Category Archives: Eco Wedding

Peas and Carrots: Our Eco-Thrifty Wedding

Way way back, at the beginning of this whole process, over nine months ago, I wrote about how our goal was to have an amazing wedding that celebrated us. By celebrating us, I mean celebrating who we are, what we stand for, how we live. Our lifestyle. A lifestyle of living simply and lightly on the planet.

The Veggies on 350 day last year (personal photo).

I’d like to pretend that this was easy, but the pull of the wedding industry is strong. Actually, maybe that’s unfair, because it’s not just the wedding industry. I am a girl who grew up in a state known for its highways and malls, in the highest consuming nation on the planet, during an economic boom. I was given Barbie dolls, and movies starring Disney princesses, and cassette tapes of Debbie Gibson and told by society, that like them, I too could have it all, especially on the biggest day of my life, my wedding day.

A princess bride? (Oh Darling Photography)

So, yes, even though my heart and my head knew the boundaries that I wanted to play within when planning our wedding. And even though I created those boundaries, not anyone else. Even though deep deep down I wanted simple, and thrifty, and eco. Somewhere even deeper, laid a girl ready and waiting to buy into all of the hoopla.

Beautiful hoopla. (Personal Photo)

So, if my recaps seem a bit schizophrenic… If you wonder why we were so staunch about non-paper invitations, and then printed out eight page programs… If you wonder why my dress is re-used but my flowergirls are wearing new Chucks, all I can say is it was a struggle. It was a struggle between us and what we thought our families wanted, between us as a couple, and between myself and my inner diva.

The Veggies de-stress the day before the wedding. That’s some good teamwork. (Photo by Mamma Veggie)

And as I sit here in my gumboots, wiping the baby duck pooh off my workpants, sorting through wedding pictures to put with this post, I am happy with the balance we struck. In the end, I think we came out on top. We didn’t end up with the thriftiest or eco-iest of weddings ever on the whole planet, but we sure gave it a go. And we did end up with a very eco-thrifty wedding, one that was also very us, and made us very happy.

Happy Veggies. (Oh Darling Photography)

I will try to give out any eco and thrifty tips that we picked up along the way as I go through my recaps, and I will definitely give you both and environmental and financial tally of the event at the end.

P.S.- Wanna see a picture of our new baby ducklings?

I thought you might! (Personal Photo)

Did you have battles with yourself or your SO while wedding planning? What were some of the things you got pulled into that you wish you hadn’t? What are some things you were happily able to resist?

Grow With Love

Update on my life: Mr. Veg and I had a romantic reunion at our friends’ Dave and Heather’s lakeside wedding, I passed my written test at the RMV and am now allowed to drive in the USA (with a licensed adult), I have scoured FMIL Veg’s house and barn for wedding items, and thanks to the Salvation Army Mr. Veg finally has something to wear to the wedding.

And now I find myself with a few minutes of down time so I thought I’d keep good on my promise to delve into more detail about our seed packet favors. I’ll let you read the story behind them for yourselves, but I’ll give you a little background on the steps involved.

We bought all seeds in bulk from The Territorial Seed Company. They were very friendly and helpful on the phone. The seed packets from Territorial are so cute that I contemplated using theirs, but buying the seeds in packets is substantially more expensive than buying them in bulk. Like 10x more expensive. So, of course, we went the DIY route.


I designed the packets on good old trusty MS Word with fonts downloaded from DaFont.I then went on an odyssey to find the right paper. It was important to me that the paper was 100% recycled and bleach free, but also that it was thin enough to fold and glue easily. Trust me, if you’re thinking about folding and glueing 160 envelopes, find the thinnest paper available. So I looked in every office supply and craft store I could think of, but kept coming up empty handed. The best I could find was Paper source paper for about 30 cents per sheet. That seemed awfully expensive.

Finally, I stopped in an art supply store near where my sister lived and found handmade paper that was 100% recycled for only $8 per pack. I bought two packs and the lady gave me a 40% discount with a coupon she had behind the counter. Woo hoo! And the best part was that it was already cut in half vertically (hot dog style, not hamburger), so it saved me a bit of time. When do you ever find 4 x 11 paper? Perfect. I love when things like that happen.

So anyway, I know you’ve already seen this picture, but here is the end result.


10 days out now. Yee haw!

No time!

Two weeks to go. No time for a real post right now, Mr. Veggie flew in to the US two days ago and I am on my way up to see him for the first time since mid-June. (Pucker up Veg!, I’m-a-comin’). Then we have a wedding to go to, a conference to present at, family to visit, a driver’s license to renew, a bank account to open, oh yeah, and a few minor details to hammer out before the big day. Marriage license? Yeah, that one should probably get moved up to the top of the list.

So, sorry for the lack of witty and insightful commentary, but the least I could do is give you a sneak peek at some projects I’ve been working on this week.

Vegetable Escort Cards made from recycled craft paper cardstock and fabric scraps from Veggie sister Kale’s quilting room.

Seed packet favors. I should do a whole post on these because the story behind them is really sweet. We’ll see, I’ll try my best.

Birds for garlands. Made from cardboard gathered from our rubbish (pizza boxes, beer boxes, two-year old flowergirl’s birthday presents) and vintage sheets/ fabric scraps.

This shindig is starting to come together. I can’t believe I’m going to be a wife in two weeks. I can’t believe I get to see Mr. Veggie tonight. Have a great weekend everyone!

I get by with a little help from my…

…newly-found-internet-acquaintances. Such a catchy tune.
Last week I was the recipient of some major bee love.
There once was a girl so nice that she volunteered to help with cutting and glueing, the two most evil most dreaded wedding crafting jobs. Who is this saint? This happy little crafting elf? This magical crafting fairy-godmother? Why she’s EAQ219, (A.K.A. Em) wedding bee afficionado. We met at the D.C. Bee meetup two weeks ago and she volunteered to help me finish up some projects. You know I wasn’t going to let an opportunity like that slip by. So I invited her over for an afternoon crafting session while my nieces were supposed to be napping.
Still smiling even though her fingers are blistering.
Let me tell you something about Em. She is hardcore. Some people might head for the door when greeted with a pile of 160 envelopes to fold, glue, and stuff. A lesser woman might have balked at cutting corrugated cardboard when the only scissors I could find were hot pink kiddie safety scissors. Not this girl. She is epic. And, not only did she show some mad crafting skills, she also passed on some good words of advice, as only a recent DIY bride could.

Trace. Cut. Glue. Repeat.
Also, on the way back to DC from my bridal shower I swung by Mrs. Trail Mix’s house. While my nieces fought over who would get to walk her ah-dor-a-ble little puppy, her and I loaded my trunk with boxes of café lights. 500 feet of gorgeous little beauties, all in two nice nest-like bundles. If you enjoy rubix cubes, do I have a good job for you. Then, because she really is so super sweet, and was about to move into a new apartment in 3 days, she threw in some paper lanterns too. Nice! Gotta love the leftover wedding goodies. After a mere two nights of So You Think You Can Dance, I had those babies untangled and ready to hang. I am so excited about them. Like really really jazzed. Pumped, even.
Three weeks to go and I am loving the bee love. Thanks Trail Mix, thanks Em, I will be sure to pay these favors forward.

Shower for a Dirty Hippie

I feel so special and loved and supported and excited and happy. This weekend I was showered.

Every bride needs a wedding bell and candle, right? Thanks Great Aunt Veggie.
**All photos in this post my my amazing FSIL, Jen, from Jen Lebo Photography.

My bridesmaids (Veggie Sisters Kale, Eggplant, Carrot), Momma Veggie, and little brother Bridesman Veggie threw me a fantastic bridal shower at the Veggie parents house in New Jersey. We missed Veggie Sister Tomato, who couldn’t take time off of med school in Arizona to join us, but I got to see so many wonderful women that have been a part of my life throughout the years. Friends from elementary school, grad school, and even one from NZ managed to find their way to the party. And the Veggie ladies did not disappoint. They cooked the most amazing most drool worthy food. They are clearly not doing their part to make sure I fit in my wedding dress in a few weeks. Veggie sisters, we have about 1/16 of an inch in wiggle room in that dress. If it doesn’t fit, I blame the stratta from the shower.
Momma Veggie’s cupcakes, which will also make an appearance at the wedding got rave reviews:
Unbeknownst to me (well, actually pretty knownst), the Veggie sisters interviewed Mr. Veggie via Skype and recorded it so we could play a “how well do you know your groom?” game. Veggie sister Kale read the questions and I tried my best to give answers that wouldn’t embarrass either of us too badly. I was doing well until they asked about our first kiss, which may or may not have been in the middle of a crowded party in a bit of a drunken stupor. Sorry mom! Veggie sister Eggplant played back Mr. Veggie’s responses to the joy of the crowd. They particularly enjoyed this response by Mr. Veg.
Veggie sister Kale: What is the first thing that Miss Veggie will want to do after the wedding?
Mr. Veggie: Blog about it.
You know it!

Then we played a game that was really all about embarrassing me… it was kind of a roast where guests wrote down their favorite Miss Veggie moment. Then they were read out loud and I had to guess who wrote them. I’m just thankful that my friends used good judgement and censored a bit.After games it was time to get serious. There was a pile of treasure waiting with my name on it. I was a little nervous about this part of the party with some registration hesitations still lingering. All week I was practicing my “Gee thanks, this is so thoughtful of you, even though it weighs 50 pounds, is breakable and bulky, doesn’t work with NZ electrical outlets, and is a totally ridiculous item that we would never buy ourselves”-face. But I should have had more faith in our family and friends. They totally get us.Veggie Sister Carrot diligently recorded names and gifts while I tore through handmade wrapping paper of one kind and another. Our guests were so thoughtful in their choices of wrapping, keeping in mind our desire for a low footprint wedding. We got gifts wrapped in magazine pages, new dishtowels, and recycled fabric. Most of the gifts really fell in-line with our lifestyle too, being light, nonbreakable, and recycled or eco in some way. And the best part was that we got a lot of donations for our non-profit and really generous contributions to a “travel home to visit” fund. I know I sound ridiculous and snobby right now, and should be thankful for any gifts that we received, and I totally am, but it really just felt nice that people understood us so well to pick gifts that worked for us. I did get three bars of nice soap. Is that a hint? Because I really tried to clean up nice and leave my dirty hippie-ness out on the porch for a day.

So, thanks Veggie Fam. You rock.

Momma Veggie, Veggie Sister Kale, Me, Veggie Sister Eggplant, and Veggie Sister Carrot.
**All photos in this post my my amazing FSIL, Jen, from Jen Lebo Photography.
Did anyone have any embarrassing moments at their bridal shower? Anyone else have any gift-induced nervousness? Did it turn out for the beter or for the worse?

Paper Galands – Help Me Decide

I have had this project on my radar screen for a long time now. I think may even be on the original inspiration board I made about a year ago. So, with 5 weeks until the wedding, I guess its time to get going. Which means its time to decide what shape I want to make the garland. Want to help?

I will be making my garland out of salvaged cardboard boxes and vintage sheets my sister has gathered from Salvation Army and Value Village. One side will stay brown and the other side will be one of these gorgeous patterns. They will be strung from jute twine or hemp.


And here’s where you come in. I can’t decide what shape to make my garland. Originally I thought I would do birds, like the original project. I made a mock up out of paper and baker’s twine and this is how it turned out:

Then I started thinking that even though the birds are super cute, maybe they are a little trendy, and maybe there is something that represents Mr. Veggie and I a little better. So I made a garland made of leaves:

And then once I got going, I thought maybe I could make something a little more “veggie”-ish for us. So I made a garland of beans and beany leaves:
Here are all three mock-ups hanging together.
So what do you think? Should I stick with the oh-so-cute birds? Go with the pretty and natural shaped leaves? Keep it real with the beans? Can you tell what everything is? Does one stand out more than the others? Let me know.

PENGY: Can you please add a poll to this post with the following choices? -Thanks
Which shape should I choose to make my cardboard garland?
Bird’s The Word
Leaf it up to Me
String Bean