Weddings are events that offer many ways to choose local, borrow what you need and create a one-of-a-kind experience. From the venue and clothing to food and flowers, there are many resources to help you be creative and sustainable, so you can refocus your energy on what’s most important to you on your special day.
Venue and officiant options
To minimize transportation impacts, choose a local wedding instead of a destination wedding and find event space where you can have the ceremony and reception in the same location.
Make your vows in an urban wilderness at one of Portland’s many parks.
Use the City of Portland’s Event Recycling containers and signage to recycle and compost everything you can.
From veil to train, the officiants at Portland Green Weddings and Wed Portland have you covered.
Many bridal and formalwear stores sell like-new consignment dresses at substantial discounts. Search for “wedding consignment” or similar terms to find locations convenient for you.
Local vintage and thrift stores also carry unique dresses and accessories to help you create a one-of-a-kind look. Or find your perfect “recycled” dress online at Pre-owned Wedding Dresses.
For tuxedos and menswear, put on the (rented) ritz with Mr. Formal.
Food, flowers and décor
Plan an organic and locally grown menu for the wedding and the favors (that includes Oregon beer and wine!). Consider one of Portland’s many sustainably minded caterers. Provide a water station or water pitchers on dinner tables instead of bottled water.
Use simple, non-themed décor that can be reused for other occasions. Decorate with seasonal food that looks beautiful on the tables and on the plates.
Look for flowers that are seasonal, organic or local. Consider using live plants instead of cut flowers. For a growing give-away instead of bouquets, visit Portland Nursery or Pistils.
Rent cloth linens and napkins, plates, flatware and drinkware. Something Borrowed has a wide array of items available to rent to make your special day unique. Both Preserve and Serve and the Home Goods Library have durable dishes for everything from cake slices to attendees’ proud toasts.
Other green wedding planning tips
- Create a charity registry so guests can give donations in your honor in lieu of gifts.
- Set up a honeymoon registry and calculate and offset the carbon footprint of your wedding and travel.
- Use recycled paper for postcard-sized save-the-dates and all-in-one invitations. Invite guests to RSVP via email, phone or online, rather than including return RSVP cards.
- Be aware that signing up for mailing lists at bridal shows or retail stores will likely add you to distribution lists that will generate much paper mail waste.
- Encourage invitees to carpool to the location. Ask guests to RSVP whether they’re interested in carpooling, and have a friend coordinate logistics or set up a carpool to your event.
- Think of the environment and consider using flower petals or reusable streamers rather than confetti or balloons.
- Looking for the perfect gift for your wedding party? Our previous posts about celebrating with your Valentine and finding creative birthday gifts offer many resourceful ideas!
Have a favorite Portland wedding planning resource? Share it with us!
The City does not endorse or assume responsibility for businesses, companies or organizations listed by the Be Resourceful program.