At Epic Thyme, we love planning green, eco-friendly weddings that are good for the earth without compromising your wedding vision. There are so many ways to go green for your big day, but what about afterward? What do you do with all the leftover wedding food, supplies, and things you never plan on using again? Even though your wedding day has come and gone, there are still plenty of eco-friendly ways to dispose and disperse of wedding leftovers. Check out these eighteen post-wedding ideas to help reduce your environmental impact and make your big day a little more sustainable, even after you say “I do!”
Eco-Friendly Wedding Ideas for Leftover Food
After you and your guests enjoy the delicious food and desserts at your wedding, you may have some leftovers. Rather than throwing them away, here are five ways to minimize wedding waste.
Donate leftover food to a charity or food shelter.
Bring it to a local fire station.
Supply take-home containers for your guests.
Bring it back to your hotel or accommodations to enjoy during the after-party.
Ask your caterer to put it in freezer containers to save for a later time.
Some ideas require you to plan ahead, so talk to your wedding planner about coordinating a pick-up from a local charity or supplying take-home containers for your guests. It’s also important to talk to your caterer to ensure they can release the food to you for health code reasons.
Eco-Friendly Wedding Ideas for Leftover Decor and Supplies
There are many items you need for a wedding that you’ll likely never use in day-to-day life. If you plan to have a sustainable wedding, you can rent these essential items and simply return them after your wedding. However, if you purchased a lot of supplies and decor and you’re looking for eco-friendly ways to get them off your hands, try these three ideas.
Sell your wedding supplies. Selling wedding items is a great way to get them off your hands while making some of your money back. It also allows other couples to have a sustainable wedding by purchasing second-hand items. Since you only used them for one day, most will be in excellent condition. This might include tables and chairs, glasses, vases, candleholders, and even your wedding arch.
Repurpose your wedding decor. If you don’t want to get rid of your wedding items, you can find unique ways to repurpose them instead. For example, did you line your wedding aisle with boho rugs for an organic-style ceremony? Use them in your home, and you’ll have your wedding memories on your living room floor for years to come! Did you purchase decorative lights for your evening outdoor reception? Put them in your backyard, or take them out during the holidays to add some sparkle!
Give away perishable items. Some wedding decorations and supplies won’t last long enough to sell or repurpose. Instead, you can give them away to your wedding guests or vendors. For example, send all of your on-site vendors home with a floral centerpiece, along with their vendor tips.
Eco-Friendly Wedding Ideas for Leftover Flowers
Recycling your wedding flowers after the ceremony is an excellent way to go green once your wedding is over. Here are a few ways to reuse and recycle your floral arrangements.
Hang them to dry and use in crafts or decorations.
Press them in a book and send one flower with each wedding thank you card.
Turn your flowers into potpourri to enjoy for a little while longer.
Compost your flowers into rich, nutrient mulch for more plants to grow.
Eco-Friendly Wedding Ideas for Your Wedding Attire
Some couples want to keep their wedding dress or suit as a reminder of their wedding day. Others simply don’t have the space in their closet. Here’s what you can do instead:
Sell your dress online. There are plenty of sites where you can list your item, from Facebook Marketplace and eBay to wedding-specific reselling websites. You can also list your shoes, jewelry, and any other attire you’re ready to let go of.
Give your wedding attire to someone in need. Do you know someone who can’t afford an elaborate gown or snazzy tux? Consider gifting your wedding attire to them!
Make something new with the material. If you’re a skilled seamstress, you can repurpose your wedding attire into something you’ll wear regularly.
Ask your wedding party to give their dresses and tuxedos to a local organization. This idea would make the most sense if you purchased your wedding party’s attire. You can find a local charity looking for prom dresses and tuxes for kids who can’t afford their own and supply them with your wedding party’s clothing.
Eco-Friendly Wedding Ideas for Thank You Cards
Not only does writing thank you cards to hundreds of people take time, but it also uses a lot of paper. One of my favorite eco-friendly thank-you card ideas is to record video thank-yous instead. It’s easy to personalize each video, and you can send them to guests via text message or email to minimize wedding waste. You can also set aside a few hand-written notes for those older guests you know aren’t tech-savvy or would greatly appreciate a traditional thank you card. If you definitely want to do hand-written cards, consider purchasing plantable cards that grow into living plants!
Go Green with Epic Thyme to Plan the Eco-Friendly Wedding of Your Dreams
Going green after your wedding is much easier when you plan an eco-friendly wedding from the start. You can purposefully purchase decor you’ll repurpose and use sustainable alternatives for nearly every aspect of your wedding. At Epic Thyme, we specialize in planning sustainable weddings for earth-conscious couples who want to minimize wedding waste. We have tons of ideas on how to go green without sacrificing style, elegance, or your wedding vision. Contact us today to start planning the eco-friendly wedding of your dreams!