Couples turn to eco-friendly wedding elements as sustainability grows more popular: Report

Event venues and vendors are putting more effort into being eco-friendly, as Lauren Kay, an executive editor at The Knot, a leading wedding publication, told The Associated Press. 

“A lot of vendors are really educating themselves on ways to be more sustainable in an effort to meet the demand,” she told the AP. “We’re seeing across the board much more interest and recognition around sustainability.”

The wedding magazine updated its annual Real Weddings Report for 2021 in February, which revealed that one in five couples said they incorporated “sustainable elements” to make their “wedding eco-friendly” last year.

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Nearly 70% of the 15,000 couples surveyed by The Knot told the publication they did or plan to — if they have a wedding in 2022 — include environmentally friendly activities and decor, such as buying secondhand or upcycled items, using recycled paper and minimizing single-use products and food waste.

VerTerra Dinnerware Products is an eco-friendly brand that has caught the eyes of couples, according to the Associated Press. The company makes disposable dinnerware sourced from fallen palm leaves.

VerTerra Dinnerware Products is an eco-friendly brand that has caught the eyes of couples, according to the Associated Press. The company makes disposable dinnerware sourced from fallen palm leaves. (Ken Goodman via AP)

Nearly one in three couples think that vendors “should be more proactive in providing eco-friendly suggestions” in addition to providing “transparent” sustainability practices, The Knot’s annual wedding survey also reported.

Sustainable wedding services that have caught couples’ eyes include wedding attire consignment or thrifting, accessory rentals, post-event food donations, faux flowers, recycled invitation paper, biodegradable products and clean energy sources.

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The Associated Press cited a real-life couple, Lena Kazer and Quinn Alvarez, of Los Angeles, as an example of one that held a sustainable wedding.

On Saturday, May 21, the couple tied the knot in their backyard with 38 of their closest friends and family.

Quinn Alvarez and Lena Kazer got married on May 21, 2022, in LA. The pair tied the knot in their backyard with 38 guests. Sustainable wedding elements they included were recyclable dinnerware, reused clothes and furniture.

Quinn Alvarez and Lena Kazer got married on May 21, 2022, in LA. The pair tied the knot in their backyard with 38 guests. Sustainable wedding elements they included were recyclable dinnerware, reused clothes and furniture. (Gayle Riedmann via AP)

They opted to use their household furniture in place of seating rentals, minimal floral decor, thrift-store ornaments, batch cocktails and recyclable or compostable dinnerware, including utensils, cups and plates. 

Kazer wore her sister’s wedding dress and her mother’s veil, which gave the items a second life.

“Both of us are a little disgusted by the extravagance of the wedding industry.”

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