How to Throw a Green Wedding Shower
Green is chic these days, but it’s not an easy road to travel, especially when we’re too excited by the sound of wedding bells. Contrary to popular thought, throwing an eco-friendly wedding shower doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. The following are small changes you can make to standard wedding shower décor, food, and more to make the special day special for the earth, too.
- Buy invitations made with recycled paper and printed with vegetable-based inks. Think Green Printing.
- Send postcards so you don’t have to waste paper (or money) on envelopes.
- Alternatively, send e-vites. With an elegant design, there’s nothing cheesy about them. For recipients without an email address, give them a good old fashioned phone call.
- Politely announce that you are throwing an eco-friendly shower. (This can be tricky. Try not to make too many specific requests, except for the one below.)
- Politely ask guests not to wrap their presents with conventional wrapping paper and to instead use napkins, bandanas, clothing, bath or dish towels, and other reusable items.
- Opt for a room with lots of windows so you can cut down on the electricity bill. Sunlight is more flattering than fluorescent lighting, anyway. Alternatively, have the party on a grassy lawn.
- If it rains on the day (grumble, grumble), just use CFLs, compact fluorescent lights, which come in a variety of shades and styles to suit your needs while eating up less energy than incandescent bulbs.
Food, Drink, and Utensils
- Two words: farmers’ market.
- Talk to local growers and discuss what sort of shindig you’re planning. They’ll be happy to help you with their tried-and-true recipes, organic and fresh flowers, and maybe local wine.
- If you’re already buddy-buddy with the vendors, they might offer you a discount (but try to resist pushing for one; farmers have it rough these days).
- For dishes and utensils, avoid plastic and paper, even if it’s recycled. The best way to go is by using your own dishes.
- Consignment shops and thrift stores will also have nice dishware and silverware for cheaper prices than many other stores. (Best of all, you won’t be consuming so much as re-using, making your carbon-footprint smaller.) Bring the shower into the kitchen when it’s time to clean up instead of throwing plates away.
- Use real napkins instead of paper ones. Keep them for yourself or wash and present them to the bride.
- Potted plants like succulents and flowers in terra cotta pots make great centerpieces. Try to get your plants from the farmers’ market. Columbia is today the dominant producer of American cut flowers. That’s a lot of CO2 for a few roses.
- Soy wax candles burn cleaner and longer than conventional candles. Make sure the wick is lead-free.
- Instead of streamers and balloons, strategically place potted bamboo shoots or even dried stalks in tall vases for an eco-chic feel.
- Sprinkle the tables with flower petals, seeds, or pretty leaves instead of confetti.
Favors and Gifts Ideas
- Organic, fairly traded chocolate
- Homemade and naturally scented soaps (if you’re just not the DIY type, look for a local soap maker on Etsy)
- Organic and cruelty-free beauty products
- Reusable tote bags
- Bamboo kitchen items like cutting boards, spatulas, bowls, and dish towels
- Indoor composters (try the Bokashi bin)
- Cotton or hemp shower curtains
Bio: Alexis Bonari is currently a resident blogger at College Scholarships, where recently she’s been researching federal student loan consolidation as well as teaching MA scholarships. Whenever this WAHM gets some free time she enjoys doing yoga, cooking with the freshest organic in-season fare, and practicing the art of coupon clipping.
- Wedding Cakes that Take the Cake (weddingsetups.com)
- Ball and Chain Party Theme (weddingsetups.com)
- Who Pays for the Royal Wedding (infographicsshowcase.com)
- *Feature Friday!* Floral Favours! (mysweetwedding.wordpress.com)