Wedding Packages Las Vegas Style

Las Vegas has more wedding chapels than any other city in the country. You can even have a drive through wedding. Some of the many chapels are: A Little White Wedding, Little Church of the West, Graceland Wedding, Cupid Wedding, Hollywood Wedding and my favorite, A Special Memory Wedding Chapel. Wedding chapels are generally located mostly on the L.V. Boulevard and each major hotel has its own wedding chapel. Additionally, there are other wedding chapels at other locations.

Prices of wedding packages range from a low cost drive through wedding ceremony price of $69 to a luxurious deluxe package that can amount to thousands of dollars. The best advice is to know ahead of time what types of amenities you would you like provided at your wedding, i.e., flowers, cake, music, photography, limousine service, reception, etc. and to know your budget. The Elvis impersonator can be expensive if you want him as a witness to your wedding or to marry you!

A Nevada wedding is a great place to hold a wedding reception. There are many people who can not resist the bright lights and the fun opportunities of the hotels along L.V. Boulevard. This is why many of your friends would suggest that you hold your wedding on the Boulevard so they can go out and have fun as well.

You want to make a note of the fun that you can have at a small chapel, this is what will bring a fair amount of appeal to the situation. An Elvis impersonator is always a “fun” witness or you can be married by him or any other impersonator. If you can think of one you can get him (or her). You can also get you through the wedding process in a very quick way if necessary so you can go ahead and spend your life together. That’s what the drive through is all about.

There are many wedding packages offered by the hotels along L.V. Boulevard. Always do your homework on-line and be sure to look at the chapels located inside of the Wynn Resorts, Belagio, the Venetian, Aria, Paris, Caesars, the Mirage and Bally’s. I personally like the simple, quaint and traditional wedding chapels along L.V Boulevard.

Nevada wedding packages are important, but don’t forget the most important item–your marriage license, which is obtained at the Office of the Civil Clerk, Service, Clark County Government Center, 500 S. Grand Central Pkwy, Las Vegas, NV 89155 (702) 455-0000.

The 10 Most Important Tips For Perfect Makeup on Your Wedding Day!

TIP #1 PLAN AHEAD

Every bride spends weeks looking at the stores, the magazines and searching online to find the perfect wedding dress; the perfect color bridesmaid dresses; the perfect shoes and other accessories. A bride always plans the venue months in advance. Unfortunately, many brides wait to the last minute to plan their makeup for their wedding. That truly is like waiting just days before to pick out a dress!

It is important that you are prepared and know what the perfect look is for your wedding day. It is not recommended that you try something drastic or totally new, but fine tune the look that makes you feel beautiful! Play with different looks and colors – remember – makeup washes off! Do not try a new look the day of your wedding! Promise!

If you are contacting a professional makeup artist or consultant; be sure to allot a time to meet with the consultant before your wedding day. The consultant will know what questions to ask you to make the best recommendations. Also, if you are not totally satisfied with the recommendations, you will have the opportunity to try different looks well in advance. The day of your wedding is NOT the day to change your mind or not be sure how your look makes you feel! You will be emotional! Remember, we offer specials for those brides who come with their bridal party for their first consultation!

TIP #2 classic vs trendy

Fashion comes and goes as often as the season changes. Trends range back and forth as easily as a pendulum keeps time. One thing for sure – the trend will change. When choosing your bridal makeup – make a decision if you want to look classic and timeless or if you wish for a trendy look of the day. One thing to consider is thinking far ahead when you, your children and even your grandchildren are looking at your wedding pictures. Will you still think you look pretty? That’s a good rule to follow to determine if your choice of makeup will stand the test of time. You want to look like you. You just want to enhance your favorite features and create the illusion to cover the aspects of which you are not satisfied. It is important to look like yourself. Remember the groom asked the real you to marry him and he wants to see the real you at the altar!

There are a few timeless looks that are still trendy – the Audrey Hepburn look is a timeless classic yet one that is noticeable today. The colors you choose should complement you not make a statement for the fashion industry. Certain techniques that you know have come and gone in and out of style are certainly not what you want to use on your wedding day! Remember – beautiful, elegant, timeless, captivating…these adjectives are how you wish to be described.

TIP #3 TIME OF DAY FOR THE WEDDING

You as the bride should consider the time of day the wedding will be held as you plans your makeup. Time of day is critical to how well the makeup will photograph because of the varied lighting. Paying attention to details for each time frame is essential to have the wedding photographs of your dreams!

MORNING BRIDE

A Wedding makeup look for the morning should be soft and natural. This is the perfect time for a girl who prefers natural looks. Most of the morning brides have their wedding outside or at least take lots of photos outside. A photographer will take advantage of the soft natural light in the morning.

1. A bride may choose a matte foundation but also may prefer a foundation with a slight sheen or dewiness.

2. If the bride is prone to breakouts, this is not the ideal time of day for the wedding. You will want to wear very little foundation and concealer due to the softer light.

3. Use minimal powder to create the slight matte appearance. Heavy powder can appear artificial in the morning light.

4. Choose warmer, softer eye shades that complement your eye color. Bold eye shadow or too much eye shadow will be accentuated in the morning light.

5. Define the eyes really well with mascara and possibly opt for false eyelashes.

6. Eyeliner is a choice for the morning bride. Keep eyeliner subtle and soft. No black eyeliner and smudge the lines to prevent a harsh look.

7. A soft and natural lip is ideal for the morning bride. Nothing to bold or your lips are the only thing you will see in the photos!

8. Bridesmaids should also wear softer makeup shades and the dresses should be soft in color.

MIDDAY BRIDE

Mid-day weddings must take into account that the mid day sun may cast shadows on your face. This makes a huge difference if you are taking photos outdoors.

1. Avoid foundations with a sheen or dewiness. Sheen will reflect the light in the photos at this time of day. A lightweight foundation and a matte powder finish will photograph well.

2. Blush should also have a more matte finish. Avoid shimmer.

3. Keep eye makeup light and avoid dark colors. If it is to dark your eyes will look like two dark holes in the photographs. The highlight shade should be a shimmer to reflect light and this is the most important shade for this time of day. Mid tone and contour shade should be matte to avoid the eyes looking to shiny.

4. Eyeliner should be worn closest to the lash line.

5. Mascara is essential for long luscious lashes.

6. Blending is absolutely critical for the mid-day bride. The sunlight grows stronger and every makeup line will become more visible. There is no such thing as over blending!

LATE-AFTERNOON BRIDE

If you want to add a little more drama to your makeup, take advantage of the golden light in the late afternoon. This light is beautiful and forgiving.

1. You may use more concealer and foundation to cover any flaws on the face. Always powder – matte skin is essential for photographs.

2. Add color to your face as dusk approaches. Flash on cameras may tend to wash you out if you do not have enough color on. Always wear blush for a little color in the cheeks! Cheek color for this time of day is OK to have some shimmer. You may also choose a bronzing powder to give you the “warm glow” effect.

3. More dramatic eye shadow shades are appropriate for this time of day. A shimmer highlight is beautiful. Avoid using three shimmers.

4. Richer lip colors may be a preference for the late afternoon bride.

EVENING BRIDE

The evening bride is the glamour queen. More makeup and color will photograph well in the evening much better than any other time of day. You may choose darker eye shadow shades and make your makeup more dramatic.

1. More foundation and powder is acceptable to cover less than perfect skin.

2. Use bronzer generously to give your skin a glow. This adds dimension and prevents wash out from the flash.

3. Everything should be more defined – lips, eyes, cheekbones.

4. Shimmery eye shadow photographs best this time of day but no frosts. One of the three shades needs to be matte.

5. Seriously consider false eyelashes for an evening wedding. This brings more definition to the lash line to compete with the flash.

6. The Smoky eye is perfect for the evening bride.

7. Lip color and powder are essential at all times.

TIP #4 SKIN CARE PRIOR TO WEDDING

Good skin care is always imperative for the bride to have the most beautiful glowing look on her wedding day. A bride who is not already using a quality skin care routine should consider her options six to eight weeks before the wedding day. Soap is not a quality skin care routine and bargain discount items are not formulated to be the best for your skin. Choose a line that you can use all the products that are formulated to work together.

There are five essential steps to quality skin care.

  1. Cleanse -should be suitable for sensitive skin, be fragrance free and non-comodegenic; avoid eye area
  2. Tone – tightens pores and firms skin; anti-aging benefits
  3. Exfoliate – removes the top layer of dead skin; as we age the renewal process slows; light exfoliation is suitable daily; microderm abrasion or similar should be performed two-three times per week
  4. Moisturize – everyone needs to use moisturizer; dry or oily skin; keeping your skin in a moisture check is crucial for flawless makeup and anti-aging benefit.
  5. Protect – foundation of any kind protects your skin from harmful irritants and free radicals in the air. If you prefer not to wear a liquid foundation, try a powder or even a tinted moisturizer.
  6. Other products to help skin issues – ask your consultant about other specialty products for age spots, dark circles, very oily or very dry skin, facial masking etc.

The quality skin care routine should be used both morning and night. The myth is that if you go to bed with your makeup on it will age you seven days! Also, if you have ever Googled eye mites, you have learned that the little critters love to feast off dry dead skin cells in your lashes and old makeup! Do not go to bed with makeup on!

Remember a quality skin care routine allows you to create the perfect canvas of which to work with your makeup application! Broken eyelashes; missing lashes and red puffy eyes may be evidence the little eye mites had a Thanksgiving buffet on your eyes the night before.

TIP #5 WHAT NOT TO DO THE DAY OF THE WEDDING

Micro-derm abrasion – this product is absolutely amazing at exfoliating your skin and creating a soft renewed look. Microderm tends to bring red blood cells to the top of the skin as it oxygenates and renews skin so it should only be done at least two days before the wedding. Although, there are products that have a replenish step to sooth the newly exfoliated skin, it is never recommend to do this immediately before the wedding day.

Sunless Tanning – Using a sunless tanning lotion may help give you a warm glow that you desire for your wedding day. Be sure to test it weeks in advance so that you are totally satisfied with how the product applies and dries. Always exfoliate well before beginning application. After exfoliation, moisturize well to prevent streaking. Several weeks before the wedding you may choose to use sunless tanning lotion to obtain the depth of color and then maintain it every few days. Do not start a sunless tanning routine the week of the wedding. Be sure to check package labels that the lotion is safe for your face before applying to face.

Stay up late – We all know there are thousands of details, butterflies in your stomach, out of town relatives and friends the night before the wedding. Also the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner bring on much stress. It is critical for the bride to get good nights sleep so she may look her best on her wedding day. No bride wants puffy eyes and dark circles to remind her of the exhausting day years down the road.

TIP #6 FACE APPLICATION TECHNIQUES

On your wedding day, begin by using your skin care routine and end with moisturizer. Allow the moisturizer to dry before applying makeup. A bride may use whatever tool she prefers to apply foundation: fingers, brush or sponge.

A sponge is very sanitary and really helps with the blending process to help your foundation look smooth and flawless. A foundation brush will give you great even coverage. If you use your fingertips, be sure to wash your hands after applying your moisturizer and skin care products as these items can compromise the integrity of the foundation.

Begin blending foundation in the center of the face and blend outward. Finish by using downward strokes so the fine facial hairs will lay flat. On this special day you will want to blot after applying foundation to absorb any extra moisture. Powder will also absorb excess moisture, but blotting first will allow you to go longer before touching up.

Concealer is a great tool to cover flaws on your face. The key to using concealer successfully is only applying it to the discolored skin and nothing more. Concealer has different textures than foundation and will grab powder differently. Blending is essential. If you have really dark circles under your eyes, you may need to use a shade of concealer lighter than your foundation

You can outsmart puffy eyes by highlighting (not concealing) just under the puffy area. This will bring out the area to create an illusion to cover the puffiness. Use a highlighting pen or highlighting powder to create this effect.

Blemishes can be covered with a touch of concealer after you apply foundation. Apply concealer directly to the top of the blemish and stipple it to blend. Do not rub it or spread the concealer to the surrounding area as this defeats the illusion.

Powder is absolutely essential on your wedding day. It sets your foundation; adds a smooth softness to your look. Powder also absorbs more oil.

Facial Contouring is an application technique you may wish to try on your wedding day. The idea is to use three shades of foundation to create the oval face. Darker shades will assist in receding round cheeks and jaws or the square forehead. The lighter shade is applied to the center of the forehead, tip of the nose, each cheekbone and the chin.

TIP #7 EYES AND YES THOSE BROWS TOO

Remember, the eyes are the windows to your soul. The eyes will reflect so many emotions on your wedding day. You will want to use makeup that accentuates your eyes, not compete for attention! Most brides should stay away from eye shadows with a lot of color such as blue, green or black. Using natural shades such as ivory, taupe, beige or brown will bring out the sparkle in brides eyes.

Effectively prepping the eye area will ensure vibrant color that lasts all day long. Apply concealer to even out the eye lid. Use powder to set which will absorb any excess oils. Eye primer is also a secret tool of the trade to prevent creasing and allowing eye shadow to maintain its vibrant color.

Eyeliner is a personal choice for a bride. Pencils are most common, but the bride who does not normally wear a lot of makeup, may choose to line and define her eyes with a darker eye shadow. Liner should be thinnest towards the center of the face and gradually thicken towards the outer corner. Blending is a must because a harsh line is will make the eyes appear smaller. A trick you may wish to use is taking black eye shadow and a small brush and pushing it into the lash line. This defines the eyes and makes the lashes look thicker without a lot of lining.

Eye shadow should be applied that most flatters your eye shape. The standard eye, hooded eye, wide-set, narrow set, deep set and prominent all call for different application techniques to ensure the eyes are most flattering. These looks are accomplished with using shimmer shades to bring out features and matte shadows to hide or create depth. Be sure to ask what your eye shape is and for pointers for each one even for everyday wear.

Maintaining brows are also essential for the bride. If you do not normally pluck or wax your brows, I encourage you to seek a professional to create your natural arch. Then you can follow that arch and tweeze as needed. This is also a step you do not want to do immediately before the wedding. Sometimes tweezing and waxing may cause the tissue to swell or even bleed. Give yourself several days before the wedding to accomplish the idea look. Brows should be no further in on your face than directly over the corner of your eye. You can take a pencil; hold it vertical next to your nose to determine where your eyebrows should start. The outer corner should go just to the outside edge of your eye. Take the same pencil and hold it from your nose to the outside corner of your eye and you will see where the brow should end. The arch will be above the pupil of the eye. There is not set style for your brows; thick, thin, sparse or full. Groom and maintained are the only requirements.

Mascara is a must for any bride. I recommend several coats of mascara to have the fullest thickest lashes ever! Apply mascara first by just brushing over the tips called “tipping” to apply just a small amount of product. Go back and hold your want horizontal moving back and forth to make your lashes fuller. Then hold your wand vertically to create the lengthening illusion. You may wish to apply a coat of waterproof mascara at the end! If you use a lash curler, crimpers should be used before mascara. Try out a heated eyelash curler and you will be amazed at the results. A heated eyelash curler is used after mascara.

Be brave and try false eyelashes at your wedding. They really enunciate the eye and are simple to apply and so inexpensive giving you a very posh look!

TIP #8 LUSCIOUS LIPS AND HOW TO KEEP IT ON

Lips are also important for your wedding photos and to look your best. A bride should have defined and luscious lips but not overpowering her makeup look. A good rule of thumb is if you prefer to have a more dramatic eye or like your eyes better than your lips, you may wish to choose a more nude or natural lip. If you want to focus on your lips, have muted eye colors and go for a more bold lip with deeper richer colors.

Using lip liner, lip primer, powder, lipstick and lip-gloss will ensure your lipstick lasts until you eat. If you want to make your lips smaller or larger, you may also choose to use concealer to wipe out your natural lip line and gently apply lip liner just inside or just on the edge to create the desired effect. Begin lips by applying a lip primer. Then apply a lip line that will complement the lipstick shade. A bride should never have a defined line showing through the lipstick! Apply lipstick. Blot with a tissue removing excess moisture. Apply loose powder to lips to absorb any excess moisture. Apply lipstick again. Finish with a complimenting lip-gloss! When it is time for you to kiss your groom, just lick your lips and your lips will stay on you and not him!

TIP #9 CREATING BEAUTIFUL PHOTOS

Let’s face it…you may feel beautiful all day long and everyone may ooohh and ahhh over how gorgeous you look…but if that look isn’t captured in your photos that feeling will fade quickly. Many people hate being photographed and the reason is mostly they do not know the tips and tricks of photographing well. Follow these tips for beautiful photographs to last you a lifetime!

Determine if you are posing for a bridal portrait before the wedding pictures. A bridal portrait is typically photographed indoors and you can wear more makeup than you could if you were being photographed outside. Remember to review the tips on natural lighting if being photographed outside.

1. Warm up your skin by sculpting and bronzing your face. This will assure you do not look washed out in the pictures.

2. Be careful of wearing foundations and powders with a sheen. You may do this if you are being photographed inside but remember matte always photographs better.

3. Wear a little blush even if you don’t normally wear it on a daily basis. It adds life to your face and brings out your cheekbones to frame your face.

4. Warmer cheek colors make the skin look fresh and glowing more than cool colors will. Don’t forget to add a little bronzer!

5. Never wear frosted shadows on your wedding day. They always look to shiny and artificial in photographs. Stick to matter or shimmer eye shadows.

6. Make sure at least one of your eye shadows has a matte finish. Never use three shades of shimmer. It is ok, however, to use three shades of matter if you prefer.

7. Stick to warm undertones, including brown for eye shadow shades. They enhance every eye color beautifully.

8. Do not wear shades of lip or eye color that are too bold. Lips should be just a few shades darker than your natural lip color. Eye shadow shades should be deep enough to create definition and enhance your eye color but not dark enough to demand all the attention.

9. Pay particular attention to define the eyes very well at the lash line. This can be accomplished through several coats of mascara or false eyelashes.

10. Lips should be well defined for photographs. You can use a little concealer to erase the natural lip line and apply the lip liner on a perfect fresh canvas giving your lips the definition ideal for photographs.

11. Consider wearing either a blended brow pencil or a matte eye shadow to color your brows. This will make a remarkable difference in you photographs and how your brows define your face. Your brows should be well groomed.

12. Remember matte skin photographs more flawless than dewy or sheen on your skin. Keep powder handy to keep that perfect matte look all day!

TIP #10 KEEPING YOUR MAKEUP FRESH ALL DAY LONG

Initial application is the first step in keeping your makeup fresh all day long. Choose a foundation that is transfer resistant and layerable. This will keep the foundation from fading and if you reapply ensure the same shade!

Blot after applying foundation to absorb any excess moisture.

Use powder around the eyes to absorb excess moisture and keep everything in place.

Use concealer and lip primer on lips.

After applying concealer and lip primer, apply lip liner, lip stick and blot to remove extra moisture. Reapply another coat of lipstick and finish with lip gloss. This will stay on unless you eat it off or wipe it off with a napkin.

Keep pressed powder in groom’s pocket, by the time you need it you will be with him!

Have a second lipstick and lip gloss in the grooms pocket to touch up before or after the reception!

Use Black Mascara and several coats for the most effect!

Final words:
Remember, this is one of the most important days of your life as a bride. Bridesmaid’s makeup can be soft and complement them and the wedding color but it is your day. Your bridesmaids will appreciate consideration of what is most flattering with their features too!

Finding The Right Wedding Favors

With so much to do and so little time, it is often the little details involved in weddings that busy
wedding couples forget in the shuffle. Wedding favors inevitably end up on the bottom of the to
do list.

This should not be the case. The reality is that, although small, wedding favors serve an
important purpose. They are meant to serve as tokens of thanks for the guests who turn out to
help celebrate the big occasion. With this said, it is important that brides and grooms remember
wedding favors do not have to be elaborate, expensive or outrageous to be special.

Wedding favors can be as small and inexpensive or as elaborate and costly as a couple might
consider. The trick is finding a special something that says thank you. Even the smallest of
gestures can go a long way in making sure guests feel welcomed and appreciated.

The options for wedding favors are amazing. Coming in all shapes, sizes and prices, wedding
favors can be a little hard to choose. Some of the top choices include:

  • Candles. Whether they are small creations or large, candles make fantastic wedding favors. From champagne glass designs to miniature wedding present candles, these whimsical little items do not cost a lot, but they do serve the purpose. You can even personalize them for the occasion.
  • Crystal creations. Small crystal wedding favors in typical wedding designs, such as shoes, flower bouquets and even wedding coaches can delight guests without costing a small fortune.
  • Special place cardholders. These neat little creations don’t cost a lot either and they can serve the double purpose of letting guests know where they are seated.
  • Personalized candies and chocolates. Small tins of special candy with stamped tops that bear the bride and groom’s names and the wedding date are much en vogue. These little offerings are not as expensive as many might think.
  • Picture frames. Frames that guests can use for their own memories of the wedding day are rather gracious favors. Whether they’re pewter, silver or wood, these little frames tend to be a big hit. You can often personalized these novelties, as well.
  • Key chains. Small pewter, silver or even crystal key chains with the bride and groom’s names and wedding date are also gaining in popularity.
  • Goodie baskets. Tiny baskets with little trinkets inside can be a big hit, as well.
  • Homemade creations. Many couples choose to put a little TLC into the mix, creating their own wedding favors. The choices here can range from handmade goodie baskets to specially made soaps, candles and more.

Coming up with the right wedding favors doesn’t have to require a line of credit. The important
thing to remember when picking out or creating these little items is that they are simply meant to
serve as a small token of thanks. Showing each guest their presence is appreciated, wedding
favors can be as small and simple or as big and elaborate as a couple desires. As long as they get
the job done and look good doing so, they’ll be perfect.

Top Five Wedding Venues in Italy

There are many wedding venues in Italy. Italy is filled with quaint villages and medieval towns where getting married in Italy is a dream! I have put together a list of my top five wedding venues in Italy.

#5 Lake Garda: Possibly the most popular of lake wedding venues in Italy is Lake Garda. Lake Garda is the largest, bluest and most visually dramatic of all the northern Italian Lakes. Here you have many Italy wedding venues to choose from. You can choose one of many venues in Gardone Riviera, Salo’ or Malcesine.

#4 A Castle Wedding: Little could be more like a fairy tale than getting married in an actual castle. Castles have become common venues for weddings in Italy. They offer a sense of elegance, romance and sophistication. Thankfully there are many Italy castle wedding venues to choose from. They can be found in or near almost every region in Italy.

#3 Venice: Your town hall wedding in Venice will take place at the The Palazzo Cavalli. It is one of the most famous Italy wedding venues. It is a historic private palace that has been bought by the City of Venice for the purpose of Civil ceremonies. It offers a stunning view of the Grand Canal and the Rialto Bridge. This venue allows you to arrive in true Venice style, by gondola.

#2 Rome: One of the most magical Italy wedding venues is the Campidoglio in Rome. Civil weddings can be performed here, right in the heart of Rome. The Coliseum, The Roman Forum, Piazza di Venezia are all nearby so pictures following the wedding will be magical. Civil weddings are celebrated in a Palace which will bring a touch of the Renaissance style with period furniture and rich tapestries

#1 Positano: By far the most magical of Italy wedding venues is the small Amalfi Coast town of Positano. The steep hills are lined with cascading homes that seemingly are going to fall into the turquoise sea. The Positano Town Hall is simply one of the oldest and most perfect venues.

It will be your choice to be married by the Mayor of Positano inside the ancient hall or on the terrace overlooking the magical city and of course the stunning beaches and sea are below. Holding a sunset or a evening civil ceremony in the Positano Town Hall is definitely one of the most romantic ways to get married in Italy.

Choosing one of the magical Italy wedding venues is personal. It all depends on the style of Italian wedding you wish to have and of course the time of year you wish to get married. But feel comforted knowing that any of the Italy wedding venues you choose will be magical.

5 Easy Ways to Make Your Wedding More Eco-Friendly

Eco-friendly and green are hot concepts in weddings these days. Even couples who consider themselves fairly conventional can still make a few simple changes to make their wedding more earth friendly. Check out these five easy ways to make your wedding more eco-friendly and protect the planet while planning your celebration.

One: Use Less Paper. Think about how much paper is used in a traditional wedding: save the date cards, invitations, response cards, double envelopes, bridal shower and rehearsal dinner invitations, programs, menus, escort cards, table numbers, gift wrap…the list goes on and on! It is actually pretty easy to reduce the amount of paper you use for your wedding. Skip the response cards, save the dates, and double envelopes. Write the reception menu on a chalkboard, bistro style. Wrap the bridesmaid jewelry gifts in pretty scarves instead of wrapping paper (plus the scarves will be nice bonus gifts in addition to the bridesmaid jewelry!). And for the essentials like the wedding invitations, opt for recycled paper or an alternative fiber paper like hemp or bamboo.

Two: Think Beyond Cut Flowers. Every wedding needs beautiful decorations. That does not mean that you necessarily need to buy hundreds or even thousands of cut flowers that will be thrown away at the end of the reception. For the centerpieces, consider potted flowering seasonal plants that can be planted in the ground after your wedding. Little pots of herbs displayed in groups in the middle of the table could be not only eco-friendly centerpieces, but can also be taken home as the wedding favors. Grow them yourself from organic seeds to save money. If you do opt for cut flowers, choose organic locally grown blossoms whenever possible.

Three: Serve Organic or Local Food. Wouldn’t your guests enjoy a wonderful meal made from wholesome fresh ingredients grown without the use of pesticides? And wouldn’t they prefer a flavorful piece of free-range chicken that is not full of hormones or antibiotics? Food that is raised or grown with care is both better for the environment and tastier. Local produce and meat are also good options, even if they are not organic. At least you will be supporting local farmers and reducing the amount of fuel used to transport the food from the farm to your reception table. Consider working with local farmers to produce something special like farmhouse cheddar or goat’s milk soap for the wedding favors.

Four: “Green” Up Your Gown. No, this doesn’t mean walking down the aisle looking like a leprechaun! The idea is to avoid purchasing a bridal gown that is created from man-made fabrics and made in a sweatshop. The most eco-friendly option is to wear a vintage wedding dress, whether it is a family heirloom or one found in a second-hand shop. Not only will you be saving resources by re-using an existing item, you will have a unique gown that shows your personal style. For brides who definitely want a new wedding gown, opt for one made from more earth friendly fabrics like organic silk, cotton, or hemp.

Five: Plan a Green Honeymoon. One terrific way to give back to the earth is to go on a volunteer honeymoon. Newlyweds can do all sorts of things, from organic farming to rebuilding nature trails to helping with animal conservation projects. It is a fantastic opportunity to see a part of the world you might otherwise never have experienced, while doing something good. Just be aware that you will probably be responsible for your own airfare and lodging costs, just like you would with a conventional honeymoon. For couples who want a relaxing honeymoon with a reduced impact on the planet, a trip to an eco-lodge is just the thing. They are located in naturally beautiful spots around the globe, and are retreats which focus on conservation and appreciation for the local culture. At the same time, the amenities at many eco-lodges are top-notch, so don’t feel like you will be roughing it as you lounge in solar powered splendor. Isn’t it wonderful when you can green up your wedding without sacrificing a thing?