Events + Contests Organic wedding

Published on May 14th, 2010 | by Wenona Napolitano


Simple Ideas for the Green DIY Bride

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Organic wedding It’s wedding season.

(Groans in the background) Yes, I know, I know. Those of us who are married and have been married for awhile are so done with weddings. We’ve made the rounds, been to lots of them (and probably been in a few),  planned our own and pray to never have to go through it again.

But there are plenty of bright and shiny brides-to-be out there planning their weddings who would love to go green and DIY- the two seem to go hand in hand.

Some of the simplest ways to be green are about making smart choices. Pay attention to the materials used. Are they natural? Biodegradable? Do they come from renewable resources? Think organic, renewable and sustainable when buying supplies. Even used and vintage comes into play in the green scheme of things.

Reusing is an area where you can get really creative. Reuse things other people had left over from weddings and parties. Decorate your wedding with things you can reuse in your newlywed home. Sell things after your wedding that other people can reuse, like those thirty glass bowls you used for floating candle centerpieces or the arbor you wanted to get married under but now you live in an apartment and have no place to put it. Or how about that chocolate fountain? There are online sites that cater specifically to getting rid of your used wedding items like Recycled Bride. And of course there’s always eBay, Craigslist and a multitude of other online auction and classified sites where you can unload your used stuff and make a buck or two.

As a green DIY bride you can easily add a little eco-charm to your wedding day by being creatively green.

What does this mean? The idea is to think outside the traditional wedding box. Look at normal, ordinary, everyday things in a new way. Put your green wedding goggles on and look at everything around you. Imagine the item transformed into something potentially wedding-ish.

Fabulous wedding décor and accessories exist all around you. Take for instance cardboard toilet paper rolls. In a million years you probably never would have considered that toilet paper rolls could play a roll (pun intended) in your wedding, but they can. A cardboard toilet paper or paper towel roll can be transformed in a fabulous favor holder with a bit of paint, ribbon, glue or flowers.

Other ordinary everyday objects that you might never think twice about are empty aluminum cans or glass pasta sauce jars.

Take a look at what piles up in your trash cans and recycling bins. Now look at it all again. Really look. Inspect every object and try to think of it with a fancy or funky coat of paint. Imagine these objects at your wedding reception. Can you see them there? You are probably thinking no way but ordinary can become extraordinary.

Just like the simple toilet paper roll that became a fancy favor box, other items can be transformed as well. Suddenly a soup can is reborn as a candle holder or centerpiece, a pasta sauce jar becomes beautiful Italian inspired décor or a fabulous soy jar candle. That discarded plastic ice cream pail becomes a beautiful flower girl basket.

You can save things from ending up in the landfill or at the recycling center by giving them a new purpose. Old things can become useful and beautiful additions to your wedding.

So look around, you never know what may inspire you.

[Image by bloosifer, used under a Creative Commons License]

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About the Author

Wenona is married with three crazy kids that range in age from 4 to 18. She is a freelance writer, poet and the author of The Everything Green Wedding Book. She enjoys reading, writing, crafting and gardening. She tries to do all of these as "greenly" as possible. Her writing has appeared in several local and regional publications, Pack O Fun, Today's Creative Home Arts, and Indiana Living Green magazines as well as numerous online sites including,,, eHow, Associated Content, Suite101 and

11 Responses to Simple Ideas for the Green DIY Bride

  1. Pingback: Simple Ideas for the Green DIY Bride

  2. Melanie says:

    There are so many easy ways to green your wedding, like considering eco-friendly dress options, buying rings made from recycled metal, getting favors people will actually keep and use (or eat), choosing organic food for the reception, using rented or borrowed cloth napkins and tablecloths instead of using disposable ones or buying new….so many options!

    My fiancé and I are planning our eco-friendly wedding in July. We found a beautiful outdoor location overlooking the ocean that is already landscaped with abundant trees and flowers. By choosing a gorgeous location, we don’t have to pay for flowers or decorations for our ceremony. I’m href=””>making my dress from an Egyptian cotton duvet cover I found at goodwill for $15. It was brand new and still in the package. We bought href=”″>our rings from, and they are made out of 100% recycled metal.

    We created e-mail Save-the-Dates and I did an href=”″>online video invitation for our guests. Everyone loved the video! Plus, it allowed them to see where we are getting married and get a feel for the type of wedding weekend we are planning – delightful and easy breezy.

    There are so many great ideas on the web for eco-friendly weddings. You can create any style you want in an eco-friendly way…you just have to think outside the box.


  3. Melanie says:

    Oops! Working on my html (obviously). Here are the active links:

    My dress made from an Egyptian cotton duvet cover I found at goodwill for $15. Still a work in progress!
    Our rings from made out of 100% recycled metal.

    Online video invitation for our guests.


  4. Lynn says:

    Wenona, you’re the queen of eco weddings so of course, all your ideas are spot on. Two other ideas we’ve worked on recently. One is info if you want to be a more eco-friendly wedding guest which is here and secondly the idea of a vintage brooch bouquet. These are SO beautiful and as we say in our tagline, add “meaning to the greening.” We’ve got info about one special bride who is doing this on our blog. Looking forward to more wedding tips.

  5. I read about the brooch/jewelry bouquet. I can’t wait to see a photo of what one would look like. I bet it is going to be beautiful.

  6. Pingback: Eco-Friendly Wedding Favors on Etsy : Crafting a Green World

  7. Pingback: Make Your Own Eco-Wedding Favors : Crafting a Green World

  8. ShutterBug says:

    That photo is unbelievable. I really love the contrast. And these are some great ideas. My favorite is the toilet paper roll idea. I once saw a really cool vintage wedding reception that was low-budget and green. They made used glass coke bottles into vases and a few other cool re-using ideas that made their wedding into one of the best I’ve been to. It was very unique and conscientious.

  9. MendelPotok says:

    Don’t forget an ice sculpture is very eco friendly, not to mention much more classy than a gaudy boutique.

  10. Jane Austen says:

    First of all I love the outdoor wedding picture with the sun coming through the trees! I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again that pictures and good wedding videography are the most important part of a wedding detail (aside from the actual ceremony). I know there are a lot of brides that are going to appreciate your “green” incite for them.

  11. Pingback: Green Wedding Ideas: Rustic DIY Ideas For A Nature-Centered Wedding - The Fun Times Guide to Weddings

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