Planning an eco-friendly wedding doesn’t need to be harder than planning a less environmentally friendly one. More people including wedding vendors are taking notice of our impact on the earth, and looking for ways to protect its resources. Sustainable weddings are becoming more popular each year and there are more eco-friendly options on the market to choose from. As a wedding photographer, I am always thrilled to hear that my clients, just like me, want to make earth-friendly decisions in all parts of their lives. Let’s start with some ideas on how to plan an eco-friendly wedding!

bride and groom at a wedding in chapel hill NC
Romantic moment between the bride and groom


If you hire an environmentally conscious wedding planner you will get great advice and expertise on how to make your decisions more earth-friendly. Planners have a lot of connections and can recommend the right vendor for you, so you don’t need to do the research all by yourself.

eco friendly wedding table settings by chapel hill wedding photographer
Eco-friendly wedding decor by Raleigh wedding photographer


The programs, menus, and invitations can be printed on recycled paper. You can also reduce print by sending information online, for example, using paperless post. You can include a lot of information for your guests on your wedding website.

newlyweds kissing by a pond after tying the knot in chapel hill,nc
groom in a blue suit kissing his bride wearing white during romantic photo session in chapel hill north carolina


When it comes to choosing your wedding venue you can opt for an eco-friendly one like the couple pictured below. Eco-conscious venues have practices in place like recycling, composting, and donating leftovers, some even grow their own food (or buy it locally). They also have solar panels, use low-flow faucets, water bottle filling stations, drought-tolerant plants, etc.

ceremony setup with white chairs and orange and green in a gazebo
Beautiful, classy ceremony setup
bonfire setup
bride holding white and orange flowers holding hands with her groom
I love photographing candid moments between bride and groom!
eco-friendly venue in Chapel Hill North Carolina by Magdalena Stefanek Photography
Happy Bride visiting the goats:)
ring bearer petting a goat during eco-friendly wedding in North Carolina


An eco-friendly registry that is in line with your environmentally conscious lifestyle is another great option! You can even inspire and educate some of your guests by choosing items from stores that pledge to save the earth and be eco-friendly.

sweetheart table with blue velvet table cloth and orange flower arrangement


Sadly the biggest contributor to wedding garbage is food waste. When it comes to choosing your catering company you can opt for the one that uses food from local farms, serves a seasonal menu, and offers vegetarian/vegan options. It’s a bonus if your caterer pledges to reduce food waste and uses sustainable server ware. Choosing alcohol from local wineries, distilleries and breweries is another great way to reduce your carbon footprint.

best wedding photographer Raleigh NC
Boho animal table number cards


You can make an impact by renting when possible, using products and flowers that are in season, and using biodegradable goods. Choosing blooms from local farms is a great alternative to cut flowers that often come from different countries. Think about that carbon footprint! Incorporating dry flowers or using centerpieces in pots that can become wedding favors are becoming more popular.

unique seating chart for a wedding by chapel hill wedding photographer
Unique seating chart for a wedding
natural wedding decor beaded wooden chandeliers magdalena stefanek photography
Great way to class up your wedding tent with these decorative chandeliers
colorful centerpieces wedding reception chapel hill nc photographer
Local, seasonal flowers make a great choice for an eco-friendly wedding
trio at a wedding in chapel hill nc

If living an eco-friendly lifestyle is important to you and your partner, without a doubt your nuptials should show that as well. Nevertheless, don’t let planning an environmentally friendly wedding overwhelm you! Even small decisions can add up and create big results! Just do your part for our planet!

I captured the photos used in this blog while second shooting for Fabiana Skubic Photography at the Eco-Institute at Pickards Mountain in Chapel Hill, NC. As a wedding photographer and an eco enthusiast, I absolutely love it when more couples plan environmentally friendly weddings! I also love that eco-friendly weddings can look gorgeous and classy, so they are fun to photograph!

Do you want to see more pretty wedding photos, click here!


Eco-friendly wedding in Chapel Hill, NC

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *