Wedding invitations, response cards, reception cards, directions, etc. etc. etc. The “what I’ve been told I have to print” list goes on and on. But designing and printing all that stationery is time consuming and expensive. Really expensive. And once it’s printed, you can’t hit the back button or make any last minute changes.
To top it off, your guests don’t even need all that paper. They’re just going to transfer the information to their iCalendar, toss the invite into the trash, email you their RSVP and use their navigation app to find the venue.
At least some of your guests will put the invitation in the blue bin, right? But if the paper was treated with UV coating, varnish, laminate or metallic ink, their good intentions will actually contaminate the recycling stream with harmful toxins.
Why spend all that money and go through the bother, when everyone lives online and even your grandmother has a smartphone? Take advantage of wedding sites and apps that save you time and money, simplify your printing needs and become your wedding lifeline.
All that said, if you just love the tradition and beauty of paper stationery, you can still choose from a variety of beautiful (yet more sustainable) paper options that can be safely recycled… or planted.
- Let a wedding site do the heavy lifting
- Sign up for an all-in-one wedding website or app to manage everything more easily.
- Keep your pre-wedding and wedding day information in one convenient place (times, dates, venues, hotels, activities, etc.).
- Send hassle-free invites for your engagement party, bachelor/bachelorette parties, shower and rehearsal dinner.
- Let the website handle the RSVPs. Send logistics and reminders to just the “yes” guests and easily keep your caterer up to date.
- Make last minute changes as needed and send updates with a click.
- Upload wedding photos for your guests (and those who couldn’t make it) to enjoy.
- Choose more sustainable paper
- Skip the inserts (directions, venue info, hotels) and choose All-In-One wedding invites instead. The creative layout keeps things elegantly simple and some invites transform into the RSVP envelope with a clever fold.
- Choose stationery that has been certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) to ensure the trees have been harvested from a responsibly managed forest.
- Choose beautiful (and often compostable) stationery from fast-growing plants such as bamboo, hemp or sugar cane.
- Choose stationery embedded with wildflower or herb seeds. Rather than discarding the invite, guests can plant it, water it and watch it grow.
- Choose stationery that is unbleached or look for paper marketed as Totally Chlorine Free (TCF) or Processed Chlorine Free (PCF).
- Skip the UV coating, varnish and laminate. Opt for uncoated wedding stationery or ask for a water-based “aqueous” coating.
- Skip metallic and petroleum-based inks. Instead, ask for soy or other plant-based inks, which are chemical-free and easily recycled.
- Replace throwaway seating cards at the reception with a memorable keepsake. For example, an adventurous couple might use fun luggage tags instead. Or avid gardeners can write guests’ names and table number on garden pots, seed packets or flat stones to share their love of the outdoors.
- Use these wedding checklists
- A wedding website or app can track important guest information for you. Or you can use these checklists if you decide to go the stationery route.
Invitations Event date Sent date # of invites RSVP yes RSVP no Done? (✓) Engagement party Save-the-dates Bridal shower Rehearsal dinner Bachelor party Bachelorette party The wedding! Other
Guest Info (invitation inserts)
Done? (✓) RSVP cards Reception information Map & directions Registry information For out-of-town guests: Hotel accommodations Restaurants Sightseeing ideas Welcome package Other
Wedding day materials
Done? (✓) Wedding ceremony Welcome signs Ceremony programs Other Wedding reception Welcome signs Place cards Table cards Menus Other
After the celebration
Done? (✓) Thank you cards Wedding announcement
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Green Wedding Invitations