How to be more eco friendly at your wedding or elopement

eco friendly wedding confetti with dried flowers in a paper holder

Happy Earth Day! Today is the day that we really should focus, reflect, and protect the planet that we live on. It is our home. It’s the very thing that allows us to breathe air, eat food, and drink water. Here are some ways to be more eco-friendly at your wedding or element:

Choose a venue that stands by eco-friendly principles

If you're picking a good weather season to get hitched in, why not consider an outdoor ceremony and reception? You'll be cutting down the cost of energy just by moving it outdoors.

If you choose a venue, can they cater for the whole day, from prep to dancing? This would save you and your guests gas to drive from location to location.

Would the venue have ready built decor already there? This saves you having to buy or make something to bring along.

Consider eco-friendly invites

The number one thing here would be to go digital! There are so many places online where you can design your own invite, and have the company take care of the RSVP's and everything gets sent straight to you. It's a great way to save on postage of mailing a whole load of invites out. Green Envelope is a great example of a company that does this.

If you are still set on wanting to mail invites, consider using paper invites instead of plastic.


If you’re ever going to go second hand, a wedding dress is a perfect reason, because it’s for an item of clothing that has probably only been worn once before! There are various places you can find used wedding dresses locally and online in your area.

Another option is to consider renting your suits or dresses. After all, what would you do with them afterwards? I still have my dress in a bin bag at the back of my closet. It's been there for 10 years. I wish I had rented. But, hindsight is a wonderful thing!

Ditch the plastic

You don't need the 150 plastic charger plates. In fact, rumour has it that charger plates are a dying trend in 2022. You could be creative and use paper decor for the table instead.

See about getting some bamboo plates and cutlery instead of plastic. And paper straws for the kids! Try to put the waste that is biodegradable into compost bags for easy disposal later on.

Guest favours

This is something that can easily reduce the amount of waste at a wedding. Why not consider an edible favour? Support local and buy some local jam or honey pots? Or even bake some homemade cookies! One wedding I went to a couple of years ago gave out biodegradable plant pots, each had a seed in. Several years later I now have 4 plants in various pots around the house from that one seed! What a lasting reminder fo that day.


Do you ever think about what happens to all of the confetti that is left on the ground after you've spent a whole second throwing it?

Why not use lavender as confetti? It would smell wonderful! Another idea is dried flower petals, or I've even seen hole punched green leaves if you're creative enough.

Leave No Trace

As a Leave No Trace Aware Photographer, I stand by these 7 principles:

- Plan ahead & prepare

- Be considerate of others

- Travel & camp on durable surfaces

- Dispose of waste properly

- Leave what you find

- Minimize campfire impacts

- Respect wildlife

- Be considerate of others

And remember, being eco-friendly doesn’t mean it has to be expensive or difficult, he could actually save you money in the long run!

The more people consider being eco-friendly for their wedding or elopement, the better protected our Earth will be.

If you'd like to chat about your upcoming wedding and how I can document it, check out my portfolio or get in touch.


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If you like unconventional, honest, friendly and real photos, I’m your person.

Sam Wildridge is a candid + lifestyle photographer / filmmaker based in Wainwright, Alberta. Sam has been capturing wedding, family + corporate photos for 9 years and defines her style as "organic storytelling".


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