February 22, 2008

Observer Ethical Awards

ethical_awards.jpg

With award season well underway and the Oscars being a huge success for Britain and British talent, we decided here at GreenUnion HQ that we want in on the act!

As you may know, the average wedding in the UK can create 14.5 tonnes of CO2 and GreenUnion is working really hard along with our partners to create awareness to reduce and offset this without compromising on style.

As part of our determination to increase awareness within the wedding industry we have entered the Observer Ethical Awards and to help us win we'd really appreciate your input and ask, if you haven't already done so, do please take five minutes out of your busy lives to vote for us on-line.
But hurry there's only a few days left...

Ok this is the tricky bit, when you click on: Observer Ethical Awards look for the line that says click here to vote now. This will then bring up a screen and you have to click through the various awards by pressing next until you reach Ethical Business Of The Year - here you just need to write in the company name and a few words (you need not write the recommended 1000 words, just wax lyrical on our behalf!) about why you feel GreenUnion should win.

Easy peasy! And thanks a bundle.

Posted in Green Wedding News

Scented sensation

paperwhite_narcissi.jpgHave you got a Mum who deserves a well earned 'thank you' for all her support and help on the run up to your green wedding? Do you want to tell her how much she means to you at this all important time and stuck for ideas on how to show it?

Snapdragon has come up with this wonderful seasonal UK grown treat to indulge her. The bulbs are beautifully scented paperwhite narcissi and they have been potted up in beautifully aged sage green and white pots that will fit into any interior. And there's no need to throw the bulbs away once they have finished flowering and can be kept from year to year - included in the pack are care instructions for years of pleasure.

The potted bulbs are delivered by overnight courier in specially designed boxes to keep them in tip top condition. So hurry and place your order to get them to your Mum in time.

Posted in Green Wedding Flowers

February 21, 2008

Natural beauty

orglamic_beauty.jpgIts a rare thing to find a make up artist so dedicated to using the most natural cosmetics she can find for her eco chic wedding clients, but Laurie Saunders of Orglamic is doing just that. After years of working with big brand beauty companies, but already leading a fairly ethical lifestyle, she found her skin crying out for change on the run up to her own green wedding. The final leap came in a desperate attempt to improve her skin health in time for that all important day.

Now Laurie only uses organic products in her personal skincare regime which, she says "hasn’t just been good for my conscience, it’s worked wonders on my skin", but also in her work. Laurie is available to work nationwide because, as she rightly points out, there are few make up artists dedicated to using the most natural cosmetics for bridal work. But to compensate for the mileage involved she will offset all her carbon emissions by contributing to a tree planting scheme.

Laurie also offers other services like make up instruction for earth friendly brides wanting the confidence to apply their own makeup beautifully on the big day, a personal shopping service taking the hassle out of finding honest green products to suit the individual and a fabulous bespoke service producing 100% organic products tailored just for you.

Read more


Posted in Green Wedding Beauty, Hair & Makeup

February 19, 2008

5 easy ways to throw a greener celebration

5_easy_ways.jpgBuy local.
Choosing local products and services will save your pocket and the planet!

Eat seasonal.
Locally grown and seasonal food is good for you and the earth.

Reduce flower miles.
Decorate with local grown, fairly traded flowers and plants.

Honeymoon at home.
Take advantage of your beautiful country, support local tourism.

Spread your love.
Register with a charity gift list or commission a local artisan.

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration

February 14, 2008

Love is in the air

lovers.jpgWell, Valentine's Day has finally arrived and I wonder if you decided how to mark the day? There can be no better way to do this than to give the love of your life a big hug and a kiss and tell them how much you love them. Later buy some fresh seasonal food and knock together the simplest and tastiest of meals to share with your love over a candlelit table for two with your favourite tracks in the background. There that was easy and didn't cost a penny - or no more than you would normally have spent on your evening meal. And if you want to make it really special plan a train ride into the countryside this weekend and take a walk in the glorious sunshine, see the spring flowers popping up everywhere and listen to the birdsong.

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration

February 12, 2008

Seasonal flower inspiration

pr_flowers_spring_bouquet_s.jpgSo you've decided to go seasonal and local for your wedding flowers and need a bit of inspiration with your eco chic wedding plans. You can't go wrong checking out Jane Lindsey's blog at Snapdragon Garden. While you're there subscribe to her fortnightly newsletter full of fantastic tips. A creative and dedicated florist who grows flowers for clients' weddings and events, she regularly posts seasonal news and ideas from her cutting garden in Scotland.

Posted in Green Wedding Flowers

February 11, 2008

Do truly organic flowers exist?

spring_posy.jpgWell, its true that flowers labelled by the Soil Association in the UK or 'USDA Organic' in the US, certifying them free from toxic or synthetic pesticides or fertilizers, are still difficult to get hold of. While organically grown flowers are available in farmer's markets and through small local growers and online, they're not always labeled as such - certification is a costly and time consuming business for small producers. Organic flower growers also struggle to achieve the quality now expected of the product, as some flowers could have blemishes and imperfectly shaped petals.

Read more


Posted in Green Wedding Flowers

February 07, 2008

Fairly traded flowers

Following on from our foray into the world of flowers yesterday, let's look a bit more closley at why we should consider Fair Trade Flowers. I know there's still a couple of weeks to go before Fair Trade Fortnight, but with Valentines day approaching I think this is the time to talk flowers.

According to the Flowers & Plants Association British people will spend around £30 million on 'fresh' flowers this Valentines Day and with around 90% of those flowers being bought by men, so please make sure your significant other sees this before he buys!

Well over 9 million red roses are given in the UK, the majority flown in from Colombia, India, Israel, Kenya and Zimbabwe and over 50 million red roses are traded worldwide on this day alone!

valentine_rose.jpgSo it can't be denied, if you're going to buy roses, or any flowers that are flown here, it just makes sense to buy Fairtrade. By doing this you will be ensuring that workers and producers on farms in the third world will be getting a better deal from your purchase. The premium you pay for Fair Trade flowers goes towards funding further improvements for workers and their communities, and helps empower them to play a more active role in farm management issues that affect them. It ensures that less pesticides are used in the cultivation of the flowers thus making it a less toxic environment for the workers. You will be instrumental in helping workers look forward to a more secure future and a better quality in their day-to-day lives.

Read more


Posted in Green Wedding Flowers

February 06, 2008

Will you give your valentine a bucket full of pesticides?

sweet_loving_flower.jpgWhile we'd fully admit that pesticides don't usually come to mind when choosing red roses for a valentine, we believe it's about time to start asking people to think about it. True, we don't normally eat our flowers and, for the most part, they're not worn against the skin, so that's probably why its taken longer to recognise the environmental issues surrounding the production of cut flowers.

So the big debate is raging - what is considered environmentally correct in the flower industry? Should all flowers be organic, grown without any synthetic or toxic pesticides? Or should the emphasis be on fair trade flowers, which means that the workers on the flower farms are safe and paid a fair wage? Should we choose locally grown flowers, reducing the cost of emissions? Which flowers can truly be called green?

Image Sweet Loving Flowers

For the next three days we'll tackle each of these questions in greater depth, looking at the pros and cons of each.

Read more


Posted in Green Wedding Flowers

February 01, 2008

Perfect pearls

bride_with_pearls.jpgThis image of a beautiful bride listening to her husband's wedding vows illustrates how simple ear studs and a string of pearls can perfectly finish off a modern bride's outfit.

Mai Pearls have made it their business to source a range of hand made classic and contemporary pearl jewellery ethically, by only buying from two small groups of skillful Chinese women. Henrietta, founder of Mai Pearls, personally travels to China every year to place her orders and donates 10% of all profits to Operations Blessings care programs. These programs are available for China’s needy, handicapped, orphans, and children suffering from various diseases. For more information on the charity visit www.obchina.org.

Give a little back by choosing gorgeous freshwater pearls in every hue, bracelets, earrings, necklaces - the world's your oyster!

Posted in Green Wedding Jewellery

GreenUnion - a searchable database of green wedding services, products, tips and advice