There has been a lot of interest in ethical weddings recently. Celebrities have talked about things they chose for their wedding with environmental, cultural, or other ethical considerations in mind. It has led to a lot of confusion about what an ethical wedding is. And with few ‘real world’ role models, it all starts to sound like it might be quite expensive!
Despite the hype and the lack of clear information, an ethical wedding is something that anyone can enjoy on any budget. In fact, you might find that many budget weddings work well when the happy couple adopts ethical options into their ceremony and reception. So where can you start?
There are lots of options, but you don’t have to take advantage of them all. Generally speaking, you should choose the ones that work for you both. You might start with the dress. This is for just one day so consider what you might do with your beautiful gown afterward. Recycling it could be one option. With that in mind, why not choose a wedding dress that has been preloved? This could save you money, but it also spares the environment from the extra energy required to make a new one.
Why not choose flowers that grow naturally in your own garden? Select from blooms that happen to be in season anyway. You could be saving the environment from the energy required to grow out-of-season. Artificial flowers may have come from a factory, but they can last for decades and be reused again and again.
Even your wedding jewelry could be ethically sourced. Precious metals like gold come from places that might be war torn or invoke poor employee conditions. Choosing rings that have been ethically sourced from places like Brilliant Earth, can avoid involvement with any of those issues. It can help alleviate guilt for some.
The food you choose for your big day could also be considered ethical. It’s not essential to choose an entirely vegan menu. But why not select local growers and community sourced dishes to reduce the effect on the environment. And if you are concerned by the amount of traffic on the roads, why not pick a venue near to the majority of your guests? You can even arrange public transport to help everyone reduce their carbon footprint!
The easiest options for your ethical wedding might include using recycled materials for your invitations and place settings. Perhaps the most difficult for a newlywed couple is to request that wedding gifts be donations to charitable causes. This is hugely generous of you and everyone in your wedding party. And it could make a big difference to others in the world.
The options here provide choices for you and your guests to promote the idea of good ethics at your event. How far you go will depend on your preferences, your budget, and the practicalities of your day. Even if you don’t take any of them on, chances are you’ll find your own way to enjoy the most important day of your life by helping others with theirs.