Monday, October 12, 2009

Save the planet...I mean Wedding

Reduce, Re-use, Recycle

We've all heard this phrase from the time we were in elementary school. Usually, it applies to our daily grind- trying to limit the amount of paper we use, rinsing out jars and using them for other things, and of course putting anything we possibly can into the recycling bin. So how does this apply to weddings?

Well, I should first admit that this has nothing to do with saving the planet-- but it does have to do with saving you and your family a ton of cash. Why not use some of the resources already available to you for the wedding ceremony and reception instead of purchasing more than you have to?

Not only should you be thinking about items you or your family have lying around the house, but also items that can be transported from the ceremony to the reception. Here are some basic ideas to help you cut back:

1) Centerpieces
These days, centerpieces can be anything the mind can possibly conjure. You don't need to have a traditional vase with roses in it. People come up with the most unique, creative and fun centerpieces that really blow the traditional ones out of the water. Not every table needs to be the same, either. So think about collecting a variety of vases from your house, your friends' houses and your family's house. I think it looks really cool to have some tall vases, some short, some wide, some narrow, etc. See what you can find. When you fill them, think of things that you don't have to buy. For example, you or your loved ones may have really cool greenery in the yard that can create a gorgeous natural piece that looks really whimsical and romantic. You could also collect some sand from a nearby beach to fill the vases with. One of the most obvious free centerpiece accents is water. Filling a vase with water and some floating flowers/candles can look really cool and eclectic- you might consider getting food coloring in your theme colors and dying the water. The sky is the limit!

2) Bouquets
So let's say you have 4 bridesmaids. There are 5 bouquets, including your own, that you girls are going to throw under the table as soon as the festivities get started. Why not leave the head table unadorned until you all get there? Have the vases filled with water and ready to go; then when the bridal party arrives, you all can put your beautiful bouquets in the vases and you've got your head table decor taken care of.

3) Accessories
Don't forget the beauty of the expression "Something borrowed". If your family and friends have gorgeous earrings, necklace, bracelet, hair pieces/ accessories, ask to borrow them! You don't need to buy $500 worth of jewelry for one day of wear.

4) Rentals
If you need to rent tables, chairs, etc for your wedding, consider having your rehearsal dinner with these items. The rentals will most likely be dropped off and set up 2-3 days in advance, so make use of the time you have them! You can most likely have the rehearsal dinner catered for less than going to a nice restaurant.

5) Entertainment
Do your family members or friends have special talents? Use them! If a friend is a good singer, ask her to sing for your ceremony or reception. If your little cousins Irish dance, ask them to perform for the crowd. If your wedding party is a bunch of jokesters, put together a surprise dance/ skit to perform. You and your loved ones can probably entertain your guests much better than a stranger could and have a lot of fun with it.

Do you have any other ideas about this topic?? Please share!

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