07 Apr My Eco Wedding!

Sebastian and I met 7 years ago on New Years Eve. Very quickly he became my best friend.

So when he popped the question last year, I was more than ready to say “YES”! After a couple days of the engagement bubble the reality of planning a wedding set in.

( Our very elated faces below, just after the question was popped! and the beautiful wooden engagement ring he bought for me! He knows me well!)

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Through my Sustainability Consulting practice (The Green Scene), I have worked on ‘Greening’ large events. I wanted our wedding to be uniquely us, but also aligned with my eco living values and with the least amount of  impact on the planet.

Australian weddings cost on average $36,000. The amount of excessive waste, consumption, and emissions that come with that figure is mind blowing!

I set out  to create a magical, personal wedding for 60 guests on a eco and moderate financial budget. As with everything around eco-living I made sure that there was some give and take. To make it the ‘greenest wedding ever’ was going to take away from this once in a lifetime event, so I took lots of steps to make it a lighter more eco-friendly event, but also had to give in to some things to make sure it was what we both wanted and was an amazingly special day… which it was.

A lot of thought, planning, research, and time was spent into creating our eco-magical wedding. Since I know how much work events are, even with green event experience, I have decided to put together the most comprehensive but easy to use, Eco Wedding Guide with online resources  to help other brides looking for a eco-wedding alternative – stay tuned – I will post it here! Our lovely photos were taken by Michelle Troop from Le Photogenic .

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Here is an overview of some of the things I did to make our wedding lighter on the planet!

  • I didn’t want to purchase anything to be used for just one day. So all items in the wedding were borrowed, second hand, upcycled or if none of those options worked we bought something but then made sure it could be used again.
  • We aimed to have a low waste wedding so we made this a consideration in each and every step of the planning – in the end we had 2 small bags of rubbish destined for landfill.

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  •   We chose a location for the ceremony that was special to us and the reception was nearby on a permaculture farm. Both of our venues had natural charm and this meant we needed less decorations.


Base's Wedding 003                  jv


  • Local flowers were grown or collected  and used for bouquets, and wedding favors.
  • It gets to me that glass doesn’t get recycled where we live, so we opted for kegs instead of bottled beer,  and made all our own pint and water glasses from upcycled wine bottles.

IMG_0206                   succlents

  • Our invites and thank yous were all paperless to save on cost and the need for so many paper products.
  • Our guests traveled to the venue, so we did some calculations and have offset the carbon emissions for all the guests travel

      Eco Wedding     jamie and base-1055wjamie and base-561w

There we many other steps in the planning process from the food, the music, the outfits, the lighting, the transport…etc. that helped to keep our footprint and budget down. To learn more about planning a eco wedding – stay tuned for the Eco-Wedding Guide I am creating.

Whether it’s a birthday party, a farewell, or a wedding, there are so many ways to make events lighter on our planet and just as special. Just take a bit of time in the planning to think of some of the ways you can reduce waste and your events eco-footprint.




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  • Candy
    Posted at 16:42h, 10 April

    Bravo Jamie, so inspirational and all the little natural touches are beautiful (love the white parasols!). Your wooden ring was also really interesting. I have a gold band but I refused an engagement ring which was pretty radical 30 years ago! Good luck for your adventures aboard your beautiful boat.

    • Jamie Van Jones
      Posted at 11:53h, 14 April

      Thanks Candy! It was a lot to think about in the planning, but the little things really did make it all extra special on the day.
      Good on you for standing up about an engagement ring. Our wedding bands are sustainably sourced rings made from Koa wood and Titanium from Hawaii. We are definitely starting off the next chapter of our lives with a big bang!

  • Sherri Osaka
    Posted at 17:31h, 11 April

    I’m planning my 30-year wedding anniversary this summer, and need lots of waste-free tips

    • Jamie Van Jones
      Posted at 11:55h, 14 April

      Hi Sherri, the big thing I did was think about each item we needed and how it could be done with less resources and less waste. The best tips are Borrow or rent what you need, if you do buy things can they be re-useable? We used food baskets for the burritos and tacos at our wedding and I have now sold those baskets on for someone else to use. Things like that. I am getting my eco wedding/event guide out soon! All the best with the planning.