Throwing a party? Hooray! There's nothing better than gathering with friends and family to celebrate a special occasion. But whilst a celebration can be an excuse for a little indulgence, it doesn't need to be at the expense of the environment.
Here are our ten top tips to help you throw a more eco-friendly party for your next occasion!
1. Use digital invitations instead of paper. If a text or email is too casual for your event, try creating a digital invite using programs such as Canva - a free, easy to use online website that can help you create high quality invitations to suit your preferred style and theme.
2. If the weather permits, keep the party outdoors. Using a naturally scenic venue, such as a local park, beach or your backyard means you'll need to use less decorations and less electricity. Try looking for a venue that'll let you quickly move undercover if the rain makes a sudden appearance, such as a park with a pagoda that you can reserve in advance.
3. Challenge yourself to a creative, zero-waste menu. Try creating delicacies using the whole ingredient, such as using the skin and stem of vegetables in soups, or using hard-shell fruits as bowls to serve your dessert.
4. Have a sharing style feast, rather than individual portions. Whilst individual bites served in soup spoons or on toothpicks may have been all the rage a few years ago, most guests would prefer heartier, sharing style serves that they can comfortably tuck into. Plus less individual serving ware means less wastage (and less cleaning up).
5. If you are serving wine, look for locally produced organic wines. Not only do most organic wines leave out the preservatives, but most are also made without added sulphites, meaning you and your guests are less likely to wake up with an unwelcome next-day hangover.
6. Use low-waste decorations which are paper- and plastic-free. Forage in your backyard for flowers or leaves, and reuse empty wine bottles or glass jars as candle holders. If the weather permits, try a picnic style-set up repurposing cushions, throws and blankets for a boho-chic feel.
7. Use reusable table linen, such as Linen Tablecloths and Linen Table Napkins, instead of purchasing single use paper or plastic alternatives. You can simply pop these in the wash and bring them out for your next occasion.
8. If you're bringing in external vendors, use local suppliers where possible. The less they have to travel, the less carbon they will emit in delivering and picking up their staff, supplies and equipment.
9. Ditch the favours, most items end up being discarded or left behind anyway. If you are determined to have favours - make them edible, trust us, your guests will prefer a cookie or cupcake they can snack on, much more than personalised coasters or candles.
10. If your guests are likely to bring a gift, consider setting up a registry or wishing well. That way you're only getting something you truly will use, rather than gifts that'll just sit unused (or regifted!). Better yet, consider asking them to make a donation on your behalf to a foundation or cause that you truly care about, for an inspiring gift that'll make an impact long after the party has ended.