A green napkin

We want to be as green as possible at our wedding but also create something beautiful and unique for our guests.

all the colours

As a self confessed fabric addict I wanted to make individualised napkins as an alternative to using paper napkins at the wedding.

I sorted through my fabric stash to find as many fat quarter sized pieces as possible then started matching them up in a crazy, colourful and personalised way!

ironed at least 20 times!!

They are all different in colours as well as sizes (whoops) I did a double top stitch and nearly tore all my hair out the amount I had to change the top thread and bobbin. Multiple colours seemed like a great idea before sewing!!

Folded perfection

I then trawled through the internet looking for the best way to fold them so that we could insert our wedding favours into the napkin making it a full favour gift if guests would like to take the napkins with them. If they do not I am going to make a huge quilt with them as a wedding memory.

I found this envelope fold and it works perfectly with the favours.

Completely green

We are really pleased with the finished result and it will add so much colour to our wedding table making this truly a hodgepodge wedding.

Recycled book pages and bird seed
Recycled book pages and wild flower seeds plus some cornflower seeds from the garden
Picnic basket full of colour! And the page boys napkin matches his shirt.

Wild thing

Having completed a floristry course earlier this year for pleasure not for business or weddings it made me look at what I grow in my garden. Flowers cost a fortune rightfully so they are a luxury and take a lot of effort to grow.

After many discussions with my friend who has an allotment and likes to experiment we decided to give cut flower growing a go.

Strong little shoots

I invested in some seeds and plug plants from Sarah Raven amongst others and started sowing in February our spare room was full of little seeds in many pots. I also invested in some eucalyptus plants which arrived looking very sorry for themselves but have since recovered

Lots of lovely smelling eucalyptus

Although I would love to use cut flowers to recreate hand tied bouquets at a fraction of the cost, we also want to have wild flowers in jars at the wedding. So I decided to experiment today.

Full of wild flowers

I am really pleased with how it looks but worried that we are not going to have enough flowers for the wedding. I really wanted to be sustainable with the flowers as it is so easy to spend lots of money on something that is only for a day. By growing our own flowers we get to enjoy them in our garden as well as at our wedding!

Our wild wind beaten garden

However since doing my experiment I am now panicking that there is no way we will ever grow enough flowers (and keep them alive) for the wedding in August to fill one jar let alone 40! Plus I think they have to be filled well to create the most beautiful effect and the jar above has several flowers in there.

Gypsophila

We do have what feels like 50 pots as well the ground so hopefully there will be some staggered growth from now until August. We have decorated over 100 jars for candles and flowers so may have to buy some flowers or hopefully find a good wild patch somewhere!

Billy buttons

This is my pride and joy in cut flower growing. Steph brought some Billy buttons for my mum and dad for when they moved house and they were super expensive partly because of where we live and the mark up! However I looked online and found these plants I had 10 to start with and although they seem to be a favourite of aphids I have 9 plants with lots of buttons growing and these dry well so can be cut and kept yipppppeeee!

Jar of delights

Bauholz!

We are going common with our wedding entertainment and have been searching for ideas for unusual garden games as it would be rude not to use this beautiful house and grounds for the weekend (fingers crossed for sunshine!)

The beautiful Northfields house

In Germany it is traditional to play games at the wedding, ones which test your future of working together this could be sawing a log, hanging out children’s clothes or kidnapping the bride! As the last one would involve us both going missing for the evening and the other two are not easy to complete we have gone for common garden jenga. Although I think the German contingency have some secrets up their sleeve for the day!

Giant jenga!

Although we have chosen the wedding game that everyone has we have put the hodgepodge twist on it! Then it becomes a game we love to play and share with friends and possibly even little people for the rest of lives.

Introducing quotation jenga!

Our homemade sign

We think this is a great way to personalise the game and makes it more fun to play! We made the sign from a second hand 25p board we found, painted it with chalkboard paint and wrote with pens our made up rules.

Pull a brick and write a quote!

I brought the Oxford book of quotations secondhand also for about £1.99 it’s a little out of date but has all of the famous quotes in it and there is always Google for the kids!

“The truth is rarely pure, and never simple” Oscar Wilde

I look forward to playing this with Steph when we are old and grey in our joint nursing home and leaving it to our kids in the will making it sustainable!

A shower of petals

Going green and sustainable at a wedding we are discovering is an immense and thoughtful process. Everyday Steph and I discuss the problems with the climate and how our little footprint affects the world and this has made us rethink what we do and how we live.

We do try to live our best and cleanest life, we beach clean as we live by the seaside we try to avoid buying unsustainable foods and items packaged in plastic we pay for recycling (and we have a green council go figure!)

Reduced roses are always pleasing!

So today I popped to my local shop to pick up some items and saw these beautiful roses that were past their most beautiful stage. I chatted to the lady in the shop about flowers and she showed me some fresh ones (which were not as nice!) I explained I wanted them to dry the petals to make confetti for my wedding day and she was so sweet and found all the half decent ones and reduced them to 25p! Now sadly shop brought flowers always come in plastic but fear not this will be reused somehow.

Dynamic dehydration

Confetti originally was sweets that were thrown such as sugar plums, I don’t know how you would feel but mini missiles springs to mind! This comes from the Italian confetto meaning small sweet. Tradition in England and Germany is or was rice but we all now know this is not good for birds. Over the years things have changed and plastic or ribbon and paper have been introduced a big no no for our green wedding!

The beauty of dried petals

We decided we would dry out own petals for the wedding and I went old school with heavy books filled with petals weighed down all over the house eeeekkkk! This is really not feasible to create in large quantities so we investigated buying a dehydrator and what a revelation this has been! Not only can we make our own confetti but we are wasting less overrule fruit by sticking it in the dehydrator and creating super yummy snacks!

Hand tied bouquet

I recently completed a floristry course creating items like the above and through this had beautiful flowers in the house every week and decided that once they started to droop instead of throwing them in the garden waste they get a second chance to be beautiful and appreciated so all the petals are from flowers I have had at home or ones that are reduced and will just end up in landfill.

Paper cones of magic

We are making paper cones from old books on flowers and they will be filled with our beautiful homemade confetti! These will go in a basket for my beautiful niece to hand out for our guests for a tradition in our in many ways untraditional wedding!

Dried flowers book paper

With our home grown flowers for the wedding decorations I feel so proud of creating something beautiful for our special day that is recycled and being resourceful. We are saving money as a friend was quoted £400 for dried petal confetti and we are being kinder to the planet by not throwing paper or plastic but returning nature to its rightful place.

Softer than sugar plums!

A bunting mission

Being an avid crafter with my roots firmly planted in sewing soil I have to add my craft to our wedding and this is where I have the potential to increase my already horder worthy fabric collection!

Fabric madness!

However that does not fit into our sustainable wedding plans so no buying brand new fabric!

Bunting has been around since the 1600’s and was predominantly used to decorate ships with the sailor whose job it was to raise the flag being called the bunt hence bunting!

In England we traditionally have bunting at any celebration we possibly can, village fetes to royal weddings we love any opportunity to get our bunting out!

Lots of triangles

So how can I make this beautiful and traditional decoration green?

By using second hand fabric and scraps only. So far I have cut up a dress I got for £1 A pair of pyjama bottoms and some old curtains alongside all those little pieces that are not quite big enough for anything else.

Sewing marathon

This set of curtains so far has produced 20 triangles and as this our outdoor decorations we need metres and metres! So having set myself this mammoth task alongside making individual napkins I have to get going as only 4 months to go.

So many triangles…..

With that in mind I have run off a heap of triangles tonight after work they are all sewn and turned through so now to iron them all.

Phew!

Do me a favour……….

The question of wedding favours! It’s a tricky one as you don’t want people to think they have to take some tat home and then throw it in the bin. That is not sustainable! Also wedding favours can cost a fortune, we wanted to make a favour that meant something to us and represented our day.

For the bees

So here are our handmade wedding favours. We used paper from a beautiful book about butterflies that I found in a second hand shop costing £1!

Very old copy of the complete book of butterflies

I made a template to create the envelopes and Steph created hand stamped labels thank goodness we only have 31 guests!

A basket of bees

We are filling our bee envelopes with wild flower seeds so our guests can plant some seeds for the bees whether they choose to do this in their gardens or seed bomb somewhere urban that needs some colour and more importantly some bees!

And because we can never stop!

We had to include the birds! Another important part of our wildlife are birds. Using the same template we used a very ancient readers digest gardening book again for £1!

The very ancient and well loved readers digest illustrated gardeners guide

I really love this book and we are using it for lots of different parts of the wedding and I must find a use for the cover
Beautiful old book pages finding a new lease of life

We will be filling the bird envelopes with a mixture of bird seed to encourage all different garden birds into our guests lives.

The wild flowers will be exactly what we hope to have on the table outside and we really hope our guests love our wedding favours as much as we have loved making them. The bonus is they can be reused as an envelope for gift cards at Christmas double upcycling=happy Sophie and Steph!

Wild garlic pesto

Wild garlic pesto

Firstly I wish these were our wedding favours! But too early in the year, great fun foraging for wild garlic and making this pesto!


We managed to forage some Sussex wild garlic and had a day mass producing some wild garlic pesto and just an experiment making some wild garlic hummus (had a glut of it!) The recipe was so easy and quick which was brilliant and we have frozen some of the pesto, so hopefully can make some of the wild garlic hummus for the wedding day picnic. This we will be serving in our second hand picnic baskets which we managed to get super cheap from a brilliant second hand shop locally called emmaus (do check it out if you are in the Brighton area. We will be putting the hummus in jars to avoid plastic! Picture to follow nearer the date!
 




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Quick wild garlic pesto 
125g wild garlic
100g cashew nuts
100g parmesan
Approx 5tsp Olive oil
Whizz it all up in a food processor and put into steralised jars
Try not to eat it all with a spoon and some cheesy oat cakes!
 




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A little bit hodgepodge goes green
a sustainable green wedding



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Can you do a sustainable wedding?

Hi All,
 First and foremost I am a nurse, I would like to say firstly I am a crafter and wedding planner but at the moment just a dream! I am planning our wedding in 6 months and trying to be green and sustainable along the way. Only 4 months to the big day and I thought (sadly too late) that this would be a good way to share our greeness!




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Sweet williams for the wild wedding jars! Madly we are trying to grow all our real flowers in our tiny garden currently overrun with pots all over the place! These tiny plugs of sweet williams came from Van Meuwen arrived yesterday and I potted them into these tiny pots last night. Also have been scavenging jars from everywhere for the vases these will be outside, everything upcycled!

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Firstly I wish these were our wedding favours! But too early in the year, great fun foraging for wild garlic and making this pesto!

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Wild garlic pesto and more
We managed to forage some Sussex wild garlic and had a day mass producing some wild garlic pesto and just an experiment making some wild garlic hummus (had a glut of it!) The recipe was so easy and quick which was brilliant and we have frozen some of the pesto, so hopefully can make some of the wild garlic hummus for the wedding day picnic. This we will be serving in our second hand picnic baskets which we managed to get super cheap from a brilliant second hand shop locally called emmaus (do check it out if you are in the Brighton area. We will be putting the hummus in jars to avoid plastic! Picture to follow nearer the date!