Invitations are the first contact to inform guests of your special day. They often consist of elaborate foils and glitter which increases cost and reduces the recyclability. If your wedding is following a “green” theme, then begin with considering sustainable invitations.
Plantable recycled paper
Another quirky idea for your invites is buying recycled paper which contains seeds. If you plant the card in your garden or a plant pot it will grow flowers! Etsy has loads of designs for plantable invitations here. If planted afterwards, this eliminates all waste entirely.
However, if the invitation is not planted the card can NOT be recycled. The seeds can contaminate paper recycling streams. Realistically, you must consider how many of your guests will actually plant their invites and if it will be eco-friendly or just greenwashing
Event Website or Emails
The most sustainable option is to go invitation-less! Who’s sending letters in 2020 anyway? Saving the costs spent on cards, printing and stamps, means you can put more money towards the event itself. (More champagne, anyone?)
Building a “wedding day website” can be an effective alternative. WeddingWire is a free wedding design site, it has hundreds of templates and can be set up in minutes. Your site will contain all the details about the event and even a page for guests to RSVP. It’s easy to direct people to your site via social media or email. The best thing about a website is your guests won’t lose their invite and will be kept up to date with more information than is possible to include in an envelope!
The wedding planner tools also seem useful on Wedding Wire. There is a checklist for the event to keep you organised, budget breakdown controls and even gives suggestions of venues, caterers, dress shops, photographers and entertainment in your local area.
Alternatively, build your own website using Tumblr, WordPress or Blogspot. Which ever you decide to use, explain to your guests your decision to avoid paper invitations and encourage others to do the same.
Sending an email invitation may also work too – though that requires you to have everyones email addresses and may be difficult to record RSVP’s.
Friends of the Earth states that to make recycled paper it uses 40% less energy than is required to make paper from virgin wood fibres. 1 tonne of paper made from recycled fibres also conserves 7,000 gallons of water and up to 31 trees! There is no doubt that using recycled paper is the second most sustainable option if you decide paper invitations are a must-have at your event.
It’s now easy to find recycled paper or cardboard invitations on websites like Etsy. Ensure you don’t use or buy cards which are decorated with foil or glitters, so they can be recycled again!
Tip: Write a message on the back of your invite encouraging your guests to also recycle them to help others make sustainable choices.