Your Eco-Friendly Wedding
Do you want to host a ‘green’ wedding, but don’t want to comprise on your style?
Why not make your wedding a celebration of not only your love, but also the love of our planet? As environmental concerns jump up the global agenda, we want to assure you that an eco-friendly wedding doesn’t mean that you have to compromise on style and put on a pair of Wedingtons (unless you just want to), and walk through the local farmers field! At Hayne House we believe that what it does require is time and consideration.
To help you identify opportunities to minimise your wedding ‘waste’ and plan an eco friendly wedding without sacrificing on taste and style, we have spoken to our handpicked wedding experts to help you be greener on your wedding day, but remain chic. So, to help you the team at Hayne House put questions to a team of suppliers that we work closely with:
How do I plan a definitive eco-friendly wedding?
The overriding response was that when planning a wedding, probably the biggest celebration event of your life, they all said that time was the most important factor.
They understood that quality and aesthetics are likely to be important factors for you, but if researched well, which takes time, then by choosing to go green, you will have every reason to celebrate your perfect eco-friendly wedding.
So, why not use your wedding as an opportunity to promote and celebrate all things green. By making your wedding as single-use-plastic free as possible, by reducing single-use decorations, by making efforts to eliminate waste, by keeping yours and your guests carbon footprint as low as possible, and working with some really exciting suppliers (who have more responsible practices), you can now plan your perfect wedding and not lose sleep worrying about the impact of your day on our beautiful planet.
What is the first step to planning a green wedding?
At Hayne House we believe that planning a wedding is like putting a giant puzzle together, with each interlocking piece put into place, your vision starts to come to life. However, if you add in your concerns with environmental issues, finding a venue that shares your values, that is operating greenly, but is also is still chic can be more akin to having a critical piece of the jigsaw missing.
How do I find an eco-chic venue in Kent?
To assure you, it is possible to host an eco-friendly wedding without losing a sense of style. When looking for a eco-friendly venue, you will need to feel confident that responsible practices are being followed. So, when searching for eco-chic wedding venue, look for companies that share your own values. However, being honest, we know that there are currently very few eco-chic wedding venues available in Kent, you can literally count them on one hand, so, it will be no surprise to learn that these venues can get booked up well in advance. We recommend using Sustainable Wedding Alliance to find a ‘green’ venue – of which we are delighted and honoured to be listed as one!
Here at Hayne House we have implemented a great eco-friendly policy, and have signed up for the UN Race to Zero whereby we can record and track all our carbon emissions. We have pledged to halve our emissions by 2022 and be carbon zero by 2030. Therefore, we want couple’s to be able to see our efforts and know we are being open and transparent with our journey.
Once you have located, your venues, then we would recommend that you ask them several questions on email about their green credentials before visiting, that way you are already on the path to keeping your carbon footprint to a minimum. Once you are content with their answers visit the strongest venue first.
What are the benefits of booking your ‘green’ wedding venue early?
When planning an eco-conscious wedding, we recommend that you book your wedding venue well in advance, we suggest a minimum of 18 months, as this enables you to really do your research, and find a venue that is not only green but chic. By researching your eco-friendly venue well in advance this enables you to:
- Book the most positive ‘green’ time of the year. Book during the Spring and Autumn equinox, for a green wedding, as this is when you can maximise the daylight hours, so using less electricity. An outside Gazebo is perfect for a summer wedding as this means, weather permitting, you can choose to marry outside, perfect for a beautiful, romantic, quintessential wedding
- Pick a venue that does not have air conditioning. Instead of booking a venue that has air conditioning to keep cool, why not choose a venue that has lots of windows that can be opened. Why, because this enables you to keep the air fresh by having the windows or vents open, to let the ‘old’ air out and bring the fresh real air in. Our Orangery is soon to be carbon neutral after the installation of a heat pump
- Look up at the sky. Pick a venue that has roof or ceiling windows, as just taking a moment to look up to the sky makes everyone feel relaxed, freer and more connected with the outside and is good for you and your guest’s well-being. Did you know that roof windows bring in twice as much light as vertical windows as they enable the light to penetrate further into the room – flooding every corner of your wedding breakfast room with daylight makes it also feel more spacious
- Communicate with your guests. Don’t forget to tell your guests in your digital invite about your green wedding and ask them to help you achieve a green wedding. Why not ask your wedding guests to explore ways to attend your wedding by exploring greener ways to travel, for example making sure guests can travel down by train. In order to get to Hayne House:
- If guests are having to travel then using public transport and offsetting their journeys is the greenest way. We are close to the Eurostar, and our recommended coach service have a green fleet
- You can set the guests a challenge that you might share as part of your speeches e.g. who travelled the greenest way and possibly even the most cost-effective way?
- Some of your guests can stay onsite in our onsite accommodation, we currently have ten rooms on site (which includes the complimentary bridal suite)
- Don’t forget to tell them about your dress code – something old, something borrowed, something hired all add up to something green!
- Stop having to buy things last minute, which are more likely to be less green, and bring in more natural elements and textures such as wooden tables, from companies like Locate to Create who buy old furniture and up-cycle.
- Grow your own décor! Instead of flowers why not use some home-grown potted plants like herbs, that not only makes your venue smell lovely but also no matter how small, plants release oxygen, remove carbon dioxide, toxins such as benzine and formaldehyde from the air.
How can you make your wedding eco-friendly?
When wedding planning your green wedding, here are some easy ways to make your big day as environmentally friendly as possible.
Work with your catering company to create a menu that not only showcases local ingredients but utilizes what is in season and is mindful about their waste and the sustainability of their props.
When choosing your suppliers choose them local to the venue.
We have put together the biggest list of alternatives ways to make sure your wedding is eco-friendly. Here you will find a eco-swap for everything.
How to Decorate the Orangery in a way, that complements the Eco-Chic environment
Here’s our handy tips on how to style a wedding in a way you can feel proud of and everyone will be ‘green’ with envy.
- Make the most of the natural light that is ever present in an Orangery
- Use the gardens as the backdrop – to create a natural sense of drama
- Use candles for the evening – you know the ones without chemicals in
- Decorate the wedding aisle with real plants is a great opportunity to intake carbon dioxide and release clean oxygen into the space. Not only do plants act as natural filters, but being close to nature has also been proven to increase our levels of happiness, bring a feeling of peace into a space, then they could be used on the table and you can give them as gifts at the end of the night, so no need to buy extra gifts
- For your tables we advise choosing natural fibres such as cotton or linen (which are supplied by Andersons catering team)
- Include flowers and foliage in your bouquet and table decorations that are seasonal and ideally grown locally – not only will this reduce the carbon footprint of transporting out-of-season blooms, but it should also save you money
- Bring in any one-of-a-kind piece of furniture from your home – something vintage, refurbished or repainted and then use these pieces to add those personal ‘touch points’ like your cake, cheese or sweetie tables. Or what about your favourite armchair – something you saved from landfill? That way you could have a cosy corner and add a standard lamp, so you don’t have to have the overhead lights on.
That way you will create a wedding full of character and your guests will walk away saying wow that really was them and you will feel so good about your day!
Our Green Hayne House Story
At Hayne House we designed and built and Orangery using environmentally friendly materials, to create a contemporary building designed to last which is incredibly insulated to keep the heat in the cooler months and keep the orangery cool in the summer.
To support your aspirations to host a ‘green’ wedding here is what we are doing at Hayne House to be more eco-friendly – and continuing every day to think of greener ways to run the venue as our pledge:
- In 2017 we took down the Marquee – which was surprisingly un green, especially when it came to heating it!
- Built the Orangery using triple glazing argon filled glass windows and roof lanterns, and solid mahogany wood for quality and durability.
- We support local suppliers, promoting local florists, wedding cake makers, photographers and videographers. We choose hand-picked suppliers who are local and who support our green pledge, such as Andersons, our amazing caterers. At Andersons they:
- limit the amount of printing in the office
- what they do print they use recycle paper and receive a receipt from the company they use to confirm how may trees they have saved
- recycle their cooking oil, which is turned into biofuel
- have changed their lights to energy saving lights
- use wooden skewers for your delicious canapes
- for certain dishes use wooden disposable cutlery
- use takeaway boxes which are all from sustainable sources
- recycle kitchen paper, card, glass and plastic
- use local suppliers for meat and produce as much as possible, to reduce their carbon footprint
- grow a lot of their own herbs at Brogdale, therefore reducing the amount of packing and transportation required
- invested in a newer refrigerated van that is more economical to run and produces lower emissions
- Last year with the launch of the Orangery we have been taking steps to lessen our bar’s impact on the environment. We have ensured that the bar has become eco-friendlier by taking steps that have included:
- reducing landfill by e.g. offering paper straws
- working with a new waste disposable company to recycle all of the cardboard packaging and glass bottles
- trying, where possible, to stock drinks that are not supplied in plastic bottles
- offering a brand-new Kentish Drinks Package that focuses on using local brands of wine, ciders and juices that are local growers, known for being champions of the environment
- serving drinks that are pre-mixed (like the Pimms on tap) and that are pre-chilled so reduce our reliance on ice (which takes more energy to make)
- offering cocktails that use seasonal ingredients
- growing our own herbs that include mint and rosemary and this year our gardener is trying to grow our own cucumbers – but without using slug pellets or pesticides bear with us as it is a work in progress!
- Invest in quality and solid furniture for our display tables so as to reduce linen waste.
- Energy and water at Hayne House:
- We turn off all our lights at the end of your party
- We have started to install solar panels across the site and are continually investing to gradually power the site in a greener way
- Our current underfloor heating system is incredibly green; however, we are working on going completely carbon neutral by way of grounds source heat to power not only the orangery but also the house.
- We have a rainwater harvesting tank which collects water off the orangery roof and is used to water our lawns.
- Within the toilets throughout the former Hunting Lodge and the Orangery we use eco-friendly refillable toiletries to cut out the single use plastic bottles.
- We have signed up and pledged to the UN Race to Zero to start our journey into zero emissions.
- We have pledged to only upcycle our furniture rather than buying new.
Interested in an eco-friendly wedding? Read about what we have done in more detail and to see what is in next in store, give our Sustainability page a read.