The eco-friendly way to say 'I do'

The environmental movement seems to have tinted every part of daily life green. And the world of weddings is no exception, as more and more brides try to balance glamour and environmental awareness on their big day.

With a little imagination, the possibilities are endless. Easy options include hiring a specialist planner, arriving in a low-emission vehicle, and arranging eco-catering, which uses local organic products. 

You can also do your bit by growing your own flowers or choosing to send electronic invitations instead of classic paper ones.

Guests can get involved, too. Rather than presenting the couple with a plasma TV, the latest trend is to make donations to non-governmental ecological organisations in the bride and groom's name.

For example, the World Wildlife Fund provides lots of resources for couples that want a wedding with a low environmental impact. Their special 'Weddings and Celebrations' web site even allows you to create a registry where friends and family can make donations.

There is, of course, one other important element that can be given the green touch: the bride's look.

Bridal fashion has gone eco-friendly, and these days many women are opting for gowns made from organic silk, cotton or bamboo.

Another way to turn your white dress into a green statement is to use vintage family heirlooms, which don't require textile processes that can harm the environment.

Wedding day jewels are also a consideration, as brides and grooms can select ethical accessories, like engagement rings and wedding bands made from Fair Trade gems and recycled metals.

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