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Local & Community

Preloved Member: An Eco-friendly wedding

Preloved member Kate Haines and her partner knew they wanted to keep the cost of their wedding low and as environmentally friendly as possible.


When my partner of 10 years proposed over a romantic dinner on a weekend away we were so excited about planning the wedding we spent the rest of the evening chatting about our plans and ideas. With us both being eco-minded we decided we wanted a wedding that was as sustainable as possible and kind to the planet.

As an avid crafter and upcycler I also knew I wanted to do as much as possible myself including growing and arranging the flowers, making the decorations and invitations and generally keeping the wedding as eco-friendly as possible.


Image Credit: Kate Haines

I also wanted a recycled wedding dress and was lucky enough to find a beautiful vintage style 1930’s dress from Preloved. I managed to find a lovely pair of wedding shoes from my local charity shop and sourced rustic urns, paper pom poms and bunting second hand too.

One of my favourite finds was an old school recorder book from which I made the pages into confetti cones although our guests seemed to really like the place settings which I made with stamps from my Dad’s old stamp collection.


Image Credit: Kate Haines

For the flower centre pieces I upcycled milk bottles, jam jars, vintage tea cups and beer bottles and as the majority of the flowers were from my garden and parents allotment I estimate I saved over £500 on a florist and hundreds of pounds on the reclaimed decorations too. After the wedding guests were welcome to take home the flowers and place settings and I’ve been steadily selling the rest of decorations online.


Image Credit: Kate Haines

Although I did feel slightly pressured working to a deadline I really did enjoy arranging the flowers and creating all the extra personal touches for our special day. Our guests had a great day and we had lots of compliments on how lovely the venue looked. Our handmade wedding was everything we hoped for and we enjoyed a beautiful day surrounded by friends and family. I certainly think all the hard work and extra time was worth it and certainly saved us money in the long run too.

Lastly, my 5 tips for an eco wedding would be:

  1. Have the ceremony and wedding breakfast in the same venue, or within walking distance of each other, and both near public transport. If this isn’t possible, help to coordinate car sharing between your guests.
  2. Buy a preloved wedding dress or have one made in eco fabrics
  3. Choose a couple of charities close to your heart and ask for donations instead of gifts.
  4. Do your research and find suppliers who fit your criteria.
  5. Choose a vintage or antique ring or check out the many ethical jewellery suppliers online

Kate Haines

Kate Haines

Community User

Kate lives with her husband Nigel and two little girls in Leamington Spa. She loves cycling, gardening and crafting and is soon to become a chicken keeper. She runs a green pages style directory called GreenFinder, which helps the public find green and ethical products and services.