Featured image by Shareen

As the world becomes more environmentally conscious more brides are opting for sustainable weddings. Even small changes can help reduce the excessive waste produced by weddings. The average wedding of around 100 people produces 400 to 600 pounds of waste. 

To help reduce that waste there are hundreds of ways to swap for more sustainable options, here are some of our favorites:

Image by: LaMiaCasa

Sustainable Confetti

  • Leaves: One of the most environmentally friendly options is taking leaves from the yard and using a hole punch to make your own confetti. You can DIY this, or grab some from Etsy. 
  • Flowers: Dried flowers are a fun DIY project or you can even buy them on Etsy to match your wedding color palette. 
  • Bird Seed: This fun alternative creates beautiful photo opportunities when birds flock to you as it is thrown. 


  • Recycled Paper: The easiest option is recycled paper. This is an option that most printers will have onhand and comes in many colors and weights. 
  • Seed Paper: Have your wedding invitations printed on paper made with flower seeds. After guests receive the invites they can plant them to grow beautiful flowers as a reminder of your special day. 
  • Email Invitations: The option with the least amount of waste is a digital invitation. Not only are these significantly cheaper but there are no emissions from producing or mailing these invites. 

The Dress

  • Buy Used: Most women only wear their wedding dresses once, so it can be easy to find designer dresses for a fraction of the price online. This is a great way to reduce waste and find a gorgeous dress on a tighter budget. 
  • Vintage Fabric: If you prefer a more custom look, finding vintage fabric and having a dress handmade is a wonderful way to bring old and new together.

Image by: Weddingomania


  • Live Plants: Opt for live plants rather than cut flowers. After the event, they can be planted.
  • Go Local: The best way to source sustainable flowers is to find a local flower shop that doesn’t source flowers internationally.

The Rings

  • Vintage: The most sustainable option is to shop for vintage rings. There are thousands of unique high-quality vintage rings online and at specialty jewelry shops. 
  • Conflict-Free: Ask your jeweler if they are conflict-free and make sure they know exactly where the diamond was sourced from. 
  • Fair Trade: Even if a diamond is conflict-free it still may not be fair trade, be sure to confirm anyone working on the diamond was paid fair wages. This applied to the metal as well, which can either be fair trade or recycled. 


  • Reusable Containers: Ask your caterer if they plan on transporting and serving food with single-use or reusable items. 
  • Local Ingredients: Using a caterer that sources ingredients locally means fewer emissions and fresher ingredients. 
  • Leftovers: Instead of throwing away leftovers allow guests to take home a box for themselves.

Wedding Favors

  • Ditch the Plastic: Avoid wrapping any favors in plastic and instead opt for recycled packaging.
  • Local Foods: offer a selection of local foods such as honey, jams and spreads.
  • Tea: Craft your own custom sustainably and ethically sourced tea.
  • An Edible Treat: Send guests home with a cookie or two. Anything edible is a great way to avoid waste. 

The Venue

  • Recycling & Compost: Many venues now offer recycling and compost, check with yours to see if they offer either. 

Go Local

  • No matter what you buy for your wedding shopping locally is always the best way to reduce emissions and have a more sustainable wedding. 

Our purpose at Weddings in Athens is to show the outstanding selection of Athens, Georgia wedding vendors such as wedding photographers, videographers, florists, wedding planners and venues. We hope that our information will be helpful to you as you plan your Athens, Georgia wedding. Please contact Weddings in Athens if you would like to have your listing added. Please follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/weddingsinathens.

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