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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Doing Good by DIY

Last week I dished on the delicious and charitably minded food at my dear friend Leah's wedding reception. As promised, here is my mini-interview with the fabulously eco-friendly bride, who also happens to be a talented interior designer and DIY master. 

All photos by Bonnie Sen.
Can you tell me about some of the eco/charitable elements of your wedding? 
A large percentage of the decor was made from recycled or found materials.  A family friend cut all of the bottles to use as candleholders for the table centerpieces. I think the wine bottles turned out amazing. Our friends and family really  pitched in to drink up for the sake of the wedding decor.

What about flowers? How did you ensure your flowers were eco-friendly?
We used succulents and mums (which were in season too)  instead of cut flowers throughout. The idea was that guests could take a piece of the wedding home, instead of using fresh cut flowers that don't usually last more than a week.

What were your three  favorite DIY items that were eco-friendly or reusable?
The string balloons, which were a labor of love. We redid them about three times. The formulas for the glue I found did not take into account Louisiana humidity. We ended up adding cornstarch to the mixture the third time they collapsed and that did the trick. The wood circles were a favorite too, a neighbor had been meaning to get rid of an old fallen tree for some time, and donated the woodcuts. Instead of plastic we used the wood to catch the candle wax.

Homemade globes provide a great photo backdrop that's also reusable.
I really loved the Huppah! Family friends donated weekends to help with everything, and this was something that ended up being a wonderful group effort. Some of the fabric was new, and a good bit was salvaged material from thrift stores around Baton Rouge. 

The Huppah in daylight- still gorgeous!

Any other reusable favorites that other brides could reuse?
The mason jars for the signature cocktail added a nice touch to the overall feel of the backyard affair, and will be reusable for the next party. We also decided on beer kegs instead of bottled or canned beer to cut down on waste.

How did you limit paper products?
 The chalkboards not only added a nice tone to the backyard feeling, but we saved paper by not having to print programs and menus, etc. There was also a huge monetary savings to not having to design and print all the programs and menus that just end up as landfill later. We did not send reply cards with the invitations. Instead we asked that guest reply to our wedding online. We were able to reduce our footprint a little further by doing so.  

Now for some more great closing shots for your own DIY inspiration... 

Yup, more food - even after last week's post was dedicated to food...
it was a Louisiana wedding after all.

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