Saturday, March 8, 2008

Vintage Indie's Wedding Guide

I was asked to guest blog at Vintage Indie for March. The original version of my first blog is below. Visit Vintage Indie's Wedding Month for more indie wedding ideas!
How to Save a Tree or Two on Your Wedding Day

A wedding needs save-the-dates, invitations, directions, thank-you cards, table envelopes, table cards, place cards, menus, confetti, and gift bags—I don’t want to know how many trees that adds up to. But there are ways to spare the Earth on your wedding day—I did it as best I could, and without sacrificing style.

First, forget save-the-dates. It’s very now, but it’s not very Zen. Instead, use that old-fashioned machine, the telephone. Get some help from your mom, dad, and future in-laws, and not only will you get the word out fast, you’ll make everyone invited feel special because their presence at your wedding warranted a personal call.

Most people want to give and get an invitation. So, the best way to go is to use recycled paper. Many paperies (such as Paper Source) offer this option, or you can purchase the paper yourself, and have a paperie print on it. A few online retailers let you DIY with recycled paper. Check out Twisted Limb CustomPaper, SealandSend and PristinePlanet .

Go online. Although some of the older generation may fuss, it’s not only better for the environment to put extra materials (such as directions, maps, local hotels, and other wedding-related event information) online, it’s also more convenient. Want to book the hotel? The link is right there. Wondering if Aunt Sally is coming? Put up an “attending” list so guests can see who will be coming. Want to print out directions? Place a link to a printable pdf. And, of course, encourage site visitors to print out their directions on recycled or scratch paper.

At the reception, rather than have a boring table of “table/escort envelopes” combine your table cards and guest gifts into one. Choose a guest gift container you can write on, such as the DIY Pillow Box from Paper Source (or a similar one from an independent vendor) , or small gift bags from Bags and Bows Bags and Bows (pictured). If you prefer the look of organdy bags, simply write names and table numbers on cards and place them inside the bag with the gift.

At each table, combine the menu with a seating chart for the table. Print two menus per table onto 4 ¼ by 5 1/2 pieces of cardstock, leaving space for the seating chart. Draw a circle (or square) table and write in people’s first names or initials. Or have open seating.

Confetti is fun, but we can all agree it’s a waste. If you want something to throw, get creative. Throw candy for the children to pick up later. Throw rose petals that will make the pathway colorful. Throw pieces of lavender that, when stepped on, will add fragrance to the air.

Using some of these tips will not only make your wedding less harmful to the Earth, but it will also add a sparkle of personal detail.