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Eco-Friendly Destination Wedding

An increasing number of couples are looking at ways of having an eco destination wedding or adopting a few eco-friendly ideas to make their wedding day that bit more sustainable.

Planning a green wedding in Spain doesn’t necessarily have to be harder than planning a less environmentally friendly event. At My Natural Wedding, we can help you to achieve a more eco-friendly celebration, choosing local vendors and suppliers.

These days, sustainable wedding ideas are plentiful, with more eco-friendly wedding decorations on the market and greener options.

If you’re eco-conscious and want to reduce your event’s effect on the environment, there are plenty of small changes you can make that will have a major impact.

Here are 6 tips!

1. Pick an Eco-Friendly Venue. Built-In Décor

One of the first steps you can take when organizing your events is choosing a venue that is in line with values of sustainability. If you find the right venue, making your event sustainable will become a much easier task.

Today, more and more venues are beginning to understand the importance of using renewable energy for their buildings, so if you want to emphasize that your event is sustainable, finding a site that uses solar or even wind energy can be a great option.

Andalucia, in the South of Spain, is the perfect place for renewable energy, with its miles of coastline where wind turbines can harness the sea breezes, and its endless hours of sunshine, which can be absorbed by solar panels and turned into energy. The hotel industry is one where many companies are working to incorporate renewable energy. Every day more hotels in southern Spain install renewable energy sources based on solar panels, light sensors or biomass tanks.

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My Natural Wedding venue destination eco

You can also opt for an outdoor space, this is a great way to be one with nature on your wedding day. You’ll also save on your energy usage by cutting down on the amount of lighting you’ll need. All the natural light will result in beautiful photographs! Malaga is a perfect location for an outdoor wedding. On average, there are 320 days of sunshine per year in Malaga.

While booking your ceremony and reception sites, look for spaces and venues that offer details that fit your wedding style, such as breathtaking sea or mountain views, rustic vineyards, charming palaces and Spanish Cortijos or stunning gardens. Using the venue “Built-in” decor will save cash for you and resources for the earth.

2. Opt for Sustainable Meals / Reduce food waste

Look for caterers who focus on local, sustainable, and seasonal cuisine. The more local, the smaller the carbon-footprint from long-distance shipping.

The same goes for wine and drinks. Look for natural, organic, and biodynamic bottlings to support environmentally conscious producers who focus on being earth-friendly in the vineyard and the winery.

Opt for plated dinners to avoid excess food, and if you do go for a buffet, speak to your caterer about saving leftovers.

Wedding planner Spain

3. Eco-Conscious Ring & Wedding Dress

There are a few different ways to approach ethical bridal fashion, including buying a vintage or second-hand dress, and recycling your dress after you wear it. For us, the most impactful option is to support designers who work hard to ensure fair conditions for their garment workers and source fabrics from suppliers who do the same.

Jewellery is another opportunity to make ethical choices – choose conflict-free stones and Fairmined metals, shop vintage or look for brands with Fairtrade or sustainable manufacturing. You can even melt down the gold and refine it, or set an existing diamond into a new band.

4. Choose Eco-Friendly Invitations

Wedding stationery means lots and lots of paper. There’s several ways to reduce the environmental impact of sending all those paper invites.

My Natural Wedding invitatoin eco
Design: Luna & Sol CO Design

Paperless options for wedding stationery are increasingly popular. Invitations and Save the Dates can be sent digitally by email.

If you opt for paper invites, the ideal is for the invite to be made from recycled cards in the first place. It’s easier than ever to find invitations that are printed on recycled paper or use alternative materials, like upcycled fabrics, leather, and wood..

For the most earth-friendly stationery, print invitations, programs, and menus on seed paper. Seed paper is a biodegradable material that sprouts into flowers when planted in a pot of soil.

 

5. Be Conscious of Floral Arrangements

To accompany your carefully chosen menu, flowers should be as locally sourced as possible and in season. Make your cut flowers go further by putting single stems into recycled glass bottles.

Why not opt for live plants instead of cut flowers to give your wedding table an unconventional twist? Potted plants are more affordable than elaborate cut flowers and can be taken home after the wedding.

Many florists work with small local farms or grow flowers themselves, reducing the need to transport blooms long distances.

For that all important ‘just married’ moment, choose biodegradable dried petal confetti or olive leaves over paper or synthetic types. Not only will it create the sense of blossom falling from the trees, you won’t be littering the venue! Make them available to your guests in Kraft-paper bags that can be recycled or large vessels where guests can grab a handful on the go.

costs of a wedding in southern spain
destination wedding planner Spain Malaga Marbella venues

6. Rent, Don’t Buy

Not just for the eco-conscious couple, a greener mindset can actually help to simplify your wedding plans, be potentially more cost effective and enhance the feel good factor on the day. Hiring a local Wedding planner for your wedding abroad will be very helpful.

When it comes to furniture, lighting, accessories and props, hiring reusable items instead of buying new wherever possible is the greenest way to go – and the more locally you can source it the better.
If those crisp white tablecloths are a little too formal for your taste, consider linens made from natural fibres for your tables. Organic linen and hemp napkins and runners are also available for hire.

Ban disposables including plastic cups wherever possible and hire reusable crockery and cutlery instead. If disposables are absolutely necessary, choose bamboo or biodegradable alternatives. If you’re going for straws in mixed drinks, rent or buy reusable stainless steel ones. Or, for a less expensive option, pick paper straws over plastic ones; they decompose more easily and won’t harm sea life.

If a Destination Wedding in Southern Spain is your ideal way to get married, get in touch to arrange a free consultation!

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How to plan a Wedding Abroad?

There’s nothing quite like a destination wedding; guaranteed good weather, a holiday with all your nearest and dearest and absolutely amazing wedding photos!

Once you’ve decided you would like to get married overseas, the next step is figuring out how to plan a destination wedding miles away from home. Throwing a destination wedding means you’re in for a much more intimate ceremony and can basically enjoy a two for one wedding and honeymoon. But before you jet off to a foreign land to marry your love, you have some important details to consider as you start planning a destination wedding.

1. Choosing the Right Location for your Destination Wedding​

Naturally, deciding on a destination is the first step. Keep in mind that your destination must have all of the resources you need:

– Your Personality and Vision. Make with your partner a list of all your possible ideas. Write down everything you envision your special day to be.
Do you imagine a garden or a historical building? Sea or Mountains views? Is it indoors or outdoors? Are there lots of people, or only a few?
The answers to these questions all affect what type of destination and venue is worth it for you. It’s all about you!

– Consider Travel time & Distance. You must also think about the ease of getting to your location.

– Check if your wedding ceremony will be legal or if you need to sort out the legalities before you go.
Can you legally get married in Spain? Read our recent post!

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Wedding planner Spain

2. Pick the right time of year

You won’t officially “set a date” until you book your venue. But, we recommend choosing a few potential wedding dates before you start looking at venues. First, think about the season in which you’d like to get married and take into consideration the weather!

Think if a weekend wedding is a must (convenient, but potentially more expensive and competitive) or if you’re open to a wedding on a different day. Some wedding venues require a minimum spend or guests for weddings during the weekend.

Then, take a look at the calendar, taking into account work schedules, holidays, family conflicts, etc., and narrow things down to a few choice dates. Having some potential wedding dates in mind will be very helpful during the venue selection process.

3. Number of guests

While you don’t have to have a final guest list until a bit later, when thinking about how to plan a wedding step by step, coming up with an estimated guest count early on is important.

This estimated number of guests will help you to set up a budget and decide a venue. So before you start browsing wedding venues, get an idea of how many guests you’ll host.

Once you book the venue, It’s important to give your nearest and dearest plenty of time to calculate if they can afford the cost of traveling to your ceremony and reception. We recommend you to send the Save the Date 12 to 9 months before the wedding.

4. Wedding Budget​

It’s critical that setting your budget be the first step in planning your wedding. It might not be the most fun part of the process, but it’s a task that really needs to be completed first because it sets the rest of your wedding planning process into motion.

At My Natural Wedding, we offer you a tailored service rather than a package wedding. When we get asked about the cost of a wedding in Southern Spain, it’s difficult to say how much you are going to spend, as the final figure will depend on the couples wishes.

You can find more information about the costs of a wedding in Southern Spain here.

5. Hire a Wedding planner

Make sure to find a wedding planner that specializes in destination weddings. This way, instead of spending hours on phone calls trying to overcome a language barrier or making executive decisions about flowers and decoration, you have an expert on hand to take care of it all for you.

A local wedding planner who knows the area will be invaluable. From sourcing key suppliers, liaising with vendors in the region and explaining your requirements in the local language, the help will be essential.

At My Natural Wedding, we will guide you in every step of the way, from the sketch design to the “Big Day”. Our principal aim is to create and produce bespoke weddings and events which reflect each individual couple and their journey.

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6. Visit the Location and Venue in Advance​

Ideally, you’d see your venue once before booking and again a few months before the wedding to finalize details.

Your wedding planner will shortlist a number of potential venues and it’s worth taking a weekend and visiting them in person. You’ll get a feel for the place that no pictures can fully express, and you’ll understand the spaces when it comes to questions about layout, timings, accommodation etc.  If you can’t travel to the destination, a virtual Tour is always a good option!

If a second trip’s not possible, arrive at least five days early to visit the venue with your planner, finalise some details and do a hair and makeup trial.

If a Destination Wedding in Southern Spain is your ideal way to get married, get in touch to arrange a free consultation!

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Elopement and Micro Weddings Abroad

COVID19 has changed our world in more ways than one, including the wedding industry. 

Along with the added face masks and extra measures to keep everyone healthy and safe, comes a shift of big, traditional weddings to more intimate elopements and micro weddings.

You’re probably thinking, What is an elopement? What is a micro-wedding? Is it right for me?

Elopement Wedding

Just the two of you

“The act of running away with somebody in order to marry them secretly”

An elopement is choosing connection over expectation by marrying in an intimate, meaningful and highly-personal way. Focusing only on your commitment – an elopement creates a space for you to be truly open and present with each other on your wedding day.

The beauty of an elopement is that there are endless options as to where to hold your ceremony. As a result, elopements can happen in nature, in public parks or buildings, at someone’s residence, or even a family member’s property. With an elopement, the destination is essentially wherever you’d like it to be, without worrying about a hefty deposit on a wedding venue.

The beauty of an elopement is blending both traditional and non-traditional elements, making your day exactly what you’ve envisioned.

Elopement and Micro Weddings Abroad

Here are some things your day could incorporate…

  • A morning stroll or swim together. Have a couples’ massage
  • Choosing to only honour traditions which align with you i.e. handfasting, not seeing each other before the ceremony, wearing a white dress, carrying a bouquet etc.
  • Choosing to have a ‘first look’ somewhere special
  • Personal vows at sunset or sunrise
  • Have a private dinner at your hotel suite or Villa; going to a Michelin star restaurant for dinner
  • Having a first dance under your favourite tree
  • Eating wedding cake for breakfast

Micro Wedding

Intimate Love Story

The trend for having a micro wedding is growing, and if you’re after a small wedding with a focus on guest experience and your true love story, it could be the right choice for you.

A micro wedding is a wedding with less than 25 guests. Being smaller in size, it’s usually cheaper, more relaxed and shorter in length than a traditional wedding day. While a microwedding can save you money, many couples are turning it into a macro experience. It strips the planning process back to the important things: the people you absolutely want by your side and the experience you want to create for yourselves and your guests.

The advantage of a micro wedding is that it doesn’t have to include all the components of a ‘traditional’ wedding day, like a cake cutting, bouquet toss or first dance. However, for many couples, traditions like speeches and the first dance are still essential elements and they’ll choose to have them. It all depends whether the wedding traditions are important to the couple or not. If they don’t resonate with your values or vision, there’s no pressure to include them!

A smaller ceremony and reception means that you can be even more flexible with where you do it. You can pick a beach, a park, or somewhere isolated, as you don’t need to worry about capacity.

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We Love These Micro Wedding Ideas:

  • Make your destination micro wedding last longer than a day (for example you can rent a house and have all your favorite people stay with you for a weekend to make the love and fun last longer).
  • Plan a fun adventure or activities with your guests like a boat ride, helicopter ride, hiking, scuba diving, —of course, that will depend on your budget, number of guests, and what you enjoy doing.
  • Have people write you letters of what they wish for you in the future in a sealed box for you to read on one of your anniversaries.
  • Make a spiritual ritual during your ceremony. Wite your own vows

If a Destination Elopement or Micro wedding in Southern Spain is your ideal way to get married then get in touch to arrange a free consultation!