jueves, abril 25, 2024

The Bride in Green

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Sustainable weddings have been in vogue for some time here in Los Cabos. Although the wedding industry has usually been associated with tradition, extravagance, and excess, people are becoming more conscious of the fact that a huge, pompous celebration puts a strain on the environment and any kind of life on earth. And our local wedding coordinators have had the foresight and social responsibility to know how crucial it is to preserve our outstanding destination for future generations of residents and visitors.

“When we plan a wedding, we guide the couple to make informed and responsible decisions because nature comes first”, confirms Elsa Dilasser from Palms Weddings & Events. Elsa loves to share “green” tips aimed to prevent a negative impact on the environment.

A survey conducted last year by the Sustainable Wedding Alliance revealed that 78% of the ready-to-get-married couples consider sustainability an important, or very important factor when planning their party. The good news is that also 97% of the industry vendors think the same way.

We present you with tips from A to Z for a sustainable wedding in Los Cabos and anywhere else

Audio guestbooks are replacing conventional cards and books where guests fill in their well-wishes for the newlyweds. There are also service providers in the United States that rent antique telephones to record and store voicemails from attendees. Couples can of course opt out for a DIY solution with a cell phone.

Balloons as décor have already been banned from receptions because of the harm they can cause to marine and land fauna if released intentionally or by accident. You should also avoid Whishing lanterns unless they are made of 100% biodegradable material in all the components.

Candles are better than torches that release chemicals while they burn. Certain candles made with paraffin cause the same damage as these torches. Go for candles made of natural components like soy and beeswax that do not pollute.

Decorate wisely. Start by choosing a venue where the natural scenery does not require many extra ornamentations. Should more decoration be necessary to please the eyes, follow the 3 R´s rule: reduce, reuse, recycle.

Elope. The original meaning of “running away secretly to get married” has now turned into “tie the knot in a small gathering”. Less people, less money, less waste. Celebrities like Kourtney Kardashian and Travis Barker, Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck, who chose intimacy in lieu of lavishness to celebrate their union, placed back on the map this discrete ceremonies.

Favors. Aligning with the general post-pandemic trends, weddings are all about the attendees’ experience and favors take second place. The best memento the couple can offer their guests is a day to remember. Anyway, if you think that a favor is a must, choose ecological and sustainable options or…

Give-back. “Couples often ask us how they could give back to the community and we tell them to donate to a charity. Instead of spending money on favors, donate and let your guests know”, says Dilasser.  A philanthropic twist for a wedding party with a cause.

Honeymoon. The give-back philosophy should endure the whole honeymoon, when the responsible newly-weds shop ethically for sustainable arts and crafts to support local manufacturers. When on vacation it is not only about not doing harm but also eventually doing good.

Invitations. Stand up for technology here and go digital. Cut out paper and gasoline for transportation. Choose animated wedding invitations that you can send by email or Whatsapp, and add a touch of modernity with a QR code (see below).

Jugs and glasses. As Harvard University alerts, “the entire life cycle of bottled water uses fossil fuels, contributes to global warming, and causes pollution”. This applies to disposables of any type, advocating for the use of glass and ceramic dinnerware. These changes may be less practical and a bit more costly, yet much more glamourous.

Keep the bridal bouquet small. Luxuriant cascading arrangements have become obsolete. A posy is now the most common companion of the bride who does not want to skip the classic bouquet tossing, a classic that is hard to die. By the way, there are planet-friendly alternatives to freshly cut flowers, like ribbon wands, fancy fans, and pinwheels.

Leftovers. Local health authorities do not allow to donate leftovers for safety and hygiene reasons; therefore, it is important to calculate the quantity of food required. “If you are planning a sustainable wedding, the advice is to cook the meal at the moment and stop when everyone has been served”, added Dilasser.

Make-up. Cruelty-free cosmetics are a must for the ethical bride in the wake of famous make-up artists and celebrities endorsing PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals).

Nuances or mixed colors. To loosening the reins on the design of their bridesmaids’ outfit, the modern bride lets her friends pick their dresses. The dresses can fall within the range of nuances of the selected color or even a different one. Each bridesmaid can buy something that suits her better, recycle an already worn dress, buy second-hand, or rent one.

Organic and locally grown ingredients should be emphasized as a sustainable option for a yummy menu. These ingredients are fresh, healthy, and trendy. Producers use natural substances that improve soil fertility instead of pumping it with artificial chemicals that cause erosion.

Potted flowers or plants should be preferred instead of freshly cut flowers as centerpieces. You can give them away as favors to keep at home or to transplant into the garden.

QR codes, as already mentioned, can be helpful in speeding up some procedure like RSVPs, sharing information about the celebration, accessing and download pictures, and replacing the printed menu.

Recycled paper should be the one and only choice for the menu, place cards and any kind of stationary required by couples who want to keep going on the traditional path.

Stainless steel straws are the perfect match for signature cocktails throughout the reception. Other options are paper, bamboo and coconut straws.

Toss dried leaves. Leaves fall from trees naturally, with no need to cut them to manufacture paper. The weds-to-be themselves can collect leaves and crush or hole punch them into eco-friendly confetti. This is more original than petals especially since flowers are scarce and expensive in Baja Sur.

Unique food station-style dining is a growing trend as guests can try a range of foods from ethnic to vegan, from gluten-free to plant-based. Such a menu is surely inclusive, although wasteful due to the leftovers. That´s literally “food for thought”!

Vintage and boho weddings create a more intimate and romantic atmosphere. They favor all things natural instead of artificial, therefore reducing the ecological footprint.

Wedding rings. A way to diminish the impact of mining on the environment is by lowering the demand for newly mined gold. You can achieve that by purchasing wedding bands made with reused gold and the same high-quality new metals.

X, cross out sparklers and fireworks on your celebration wish list. Prevent wildfire hazards and chemical pollution with the “clean and silent” light of a drone show. Drones are also much cheaper that pyrotechnics.

Your wedding planner will guide you through greener alternatives, sustainable suppliers, eco-friendly ideas for décor, creative fabrics, and gifts. In Cabo, Mother Nature rules and you will easily find a guide who shares your philosophy about celebrating responsibly. 

Zero-waste, recycling, reusing, and repurposing are the pillars of sustainable weddings in the beginnings of the third millennium.

In conclusion, you don’t have to sacrifice fun, good taste, and glamour when planning a sustainable wedding. In a marriage, what counts is love and the message the couple spreads around. “We love, we care for people, animals, nature and the whole planet”, that message will be the best centerpiece on the table of the special day.

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