Eco-Friendly Bridal Style Elements

Wedding style was one of my favorite areas in which to go green. There are so many fun things to research and shop around for, although at times, the decisions can be tough.

Committing to finding an alternative can prove to be difficult, when sometimes there don't seem to be many choices. But it was important for me to stick to my guns, support local businesses, and choose more eco-friendly alternatives.

Overall, I'm very happy with how well I did! And today, I'm breaking down each element for you.

I had three dresses for pre-wedding events, and all of them (plus a pair of shoes) were secondhand, without looking like it! Two dresses came from Thred Up, and one was from local consignment shop Clothing Loft. The dresses themselves were amazing, but needed a few alterations to truly fit well. It was an easy fix and still less expensive than buying three new dresses. I either wore jewelry I already had, or wore a few "new" vintage finds.

The morning of the wedding, I knew I wanted to wear my favorite Niyama Sol turquoise yoga pants. Not only are they extremely comfortable and my favorite color, they are made of recycled plastic bottles. (And I got them locally at Yoga Garden.) My button-up shirt was monogrammed by Simply Unique Too, a local husband and wife venture.

So, the dress. When we first got engaged, I started by researching organic and sustainable wedding dresses. It was a fail. There are dresses available online, but none that came close to fitting the vision I saw for myself. One of the things I find about eco-fashion is that it focuses more on being sustainable than being cute (for lack of a better word). I'm no fashion designer, and maybe my girl Natalie from Sustainably Chic can shed more light on it, but I don't see why eco clothes don't fit/aren't designed more like conventional clothes.

I also perused a few secondhand bridal websites, like OnceWed, but I really wanted to experience trying on a lot of dresses. It was a stressful process, but it was a fun tough decision to make! With my mom by my side, I had a lot of fun trying on so many different styles, and I ultimately chose my dress from a popular local shop, A Net's Bridal Boutique.

With all of the follow-up visits I made to the store for fittings and accessories, I was extra happy to be so close by, instead of having to make multiple trips out of town. (In fact, I only visited two other boutiques during my hunt, one in Lafayette and one in Baton Rouge.)

I wanted to keep my jewelry simple, since the dress was covered in sequined lace and the belt was very beaded. My pearl bracelet was made for A Net's, I believe. My earrings are a vintage pair courtesy of my grandmother, and I was so happy to be able to have something of hers in my outfit. My small cross necklace is actually from when I was a child. It was simple and subtle, and didn't compete with the illusion lace neckline.

I mentioned it a couple weeks ago in a Photo Friday blog post, but my shoe journey was quite adventurous. I was determined to have sustainable shoes, which is not as easy as it seems to accomplish. I really wanted an amazing pair of vintage bridal shoes, but it was a very fruitless search. I tried two other pairs, one conventional and one secondhand, before finding this vegan leather pair from Beyond Skin.

With the company based in the United Kingdom, I quickly learned a lot about European shoe sizing and how it translates to my traditional shoe size. Their customer service rep, Coral, very sweetly handled all of my email questions about shoe sizing, styles, returns and customs. I definitely guessed wrong on my shoe size on my first pair, and ended up with a different style shoe, but they were my favorites out of every pair I tried. (If you're curious, I wear a 7.5 in American sizing, and went with a 38 in European sizing. They were a pretty solid fit.)

So, these shoes are made of vegan leather, and the lining is 100% recycled with a vegetable polymer coating. With the lower heel and ankle strap, they were perfect for dancing all night while staying comfortable. And I definitely plan to wear them for special occasions post-wedding.

I ended up wearing the secondhand shoes that didn't work out with my wedding dress with my secondhand rehearsal dinner dress, and they'll also get a lot of use in future holiday parties and cocktail dinners (like I go to so many of them. Ha!)

We got our rings from a local Abbeville jeweler, Melancon Jewelers. The staff was so incredibly helpful during all of our visits, and I'm so happy that we got to support a small business.

Check out my previous post on Eco Flower here.

I used my eco-friendly makeup and perfume on my big day, and I'm still amazed I didn't screw it all up. Most of the makeup was Tarte, with Ecco Bella powder and Physician's Formula eye shadow. My perfume was La Vanila (my absolute favorite brand).

With all of the eco-friendly elements to my bridal style, I felt even more like a million bucks for our big day!

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