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Going Green

Going Green: Eco Chic Wedding Tips to Celebrate Earth Day

Green is all the buzz, so how does saving the Earth fit into your wedding day? According to Kate Harrison, founder of The Green Bride Guide, an average American wedding creates 400 to 600 pounds of garbage and 63 tons of carbon dioxide - which is the equivalent of 8.3 million non-hybrid cars on the road for a year! But it's easier than you think to go eco-chic with your Big Day, and it doesn't mean you have to be hippie-dippie.Some easy ways to go green and save money on your wedding: * Use local vendors, especially for flowers. Over 80% of flowers sold in the USA are imported from other continents! * If you don't need more "stuff", skip the gift registry and set up a custom registry to allow guests to help pay for your honeymoon or other experiences. Try Honeyfund.com or Wanderable.com

* Skip favors and donate to a charity. Karma points! * Ask if your caterer can recycle cans/bottles and compost food leftovers. If they can't compost, ask if they will pack up leftovers for guests to take home. Waste not, want not. * Need a gift for bridesmaid? Treat them to their hair & make-up services. Feeling beautiful in pictures is better than any trinket you can give them. * When considering your menu, look for bakers and caterers offering local, organic choices. Many local wines and beer are also delicious for your bar. Meatless meals are highly eco-sustainable and great money-savers, too. Maryland Wine Guide Maryland Breweries Virginia Wineries Delaware Wineries and Breweries

* Try on vintage or upcycled dresses. Allow wedding party members to wear nice clothing they already own in coordinated shades. I Do I Do Wedding Gowns http://www.idoidoweddinggowns.com/ * Cut down on paper usage any way you can. For required paper, select recycled stock. Green Paper Studio http://www.greenpaperstudio.com/ * Host your event at one location, closest to where all your guests live. The less traveling folks have to do, the better for them financially - and it's safer! Every little bit you do is helpful, so don't believe that only doing one or two things doesn't matter!

A big thank you to Rissa Miller with Balance Photography for sharing these eco tips and photos!

Lori's bridal portrait showcases a local flower bridal bouquet by Local Color Flowers and a second-hand wedding dress purchased at I Do I Do Wedding Gowns. Her mother’s wedding rings adorn the bouquet. Hair and makeup by Up Do's For I Do’s.

Shot at Thorpewood in Thurmont, Maryland during a bridal portrait, this Local Color Flowers bouquet echoes warm, fall colors.

Guests enjoyed a delectable meatless entree during Up Do’s For I Do’s makeup artist, Amanda's reception at Casa Marina in Key West, Florida.

Going Green: DC Mobile Hair

What a pleasure it was meeting Deborah with DC Mobile Hair! This on-the-go stylist arrived in our studio like Mary Poppins, with a full salon in a traveling bag! Deborah quickly assembled her tools, shampooed, conditioned and cut Lindsay’s hair with incredible precision, then finished the style with a voluminous blow-out! Her on-site service was extremely accommodating and it took less time than our lunch break!

Going Green: Hey Honey, Help Me Out!

Have chemicals and hot styling tools damaged your lovely locks? Not to worry! We’ve found a natural remedy to refresh and revitalize those tresses. Natural honey, used as a shampoo, tames frizz and extends the life of your hair between regular shampoos. Enjoy the benefits of honey on your skin too! It attracts water, and helps the skin retain moisture, leaving your skin silky soft.

Source: Medical News Today and Dr. Oz Blog Images: Lisa Porter Collection and Pinterest

Going Green: Gift Wrapping

‘Tis the season of giving, gifting and receiving! While wrapping your gifts, tune into some of your favorite holiday music, sip some hot cocoa, and choose eco-friendly options to adorn all of your gifts. While we are big fans of recycling last year’s gift bags, show off your artistic talents give these personalized and creative ideas a try:

(1) Use cereal boxes to cut into shapes, glue scrapbook paper onto them, and use as gift tags.

(2) We’re fond of spray painting brown paper bags with a festive hue and then stamping snowflakes when the paint dries!

(3) Use last week’s newspaper combined with a bright, contrastive colored ribbon.

(4) Found a bunch of ribbon that looks a little too wrinkled to use? Set your flat iron on the lowest setting and run over strands of ribbon!

(5) Wrap cereal boxes after filling with Dad’s new dress shirt. After wrapping, use a tie in place of ribbon. Super manly!

Recycle old flower vases by leaving them transparent and wrapping a ribbon around the neck.

Not sure how to dress up the present? Use nature to customize and personalize the gift. Incorporate cinnamon sticks, pinecones or freshly baked goodies wrapped in a cellophane bag fastened to the top of the package.

Visit tipjunkie.com for inspiring ideas!

Images: Pinterest.com

Going Green: Eco Friendly Gifts

Still searching for the perfect gift? We’ve got you covered! These eco-friendly options are sure please anyone on your list and mother earth too!

Bring the outdoors in with this bamboo herb kit from RedEnvelope.com. Every component of this gift contains all natural, organic and recycled materials. Mmm...and each flavor is oh so fragrant! $19.95

Who doesn’t want to be pampered with a gift certificate for a service that is local, green and clean? Give the gift of time and let everyone on your list relax while having their home professionally cleaned. Our local go-to is Crystal Cleaning.

Handmade goodness for every body is what you’ll find in eco vegan body care products from Eco Sevi. Berries + Flowers Hand Salve, which doubles as a hair pomade, makes a perfect stocking stuffer! $10

Bring a smile to the little ones on your list with a handmade, organic, personalized puzzle, available in four choices of natural wood found on Etsy. $30

Don’t forget a pawsitively wonderful treat for your four-legged friends! Not only is this Paw Conditioning Treatment soothing and moisturizing for your dog’s paws, it is non allergenic and safe to lick after application. $11.99

Going Green: Upcycled Dresses

Can those 1980’s wedding dresses designed with big, puffy sleeves and a huge butt bow really ever be useful again? We say they can!

After discovering a $25 thrift store dress and examining the many yards of still lovely fabric with attached beads, our task was set to recycle this outdated dress into a modern and elegant gown that any bride would desire! The final product: A stunning wedding dress created entirely from recycled and eco friendly materials.

Dressmaker: Barbara Deckert Couture Photographer: Balance Photography Location: Black Ankle Vineyard Florals: Local Color Flowers Shoes: Vegan Shoes by Touch-Ups

Going Green: Tattered Petals

We’re in love with Debbie Shepardson’s blooming business that offers eco friendly options for wedding day florals! Her story behind the inspiration for the company is even more amazing!

We sat down with Debbie and listened as she explained the details of how bad bridesmaid dresses created a fresh idea for the wedding industry!

“It was an artistic accident that led me to this business of making artful flowers out of fabric. For my own wedding, I sought out a dress designer on Etsy to make the bridesmaid dresses of my dreams. I sent her pictures of my ideas, we collaborated and corresponded back and forth until finally the final products arrived. When my matron of honor sent me a picture of her wearing her new dress, my heart instantly sunk in horror and utter embarrassment. The dress looked nothing like it did in the pictures the designer sent me!”

“I could only imagine how horrible the other bridesmaids' dresses were going to turn out, so I demanded that they each mail me back their dresses without even opening the boxes first (to spare me any further embarrassment of my clearly misguided artistic vision), and I would buy them all brand new "traditional" dresses with only months to spare until the wedding date. (As a side note, the "traditional" dresses didn't turn out so great either, but at least my bridesmaids had something appropriate to wear on my big day.”)

‘Feeling disappointed and jilted out of the $600 I would never get back from this designer, I had nothing to do but make the best of it. I saw that this designer was selling a single fabric flower pin for $40. $40?! This flower looked like an arts and crafts project gone wrong, and I knew I could do much better. So I cut up all the original bridesmaids' dresses (made from gorgeous vintage, hand-dyed fabrics - at least that part was nice) and started making my own fabric flowers to sell on Etsy. I specialize in using upcycled fabrics from thrift stores, the bride's closet, or even my own collection of fabrics. My flowers range from using sentimental fabrics, such as the bride's mother's wedding dress, to everyday tee-shirts, making the flowers truly unique.”

“I taught myself everything I know about making flowers, and as they began to sell, I realized I just may have a talent for this business! And so, what was once trash(y bridesmaids dresses), was finally turned into treasure.”

“Tattered Petals was beginning to bloom, but then I contracted Lyme disease and my life changed dramatically. I lost my steady day job because I was too sick to work the regular hours they demanded. But making flowers was something I could do in the comfort of my own home and on my own time, and was one of the few things that brought me pleasure over the pain from Lyme.”

“So here I am now, still healing from Lyme disease, and making more flowers than ever. Watching my business grow and working with such wonderful brides and other clients has undoubtedly been a benefit to my health. Without you, the potential client who is reading this for the first time, or the bride who came back to read my profile, I wouldn't be on this healthy road to recovery and loving my new job as a flower artist. YOU are my inspiration, my muses, and all I have left to say is, "thank you" to the RegrEtsy designer who tainted my dream of the perfect bridesmaid dress. Had things not gone so wrong before, they wouldn't be so right today.”

“Love is everlasting. Your flowers should be, too.”

Enjoy a glimpse of her lovely creations on Etsy!

Going Green: Pumpkin Seeds

Benefits of pumpkin seeds• Contain the minerals: phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, iron, copper, zinc • Contain Vitamins: K, E, B • Reduce levels of LDL cholesterol • Rich in antioxidants • Contain anti- inflammatory properties • Promote good sleep • Lower depression • Protect against osteoporosis • Improve bladder function and prevent formation of kidney stones • Remove tapeworms and other parasites

Image: Google Images