Photo: Chad Hansen for First Mate Photography Co.
Months of intensive wedding planning to arrange every last detail of your ceremony and reception will leave you with an affair to remember, but what happens to the décor you painstakingly picked after the champagne toast and rice toss? In the flurry of action between proposal and "I dos," it can be simple to forget that some of your wedding décor may have far greater potential than functioning as part of your centerpiece or buffet table. Danielle Bobish of Curtain Up Events and Maya Katz of Alimay Events offer their expertise on how to repurpose wedding décor after your nuptials.
1. Reuse Floral Arrangements for Favors
If you hate the notion of seeing your beautiful blooms go to waste, send them home with your guests instead. "Create individually wrapped bouquets to be handed out as departure gifts for guests using flowers from the ceremony or cocktail hour arrangements," Katz suggests. "This way they are not leaving with large cumbersome arrangements, but a nicely arranged bouquet for the next few days."
2. Donate Your Wedding Arrangements
"Have the flowers from the wedding donated to various charitable organizations," Katz advises. "Blooms from the Heart is one company that takes floral and container donations from events. Another company, The Special E is a unique 'green' service that rescues leftovers from meetings, parties and special events throughout the country and recycles them in ways that help our planet and people in need."
3. Repurpose Your Runners as Home Décor
"We have a lot of clients do custom runners for weddings," Bobish reveals. "When the wedding is over there are several ways to recycle it. You can have the monogram, design or quote on the runner framed at a local framer or craft store, you can have it made into a pillow, and you can even have guests sign it at the wedding and frame the signed portion as a 'guest book'," she suggests.
5. Substitute Nuptial Mason Jars for Stemware in Your Home
Whether utilized as cups or stands for your floral arrangements, mason jars can and should be recycled as stemware in your home after the wedding. "Turn your mason jars into classic water or wine glasses in your home," Katz recommends.
5. Gift Excess Linens to Friends and Family
Between registry gifts and leftover linens from the reception, many brides are overwhelmed by the sheer volume of napkins and tablecloths they are left with post-nuptials. Katz encourages brides to share the bounty with friends and family. "If you have purchased linen or cloth napkins for your wedding, have them cleaned and pressed," Katz explains. "You can split the quantity amongst family and friends and bring as hostess gifts when invited over for dinner at your friends or family's homes. Then everyone can benefits when they entertain! A nice touch would be to take some napkins to be monogrammed with your new initials or family crest."