DeLong Photography Blog

Photographers providing authentic photographs, modern heirloom albums, and more for those who value a comfortable and fun experience 
Based in Charlotte, North Carolina. Available for travel.

Eco-Friendly Wedding Ideas

Waterfall at Namtok Phlio National Park in Chanthaburi ,Thailand implying eco-friendly


The eco-friendly wedding trend is one we can definitely get behind. Many of today’s couples are more environmentally conscious, thus they aim to use more sustainable options when planning their wedding. Elegance and charm do not have to be sacrificed just because you plan sustainably either. Read on to find out ways to reduce your carbon footprint, and most likely save a little money!


Choosing a venue is undoubtedly one of the largest expenses when it comes to a wedding. Make your heart feel good, as well as padding your pocket, by choosing a nature preserve or state/national park. Many of these places gladly welcome weddings, and can provide some stunning scenery. While the worry of, “What if it rains?” may plague your mind, some locations have centers onsite (such as the 5,000 sq ft River Center at Saluda Shoals Park) and picnic shelters of varying sizes to provide shade from the elements.


With most of our lives being focused around digital devices, why not send a digital invitation? If you’ve been reading with us for a while you’ll know that Tim and I send digital save the dates.

If you’re more traditional, and really want to mail your invites, you can choose to print on 100% recycled paper. Many companies that offer 100% recycled paper offer different types of materials such as cotton and bamboo, as well as using vegetable-based ink. Check out Paperculture and Smock if this is up your alley. One extra benefit of using  Paper Culture is their cards are made from 100% post-consumer recycled paper (which means no trees are cut down in the process), AND each order plants a tree!

Smock says “We print on smooth cotton paper. Cotton is a sustainable and renewable resource. Today, we partner with a historic New England paper mill to develop a fine artisan paper just for us. Our smooth cotton paper is extremely soft, luxuriously thick, and has a satin feel. It’s also perfect for letterpress. We actively work to reduce our carbon footprint and are entirely wind-powered through Native Energy”.


Hold on there, we aren’t suggesting making your own moonshine. Using kegs and bottles for serving alcohol instead of individual cans is much more eco-friendly! This greatly reduces the amount of trash and recycling leftover at the end of the night. It may also be more cost-effective, so party hard worry free!


What is more romantic than the ambiance of candlelight? This is certainly an easy way to reduce your venue cost and make your night unforgettable. Please check with your venue before going candle shopping though. Some venues do not allow candles as part of their liability. If you’re early in wedding planning, and candles sound like the dreamy atmosphere you’re looking for, ask each venue you’re interested in if they allow this.


Using recyclable dinnerware (which nowadays is available in some chic designs) is a great idea. You can also take this one step further by using compostable dinner and flatware.

Kelly Trimble Smith of the DIYnetwork hosted her BBQ style rustic chic reception using compostable dinner and flatware. She ordered everything from here! She also hosted her wedding at a nature preserve, which is where I took that inspiration from. You can check out her whole post here.

Black and white image of Tim and Shannon DeLong of DeLong Photography in Riverfront Park park smiling at the camera

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Interested in having us photograph your wedding? Contact us!

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