Caitlin & James’ Beautiful Eco-Friendly Wedding

It’s always a treat to be able to share weddings that are eco-friendly. I know many of you are looking for clever (and stylish) ways to reuse, recycle, or repurpose in your own weddings so this lovely day from Caitlin and James is sure to inspire!

Caitlin, beautiful bride, tells us about her wedding to James:

We had a long engagement by necessity (I moved to Louisiana, we had an academic year to get through first since we both work for a university) and also a small budget and a lot of guests. I’m very much a DIY person, and turns out I loved wedding planning. Our friends and family were very supportive and got asked a lot of opinions about this or that, which helped tremendously. We used the long engagement to do a lot of research and a lot of crafting. Sourcing items from independent retailers was really important for us…and we used local vendors when possible. Etsy in particular was an AMAZING resource and the sellers there were fantastic.

We tried really hard to have as much as possible be reusable and/or recyclable. We used a variety of clear glass jars to decorate the tables because you can’t recycle glass in Louisiana, so at the very least they got one more use. We’ll also cart all our glass to Texas to recycle it when we visit James’ family so we won’t have to throw it away! We used potted succulents as part of the table decor because we love them and they live past the wedding…the flowers, of course, there was no saving and that was really sad. We drank out of mason jars not because we’re huge cliches, but because we actually can a ton of food every year and will re-use those too! We used a lot of ribbon in decorating, my Mom made the pennants…and we’ll wrap every gift for the next five years in that ribbon and will have the best party decorations with the pennants!

All the decor and plans were thoroughly discussed beforehand, and we pretty much had a brigade of family help set up on Friday and had detailed break-down directions for after. If you’re going to ask for people to help you, it’s best to be kind to them and keep things really organized! If I could change one thing, it would be paying someone to do this for us. That wasn’t realistic for us for our wedding and we all had a great attitude about the work (and fun doing it!), it was just a lot. of work.

Honestly, one of the best things we did was build in the hour or so for portraits. We made sure our guests were amused, and walking around gave us both a chance to settle from all the excitement and nerves from the wedding itself, to really take a moment to breathe and get away from it all. That is one thing I absolutely would not change! We had so much fun chatting with our photographer and strolling around, that time really flew by and when we returned to the reception I think we did so with much clearer heads.

The dance party at the end of the night was so cathartic- all the stress and work and anticipation of the wedding just melted away, and we could be silly and celebrate with our closest friends. We have never danced so hard nor been so happy, and we loved every minute. My brother crafted a master playlist, and it kept everyone out on the floor all night.

We absolutely had the time of our lives. We thought it would be awesome and fun and great, but we weren’t expecting it to be epic (in our opinions, at least, which are the only ones that really matter, right?).


Caitlin and James
Kiroli Park, Louisiana
Event Date: May, 2014

Photographer:  Amanda Summerlin Photography//DIY or Handmade Goods Designer: Amanda Jo Handmade//Jewelry: Bario-Neal//Caterer: Cilantro Bistro//Musicians: Jack Jones Trio//Event Venue: Kiroli Park//Tuxedo and Mens Attire: Mens Wearhouse//Dress Store: Designer: Mori Lee//Jewelry: Nestled//Hair Stylist: Salon Royale//Etsy Designer: Simply Sweet Studio//Invitation Designer: StampOut Online//Submitted via Two Bright Lights

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