8 ways you can be more eco-conscious as a bride in 2023

When planning a wedding, there are several factors to consider. Do you want a summer wedding or a winter one? Do you want one intimate event or extravagant events that continue throughout the week? What is your cuisine of choice? However, for the eco-conscious bride, planning her big day involves navigating an additional agenda.

There are over 35,000 South Asian weddings annually in the UK alone. This is something that is increasingly impacting the environment more and more every year.

Whatever your reasoning, in 2023 being more eco-conscious as a bride is a popular choice. Since the pandemic, low-key weddings have grown in popularity which means that people are thinking of innovative ways to keep their dreams big, while minimising their carbon footprint. Here, Ayrela selects 8 ways you can be more sustainable for your wedding.

1. The Jewellery

From engagement rings to the jewellery you’ll wear on your big day, sustainability is an important factor for brides. The sustainable wedding ring was one of the most pinned wedding trends on Pinterest according to in 2022. Not only are lab-grown diamonds better for the environment, but on average they are 50% less expensive than mined diamonds. Another option is to use family heirlooms. You can melt down gold, refine it, or even set existing stones into new jewellery. Or you can simply borrow something from a family member. Not only will this be a sentimental gesture but a sustainable one too.

2. The Venue

When choosing a wedding venue, look out for the ones that take sustainability seriously. Do they recycle? Is it a beautiful space that will need minimal decorating and what daily practices do they take part in to lower their carbon footprint? Have a conversation with potential venues to make a well-informed decision. Another option is to marry outdoors, you’ll be cutting down costs, lowering energy consumption and if you pay for the space, you may even be paying towards their funding for conservation. When it comes to travel, it’s best to keep your wedding close to your guests to minimise the impact on the environment.

3. The Décor

Choose a venue or location that already has beautiful details. Opting to marry outside, in a greenhouse, botanical garden or a glass conservatory for example means less wastage on decorations. Another option for you is to rent decorations for the wedding duration or buy and allow people to rent from you in the future. You may even want to consider using items you already own like mirrors, vases, lanterns and buying things you’ll later incorporate into your home. Using the circular model is a much more sustainable approach.

4. The Food

As with any big event, there is bound to be leftovers. Plan with caterers and the wedding venue on how you intend to ensure there is minimal food wastage. Plated dinners as opposed to buffets, donating to local food banks, charities and homeless shelters, and making sure food has the necessary plastic-free packaging to transport the food will ensure this process goes smoothly.

5. The Cake

When you’re choosing a baker for your wedding cake it’s important you check that they are only going to use ethically sourced, fairtrade and seasonal fruits to create that masterpiece. You can go one step further by asking for vegan ingredients if you want.

6. The Guest List

This is often the most stressful part of wedding planning in a South Asian household. Family members often have a difference of opinions on how big the wedding should be and who should be invited. If there’s one thing we learnt from the pandemic, it’s the power of technology. Why not enable people to join your wedding virtually in order to be kinder to the planet? Offer a live-stream option for guests. The fewer amount of people physically present, the smaller the impact to the planet in many ways. Hey, it’s 2023, people are doing everything via Zoom.

7. The Dress

If you’re avoiding single use plastic on your wedding day, why buy single use attire? Leasing your wedding dress is the latest sustainable trend that a lot of brides are opting for. Leasing creates a lower carbon footprint from not requiring the production and shipping of an outfit from abroad. It gives you the excitement of owning a beautiful look and once you’ve finished wearing it you can simply return it for someone else to do the same, thereby extending the lifespan of each garment worn. If you do choose to buy your dress, why not list it via Ayrela and allow someone else to wear it after you? You’ll earn back the cost of the dress and it’s eco-friendly.

8. The Guest Wear

No one wants to be seen in the same outfit twice so this unfortunately leads to an extreme level of fashion wastage at weddings – something that is increasingly impacting the environment more and more every year.

You can lease outfits for everyone from the groom to your parents. It also means you can experiment with new trends. When you lease, you don’t have to calculate how many times you’ll wear an item to make it worthwhile or try to figure out whether you’ll still want to wear the outfit this time next year.

As you can probably tell, being sustainable doesn’t have to come with the cost of making sacrifices when it comes to your dream day. In fact, once you put your mind to it, it pays off in more ways than one. Happy planning!


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