Consciously Coupling Your Way to a Sustainable Wedding

With 350,000 nuptials expected to take place in 2022 (thank you lockdown backlog), two-thirds of couples are planning smaller, more sustainable weddings to protect both the planet and their wallets. Read on for tips on how to thrift your way to the big day.

Take note 2022 is the year of consciously coupling, you read it here first. A big expense at the best of times, couples making their way down the aisle this year are facing one of the biggest cost-of-living crises of our generation. What steps can you take to save costs, waste less and make use of second hand items?

Something old, nothing new, plenty borrowed, something blue

Beyond just saving costs, sourcing second hand or borrowing items for your wedding goes a long way to reducing the impact on the environment. Our recent study found that 33% of couples planning their 2022-2023 weddings are conscious of its environmental impact.* Cue Gumtree: where you can source everything from centrepieces to your wedding attire, all pre-loved rather than brand new. In fact, one in five soon to be brides are planning to wear a second-hand wedding gown.* It’s not just the bride, but even the wedding party that can benefit from pre-owned or rented outfits for the big day.

Our Top Eco Wedding Tips

– Save on flight and accommodation costs (and the carbon emissions) by going for a local wedding venue
– Choose local suppliers (for catering, furniture, flowers…)
– Send electronic invites

Get Creative to Cut Costs

The average wedding costs an eye-watering £32,000** so it makes money sense to find ways to cut back costs without cutting back on the experience of your special day. Here are a few ways the couples we surveyed are making little changes with big impact:

– Ditching the wedding planner
– Asking a friend(s) to be your photographer
– Doing your own hair & make-up
– Set the date out of peak wedding season
– Ditch the free bar (guest could even bring a bottle of their favourite fizz along with them)

If that still isn’t thrifty enough for you, why not try your hand at baking your own wedding cake? And even get crafty with making your own decorations?

Wedding Guests, We Haven’t Forgotten About You…

Do weddings ever feel like buses to you? You wait forever for one, and suddenly three come at once. With the average Brit expected to attend three weddings over the next 12 months, it is estimated guests will spend a whopping £367 per wedding, not to mention travelling over 200 miles to get there. It’s no surprise then, that 30% have admitted they aren’t planning to ‘save the date’*… So we asked ourselves, how can you take part in the big day but lessen the burden on your wallets and the environment?

– Car share with other guests
– Buy and style a pre-owned outfit
– Donate to charity or thrift a gift second-hand instead of buying an expensive gift from a registry

Methodology Data conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Gumtree between 6th – 13th May 2022, polling 2,000 adults aged 18+ across the UK.

*https://trulyexperiences.com/blog/uk-wedding-industry-statistics/ – data taken from The UK Weddings Task Force

** https://www.moneyhelper.org.uk/en/blog/life-events/how-much-does-an-average-wedding-cost

The data for Gumtree’s carbon emission saving’s calculator is taken from the official UK Government analysis of the carbon footprint of UK residents. It is available to view online here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uks-carbon-footprint.

The statistics are provided using a model, developed at the University of Leeds, that calculates the embodied Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG) associated with the production of all goods and services consumed in the UK. This provides a conversion factor that provides an understanding of embodied GHG emissions of spending £1 of a given product.