By Louise Baltruschat Hollis
Ethical weddings are certain to continue to increase in popularity. We are becoming more aware of our impact on the environment as a society and hosting a sustainable and eco-friendly wedding celebration is vital in helping to contribute to the efforts being made. Today I am thrilled to share with you these natural and ethical wedding ideas, which combine style and sustainability in equal measure photographed perfectly by Jenna Kathleen Photographer. There are so many brilliant hints and tips here, with ideas for ethical flowers, sustainable décor and eco-friendly attire too.
I really love the lush greenery used throughout the flower arrangements, the moss laden table adorned with rustic decorations, the flowing gown and the on trend bridal accessories. There is also a stunning invitation suite, textured cake, flawless hair and make up and dapper tweed suit to name a few. Get ready to pin to your hearts content lovelies!
Our stone and moss themed shoot was organised to showcase ways in which wedding suppliers can work in a more sustainable and ethical way. Featuring suppliers and brands who either specialise in sustainable products or who utilise environmentally methods where possible.
The vision for the shoot was of an aged stone building which was being taken back by nature. The beautiful images by Jenna Kathleen Photographer create a natural, wild, moody aesthetic which is slightly dark and very striking. Choosing a local photographer (and other local suppliers) helps to cut down on carbon emissions produced by travelling.
The venue for our shoot was St Mary’s Chapel in Lead near Tadcaster North Yorkshire. Built around 1150 AD the church stands alone in the middle of a field. The tiny chapel is no longer used for regular worship and is cared for by The Churches Conservation Trust.
The bouquets and buttonholes by Botanicals Floristry featured foraged twigs and feathers and included locally grown foliage and grasses from the florists own garden. Sarah of Botanicals reduces waste by drying excess materials to create different textures – this can be seen with the dried poppy seed heads in the bouquets and buttonholes. Sarah also created a stunning moss runner for the tablescape styled by My Pretties UK.
My Pretties used second hand candle holders and glassware sourced from charity shops and the bamboo plates are made from recycled bamboo and are biodegradable for a sustainable alternative to disposable tableware. The tablescape included stunning silks by Laik Style who only uses fabrics which are organic, recycled or from a sustainable source and hand dyed using only natural dyes often from their own garden in Derbyshire. Dyes used for this shoot included lilac leaves, privet hedge leaves, and iron water from rusty nails.
The cake by Mrs B’s Cakery used vegan fondant and gumpaste which did not contain palm oil – an ingredient prevalent in food manufacture which has a devastating impact on the environment and animal life. The texture on the cake mirrored aged stone and cracked tree bark. Polystyrene dummies used are stripped down and re-used often more than 10 times! Couples are now more conscious of environmental and ethical considerations and vegan cakes and treats are becoming very popular for weddings.
Reduce floral waste by speaking to your florist about ways of repurposing your arrangements throughout your day. Your bridesmaids’ bouquets could double as top table arrangements after the ceremony (we know they’ll only put them down and lose them anyway). There are also a number of charities who will collect your (still beautiful) arrangements after your big day and gift them to those who would appreciate some colour such as care home residents.
There has been a movement in recent years towards arrangements free of ‘oasis’ (the green traditionally used to hold the display). This is because it is single use and its chemical makeup means that it doesn’t break down in landfill.
The invitation suite was designed by Caledonian Cowgirl and was printed on to plantable seed paper and paired with recycled envelopes.
The bridal gown from Stephanie Moran Couture featured a stunning lace high neck and flowing A-line skirt. All of their garments are handmade in the UK and use UK based fabric and haberdashery suppliers where possible which contributes to a low carbon footprint. Stephanie also donates material offcuts to charities and any material wastage is recycled.
Headpieces were designed and made by Kirsty Grant Design using woven natural rattan, wire and glass beads. Kirsty buys local where possible and avoids using plastic beads and findings in her work.
Featuring real married couple Tracey and Jamie who brought along their little three month old baby girl! Hair and makeup was by Mazz Loxton who created a relaxed and natural look with statement lips that looked like Tracey had been out foraging for berries. Mazz buys cruelty free products where she can and from brands who have a packaging return scheme or who use refills to reduce plastic waste. When researching your Hair and Makeup Artist look out for those who only use products that haven’t been tested on animals.
Statement jewellery was provided by Loft & Daughter – an ethical and sustainable jewellery and lifestyle brand specialising in items inspired from far-flung places. The brand aims to create maximum social and economic uplift for disadvantaged artisan communities with minimal environmental footprint. Their pieces prove that women can express their individual style whilst being kind to people and the planet.
The veil created by Mini Quinni was designed to look like creeping vines were climbing up and embracing the bride.
Jenna Kathleen Photographer
Hair & Makeup
Mrs B’s Cakery
Oh so beautiful. What wonderfully ethical wedding ideas! Thanks so very much to the whole creative team above for sharing these images with us xo Lou
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