Making your wedding green

Here at Coombe Lodge, our beautiful country wedding and events venue only 13 miles from Bristol, we pride ourselves on many things. Stunning surroundings, comfortable rooms and exquisite food and drink, all go a long way to making your wedding day absolutely perfect. But more and more, we are asked by our couples, how they can ensure that their wedding has as little impact upon the environment as possible, and this is an area that we’re increasingly aware of, and interested in.

It has to be said that traditionally weddings are not the most environmentally friendly activity. So the team here at Coombe Lodge wanted to come up with a few easy tips that can really help if you’re concerned about the potential environmental impact of your wedding.

1. Flowers

The flowers are a very easy way to reduce your carbon footprint. Imported flowers are often flown half-way around the world before they’ve made it in to your bouquet. There are some excellent locally grown flower producers available. Talk to your florist about the origin of their flowers, and options available to you on your day. Whilst they may not be able to work with those special orchids flown from South America, they should be able to work within your colour scheme and create arrangements that are personal to you. Even better, ask whether anyone in your wedding party could help by growing some flowers themselves! And if that’s too much, consider using herbs or foliage from your own gardens to supplement the flowers.

2. Clothes

It might not be an obvious way to reduce your carbon footprint, but nowadays, this is a brilliant way of doing so. For instance, you could choose a dress that you might be able to wear again, or that could be given to a charity shop or re-sold? Likewise, you might be able to find the pre-loved dress of your dreams, which, with a few alterations, will fit like a dream! And if you are going all out for a brand new, custom made wedding dress, you can look for an ethical designer, who shares the same ethos as you do in ensuring that your clothes are as environmentally conscious as the rest of your wedding!

3. Wedding Favours

There are so many options available now when it comes to wedding favours that we’ve struggled to keep our list short! First, many of our guests are now choosing not to have favours – it isn’t necessarily expected. That said, if you do choose to have favours, how about hand-made biscuits? These could also double up as place names, thus reducing even more paper use! Perhaps you could give each guest a small packet of wild flower seeds, or a little bunch of herbs tied in to their napkin? Or perhaps you could write a note, saying that instead of favours, you’ve made a small donation to an environmental charity so that guests might feel that they’re doing ‘their bit’ too. We’ve got lots of favour ideas so please do ask us if you’d like to discuss.

4. Gifts

The gift list is always one that gets our couples debating. Many of you will have already been living together for some time, and you might feel that you just don’t need any more towels or picture frames…You could ask for a donation towards an environmental charity or a cause that is close to your heart. Or perhaps you’d like to work on your garden, and would appreciate vouchers and contributions towards some plants or a water feature? Or if you’re planning on reducing car miles once you’re a married couple, how about some donations towards bikes? Have a look online – we now see so many wonderful gift list alternatives, and it’s brilliant to see what couples come up with.

5. Honeymoon

Guests seem used to helping out with that all important holiday – the honeymoon – in lieu of giving a wedding gift. Lots of companies now specialise in eco-tourism, and will advise on eco-friendly destinations, as well as how you can offset your air miles. If you want to be really green, then a UK break might be for you. Let’s face it, we have so much to offer close to home and you can save travelling time (and money) meaning more time for relaxing with your beloved.

Whatever your plans are for your big day, the Coombe Lodge team would love to help. To arrange a look around our beautiful venue, or to talk about your wedding, please give Martha or one of the team a call on 01761 463355.

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