EVENT: Eco wedding pop up

Now here's a wedding fair with a difference, bringing together eco wedding suppliers and talented green wedding designers from the South West of England.


Lovely GU partner Rachel Mills of the Green Wedding Boutique just told us she's been really busy planning and preparing for her Eco Wedding Pop Up Fair in Bristol which she decided to set up in order to bring under one roof some of the amazingly talented eco wedding suppliers she's found around Avon and Somerset with an opportunity to showcase what's on offer for eco chic brides and grooms to be in that area.

It's Rachel's first pop up event, so we really wish her loads of fun and visitors for the big day!

WHEN? Sunday 30 November, 2014 from 11.00 am – 5.30 pm

WHERE? BS1 Popup shop, Arclight House, 3 Unity Street, Bristol, BS1 5HH


If you're in Bristol on Sunday then get along and be inspired to create your own naturally green wedding!

Posted in Green Wedding Events , Inspiration

TENTS: Fabulous Sperry Tents by Papakata

Remember way back earlier in year I blogged that the lovely people at PapaKåta were now supplying the amazing Sperry Tents, from New England in the USA, to couples looking for something a little bit different in the way of a canvas wedding venue?

They just sent me images of the very first English wedding to be thrown in these fabulous canvas and wood structures with a New England flair.



Check out the wooden support poles, which are made from sustainable timber, and the side flaps that open right up to give guests a beautifully airy room with a view.

Love these tents!

Images: Paper Antler

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Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Marquees & Tents

PHOTOGRAPHY: Claudia Rose Carter

Have you seen Claudia Rose Carter's wedding photography? It's stunning, unique and very individual in style, just like you are ... I love it!


Anyway, Claudia has some available space this year 2014, to work with some more amazing couples. Only because, she tells me, that she held off booking too many weddings until her brand new baby, born in April, was settled into his childcare routine. So, being very accommodating and truly in love with his nanny, Jesse is allowing Claudia more time for her work and she is raring to go!


Don't hold back, if you haven’t yet found your photographer, Claudia is one of the best! Take a look at her work and email her on enquiries@claudiarosecarter.co.uk.


Oh, and she mentioned that any location is perfect!

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Photographers

BRITISH FLOWERS WEEK: Bloomin' lovely British garden roses

To end a glorious week championing the British flower growing industry, the lovely people at New Covent Garden Market are showcasing the bride of all flowers, the British garden rose, for British Flowers Week.

Just look at these beauties (it's a shame you can't smell them too)!


So it's not surprising that London florist McQueen's Duncan McCabe chose to work with the nation's favourite - blousy, romantic, intensely fragrant and beloved of brides nationwide, the Garden Rose just has to be the quintessential British summer flower. He says that the beauty of the British garden rose is in it's imperfections, lack uniformity and all stages of 'openess'. Here he's created a gorgeously luscious hand tied bouquet using rosa Deep Secret and Pure Poetry.



Available from May to September and in all shades of white, cream, apricot, peach, pink, red, purple, the Garden rose is, rather surprisingly, only stocked by one New Covent Garden Market trader, Zest Flowers, but you can source it from many small individual growers throughout the UK. Check out our wedding directory for florists and growers of British seasonal flowers championed by Green Union.

You can read the whole story and see more images over on the New Covent Garden Market blog.

Download the New Convent Garden British Flower Chart here. It gives honorary status to British flowering foliage! Use the chart for reference when planning your own seasonal wedding flowers.

Images: New Covent Garden Market for British Flowers Week

Posted in Green Wedding Events , Flowers , Inspiration

BRITISH FLOWERS WEEK: Gloriously British flowering foliage

Did you think foliage was uninteresting and only used by florists to bulk out your expensive bouquet? Well I say think again because choosing foliage carefully will go a long way to reflect the seasons in your wedding flowers, create impact, add texture and movement, and last the whole day through. Just look at this array of foliage on display and New Covent Garden Market.


And you'll see why when you look at these amazing creations using British flowering foliage by florists Euphoric Flowers for British Flowers Week. An adorable heart of cotinus, stachys byzantina, lavender, philadelphus, golden privet, poppy seed heads, buxus and the leaves of geranium, oak and heuchera is steeped in romance.


Greenery is never just green, but ranges from silver-grey or yellow to deep reds and browns depending on the seasons and when it's in flower, like lilac, jasmine or cherry blossom, it just gets better! Glorious branches of British oak, eucaluptus, philadelphus, cotinus, flowering privet, aruncus and physocarpus cascade from a moss lined vase.


And this seasonal bunch created entirely from British flowering foliage proves there's more to the colour 'green' in 'greenery'. Purple cotinus, silver stachys byzantine, golden privet, white flowering philadelphus, lime green ribes supplemented by white sweet peas and the blue of lavender - a bridal bouquet packed full of texture and colour.


You can read the whole story and see more images over on the New Covent Garden Market blog.

Go to our wedding directory for British florists and flower growers championed by Green Union.

Download the New Convent Garden British Flower Chart here. It gives honorary status to British flowering foliage! Use the chart for reference when planning your own seasonal wedding flowers.

Images: New Covent Garden Market for British Flowers Week

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Flowers , Inspiration

BRITISH FLOWERS WEEK: Garden Pinks for a colourful & fragrant wedding

So today's a big day for garden pinks, or dianthus, a much underrated British flower and grown here since before the time of Queen Elizabeth I. The garden pink was known as the gillyflower in the 16C and the name 'pink' as in the flower is presumed to predate 'pink' as in the colour.

In season from May till the end of June, the pink is showcased by New Covent Garden Market and the florist Simon Lycett for British Flowers Week, the common or garden pink, grown right here in the UK, mainly Devon, is a divinely perfumed little beauty and worthy of any bridal bouquet.


Check out how this charming little British flower can light up a foliage candelabra of trailing ivy and jasmine officianalis creating a really cost effetive table centre piece full of drama, perfume and colour.



You can read the whole story and see more images over on the New Covent Garden Market blog.

Go to our wedding directory for British florists and flower growers championed by Green Union.

Download the New Convent Garden British Flower Chart here and use it for reference when planning your own seasonal wedding flowers.

Images: New Covent Garden Market for British Flowers Week

Posted in Green Wedding Flowers , Inspiration

SUPPLIER FOCUS: Making your wedding your own…

The lovely people at Little Cherry, the Eco Friendly party suppliers, have sent me this little article packed full of tips and ideas on how to make your wedding your own. And they’ve come up with some corkers! Over to you Little Cherry ...

We, at Little Cherry, have been supplying party goodies and catering products to brides, caterers and event organisers for a few years now and of all the things we’ve learned about designing the perfect wedding, the best tip we have is to MAKE IT YOUR OWN.

Image: Bellafayegarden

Any wedding should be, first and foremost, a true reflection of who you are as a couple. There are always new themes and ideas emerging, but what we suggest is that you don’t get hung up on what’s the latest hot trend but concentrate more on you and your partner’s personalities. As we all know, a wedding is an expensive business and there are some aspects that you just can’t get around! But not everything needs to cost a fortune; shop around, do your research, there are some fabulous free resources available online these days to help inspire you. It all goes back to making it all about you, sometimes it’s the small details that say the most!

Image: Crushculdesac

Anything can be a display piece at a wedding and it doesn’t have to be done in a traditional way. For example, from dressing a vintage bike with fresh flowers to displaying a gorgeous pair of new shoes as your table centrepiece, there is no end to the possibilities. We’ve come across some lovely ideas along the way, and here are just a few which we think will inspire some amazingly personal touches for your wedding day.


Using nature as your inspiration is a great way of developing a style or theme that everyone will love. If you have a love of the great outdoors, let that be reflected by choosing eco-friendly products like our lovely compostible palm leaf plates and serving platters. More and more now, people are realising that when hosting any large event, there’s a lot of waste and there needn’t be. Use biodegradable products that look stylish and can be completely recycled afterwards ensuring your party doesn’t leave a mark on the environment.


Here at Little Cherry, we have a fantastic range of new products which would beautify any wedding - canapé dishes, floral skewers, wooden boats, paper pompoms in fabulous colours and lovely bunting to name but a few.


Make your wedding a reflection of your imagination and personality; it can be totally unique and doesn’t have to cost the earth.

Thanks Little Cherry, great tips to give brides to be and grooms a head start as they embark on their wedding plans.

Little Cherry is a recommended Green Union supplier selling a wide range of stylish, natural and sustainable wedding reception supplies. They specialise in ethically sourced palm leaf plates and other natural, disposable tableware. Their eco-friendly tableware has been exclusively designed to be contemporary and elegant as well as fully disposable and biodegradable. They also sell cutlery, compostable cups and napkins for a one-stop-shop.

Visit Little Cherry for more details or email orders@littlecherry.co.uk

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Ethical Vendors , Inspiration

INSPIRED IDEA: Dreaming of Gorgeous Confections ...

Just a bit of whimsy today from GU HQ ...

Summer brings ideas of romantic, naturally gorgeous cakes and deserts and I just adore the trend for naked wedding cakes. Believe me, I love a bit of traditional white frosting a much as anyone, but these unadorned wedding cakes are such fun and give one a sense of wild abandon. What's more, being able to peek at all those layers of squidgy buttercream just gets the mouth watering! Let's face it, if the cake and filling are delicious enough, the rest is well, just the icing on the cake.

Here's a round up of some of those delicious looking confections that I've come across on the web over the last few days.


Cake: bakermama.com


Cake: Carried Away Cuisine


Cake: Momofuku Milk Bar


Cake: Momofuku Milk Bar

Posted in Green Wedding Cakes , Inspiration

WEDDING FLOWERS: Summer Flower Guide

Flowers - my favourite subject, and British flowers are my passion. Fresh cut blooms from the garden or, when I need them for a bigger event, then grown locally in the UK are my preference every time.


Whether trying out fresh ideas for weddings, or visiting a flower grower right here in the UK, I just love the colours, textures and variety on offer throughout the seasons. And with summer just around the corner (let’s face it the weather has been totally encouraging the last few weeks), I’m thinking about what brides will be choosing for their summer wedding decor.

It’s worth keeping in mind that the range of seasonal, locally grown flowers available will vary depending on where you are. The flowers I‘ve showcased here are all in peak season during the summer throughout the UK so begin your search by checking out what’s in bloom through the summer wherever you’re planning to get married.

Part of the magic of flowers is that they’re so fleeting and your favorite flowers might only be around for a month or so during the season, so it’s smart to choose your wedding date to coincide with your favourite flower’s blooming period - it also means they will be at their best price, so helping the budget along!

Here’s a selection of home grown British flowers, some less well known, that are ideal for a summer wedding…

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Flowers , Inspiration

DIY: Romantic just picked flower garland

Romance is a big deal in Green Unions's wedding trends, but we like to think of it as being totally new and fresh. This adorable flower garland is just the ticket with its whimsical DIY flavour...


All you need is some string, or ribbon if you want the look to be totally romantic, and a big packet of wooden clothes pegs plus the all important flowers - cosmos, mini sunflowers and zinnias for a late summer wedding are used here but you can choose any in season blooms to suit your style and decor and to get just that 'just picked' look.


Tie up your string or ribbon and just peg the blooms singly or in bunches to the line. Simple! Give it a go its soooooo easy.


If can't grow your own blooms, then go to our wedding directory to find flower growers and florists that will supply in season British grown flowers.

Images courtesy of: Arna Bee and Santa Barbara Chic

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Flowers , Inspiration

Earth Day 2014 - The Earth Delights ...


"Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet,
and the wind longs to play with your hair." - Kahlil Gibran


The Earth Delights by maechevrette - you can find this large inspirational original mixed media painting on canvas, created with the artist's own photography, acrylic paint, watercolor, fabric, book pages, old letters and found paper on Etsy.

Posted in Green Wedding Events , Inspiration

Top green wedding trends for 2014/15 - five of the best

All images emmastonerweddings.com


I now you’ll think we just conjured this one up because we’re Green Union, but seriously, although green weddings originally grew out of ethical and political reasons, a naturally green wedding theme is now one of the hottest mainstream wedding trends around. The relaxed rustic, country, festival affair is not only eco friendly, but totally chic too.
Throw your wedding in the woods or under canvas, choosing a totally green venue such as fforest (naturally beautiful) or the London Wetland Centre (a worthy cause) will give you stunning backdrops to your wedding photos.
Source locally grown food and British flowers. Keep your wedding ceremony and reception all in one place to save on transport. Choose a beautifully designed and ethically made wedding gown with vintage shoes. Decorate with naturally found materials and bring on the festival vibe.


A handfasting is a beautiful Pagan custom, dating back to the time of the ancient Celts. After the bride and groom declare their intent to enter into a union with one another, their hands are clasped and fastened together with a ribbon or cord just before, just after, or during their vows are made to one another. The wrapping of the cord forms an infinity symbol and the handfasting knot is a symbolic representation of oneness between the couple. In a show of unity, they become bound to each other.
The symbolic and very personal handfasting ceremony can be performed anywhere (though you will still need to be legally married by a registrar as well). Make a woodland wedding that little bit extra special and perform your handfasting ceremony under an ancient oak tree or choose a spot in a stone circle on top of the moors for dramatic effect.
Create a joyful and abundant theme with colourful ribbons and Celtic symbolism. A barbeque and a bonfire with unplugged music will really get your guests in the festival mood.


Quirky weddings have evolved into the most stylish events. Subtle details will create individual quirkyness while you braver brides could go wild with an unusual theme that reflects your personal style - rock and roll 50’s is still deeply trendy while the roaring 20’s is enjoying a renaissance thanks to The Great Gatsby.
Anywhere really, that is slightly out of the ordinary, can give a certain ‘je ne sais quois‘ to your individual wedding. A village hall all decked out in your quirky dream-time, a city restaurant or a pumphouse in the middle of nowhere will all lend brilliant backdrops to quirky themes. Keep your day small and intimate - it’s terribly trendy.
Transport your guests in a vintage bus or get to the ceremony on a tandem. Deck yourself out in classic 20’s and find a swing band to help you dance the night away.


Drama lends itself to weddings and if you’re the sort of person who loves to make a bold statement, then dramatic spaces and out of the ordinary details are a must.
If you plan to marry in church then dramatic ecclesiastical spaces are tops, a railway station or a botanical garden will give you city chic drama while the edge of a seaside cliff or the craggy Peak District offer wide open drama.
Let the space lend the drama, embrace it and the day will be yours.


Romantic reigns sublime and never goes out of fashion, so with the hot fashion trend for florals everywhere, weddings will be hugely influenced by blowsy roses and faded florals. Classic or contemporary, flowing frocks and roses still make the heart beat faster. Bring romantic bang up to date with retro touches and modern flourishes.
A candle lit crypt, a country house with rose gardens and parkland, a romantic fin de siecle hotel with high ceilings and grand pillars, or a Lakeside venue with rolling parkland will all hit the spot. Or throw your romantic wedding in your own back yard - it will be intimate and friendly.
British garden flowers for abundant colour and scent, roses are a must in high summer. Flower crowns are huge - design a beautiful one for your hair. Include your dog as your ring bearer and make sure you have lots of lovely flower girls to skip down the aisle strewing rose petals in your way...

Whatever you decide ...
Never loose track of why you’re tying the knot.

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Wedding Planning

Plan your very own pop up WedFest...

With the trend in 2014/15 for festival inspired weddings, you may be contemplating throwing your very own pop up wedding festival, but can’t think where to start ...


Well you should take a peek at one of our favourite bespoke wedding and event tent hire companies, Wedding Tipi and equally luxuruious canvas accommodation supplier Cariad Canvas, who tell us the have joined forces to offer couples with their very pop up Wedding Festival. Gone are the days where you could spend precious hours surfing the internet to source all the individual elements that make up a Wedfest - now it couldn’t be easier.


This fabulous, carefree service offfers everything you need to build your very own Wedfest vision from towering festival flags, epic internal and external lighting, festival stages, canvas cafes, sumptuous chill out lounges, cinema tents, bar yurts, Bedouin dance tents, exquisite canvas Glamping accommodation with onsite staffed reception serving hot drinks and cakes plus the most stunning of main reception spaces in the form for giant Nordic Tipi’s.

What’s more, with the WedFest team's help, your pop up wedding festival can be set up at almost any location; a traditional wedding venue, a farmer’s field, deep in woodlands, popped in a private garden or a designated festival spot. The two companies have compiled some stunning packages to transform your very own chosen venue and set your big green day apart from the crowd.


Also, if you can’t find the perfect venue the WedFest team has a number of unique spaces up their sleeves in various locations across Wales, England, Scotland and Ireland, so get in touch with the team to find out more about how they can help you plan the green wedding of your dreams.

For more information contact Anna at info@cariadcanvas.co.uk quoting Wedfest.

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Marquees & Tents , Wedding Accommodation

Nelson Mandela remembered ...

This is so beautiful that I just had to share it with you. Please take a moment to hit play, sit back and enjoy it too.

The Soweto Gospel Choir had scheduled a performance of James Brown's I Feel Good last weekend, but when Nelson Mandela died on Dec. 5 at age 95, their plans changed.

Dressed as employees at a Woolworths grocery story in Pretoria, members of the choir surprised shoppers with a stirring rendition of Asimbonanga, a Mandela tribute song from 1987 by musician Johnny Clegg.

Click the video above to watch the performance. On mobile? Click here

Woolworths said "On Saturday, 7 December 2013, Woolworths had planned a performance at our Parkview store in Pretoria to support our Operation Smile Christmas campaign. The Soweto Gospel Choir's planned a rendition of James Brown's I Feel Good. But, after Madiba's passing the choir decided on a tribute instead. They chose Johnny Clegg's Asimbonanga"

Click here for a translation of the lyrics.

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration

Wedding favours for National Tree Week

It's National Tree Week! Follow it on Twitter and join in their tweetathon on Wednesday using #NationalTreeWeek @TheTreeCouncil.


We love trees - ancient monuments, forests, woodlands and beautiful individuals. Trees are the lungs of the world and we need to protect them and grow them.


What better way to get involved with planting trees, making a difference and marking one of the most important days of your life than to plant trees. Give them as wedding favours to your guests and you could be responsible for a small forest of your own!

Go to Trees of Tomorrow for your very own trees seedling wedding favours.

"The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn" R. W. Emerson

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Events , Gifts & Favours , Inspiration

Let your love grow...

...with eco-friendly wildflower seed wedding favours, gifts and invitations. You should take a look at Wildflower Favours because they have some great ideas for wedding decor and stationary plus giving you heaps of tips on how to use them seasonally. So if your wedding is planned for next Autumn, here are a few tips from Teresa:


Image: Heline Bekker

Decorate your plantable wedding invitations with pressed flowers in the colour scheme that your wedding will be.
Use our tree free lotka paper autumn colour leaves to decorate your tables.
Hand out natural dried sunflower petal confetti - the sunny, golden hues will blend in with your autumnal theme.
Wildflower seeds from the English countryside in pretty colour themed packets are perfect wedding favours - get your guests to plant them and enjoy the memory of a wonderful wedding one year on.
Autumn coloured tree-free lotka paper leaves are perfect for place settings with your guests names written on them.


As you can see, we love everything Wildflower Favours do because they are constantly thinking about how it will effect the environment, particularly our precious British flora and fauna. Go to their website to find out more and buy lovely things from the online shop.

Posted in Green Wedding Gifts & Favours , Inspiration , Seasonal Celebrations

Wedding gift inspiration

My husband David designs and hand makes beautiful pieces of furniture to commission. He also makes small wooden items for sale through galleries and at craft shows like these gorgeous wooden vases with glass tubes to display individual flowers stems. We call stem vases.


He recently received this email that made me think it would be great inspiration for couples wondering what to do about wedding gifts:

"I purchased one of your 'test tube rack' vases from the Dartington Shop - a wedding present for a couple who have asked for the presents to 'remind them of the person that gave it to them' - as I am a retired science teacher who loves botany, this is the perfect present! Also, I like the fact that it is unique - in fact, I would really like to keep it! Many thanks, Steven T

While most couples these days don't want, or need, conventional wedding gifts like toasters and bed linen and don't feel that a wedding list is relevant to their unique union, wedding guests still love to give a gift to mark the occasion and so its always a good idea to have some way of letting your guests know what it is you would love to receive.

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Gifts & Favours , Inspiration , Wedding Lists

Wonderful lakeside wedding venue

Here at GU HQ we’re delighted to welcome Graythwaite to our directory of wonderful wedding venues. A beautiful Cumbrian country estate set in 5,000 acres of lakeside, forest and woodland, Greythwaite has a rich heritage, and today supports a thriving residential and working community. All the things we love to hear about... And apparently William Wordsworth, the poet, and his wife Dorothy,enjoyed walking in Graythwaite’s woods.


Silverholme, the fabulous main house at Graythwaite is a stylish blend of period character and modern luxuries: light and spacious reception rooms and quality furnishings for entertaining and relaxing; eight individualy-styled, ensuite bedrooms and the original coachman’s cottage; beautiful gardens and private access to Lake Windermere, the elegant manor house has the flexibility to make it your own - the perfect setting for your special day. The house and barn are licensed for weddings and civil partnerships and you can also hold an unlicensed ceremony with your own celebrant for any number of guests outdoors in the gardens, or in a beautiful lakeside setting under the very pretty gazebo.


You can hire Silverholme for the whole weekend from Friday to Monday, making it the perfect setting for a wonderful weekend wedding gathering.

The lovely people at Silverholme make sure its a ‘home away from home’. You can either self-cater and do your own thing with family, friends or colleagues or take up their offer of a full range of concierge services including the catering and housekeeping, as well as organised activities, leaving you and your guests free to enjoy the house and gardens, and the pleasures of the country estate on your doorstep.


Offering fine in-house catering using seasonal local produce, Silverholme comfortably seats up to 30 guests for a sit-down meal, but can also cater for up to 50 guests for an informal finger-fork buffet inside Silverholme, or in the barn close to the house, while for 50 or more guests, they’ll arrange marquee hire and can advise you on external catering companies.


So, if you imagine getting wed in the Lake District or particularly favour a poetically inspired wedding day, the people at Silverholme would love to tell you more, show you the estate and the barn, and talk through the possibilities of making your wedding a very special celebration.

For more information check out their website and contact Katrina Stacey about this lovely Lakeland wedding venue.

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Venues , Wedding Accommodation

Toms Feast - local, seasonal, organic

Inspirational food hero and ethical chef Tom Hunt of Tom's Feast joined Green Union recently and we are excited to let you in on the secret...

Tom is so passionate about his food and the wedding catering service they provide, that we thought it would be best to let him tell you about it in his own words:

"I sincerely enjoy every minute of a wedding. First the planning, with animated and creative discussions about the banquets we can create, then working together to find a location, and finally the big day itself. Delivering fresh ethical food at such a merry celebration is massively rewarding.


There’s nothing we like better than cooking huge communal feasts, of celebration, with abundant vibrant dishes that are great shared between loved ones. We like to bring an alfresco french wedding feel to the food, keeping it rustic and packed with flavour.

I really love cooking outside and if possible with fire! I have a beautiful wood oven and chargrill that we bring along to all our do’s. It allows us to make really special dishes like authentic porchetta, wood roasted sea bass with fennel and stone baked breads.

Our green wedding credentials: We care about the environmental impact of our work. We pride ourselves on sourcing our food ethically - all our ingredients are seasonal without question and we prioritise buying local, organic ingredients from sources we trust.


“how do you feed 270 people michelin-starred food in the middle of the wilderness? you call Tom and his team” – James Whewell, Organiser Wilderness festival.

For more information check out Tom's website and blog.

Oh, and Tom's Feast was featured last year in one of our Natural Nuptials blog posts.

Posted in Green Wedding Caterers, Food & Drink , Inspiration , Seasonal Celebrations

Loveluxe revisited - 10 good reasons to throw an intimate wedding

Check out our latest green wedding planning advice column on the lovely Loveluxe Blog. This time we thought it would be good to mention the growing trend for more intimate weddings.

As wedding budgets get tighter we’re hearing from our partners that guest lists are shrinking and weddings of a more intimate nature are the big choice for eco savvy couples, so we thought we’d conjure up some chic tips for couples planning to throw a more intimate affair:


Get the whole story over at Loveluxe and celebrate the fact that your wedding is small but perfectly formed!

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , News , Wedding Planning

Share the love with PapaKåta

PapaKåta , the folks who specialise in hiring out kåta tents, the giant teepees that create utterly unique and truly magical party spaces, would like to invite you to their Spring Open Weekend in April.


They say all the best parties happen in a PapaKåta tent so here's your opportunity to see for yourself if you're planning to throw your green wedding up in Yorkshire or the North of England.

They'll be there from 10am 'till 4pm and really look forward to showing you their teepees in all their glory!

To book a time to chat through your plans get in touch on 0800 612 9692, email tellmemore@papakata.co.uk or feel free to just drop by on the day. Visit their website for more ideas and information.

WHAT: PapaKåta Spring Open Weekend

WHEN: 6th & 7th April from 10am to 4pm

WHERE: Escrick park Estate, Escrick, YO19 6EA - just 5 mins from York

Posted in Green Wedding Events , Inspiration , Marquees & Tents


Here's a lovely idea for a winter wedding theme if you're planning to wed shortly after Christmas. Wassail conjurs up ideas of bowls of apple cider punch, rich colours, bare apple boughs and foraged greenery for decoration, ribbons, wedding tipis with warm fires and candle light, all surrounded by the people you love. What a theme...


Wassailing is an ancient tradition of blessing apple trees at Twelfth Night and asking the spirit of the tree for a bountiful harvest of fruit the following autumn. Some wassailers adhere to the Gregorian calendar and mark Twelfth Night on 6th January, whereas others adhere to the older Julian calendar and leave their wassails until the 17th January, a good time to celebrate a wedding too!

Wassail is an Anglo-Saxon word and is thought to mean ‘Be In Good Health’. Whilst there is a tradition of wassailing neighbours with songs and good wishes at yuletide (similar to the modern tradition of carolling), apple trees had to wait until Twelfth Night, a time when the world is turned upside down, the Lord of Misrule reigns for a day, and the spirits draw close, including those of trees.


People who cared for an apple tree – and the tradition is still strong in the cider growing areas of England and the marches of Wales – set out with gifts of hot cakes and cider as an offering to the spirit of the tree. Usually, a cider soaked cake was hoisted high and left in the fork of a branch, with more cider splashed on the earth over the roots.

In order to drive away any malignant influence, people might shout or bang pan lids together, and some even fire shotguns into the air. Then, all present sing the wassailing song, asking for a good crop of apples the following autumn. If you want to wassail your own apple tree (or, with amendment to the words, any other sort of fruiting tree, or even your own union) here are some traditional words to use.

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Seasonal Celebrations

Christmas Gold


Don't you just adore these beautiful gold letters from POSH Graffiti

We've put together a Christmas greeting for you here using the letters, but of course we think you'll love to use these original, authentic letters created by Emily Readlett Bailey for your wedding decorations any time of the year.

Emily has always taken care to source sustainable materials and for many years has pioneered the concept of stylish design with an eco and ethical policy. The POSH Graffiti collection has been made by the same village rice farming community in Bali for 15 years where the farmers use this important secondary business to sustain their agriculture. The artisans use a local fast growing albizia wood (never toxic MDF) and each piece is unique. The Company has always emphasized quality over quantity resisting the lure of mass production in China.

Emily has been actively involved in tree planting in Bali over the years and this year she has been asked be work with an important sustainable rain forest management project in Borneo. More to come in 2013.

If you go to POSH Graffiti's website you will find all sorts of ideas to inspire you and there's also a brilliant wall where you can compose your very own design before buying.


Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Ethical Vendors , Inspiration

Naturally gorgeous Christmas wedding gift designs

Take a look at these gorgeous decorations specially created by Paper Tree for Christmas. There are little rosebud wreaths, mini mistletoe kissing sprigs:


Rosebud hearts and rosey wreaths:


For a Christmas wedding you could line up these sweet rose topiary pots all the way down your reception table:

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Gifts & Favours , Inspiration , Seasonal Celebrations

Papa Christmas party

Fans of Papakata will be delighted to hear that PapaChristmas is returning for its third successive year, with 6 more party nights in their fabulous giant teepee village set in Harrogate, Yorkshire where you can eat, drink, be merry and experience the lovely event spaces, in party dress, for yourself.


Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Events , Inspiration , Marquees & Tents

Have your green wedding at fforest this Autumn!

Uniquely wonderful Welsh green wedding venue fforest has just let us know that due to a last minute event cancellation on the weekend of 14 to 17 September this year, they now have room for another magical fforest wedding!


The timing is perfect for a beautiful autumn wedding - the weather is usually really lovely then - still warm and sunny with a soft autumn light.

So if you're thinking about getting married in the Autumn of 2012 and still don't have a venue booked, get in touch with fforest right away as they would love to have a chat and let you know what they can do for you.

Find out more about fforest by going to their website coldatnight.co.uk

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Special Offers , Venues

Eco friendly wedding transport

Here's a fabulous idea for couples looking for ways to keep their carbon footprint down on their wedding day.


Travelling in style from home to church or registry office, and on to your reception, in this immaculate cycle rickshaw by Wedding Cycles will make your day truly exceptional. Not only will it bring a smile to your face but the sight of you on your way to your wedding will make people en route turn and stare!

And Alison, who rides the pedicab, points out that since the rickshaw only uses pedal power she can guarantee no hike in prices due to rising fuel costs! The rickshaw is a really affordable way to get to the church on time, with celebration ribbons and a 'Getting Married' sign all included in the very reasonable price.


For more information and to find out where they cycle, go to the Wedding Cycles website or call Alison on 07783730901.

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Transport , Wedding Planning

Spring equinox - celebrate the first day of spring!

Today's spring equinox marks the point in space and time when the sun moves across the celestial equator from south to north and heralds the first day of spring, saying goodbye to winter for another year.

The Vernal Equinox, when the length of day and night are equal, is a celebration for the renewed life of the Earth, symbolised by the egg. Eostre, the goddess of spring with her animal the hare, was taken up by the early Christians and applied to their celebration of the Resurrection of Christ calling it Easter, which is just around the corner.


Planning a spring green union can be an absolute joy with a wealth of decoration ideas. Spring colours are fresh and brand new, and perfumes are divine. Yellow is predominant but there are also subtle tones of blues, dusky pinks and real lime green too. Natural blossom is dripping from the trees and one of our favourite looks is masses of blossom twigs combined with tulips. Don't forget painted eggs and egg hunts for your younger guests if your wedding is close to Easter.

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Seasonal Celebrations

Get the Oscars look

The Oscars are over for another year and we were excited to see that the red carpet was awash with romantic white dresses - perfect wedding inspiration.

From Cameron Diaz’s strapless Gucci dress, Rooney Mara’s plunging Givenchy gown to Gwyneth Paltrow’s chic and minimal Tom Ford dress, all channeling the ethereal fairytale wedding look with clean cut lines.


This year's red carpet glamour reminded us of Sabina Motasem Brides' new Art Deco inspired collection which oozes the sophistication of both old and new Hollywood and proves beyond a doubt that eco is very definitely chic.


Go to www.motasem.co.uk for further information.

Posted in Green Wedding Dresses & Gowns , Ethical Vendors , Inspiration

fforest wedding open days

A little while ago we got really excited about a new eco friendly wedding venue in Wales that we thought was a perfect fit for those couples intending to throw a weekend festival wedding.


Now you don't just have to take our word for it - fforest is inviting you to see for yourself what an amazing place it is. It will be a day for couples and their families to go along and see what's on offer.

They will take you on a guided tour around fforest which will be decked out with all those extra little details that are included for a wedding weekend and Cassy will also being give a little presentation showing fforest at different times of year, not only giving you a good idea how it will look when you plan to get married, but also how every wedding at fforest is truly unique.

Contact Cassy Wiggins on 01239 612 133 or email cassy.wiggins@coldatnight.co.uk to book your place either in April or July.

WHAT? Wedding Open Days

WHEN? Saturday 14th April 2012 and Saturday 21st July 2012

WHERE? At fforest camp, Fforest Farm, Cwnplysgog, Cilgerran, Cardigan, SA432TB

Put the dates in your diary!

Posted in Green Wedding Events , Inspiration , Venues

Save the date, naturally

When Simone over at Welsh Green Weddings sent us Ruth and Glenn's save the date photo (they are to be married at Penybanc Farm in Carmarthenshire in April this year) we couldn't help sharing it!


If you're planning a naturally green and eco-friendly wedding this is a brilliantly cost effective way to announce your wedding date to your family and friends...


Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Natural Nuptials , Venues

A green fforest wedding

Here at GU HQ we get so excited when we discover yet another absolutely unique and exquisite wedding venue that ticks all our boxes.


A wedding at fforest, in Cardigan, Wales, really is unique and captures the essence of what a green wedding is all about, embracing the natural environment and drawing on an ever-changing template presented by the seasons.


fforest is about the great outdoors and is set in 200 acres of woodland, grazed pasture and wild meadow. The farm is bounded by the Afon (River) Teifi and the Teifi Marshes nature reserve with gorgeous views across the Preseli mountains, ancient woodland, water meadow and traditional farmland. The camp provides a natural green canvas for your wedding celebrations and creates a place to enjoy the simplicity, pleasures and beauty of outdoor living in an outstanding natural environment.

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Seasonal Celebrations , Venues

Autumn inspired eco friendly wedding shoot

Wedding stylist Sue Fyfe-Williams of Aunties Vintage China recently sent us this lovely Autumn inspired photo shoot at Welsh Green Weddings, a distinctly different wedding venue that offers a multitude of options for couples to plan a unique, individual wedding which reflects their values and choices.


Newly licensed for weddings earlier this year, wonderful Welsh Green Weddings is a beautiful and versatile eco friendly wedding venue near Llandysul, Ceridigion. The Dairy and Byre are both licensed for wedding ceremonies and, while larger weddings may need a marquee, smaller more intimate wedding receptions can fit snugly into the dairy. There is a great choice of accommodation for your guests ranging from cosy dormitory-type rooms in the adjacent Ceridwen Centre, bedrooms in the farmhouse and the byre, a yurt and an original, beautifully decorated Romany caravan. Couples who choose to spend their wedding night in the Romany caravan, which is at the end of a leafy path, will wake up surrounded by rolling Welsh hills and serenaded with birdsong.


The wedding venue is owned and run by Simone and Roger Mansell-Broome, who are just the perfect hosts and stylist Sue said that when one tries to praise them for their hospitality and attention to detail they reply “It's what we do”.

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Natural Nuptials , Venues

Glamping ...

… and festival season is just around the corner. It's hard to believe with the rain pouring down outside and the short, dark days we're experiencing right now, but soon the shortest day will be behind us and we'll be looking forward to spring, summer and those wonderful festival filled green wedding days.

And we think that nothing could be more romantic than celebrating your unique eco friendly wedding in an aesthetically glamorous arts and crafts style William Morris inspired tent, serving your wedding guests with tea and cake or Pimms cocktails on a lawn scattered with Morris print deck chairs!


To celebrate the centenary of the founding of Morris & Co, The Arabian Tent Company has created this gorgeous William Morris tent that features iconic Islamic prints in its fabrics and furnishings, inspired by the man himself.


‘I launched the William Morris tent to coincide with his centenary this year as he’s someone I have huge admiration for,’ says Katherine Hudson, founder of The Arabian Tent Company. ‘Morris took a lot of his own designs from the Islamic patterns he saw in the V&A Museum, a place I absolutely love and which I too find a source of continuous inspiration. Morris believed that ‘art improves life’ and The Arabian Tent Company believes that art improves parties!’

This design certainly fits a the trend that shows no sign of fading and inspires couples to create their own mini glamping festival wedding weekends in secret gardens and countryside locations throughout Britain in the summer time. If William Morris isn't your style then you're bound to love the Cornish Cream tent (pictured below), perfect for treating your wedding guests to cream teas served on vintage china.


If you think the William Morris or Cornish Cream tents would be perfect for your own glamping inspired wedding and would like to know more, then visit Arabian Tents website, contact them by email info@arabiantents.com or phone Katherine Hudson on 0800 8815229.

Posted in Green Wedding Honeymoon & Eco Tourism , Inspiration , Marquees & Tents

Green & Gorgeous Christmas flower design courses

The lovely girls over at Green and Gorgeous are offering some fantastic flower arranging courses to inspire you with your wedding flower design plans next year.

First up are their Christmas wreath courses in December, but since most of you will be planning a spring or summer wedding you may be more interested in the flower arranging courses on offer in 2011.


The first two will concentrate on how to grow your own cutting flowers while the rest will be showing students how to arrange flowers from the garden.


A half day practical workshop for all abilities, they will teach you the best ways to condition and work with flowers straight from the border. There will be lots of demonstrations and handy tips, plus the opportunity to arrange with the best ingredients from Green and Gorgeous's own cutting garden.


During the day students will be shown how to create a hand tied bunch - perfect for a natural bridal bouquet. Also a corsage and a table arrangement will be tackled and the great thing is that you get to take them all home with you. The day includes a home-made vegetarian light lunch and refreshments.


For more information and course dates check out the Green and Gorgeous website

Posted in Green Wedding Courses , Flowers , Inspiration

Focus on Atelier Tammam at The Luxury Wedding Show


Here at GU HQ we're delighted to learn that Tammam, one of our favourite ethical wedding dress labels is to exhibit their Couture Range of wedding gowns at The Luxury Wedding Show in London later this month. This only goes to show how eco-luxe has hit the mainstream and become the norm for many couples getting wed today.

Since launching their couture range Tammam has attracted a celebrity following including the likes of Alicia Silverstone, Olivia Williams, Erin O’Connor and Rachel McDowell. Cited as one of the designers in the running for the royal wedding dress and described as “absolutely gorgeous” by Jason Gardiner, the Tammam couture collection is the new label of choice for discerning brides.

You can read more about Atelier Tammam on the show website

Green Union's Eco Chic Boutique stocks Tammam's diffusion range of wedding dresses.

The Luxury Wedding Show is to be held at The Saatchi Gallery, Kings Road in London on 22nd and 23rd October 2011.

Posted in Green Wedding Dresses & Gowns , Ethical Vendors , Inspiration

Wedding Fair at Trafford Hall

Lovely new (to us) wedding venue, Trafford Hall, nestled in the countryside just outside Chester, are throwing their very first wedding fair this Thursday evening.


Trafford Hall is run and maintained by the National Communities Resource Centre - a notable charity. This year the Charity has been awarded Level 4 of the Green Dragon Standards for the centre's environmental management systems (EMS)and the centre has just celebrated its 20th anniversary.

The Hall is a magnificent grade 2 listed Georgian Manor house, situated in 14 acres of award winning gardens and surrounded by the beautiful Cheshire countryside, a perfect setting for your ethical wedding day celebrations.

The house offers a beautiful ballroom and glasshouse licensed for your wedding ceremony, plus a couple of other more intimate rooms for smaller weddings (the big wedding trend). The child friendly venue is surrounded by beautiful gardens and has 53 ensuite bedrooms to accommodate all your guests at very reasonable prices. What more could you wish for?


Thursday 8th September 2011


At Trafford Hall, - FREE entry and arrival drink.

View this magnificent venue set up for a wedding ceremony and reception. Take this opportunity to meet their experienced wedding team and and meet wedding suppliers including entertainment, vintage cars and beauty therapists.

If you cant'sake it to Trafford Hall tomorrow but you're planning to get wed around the Chester area then get in contact with Nicky Dutton to arrange a viewing, check availability and discuss your ideas and dreams. Tel: 01244 300246 or email n.dutton@traffordhall.com

Posted in Green Wedding Ethical Vendors , Inspiration , Venues

Seasonal summer wedding flowers

We're now deep into wedding season with eco-friendly weddings taking place every weekend up and down the country. And as promised we bring you a second installment of our seasonal summer wedding inspiration from lovely Green Union partner and eco friendly wedding florist Julie Ballard. Over to you Julie:

Peonies, Roses, Sweet peas, Alchemilla mollis, Eryngium (see holly), Gladioli, Delphinium, Stocks, Acapanthus, Scabious, Dahlias and Sunflowers.


The loveliest wedding flowers are those that complement the season and it is generally thought that there are plenty of locally grown British blooms to choose from at this time of year. But it was only whilst planning the designs for an August wedding that I began to realize, in fact, that even within the season flower choice changes month by month and there are fewer suitable flowers available in August, than in say June or July. With a little bit of further research it became obvious that the colour palette evolves too, a fact which is well worth knowing when choosing a scheme for a wedding, sometimes up to a year in advance.

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Flowers , Inspiration , Seasonal Celebrations

Still yearning for a Pippa Middleton-style wedding dress without the McQueen price tag?


You may be interested to know that Bridal Path, a lovely bridal boutique in pretty and historic Sawbridgeworth, Hertfordshire, has just taken delivery of Motasem Bridal’s two year bestseller, the Alaya dress with cap sleeves and puddle train that we mentioned here just a few weeks ago. The dress is a highly flattering, cowl neck bias-cut gown in a fabulous soft crepe silk with lots of weight to it, enough to make any bride feel like a princess on her special day.

And priced at £925 or £695 without cap sleeves and train, it’s very reasonable too.

We think the Alaya is the perfect dress for brides wanting something simple, classic and fantastic quality for the price. The gown is pictured above in Bridal Path’s window teamed with a pair of Rachel Simpson ‘Marilyn’ suede and satin bow shoes.

The Alaya dress was designed by Sabina Ali from London-based label, Motasem Bridal and is available with lace detail and a plunging backless cowl version. Motasem provides understated, vintage inspired wedding dresses to brides looking for simple and elegant wedding dresses.

Posted in Green Wedding Dresses & Gowns , Ethical Vendors , Inspiration

Royal green wedding

It's what we'd all hoped and been waiting for - proof that the Royal wedding will, in every sense be a green affair.

News that Westminster Abbey is being decked out with an avenue of 20ft trees (all to be replanted at Highgrove when the celebrations are over), lining the aisle leading to the alter, makes our hearts sing with joy!


Much of the foliage will come from the royal estates and everything is to be English, natural, seasonal, ethical and as organic as possible. The resulting decorations are to be understated and elegant - we love it!

And we know that the wedding flowers will be full of meaning with the language of flowers and symbolism being key.

The trees in the Abbey will be six English field maples, symbolising humility and reserve, and two hornbeams, symbolising resilience. They will be in huge pots made by English craftsmen at Highgrove.

The seasonal flowers being used in the displays include Solomon's seal, brought from Sandringham, which symbolises confirmation of love; azaleas, the Chinese symbol of femininity; lilacs, which represent first love, and blossoms, signifying spiritual beauty. Other blooms being used include rhododendron, euphorbias, beech and wisteria, mostly from Windsor Great Park.

We can't wait to see it all on Friday and sense a huge trend for natural decor in 2012's green weddings.

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Natural Nuptials , News

Royal wedding flags

As Royal wedding fever grips the nation and the world we'd like to make a little boast that some of our partners are thoroughly involved in the event.

Big Wave Flags, for instance, have had their complete stock of fabulous festival flags booked for the event. They'll be 'flying the flags' at Camp Royale on Clapham Common for the entire weekend! Apparently they will be flying at some other undisclosed locations too...


Big Wave Flags is a unique company that makes and rents festival flags for weddings and other events. They will either rent stock flags or will create bespoke beauties for those that have a specific colour theme not already in their portfolio.

Flags really are a spectacular and cost effective way to enliven a large space. The flying colours and movement of the flags will uplift the day and give the whole event a dynamically colourful flavour.

Find out more information on their website or contact Andrew on 01209 891819

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Ethical Vendors , Events , Inspiration

Dream green weddings in Cornwall

There’s been a revolution in the world of weddings recently. Suddenly weddings are all about the bride and groom, and the way they choose to live and marry.


You’d think that this was always how it was meant to be, but in the past it didn’t usually work out that way.

The best day of your life was often all about the parents who were probably paying for it, Great Aunt Martha’s dislike of fancy food and not upsetting the vicar!

Thankfully things have changed and now it's very personal – weddings are more and more a reflection of the happy couple themselves - they’re romantic, they’re green, they’re fun.

Cornish Tipi Weddings captures the essence of eco-chic – riding the crest of this new wave of green Romantics with its very 21st century blend of sustainability, fun and glamour.


Their licensed wedding pavillion means it's the closest you'll get to an outdoor wedding ceremony in England and they’ll arrange the wedding of your dreams for 20 people or 220 people, with a matchless backdrop of woodland and sky, shimmering lake water and magical Cornish earth.

For more information about Cornish Tipi Weddings and Cornish Tipi Holidays (their tipi camping accommodation) go to their website www.cornishtipiholidays.co.uk, email info@cornishtipiweddings.co.uk or phone 01208 880781


"The ceremony took place in a clearing in the woods. Guests sat on hay bales and sipped champagne...The band was fantastic, the company even better and we finished it off sleeping in a tipi and waking to a fantastic day of fishing and swimming in the lake."

Posted in Green Wedding Ethical Vendors , Inspiration , Venues

Green and gorgeous hens

Jo Wise, the floral designer at Green & Gorgeous, a wonderful flower business that grows their own seasonal British flowers, has sent in this lovely story of her very first hen party which, she says, went really rather well.

The weather was splendid and the house amazing. A group of fifteen girls rented a Tudor manor house in the Chilterns for the weekend, and the amazing chief bridesmaid seemed to have thought of everything from white toweling slippers to delicious food - and Jo, of course!

A Happy Hen

"Finally, after months of waiting, there are flowers to pick again and the season has kicked off for me with a Hen Party workshop in South Oxfordshire.


The bride has already ordered buckets of flowers to arrange herself for her wedding in April, so her chief bridesmaid invited me along to host a morning floristry workshop. As we began the bride announced she'd be keeping her eye out for those who would make the floristry dream team on The Big Day....no pressure then ladies!!

Joking aside, it was really relaxed and everyone enjoyed themselves. There was some pretty hot arranging going on too.


During the workshop we created a spring posy, flowers in a tea cup and a corsage. I took along some anemones, tulips, muscari and scented narcissi - all fabulous seasonal spring flowers available now. We had viburnum tinus and varigated pittosporum as foliage. For me the anemones were the main attraction because t's been such a hard winter and we have had a few losses in the garden. So the rows of anemones that have popped up in the poly tunnel with their cheerful little faces bring extra joy with them.

It was a wonderful way to start the season, so thank you ladies, especially the chief bridesmaid who plied me with coffee and cake."


Green & Gorgeous is offering private workshops for hen parties, which ties in very well with their 'Bouquets & Buckets' service.

If you opt for this service, you can order buckets of flowers for you to arrange yourself along with friends and family. Jo does the hard bit and creates the wedding party flowers which could include the bridal bouquet, bridesmaids' flowers, buttonholes and corsages, delivering them to you on the day of the wedding (when every one would rather be getting their nails done!).

For more information visit the Green & Gorgeous website, email info@greenandgorgeousflowers.co.uk or to have a chat with Jo just call 07778 549412

Posted in Green Wedding Bridesmaids , Flowers , Inspiration

The perfect bunch - seasonal wedding flowers

As the wedding planning season reaches fever pitch and the first signs of spring emerge with the sweetest snowdrops, we will be bringing you seasonal wedding flower advice from lovely Green Union partner and eco friendly wedding florist Julie Ballard. Over to you Julie:

Gardenia, Heather, Helleborus, Hyacinth, Larkspur, Narcissi, Muscari, Vibernum, Tulips, Daffodils

A jug of fresh flowers on a table does more than simply symbolise the hope that a new season, particularly spring, brings. It makes us feel good too. Many people notice how, when our environment changes with the seasons, it affects how we feel. This is a good time to treat yourself to something that won’t pile on the pounds but will lift your mood as much as chocolate does - and last so much longer! So, perhaps some tulips? With a little piece of natural fabric to tie?


If you are planning a spring wedding why not start by looking at flowers that will be available in the months ahead – British and locally grown wherever possible of course. We’re not talking about those flowers which are available all year round because they are flown half way round the world or more! Of course the recent bad weather has affected flower availability just as much as it has caused problems for vegetable growers, but the flowers are fast catching up with the season now. With some forethought, many beautiful displays can be created using just a few blooms with plenty of mixed foliage and other interesting ingredients.

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Ethical Vendors , Flowers , Inspiration

Winter wedding inspiration

Who said winter weddings couldn't be gorgeous? Here's some really wonderful eco friendly wedding inspiration from Bash Events and Hatch Creative Studio.


Keep warm!

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Inspiration , Wedding Planning

Natural winter wedding

muddy_boots_wedding.jpgRoland and Miranda Ballard, the powerhouse behind brilliant new ethical meat company, Muddy Boots, got married on one of the coldest days last winter and had the most amazing green wedding day. The wedding was everything that we so love to hear about so we asked Miranda to tell us more. Over to you Miranda ...

The place and date of your wedding - ceremony and reception?

Saturday 16 January 2010 at Burford Church, Tenbury Wells, Worcestershire for the ceremony and then 30yds/next door at my parents’ home for the reception! My parents still live where my sister and I grew up and it’s right next to this stunning rural church. My sister Olivia and I have been planning our wedding since we were 3 and 6 years old because we would play in the church. It was nice, for a change, to be able to be the bride on my own wedding because, as little sister,
I was always made to be the groom!

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Blogger Brides , Ethical Vendors , Inspiration , Natural Nuptials

Gorgeous autumn apple wedding days

apple_wreath.jpgMounds of red apples, shiny greenery and moss all twined onto a ring is a great way to celebrate our beautiful English Apple Season and makes wonderful green wedding decor.

Grab yourself a florist's wreath ring, wire some moss onto the ring then wire up shiny red apples and greenery and tie onto the ring. Hey presto! A gorgeous seasonal welcome door wreath for your wedding guests. Or hang the ring above the bride and groom's places at the reception as a bountiful kissing ring.

You could continue the theme by making apple place names for your wedding guests at each table setting, then add a long mound of moss and apples down the centre of your trestle tables for dramatic wedding reception decorations. Just let your imagination do the work!

Image from Better Homes & Gardens

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Inspiration , Seasonal Celebrations

Natural wedding venue in the heart of London

We're over the moon to have WWT London Wetland Centre join our eco friendly wedding directory.


WWT London Wetland Centre is 42 hectares of beautiful lakes, pools and lagoons bringing wildlife and birds to the heart of our capital city.

To find such an amazing habitat so close to central London is unique and this combination of beautiful surroundings and central location (Zone 2) makes it the ideal venue for natural weddings in the city. The Wetland Centre are liscensed to hold civil partnership and marriage ceremonies in some of their buildings while other buildings are fabulous spots for wedding receptions. Venues approved for ceremonies are the Observatory and Wetland Living.

The Observatory can host a maximum of 110 guests and is a beautiful split level, heated observatory with a huge viewing window which has spectacular panoramic views across the reserve.

Wetland Living is a quaint and intimate venue with a thatched roof and white washed walls providing you the perfect location for your event. Licensed for wedding ceremonies the building has a capacity for 42 guests seated or 60 people standing. Where else in London can you have a wedding ceremony surrounded by beautiful wetlands and birds?

This wonderful wildlife and bird sanctuary is situated in Barnes not far from Hammersmith Bridge and smack in the middle of London. It's an inspiration for couples living in London who would prefer to get married in a wilder, more natural environment but don't want to stray too far from home.

If you would like to hold your wedding and/or reception at the London Wetland Centre, please enquire at 020 8409 4400 or functions.london@wwt.org.uk.

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Natural Nuptials , Venues

Vintage wedding inspiration

vintage-bride.jpgIsn't she just gorgeous? We found her, and hundreds of other beautiful brides, on the V&A's website which has an amazing section dedicated to wedding fashion. If you're searching for wedding dress or bridal gown inspiration for your own wedding, this is the place to go.

In advance of what promises to be a fabulous exhibition of Wedding Dresses in 2013, the V&A is creating a database of photographs of clothes worn for weddings from all cultures between 1840 and the present, also including civil partnerships. The database of wedding fashions that they are building will provide a rich record for posterity.

There's a huge library of wedding photographs already on the site and its growing daily. Go there for wedding trends and inspiration or to upload a wedding that you know would be valuable material for the exhibition and the V&A archives.

For more information on how to participate in the V&A's wedding fashion story go to their website.

Posted in Green Wedding Dresses & Gowns , Events , Inspiration

And don't forget PapaKåta's open days this weekend

PapaKåta's Autumn Open Weekend taks places this Saturday and Sunday 9 and 10 October and they tell us they’re looking forward to a great turn out.

PapaKåta are the folks up in Yorkshire who specialise in hiring out Kåta tents. You know, the giant teepees that are made with beautiful cotton canvas and sustainable birch poles and create utterly unique and truly magical party spaces for weddings and events.

Find out more about this event by going to the blog entry.

Posted in Green Wedding Events , Inspiration , Marquees & Tents

Vintage teacup table decorations

teacup_centerpiece.jpgFlowers fade, but Martha Stewart Weddings came up with this idea of using beautiful vintage china as table decor. What's more, the china can be enjoyed long after the last dance and recycled yet again!

Collect cups and saucers from flea markets and charity shops, borrow them from family members or rent them from china rental companies like Pebble-in-the-Pond, Idyllic Days or Vintage Tea Sets. Stack them in an arrangement that suits your theme and secure the stacks with glue or cement (if you want to re use the china make sure you secure it with removable cement).

It will all come to life when you place tea light candles in the cups which have been enhanced with a single flower in each saucer. There you go, a super-inexpensive centerpiece that's graceful and unique.

Get more fabulous wedding inspiration from Marthastewartweddings.com

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Inspiration

Wondering what wedding tent to choose?

The Autumn wedding planning season is kicking off with a vengence now and there are loads of events coming up for you to keep track of and gather inspiration from.

First up is PapaKåta's Autumn Open Weekend taking place Saturday and Sunday 9 and 10 October and they tell us they’re looking forward to a great turn out. PapaKåta are the folks up in Yorkshire who specialise in hiring out Kåta tents, you know the giant teepees that are made with beautiful cotton canvas and sustainable birch poles and create utterly unique and truly magical party spaces.


You’re all more than welcome to drop in at any point throughout the weekend to come say hello, have a glass of bubbles, toast marshmallows by the brazier and warm your cockles by the fire. But if you’d like an appointment with one of the Papa Peeps then just let them know your preferred time and they’ll pop it in the diary.

There will be demonstrations taking place on both days at 11.30am and 2.30pm by PapaKåta's operations manager Alan and the Papa crew, so even if you've already booked the Papa team for your wedding day and feel you may have all the details sorted, it may still be worth heading down to find out how to lift the sides, open the smoke flaps and have any of your logistical questions answered.

With flowers by the talented Kirsty at ‘Where Angels Play’ and local caterers ‘Saunts’ and ‘Kernalls’ there to tickle your taste buds with some warming winter fare, it promises to be a great weekend.

What: PapaKåta's Autumn Open Weekend
Where: Escrick Park Estate, Escrick, Yorkshire
When: Saturday 9th and sunday 10th October 2010

For more information or to book an appointment to chat with one of the Papa Peeps call 0800 6129692 or drop them an email at tellmemore@papakata.co.uk

Posted in Green Wedding Events , Inspiration , Marquees & Tents

Party themes and canvas tents

Conjure up an image of opulence and lavish living, flock fabrics in luscious rich colours, shabby-chic lamps and over the top chandeliers; meet in the summer scented garden by the two tall trees with your family and friends over a nice cup of English tea (in china cups of course); have your senses stimulated by warm orange and ochre amongst Moroccan lanterns and pretty fairy lights, sumptuous rugs and cushions; tread the grooves into the early hours within a cool minimalist interior and canvas washed with violet on a central dance floor, surrounded by seating and a handy bar – the party is bouncing at the first beat!

We're delighted to welcome Posh Frock & Wellies to our Wedding Directory. This brand new Cheshire based marquee and tent company specialises in providing beautiful and sumptuous surroundings for your wedding celebrations.


The company's whole purpose in life is to make your wedding forever memorable by creating an intimate, warm and enticing tent interior.

Their marquees are the traditional type of canvas pole tents made from natural fabrics and a lot of their equipment is recycled. For instance, they say that unlike many other marquee companies, they carefully preserve and reuse all their flooring and interiors which helps to limit the company's impact on the environment and provides a wholesome and natural space for partying.

Owner Sarah Powell-Barker designs the marquee themes employing her unique perspective on the use of textiles, furniture and lighting. The perspiration is provided by the other staff, many of them women too, which means they do seem to have a more sensitive approach to preserving your precious gardens and lawns!

Posh Frocks & Wellies is founded on a firm and historic base within the marquee industry - Sarah’s husband’s great grandfather founded Barker’s marquees in South London in 1888!

For more information visit their website, email sarah@poshfrocksandwellies.co.uk or pick up the phone 01829 751979.

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Marquees & Tents

Green fingered wedding - part 2

Leann updates us on the run up to her eco friendly wedding ...

Four weeks to go! What happened to July?

The feeling that there isn’t time to get everything done is mounting and worry is beginning to set-in, have we paid for everything? How many people have we forgotten to invite? Do all the suppliers still have what we like? It’s quite hard to stick to the ethical ideals when last minute jobs come-up, the temptation is to do the first or easiest thing that comes to mind to get it done but then you know that you’ll feel bad on the day with the niggling feeling that something wasn’t right.

The dress is finally hanging in the wardrobe! My Nan’s wedding dress from 1952 features prominently against the new hemp/silk fabric and looks much nicer after a gentle wash and line dry; we forgot how many people smoked back in ’52 and were really surprised when the fabric revealed itself as a beautiful ivory instead of a dingy taupe!

Matt’s outfit has been a tad more troublesome though. We’ve been frustrated at the lack of choices for eco-conscious menswear. The options for women’s’ clothing is really very good (almost everything from tie-dye vests to sharp designer tailoring and can be found if you search hard) but looking at the menswear options on most sites, you would think that men wore nothing but T-shirts, boxer shorts and socks! We finally discovered British company Quail by Mail, whose selection of well tailored but not too formal shirts hit the right note and Matt is smiling again.


70 metres (yes 70!) of home-made bunting made from salvaged calico, fabric remnants and old clothes now sits in our spare bedroom on a huge roll amid the increasing boxes of organic wine, recycled napkins and tombola prizes (yep, that’s right!) We decided that we should go the whole hog with the village fete idea and have a tombola stall to raise some money for the venue. All of the prizes are ethical in some way (organic chocolate, recycled stationary and notebooks, hemp and fair-trade cotton clothing and energy saving gadgets) so while our guests have some fun they also get a look at a whole range of ethical products. We even managed to pick up some recycled raffle tickets. LoveLula liked the idea and kindly donated a prize which they sent over with my last order of Elysambre and Lavera make-up (I’ve now completed the make-up switch over, including face masks and cleansers!).

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Blogger Brides , Inspiration , Natural Nuptials , Wedding Planning

Giant tipi tents win popular vote

With festival fever in full swing, Glastonbury all but over and a sweltering summer to inspire, you'll be thinking about throwing your eco friendly wedding in a field next summer, so whatever else you do you will probably need to hire a tent (just in case it rains!).


Imagine having 200 wedding guests gathered in three Giant Hat Kåtas all joined together to create a single huge space. The sun is setting, the band is in full swing and people are grooving on the dance floor. Across the tent people are chatting at the bar whilst others linger by the open fire…yes… inside the tent! You can have a smaller Tipi tent for guests to chill out on bean bags and giant cushions. Then as the night draws to a close, your guests can retire to individual camping tents in a tipi village created for you across the field.

In the West Country the lovely people at World Inspired Tents hire these wonderful giant tipis, known as Kåtas, offering an exciting, visually stunning and practical alternative to the traditional marquee and they have an amazing selection of teepee style tents for weddings, festivals and other outdoor events. World Inspired Tents will work with you to create a venue that will amaze and wow your wedding guests, their tents allow your imagination to run wild.


What's more this eco-friendly marquee company has recently scooped the top prize at the West Country Wedding Awards. To win this coveted award they have to have gained a healthy vote from their existing customers. Proof, we think, that they are just the best tent company that we thought they were!

If you would like more information, please call Edward Wright at World Inspired Tents on 01271 865306 or e.mail info@world-inspired.co.uk

Posted in Green Wedding Ethical Vendors , Inspiration , Marquees & Tents , Venues

Felt from the heart

Your guests will be hard pressed to throw these wedding favours in the bin when they get home!

We are totally bowled over by these gorgeous felt hearts hand sewn by a group of women in Makapanstad,South Africa who have created a little heartfelt something which makes a perfectly unique idea as a little thank you gift for your wedding guests.


Julie who, with her friend Martha, set up The Heartfelt Project thinks that the wedding industry at the moment has taken the whole emphasis off what a wedding is really about - namely the love and commitment of two individuals - and that it has become greedy. She believes that more and more couples are beginning to realise this and that they want to tailor-make their wedding day, creating a more individual feel where it really is about the bride and groom and their values, and they are more discerning about how they spend their wedding budget, putting it where it can really make a difference. Buying these little wedding favours will do just that.


Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Gifts & Favours , Inspiration

Table decorations that grow on you

There's a definite feel of spring in the air and with the snowdrops looking particularly gorgeous at the moment, it made us think of spring like-table decorations. Seasonal, natural and eco friendly ones for wedding receptions.


We particularly like these glass tanks filled with tulips, hyacynth, ranunculus and grape hyacinth created for Brides.com by Studio Choo.


You could use any combination of growing bulbs to suit your wedding theme. Lush and green, jewel tones, all whites, scented, blues and creams, the choice is endless.

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Flowers , Inspiration

Eco friendly wedding bunting

If you're planning to decorate your green wedding with bunting, take a look at this great idea!

According to TRAID, the fashion recycling charity, over 1 million tons of fabric is thrown into dustbins every year in the UK. That equates to 900,000 million items of clothing - and the figures are growing. So Sue at Derry's Den has made it her mission to use up as much UK discarded textiles as she can and you can help her do it by buying her eco bunting.

Sue says "I'd noticed that most party bunting is made from new materials including plastics and the thought of adding more synthetics to the environment just doesn't appeal, so I thought it would be great to use up unwanted textiles. I've been lucky enough to have travelled all over the world in the past and many communities that I’ve visited reuse textiles out of necessity. In contrast, through lives of comparative luxury, Westerners have created a problem with waste. I’ve always been into upcycling items rather than throwing them into the rubbish bin, chopping up old clothing to create some other useful item is in my genes. I vividly remember grandmother doing it.”


Environmentally friendly bunting can be used for all sorts of occasions, not just weddings. Birthdays, anniversary, leaving parties, or Christmas, as well as street parties, corporate events, or just for brightening up your garden in the summer. Decorate a child's bedroom....have their name on bunting in their favourite colour. Sue makes her eco friendly bunting out of waste textiles, recycled cards or paper, and even waste plastic bags. The bunting is packaged in recycled waste plastic bags from the card industry. All the bunting is made in Oxfordshire and she has made bunting for Greenpeace to decorate their flagship the Rainbow Warrior and it's also been used by Greenpeace, Oxfam and Wateraid at Glastonbury Festival.

All the bunting is made to order so you can choose what colours you want to fit in with your wedding theme.

For more information on eco friendly bunting check out Sue's website ecobunting.co.uk email her on sue@derrysden.co.uk or phone her 01491 824152

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Inspiration

Exquisitely ethical flowers by Julie B

We're delighted to welcome Flowers by Julie B to our Green Wedding Directory!

Julie Ballard, who once worked at world renowned Jane Packer flowers in London, does everything she can to be an eco friendly florist, sourcing locally grown flowers when they are in season and using natural packaging and recycled materials. But this doesn't mean that her floral work is compromised in any way. In fact we think that her work is enhanced by her attention to the seasons and to every last detail that goes into creating gorgeous wedding flowers for her clients.


We're hoping that Julie will soon be sending us updates on the seasonal flowers that she is using in her work and think this will be a great resource for those brides who've decided to have a bash at doing their own wedding flowers.

So watch this space!

For more information about Julie's work go to her website Flowers by Julie B or to find out more about booking her to do your own wedding flowers contact Julie by email julie@flowersbyjulieb.co.uk or phone 01306 868186

Posted in Green Wedding Flowers , Inspiration

Turn heads with a statement ring

One of the biggest fashion trends this season is Statement Jewellery. Statement rings are all about standing out from the crowd and exhibiting your glamorous side.


Nothing makes more of an impact than one of these bold and sumptuous Statement Rings from CRED. These rings are in every sense the epitome of glamour and elegance; each crafted in stunning 18ct Fair Trade Oro Verde Gold and Platinum, set with ethically-sourced precious gemstones and diamonds.

So go ahead, make a real statement by indulging in a breathtakingly beautiful and timeless ring from CRED.

Find out more information and prices by going to CRED's website www.credjewellery.com, or visiting their Boutique in Chichester or their new London Studio.

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Jewellery

Amazing success story!

When World Inspired Tents wrote to us with an update on the company's second amazing year of trading, we couldn't help but feel proud to have been involved in their incredible success. Ed Wright, the MD told us:

"Having been in your wedding directory for two years, I can confirm that Green Union consistently provides the greatest volume of web traffic and the highest quality of leads to our business, over and above all other wedding directories".


Ed went on to tell me a little more about the business and where the teepees have taken him over the last year:

"We've had an amazing year and despite being only our second full year in business, World Inspired Tents has grown significantly. We've successfully completed jobs all over the South of England and Wales from Glastonbury to The Gower and from the western tip of Cornwall to East Grinstead (we did ask him if he was offsetting his travel!). Every one of our weddings has been a 100% successful and people just adore the tipis! Compared to traditional white marquees and tents, they are still very rare so we have the advantage of offering something that is all but unique. The letters of thanks we've had from our couples have been amazing.

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Marquees & Tents , Venues

Christmas candle inspiration

Guaranteed to give you a warm glow! Choose the most natural candles you can find for your Christmas winter wedding. All our candles are hand made in England using soy wax from sustainable sources, or beeswax from Gloucestershire.


Our soy wax candles have a lovely creamy texture and burn very cleanly, so they're better for your health and for the planet.


Our all natural beeswax candles are hand made by a beekeeper in Gloucestershire, England who uses wax from his own hives.

Don't just use them for your wedding, all our natural candles make perfect gifts and stocking fillers too.

You can buy these and other lovely natural candles in our eco chic boutique.

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Gifts & Favours , Inspiration

Create your own unique wedding experience

So many wedding venues these days only offer a bridal couple what suits the venue, rather than what you really want. So much so, that sometimes the venue will even insist that you conform to their ideas in order to make their job easier and charge you for the privilege. Some wedding venues even hold more than one wedding on the same day spitting out bridal parties like sausages!

So we're always looking for wedding venues willing to go that extra mile to help you create an extra special day totally tailored to your own dreams. One very special place we know is the Matara Centre and Kingscote Park, a beautiful and tranquil place to hold a unique wedding celebration.


After holding 100’s of weddings they have used their experience to put together and idea of the dream wedding that can be tailored to your own unique celebration.

And the people at Matara know that having the time to relax and enjoy is the secret to a wonderful wedding celebration. Savouring good food, rich conversations and fond memories in a very special place with close family and friends who have come together to celebrate your marriage is important. So with this in mind they offer you the sole use of the Matara Centre and Kingscote Park with accommodation for up to 24 guests for two whole days.

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Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Venues

Crackling bonfire wedding theme

We love autumn and think the end of October and Bonfire Night are the perfect excuse to throw an alternative wedding. Not only do you have the chance of finding a really great off season deal on your wedding venue but it can also be the best excuse for a dress down wedding party. Forget formal and think more cosy wollies, snuggly boots and fireside tales.


A giant tipi in the garden warmed by a fire pit, candles and fur lined benches will keep guests piping warm for a feast of crackling locally sourced sausages, baked potatoes, zingy chilli and organic roasted squash. Scrumptious apple cake served with clotted cream will round off the warming feast. Keep it casual with eco friendly disposable picnic plates.

Dot the garden with cut out pumpkins glowing with tea lights and create richly coloured seasonal decorations of apples and colourful squashes piled high on organic table linen glowing with fragranced candles.


Serve grown ups with home made steaming mulled wine in porcelain mugs and let the children sip hot chocolate with marshmallows. Hand out cones of roasted chestnuts and cosy blankets as the evening draws to an end and the finale of chinese flying lanterns will have your guests sending wishes high into the sky.

Images courtesy of Martha Stewart

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Seasonal Celebrations

The Designer Wedding Show

natural_bride.jpgOnce again, this weekend, the Designer Wedding Show will be taking place in Battersea Park, and they're promising an even better show than previous years.

First timers will be showing their collections alongside established bridal designers in the bridal catwalk shows taking place four times a day. This is the place to catch up on hot trends (like this one inspired by Nature) and spot talented new wedding providers and services, showcasing products which are often created right here in the UK by skilled designers and makers.

Only the cream of the crop is chosen from the fields of fashion, catering, millinery, stationery, venues, etc., all carefully chosen for their stylish wedding services and we're proud to say that several of our own partners will be there leading the way. Come along and talk to Berry Scrumptious for wedding favours, Maunsel House for a fabulous country venue and The Alternative Wedding List for ideas on charity gift lists.

So whatever stage you've reached in your wedding planning journey, whether you're newly engaged and looking for ideas, or need a bit of inspiration, its always and exciting and inspiring event to attend.

What: The Designer Wedding Show
Where: Battersea Park (courtesy bus operates from Sloane Square tube station)
When: Friday 9 October to Sunday 11 October 2009 from 10 am to 5 pm
Contact: www.designerweddingshow.co.uk or call 0871 230 5579.

Image courtesy of Elisabeth B. Photos of Clé Maraini.

Posted in Green Wedding Events , Inspiration

Dancing down the aisle ...

How cool is this, you just have to watch this video!

Not only will it brighten up your morning to see these everyday people celebrating with their hearts and souls, but it brings home the thought that love and marriage should always be good, happy and fun.

Don't hold back, take a leaf out of Jill and Kevin's book and make sure your wedding day truly reflects and celebrates you as a couple.


Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Natural Nuptials

Low Impact Wedding Series - Introduction

Foy Spicer, a florist in the US, and her husband Jeff Diesburg threw a low impact wedding in 2006 and they have generously agreed to share their experience with us over the next few weeks. Over to you Foy...

"It is actually possible to have an affordable, fun, green wedding. We consider ourselves lucky to have the wedding that we had, but I've noticed that a lot of people are having trouble comprehending how to have a green wedding on a budget of $5000, so I made sure to keep track of how we spent our money.


Sure, there were some things missing from our wedding - some were from personal preference (no meat at the brunch) and some were because of financial reasons. But, because we made sure to prioritize, those things that some people might say are "missing," were not really missed by us at all.

My parents gave us a gift of $5,000 and that's about what we spent. Which includes everything except for a lot of time and labor we and our lovely friends and family put in. If I did not list it, we probably did not have it.

Here's the cut and dry version of our wedding budget the total cost of which was $4515.00:

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Natural Nuptials

Because she's worth it

mothers_day_flowers.jpgDid you forget it's mother's day this Sunday? Have you been snowed under with all that wedding planning, so focused on sounding your Mum out about all the things on your to-do list. Things like your wedding budget, meetings with your green wedding florist, finding the perfectly ethical wedding dress and eco friendly caterer. You've been wondering how to find the ideal wedding venue - countryside, coast, historical house or chic city. Maybe you're still not sure what eco wedding stationery to choose and want Mum to help you decide.

Perhaps you're only just starting out and you and your fiance are looking for a perfectly ethical engagement ring and wedding jewellery - planning to find them this weekend.

Well spare a little time for your Mum, she's worth it. If you didn't get round to ordering her a mother's day gift, then a little bunch of seasonal flowers will speak a million words. Get out tomorrow morning, take a walk around the garden and pick a few blooms or buy a little bunch at your local florist or farmers market, your Mum will be charmed!

And if you're just a little curious and want to know more about the ethics of buying a bouquet on Mother's day, there's an great article on the subject by Amy Stewart over at the Guardian.

Happy sunny spring weekend!

Image courtesy of Snapdragon Garden

Posted in Green Wedding Flowers , Inspiration

A venue decorator with a difference!


When Emma from Pebble in the Pond contacted me about joining GreenUnion I had to ask her why her wedding stylist and decoration service considered itself 'planet friendly'. Her response was very convincing:

'we love supporting local artists and those lucky enough to be blessed with green fingers. We much prefer to use natural or organic products to those shipped in from afar. We’re busy collecting beautiful crockery, linens and glass from bygone eras and it goes without saying, we make sure that anything that can be is recycled and replanted.'

Wherever possible they:

* support local suppliers and use local products
* use recycled/reclaimed/renewable materials
* choose organic or fairtrade products
* use eco-friendly laundering services
* contribute 5% of all profits to environmental charities (charity to change on a periodic basis)

On top of that they do all the boring stuff too:

* offset all our petrol miles
* print on recycled materials, and where possible use vegetable or soya inks
* use Co-operative business banking

Although all that sounds very worthy, they're not willing to compromise on elegance, style or inspiration when setting the scene for your perfect day.

So if you're throwing a green wedding in the Manchester area and you're looking for some inspiring wedding decorations or just prefer to have a venue decorator come and do it all for you then contact Pebble in the Pond for a chat.

By the way they also supply gorgeous green wedding favours too and will be launching their gift service soon. In the meantime contact info@pebble-in-the-pond.co.uk or call Emma on 07538 176829 for more information on their gifts and wedding favours.

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Gifts & Favours , Inspiration

Stuck for a Mother's Day Gift?

gorgeous_skincream.jpgMother's Day is this Sunday 22nd March and there's still time to get a gift for your mum or mother-in-law to show how much you appreciate them.

Find plenty of gorgeous gifts in our Eco Chic Boutique.

Don't forget how important your Mum and Mum-in-Law are on the run up to your gorgeous green wedding. Support, friendship, experience, maturity - all great assets to tap into when planning the big day.

If you're still thinking of that little gift, don't delay any longer, to get your gift there by the weekend you need to order soon!

Posted in Green Wedding Events , Gifts & Favours , Inspiration

Introducing Vicky & Ads

When Vicky contacted me about selling her soy wax vintage teacup candles in our eco chic wedding boutique, she told me of her plans for her own charitable dream wedding this year. Happily she's agreed to fill us in and keep us posted on the run up to her very stylish green wedding day.

vicky_n_ads.jpgNames: Vicky & Ads

Wedding date: 15th August 2009 (not long!)

Wedding venue and location: Treowen in Monmouthshire. A big old Jacobean manor house that can be hired for days or weeks at a time. We’ve hired it for 4 days so we can make a weekend of it as my Birthday is the following day. The house can accommodate 35 people and a sizeable group are camping in the grounds. The ceremony and reception are all taking place there and we’re responsible for organising everything from the food, booze, entertainments and décor.

How many guests are coming to your wedding and where from? 60 to the reception and a further 60 for the evening. Ads and I live in Bristol and my family live in Wales, however the majority of guests aren’t local. So whilst my family are not traveling far, his family live in Surrey so have a reasonable distance to travel and we’re encouraging them to travel in convoy in minibuses (move over Gavin and Stacey). Family and wedding party are staying in the house, and then the vast majority are camping out in the 300 odd acres.

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Blogger Brides , Inspiration , Natural Nuptials

Got a brilliant Eco-Tip?

ecotip.gifWe're looking for one amazingly original eco tip to beat the 'credit crunch' which will be published on Allaboutyou.com, the online home of Good Housekeeping, Prima, SHE, Country Living, House Beautiful and Coast magazine 9th February.

If you have a fab tip you'd like us to consider then send it in to us info@greenunion.co.uk before 8th February.

The author of the tip chosen will receive a surprise gift from us.

Posted in Green Wedding Giveaways , Inspiration , Press

Christmas countdown competition

advent_calendar.jpgWith Christmas being the new 'C' word we thought a bit of festive cheer is in order, so we have 24 surprise gifts from Green Union partners and GreenUnion Eco-Chic Boutique to give away.

For a chance to win one, all you have to do is give us your top tip for making green weddings a pure joy. It can be a money-saving idea, an eco tip, a stress-saving suggestion, a decorating idea or any unique thought. Simply tell us in no more than 60 words on the form below.

Then check out our online advent calendar each day in December till Christmas Eve where the most original ideas and winning entries will be revealed.

There'll be some handy tips from us too!

Enter now for some Christmas fun and help make everyone's green wedding a true celebration!

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Giveaways , Inspiration

Make your own Christmas door wreath

door_wreath.jpgWe've been making our own Christmas door wreaths today, one for ourselves and the rest to give to friends as naturally gorgeous and seasonal Christmas gifts. We collected moss and greenery from the garden, twigs from the hedgerows, conkers, cones and bark from the woods and embellished the whole thing with dried hydrangeas, lichen and raffia.

It made me think that some of you enterprising brides may be wondering how to make one for your own big day. You can find detailed instructions of how to make a similar Christmas door wreath on Snapdragon Garden's blog.

Once you've worked out the fundamentals, then don't be afraid to experiment to your heart's content using all sorts of seeds, fruits, leaves, twigs and seasonal flowers. What you come up with will be a unique reflection of your own green wedding and it'll be a fabulous welcome to guests on your wedding day.

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Flowers , Inspiration

Happy Thanksgiving!


HAPPY THANKSGIVING to all our American friends.
When I saw this image at create my event I thought it just sums it all up in a nutshell. Find lots of inspiration (and credits to the individual images) in this mood board, for your own Thanksgiving party or wedding.

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Events , Inspiration

I heart Christmas

Still not sure what to use for your Christmas wedding decorations? Here's an idea...


Lovely hearts from POSH Graffiti would make beautiful Christmas tree decorations or tie your guests names on with ribbons for place names and they double up as wedding favours. If you haven't got a tree to decorate and don't want to have ribbon everywhere then their brilliant POSH Graffiti® on sticks can be use for all sorts of ideas - stick them into containers with your table decorations, use them to decorate your cake or pop one into every guest's desert and it will double up as a wedding favour. The ideas are endless.


And using these decorations will make you feel good about the love you have to give because...

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Inspiration

Samhain or Hallowe'en?

pumpkin_pie.jpg Samhain (pronounced 'sow'inn'), at the end of October, marks the beginning of a whole new cycle for the Celts, where they believe that in dark silence comes whisperings of new beginnings, the stirring of seeds below ground. For Christians, 31 October is Hallowe'en or All Hallow's Eve and 1 November is All Saints' Day. Many faiths mark this time of the year as one of significant change - Hindus celebrate Navarati and Muslims mark the end of Ramadan with Eid-Ul-Fitr.

The harvest has been gathered in, the animals sheltered for the winter and its a joyous time as families come together for warmth and to chase away the spirits with bonfires and feasts. What a wonderful time for a loving union of souls - a time of new beginnings, warmth, golden light, apples and nuts, loved ones are remembered.

Think gorgeous, glowing golds and reds, candle light, flares and bonfires for atmosphere. Roasted chestnuts, delicious squash soup, poached pears and baked apples, spices and mulled cider. Hot toasted sausages, baked potatoes and apple pie.

Do I need to go on...

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Inspiration , Seasonal Celebrations

Christmas inspiration

christmas_tree_favours.jpgDon't get me started! Christmas time is a fabulous season to get wed - candles, firelight, cinnamon, cloves, mulled wine, warm cosy spaces and the smell of christmas trees... Here's a perfectly gorgeous idea for your Christmas wedding table settings...
The Little Green Tree company.

Established by Rowan Clark, a forest ranger who saw the benefit of offering a green gift idea for parties and celebrations. She loves to think that every little green tree she nurtures will make a difference and, as well as being a beautiful gift, could become the family Christmas tree in years to come. The company prides itself in being as environmentally friendly as they can with products being almost enitrely 100% recyclable.

Rowan's Little Green Wedding Favours are little Christmas tree saplings rustically wrapped in individual hessian sacks tied up with a tag which can be personalised. They will do a great job of doubling up as place settings for each guest too and come in clusters of 10. A gift idea that won't break the bank and will give everyone something to celebrate!

Posted in Green Wedding Gifts & Favours , Inspiration

Lovely Green Wedding Event


If you're up in Yorkshire next weekend make time to go along to the Lovely Green Wedding Event at Norristhorpe. There'll be heaps of fun and frolics, and of course a celebration of green and local wedding ideas.

Be warned! If you’re used to the usual wedding fair conveyor belt, go prepared for something refreshingly different. There's an action packed timetable. From hay rides, pints of Black Sheep beer, an eco-couture showcase, organic make-overs and a range of Yorkshire’s finest green wedding innovators, the day is all about proving your wedding can be green but with bags of style. Forget the Jesus sandals and lentils, they’re talking full on sophisticated fun and glamour!

When: Sunday 19 October from 1 pm 'till 4 pm
Where: Low Farm, Lodge Lane, Norristhorpe, Yorkshire, WF15 7LE
How: For directions see website.
How much? Tickets are £10 each or £15 for two which includes an organic fair trade afternoon tea served on vintage china. The day will be a non-profit making event with all the proceeds going to Radio Aire’s Cash for Kids Charity.

To make a ticket reservation please contact Olivia Brabbs on 07779345819 or Claire Ellis on 07778 653501 or e-mail hello@lovelygreenweddings.co.uk


Posted in Green Wedding Events , Inspiration , Wedding Planning

A Very Green Union

cider-barn.jpgNext weekend GreenUnion's eco chic couple Sarah and Paul are joyously tying the knot. They’ve chosen Coombe Farm near Tiverton as their wedding venue, where they will have a spiritual woodland ceremony joined by family and friends. Coombe is an organic farm and woodland and the beautifully renovated 17th Century thatched Cider and Threshing Barn, with its fields and woods, offers a very special place to throw a green wedding.

The image, courtesy of Coombe Farm Woodlands is of the newly thatched barn which is licensed for civil wedding ceremonies - as close as you can get to having your wedding ceremony in the great outdoors...

We'll be posting Sarah and Paul's story here on the blog over the coming week, but here's a list of some of the people who are playing a huge part in their celebratons.

Venue - Coombe Farm Woodlands
Jewellery designer - April Doubleday
Tents, lighting & music - Over the Moon Tents & Events
Dress - Wendy Kauffman - email her at wkauffman@hotmail.com

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Venues

Wedding breakfast inspiration

artichoke.jpgAre you spending the weekend planning for your ethical wedding this time next year?

Here's a little seasonal foodie inspiration for your eco friendly wedding menu:

'Tis the season for asparagus, globe artichokes, broad beans, spinach, beetroot, radishes, broccoli, peas, horseradish, runner beans, fennel, Cornish earlies, spring onions, lettuce, stawberries and cream, gooseberries, cherries, rhubarb, elderflowers, spring lamb, wood pigeon, line-caught sea bass, lobster, halibut, john dory, herring, plaice, lemon sole, crab, line-caught mackerel, pollack and sardines.

If you're not sure how to find someone to source and dish up a delicious seasonal feast then look no further than our directory of Caterers, Food and Drink.

Tuck in and enjoy a feast of locally grown seasonal British food!

Posted in Green Wedding Caterers, Food & Drink , Inspiration

Beautiful Tents for Hire


We're really excited to welcome Hooes Yurts to GreenUnion to swell our growing number of fantastic mobile eco wedding venues country wide.

The tents are based on the Mongolian Yurt (or Ger) and are constructed from timber and canvas. They look gorgeous form the outside and, once inside, they feel solid, sumptuous and welcoming, creating a perfect space for a green wedding. Yurts are wonderfully versatile with no central poles or guy ropes to trip up the unsuspecting wedding guest and they can be used individually or linked together for bigger events. Hooes offer 24ft, 18ft and 14ft yurts that can be connected together to create different shaped venues for up to 200 people like this eco chic wedding palace pictured above.

And it doesn't stop there either. Not only do they supply you with the yurts, but their offer is second to none with a choice of other services. Amy is passionate about decorating the yurts with beautiful textiles and furniture and she personally selects all her furnishings with care and love from around the world. Often the pieces are vintage and they have always been purchased fairly. Each yurt has its own individual design and colour theme but all have a uniting style with sumptuous interiors which are exotic and vibrant.

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Inspiration , Marquees & Tents

Celebrate St. George's Day!

st_georges_day.jpgTHE TRUE DRAGON

St George was out walking
He met a dragon on a hill,
It was wise and wonderful
Too glorious to kill

It slept amongst the wild thyme
Where the oxlips and violets grow
Its skin was a luminous fire
That made the English landscape glow

Its tears were England’s crystal rivers
Its breath the mist on England’s moors
Its larder was England’s orchards,
Its house was without doors

St George was in awe of it
It was a thing apart
He hid the sleeping dragon
Inside every English heart

So on this day let’s celebrate
England’s valleys full of light,
The green fire of the landscape
Lakes shivering with delight

Let’s celebrate St George’s Day,
The dragon in repose;
The brilliant lark ascending,
The yew, the oak, the rose

Brian Patten - via English Hertitage

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration

7 Green ways to personalise your wedding for Earth Day 22 April 2008

earthday.jpgHere is our final suggestion in our series of seven green ways to personalise your eco chic wedding to celebrate Earth Day which is today!

Keeping your wedding small will not only create an intimate and personal affair, but also means fewer resources will be used all round, so saving the planet and your purse.

Have a truly earth friendly wedding and just pitch up to the registry office with a bunch of friends then entertain them all to a delicious meal of locally produced food, a barbeque on the beach or a picnic in the woods, very personal and fun for all - no headaches about what to wear, how to get there, where to stay. Go one step further and get your guests to each bring a dish, your wedding breakfast and wedding gifts all in one!

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration

Seven green ways to personalise your wedding day - Day 6

edible_favours.jpgEDIBLE FAVOURS
Will always be a hit, so give your guests a taste of the region. For instance make your own Devon clotted cream fudge and pack in little boxes with personalized labels. Or preserve your own jam in recycled jam jars with fruit from your family garden (or a pick your own farm nearby) and give everyone a little jar to take home. Buy local and regional tasty goodies like Scottish shortbread and repackage in recycled paper boxes to suit your own green wedding style.

The possibilities are endless so let your creative juices flow and produce a really personal and eco friendly thank you gift for all your wedding guests to take away. If you don't feel quite so creative you can find some charming ethical wedding gifts and favours here.

Posted in Green Wedding Gifts & Favours , Inspiration

Seven green ways to personalise your wedding day - Day 5

Your own cocktail as a post-ceremony drink. With the tastiest fruits being grown here in the UK, there's no excuse not to find one that suits your eco friendly wedding day. Combined with fruit juices from the countryside you should be able to design a sublime cocktail of your own. Seek out locally produced drinks like ginger beer, elderflower bubbly, pressed organic apple juice, raspberry lemonade and pear juices.

And just to get you going here are a couple of delicious cocktail recipes from Luscombes Organic Drinks who make the best drinks in Devon using only the freshest ingredients and leaving out all the nasties:

Elderflower Spritzer
Pop some ice and 75ml of white wine in a glass and top up with Luscombe Wild Elderflower Bubbly. Deliciously divine!

In a glass, muddle together 12 sprigs of mint, 2 lime wedges and 12.5ml Sirop de Gomme. Top with crushed ice and pour over 50ml of Hendricks Gin. Top it all up with Luscombe Apple & Elderflower juice and stir. Cool and crisp.

Posted in Green Wedding Caterers, Food & Drink , Inspiration

Seven green ways to personalise your wedding day - Day 4

Only a few days to go before the Spring Equinox and Earth Day on April 22nd, so we thought it an appropriate time to highlight seven green ways to personalise your wedding day. On day four we suggest you:

Your love for one another by choosing a personalised ceremony, in line with your own beliefs. This can mean heaps more to most couples than the 'standard' one conducted by the registrar. The ceremony could be as simple as standing amongst family and friends to proclaim your committment to one another. You could use symbolic elements from traditional ceremonies like the Handfasting, an old English marriage ceremony where your hands are symbolically tied together with ribbons. Or you could choose a ceremony from the country of your origin somewhere else in the world, combining your different backgrounds.

However you choose to conduct your eco wedding ceremony, whether it's in a beautiful wood, under a special tree, a spot on the beach, in your favourite room or even the place in the city that means the most to you, it will be meaningful and personal to you both.

Our directory of wedding venues has some fantastic places where you could choose to hold your earth friendly wedding ceremony. And they are all run by beautiful people too!

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Natural Nuptials

Seven green ways to personalise your wedding day - Day 3

The Spring Equinox and Earth Day on April 22nd are getting closer day by day, so we thought it an appropriate time to highlight seven green ways to personalise your wedding day. On day three we suggest you:

parkstudio_GU_invitation.gifSAVE ON PAPER
Save on paper by setting up a personal green wedding website which has every single bit of information about the wedding - the venue, transport, timeline, menu, wedding list details, accommodation, things to do in the area, and how to get there. Ask your guests to RSVP by email.

Make it really personal and find a designer from our list of incredibly talented stationary designers here and commission one to create your own eco-chic wedding stationery design, then have it hand printed on recycled paper.

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Stationery & Invitations

Seven green ways to personalise your wedding day - Day 2

seasonal_flowers.jpgNot long 'till the Spring Equinox and Earth Day on April 22nd, so we thought it an appropriate time to highlight seven green ways to personalise your wedding day. On day two we suggest you:

As well as choosing seasonal food, which is a no brainer when you're planning an ethical wedding, seasonal flowers will give your decorations an 'of the moment' feel. Talk to your florist about what's available locally and seasonally, or ask someone to grow flowers for you. You'll end up with blooms that that are completely unusual and look absolutely stunning.

We often hear from couples planning a green wedding who are worried about the ethics of using cut flowers. You shouldn't be, flowers are a natural process in the lifecycle of a plant. Most cultivated plants are 'deadheaded' (where blooms are removed) in order to allow the plant to grow strong and encourage more blooms during its flowering season. Just make sure you arrange to have all your flowers composted once they're past their best. Recycling the material back into the soil will encourage more blooming marvelous displays season after season.

Wild flowers, on the other hand should never be picked. They must be left in their natural habitat to do what they do best.

Find out more about locally grown, seasonal, fairtrade and organic flowers from our experts.

Posted in Green Wedding Flowers , Inspiration

Seven green ways to personalise your wedding day - Day 1

go_local.jpgWith a week to go before the Spring Equinox and Earth Day on April 22nd we thought it an appropriate time to highlight seven green ways to personalise your wedding day. So here goes for day one:

And order hand made, bespoke wedding outfits. A unique gown or suit made by a local designer/dressmaker or tailor can make your outfits really personal. Admittedly it's a more expensive option than off-the-peg or hiring, but you will want to look really gorgeous and more importantly you can make sure it's something you will both want to wear again.

There will be a talented dress maker living close to you who can create a beautiful made-to-measure wedding gown tailored especially for you using organic and natural fabrics. Some may offer a couture collection to choose from, others will work to your own design. Find talented and affordable wedding dress designers and makers in our directory.

Posted in Green Wedding Dresses & Gowns , Inspiration

Handmade weddings

etsy_handmade.jpgIf you're stuck for ideas and looking for a source of inspiration, look no further than the Handmade Wedding Series just started over at Etsy. The folk there are partnering up with some super-talented guest bloggers and Etsy sellers to explore the world of weddings and bring you the best ideas and resources in handmade: everything from custom-designed dresses to decor that suites your style.

They're going to write about loads of useful stuff on how to bring handmade elements to your wedding, whether it’s by sharing ideas for making things or by highlighting some great handmade and vintage items on the site. So check them out from time to time, you'll be inspired!

Photo by julieincharge

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , News

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

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

Today is Diwali

divali_deepavali.jpgIf you ever needed an excuse to have a wedding theme based on lights, then this is it. Diwali is the Hindu festival of lights, the most popular of all the festivals from South Asia which is also celebrated by Jains and Sikhs.

Traditionally the festival celebrates the victory of good over evil, light over darkness and knowledge over ignorance but The Times of India sums up the modern meaning of Diwali:

'Regardless of the mythological explanation one prefers, what the festival of lights really stands for today is a reaffirmation of hope, a renewed commitment to friendship and goodwill, and a religiously sanctioned celebration of the simple - and some not so simple - joys of life.' Times of India editorial

Could you think of a better package for a wedding celebration?

For a truly green wedding, seek out the little earthenware oil lamps called diyas and line the windowsills of your venue with them (after your big day you can recycle them or add them to the compost heap), soya candles and tealights are the next best thing or, if you can't use a naked flame then invest in strings of LED lights which burn only a miniscule amount of electricity. If there's a pond, lake or little stream at your venue, push floating candles out onto the water and make a wish.

Draw a Rangoli pattern on the floor at the entrance to your ceremony to welcome your new life and your guests to the wedding.

Here's a simple and easy idea for making your own decorative eco friendly safe candles for your wedding using recycled glassware and soya wax:

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Decorations & Details , Inspiration

Blaze of glory

snapdragon_wreath.jpgAs the autumn season goes out in a blaze of glory, I wanted to celebrate this favorite time of the year by showing you this gorgeous leaf wreath made by Jane Lindsay at Snapdragon Garden. This could give you all sorts of ideas for a colour scheme if you're thinking of a autumn wedding or if you just love golds and reds. And check out how the blue of the bench can be used as a highlight to really emphasise the glowing shades of autumn.

Use dahlias, lillies, chrysanthemums and sunflowers. Throw in peppers, squashes, apples, seeds, conkers, chestnut cases or grapes for texture. Top it all off with glowing candles and you'll have the richest of decorations.

Posted in Green Wedding Flowers , Inspiration

Vintage inspiration

idyllic_days.jpgIf you're in London over the weekend take time out to visit the Designer Wedding Show in Battersea Park, Friday through Sunday. It's here that all the top wedding suppliers strut their stuff. You'll find a lot of very expensive products and, I admit, some of rather dubious origin and not all eco friendly, but you will also find some absolute indie gems. Exceptional and exquisitely small, but perfectly formed businesses that believe in supplying you with the very best they can offer. These businesses are passionate about their ethics and go that extra mile to make eco chic.

A couple of our favourite partners will be there and Samantha Freeman of Idyllic Days will be showcasing her vintage chinaware to die for. If you're thinking of throwing an English country garden party, fete or afternoon tea style wedding day (a great concept for a green wedding), then go and check out her gorgeous mix and match vintage tableware and accessories. As well as hiring you the china, she can also help you style your whole day with cotton bunting and flowers too. The height of recycling chic.

Read more

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , News

Samhain or Hallowe'en?

harvest_pumpkin.jpgSamhain (pronounced 'sow'inn'), at the end of October, marks the beginning of a whole new cycle for the Celts, where they believe that in dark silence comes whisperings of new beginnings, the stirring of seeds below ground. For Christians, 31 October is Hallowe'en or All Hallow's Eve and 1 November is All Saints' Day. Many faiths mark this time of the year as one of significant change - Hindus celebrate Navarati and Muslims mark the end of Ramadan with Eid-Ul-Fitr.

The harvest has been gathered in, the animals sheltered for the winter and its a joyous time as families come together for warmth and to chase away the spirits with bonfires and feasts. What a wonderful time for a loving union of souls - a time of new beginnings, warmth, golden light, apples and nuts, loved ones are remembered.

For your late Autumn green wedding think gorgeous, glowing golds and reds, candle light, flares and bonfires for atmosphere. Roasted chestnuts, delicious squash soup, poached pears and baked apples, spices and mulled cider. Hot toasted sausages, baked potatoes and apple pie. Do I need to go on...

Posted in Green Wedding Inspiration , Seasonal Celebrations

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