J's year of wedding planning continues in a ethical direction.
I'm trying to keep our day as 'ethical' as possible. OK, so what does that mean? Well, for me its about lessening the environmental impact of the whole day. Some people approach their wedding days as a one and only time to really go that extra mile on a truly luxury and extravagant day, but for me, and it is a personal choice, I want the day that I marry the love of my life to be beautiful inside and out.
It isn't the easiest way to plan a wedding, there are many different ways you can classify 'ethical': fair trade, organic, sustainable, recycled, upcycled, carbon neutral... to be honest it can be a bit of a mine field and I often find myself in a mental cycle of doom weighing up the pro's and con's of this or that option.
I thought I'd share my approach, not only as a way of organising a wedding, but actually, this is my approach to most things in life:
I ask a lot of questions and people are (usually) more than happy to discuss their sourcing policies, or ethical standards. And in fact as sustainability and ethical responsibility grows as a movement often vendors offer the information freely.
Research as standard
My Google history must be looking pretty eclectic right now, but as Google is oh-so-helpful in searching for mainstream alternatives or finding out exactly how those shades of pink roses are cultivated then why not?
The most valuable asset of planning a wedding is having great people involved. I trust my instincts when it comes to who I work with, and I have the same approach with the suppliers involved in the wedding and often have found they lead to amazing opportunities.
A base line
My base line is: if in doubt; go local. When in the aforementioned mine field it's good to know what your one core principle is when weighing up your different options. We went with the 'local' as it immediately reduces the carbon footprint (usually an added element of a supply chain) and helps the (often) smaller local companies.
Occasionally, I feel that world which is a bit smaller than it used to be: internet video calling for example, which means I can see and speak to my cousin in New Zealand without getting on a plane. But also it means we can eat strawberries in winter without a thought, purchase a dress without thinking who made it or go for the mainstream big company option because "they offer free delivery" and I wonder if is it worth taking a step back to see the impact of it all?
For me, if I am going to take a step back and put in a few extra hours of research in for just one day. It's going to be for what will be the most beautiful day of my life, inside and out.