instead.
Non-floral centerpieces are also a great option and a chance for you to be creative and unique. Use an array of framed photos. Fill recycled glass cylinders and jars with pinecones, baby gourd or apples in the fall; beach glass, fresh veggies or citrus fruits in the summer.
Candles are always a great idea. They add to the ambiance with romantic lighting and are relatively inexpensive too. Choose beeswax or soy, please. Unscented is always better so they don’t take away from the aroma of the delicious meal your guests will be served but if you think you’ll miss the fragrance from the flowers, choose those scented naturally using essential oils and herbs.
How about ecospheres? Self-sustaining eco-systems with active micro-organism living in pretty glass globes. These are amazing and another great item your guests can take with them.
The sky’s the limit here. Do something really creative that boldly states your green values and who you are as a couple. And have a fabulous time doing it!
Lisa Marie Blinn is the owner and principal planner of L. Marie Events.