Hooray for having the time to look back on our plans and eliminate the crazy! There have been quite a few adjustments to our shopping list, mostly to save time, but also to save some money. We want to be sure to have plenty of funds to allow us a comfortable honeymoon in the Maritime Provinces!
Here are just a couple of ways we’ve been able to cut time and budget (I’ll post more in the coming months):
Bio-plastic cups instead of Mason Jars
We’re trying as hard as we can to make this wedding with items that are either reusable, recyclable, or biodegradable, so we really loved the idea of using reusable mason jars for our drinking glasses. People could either take them home to reuse, or we’d take them home and use them ourselves for our canning projects. Because home-canning jars are not recyclable, it made ecological sense and they would be a cute addition to our aesthetic.
When it came down to pricing them out, however, they just don’t make sense. We’ll be serving beer, wine, soda, and one or two things in beverage decanters (water, lemonade), with both the beers and sodas in glass bottles. The only things we’d need glassware for is the wine (which might not be a good idea in pint jars!) and the water/lemonade. Matt tried to convince me that bottled water would be a good idea instead of the decanters, but I’m not sold yet. Plastic is supposedly recyclable, but it really doesn’t get recycled back into packaging. It can go into making other things like polarfleece, plastic building boards, and roadway material, but it’s better just to limit plastic use.
We’ve decided to go with bio-plastic cups for the wine (and water, if I get my way), made of corn or potato starch, due to the lower cost and convenience. This isn’t a perfect solution by any means, but at least they will break down and reduce the need for extra garbage cans. Washing the mason jars before and after use might be a bigger problem than the cups, since we’d be wasting water during a typically dry season in the Northwest. We’ll only buy one size, and encourage people to write their names on their cups to reuse them as much as possible. We’ll also be going with bio-plastic utensils and compostable hot cups (for dessert coffee/tea) for the same reasons.
Paper table runners instead of Fabric
While I really loved the perfection that is wedding-color-matching IKEA fabric for the runners on the tables, I really didn’t want to have to buy all the fabric, cut it to size, serge the edges, and just have food spilled all over them. Sure, we’d keep some to reuse, but having 50-75 striped table runners custom cut for banquet tables would be overkill. Also, I know I’ll be swamped with more important projects and would feel icky about foisting the task off to someone else.
Instead, we’ll be keeping things simple and use Kraft paper for the runners. Kraft paper is featuring heavily in the wedding – on the invitations and save-the-dates, some of the favors, etc – and it makes sense that it would be used again. I was at a local art-supply store for work earlier this week and noticed they had Kraft paper rolls, but not in a good table runner size. I asked them if their supplier had 18″ wide rolls, which I don’t think is a weird size but apparently is, and they said they’d have to special order them and we’d end up with 36 rolls for about $300. Totally not worth it. A quick google the next day came up with a 900′ roll for about $13. I’d only need one, plus maybe one of those butcher paper roll holder/cutter things, and a quick search for those gave me one for about $25. We’ll have a ton of paper left over and I can always sell the cutter thing on Etsy if we don’t end up using it again!