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Carbon footprint & wedding: a true match!

Today, we are going to talk about a subject that is on our minds on a daily basis at Maison Calypso: the carbon footprint!

What is it?
The carbon footprint is a unit of measurement that allows us to calculate and estimate the impact of human activities on climate change. It calculates the quantity of greenhouse gases emitted during an action, more commonly known as CO2.
All our activities have an impact on the climate, that are more or less important: turning on the light, eating, getting dressed, travelling….therefore, how can we combine our dream wedding with our environmentally friendly convictions? 

To begin with, you should know that the impact of a wedding is approximatly 10T (add 5T if you include the honeymoon)*.
As a reminder, the CO2 emission of an average European person is 7T per year and is already considered too high to allow a viable planet in a few decades.
In order to help you reduce this figure for your big day, we have put together a small series of tips, which will allow you to enjoy an environmetally friendly dream day!

The wedding venue:
We’d love to tell you to do things locally, but we understand that you may be looking for a specific setting or weather conditions for your big day!
In this case, try to choose a place close to a train station, to avoid driving long distances, to encourage carpooling and to inform the guests about the carbon footprint impact of different  modes of transportation (plane/train/car). Sometimes we have a better idea when we are shown concrete numbers!
Also, favor places that offer sleeping accommodations on site, this will allow the most festive guests to go to bed safely, in addition to reducing the carbon footprint!

The guests
One of the most drastic ways to reduce the carbon footprint is to simply…reduce the number of guests.
For example, we can maybe reduce the number of invited friends of the parents, for whom the wedding of a child is a social event.
Finally, COVID has also enabled the democratization of tools such as Zoom. This can be a solution for people who are fragile or too far away to participate!

The outfit and accessories:
Opt for second hand or family accessories!
The textile industry is one of the most polluting in the world. Many wonderful second hand dresses (that sometimes have never been worn) are patiently waiting for an opportunity to shine again!
We also have”end of the season” dresses which are available in showrooms specially designed for this purpose.
Finally, don’t underestimate family treasures! 
At Maison Calypso, a whole part of our DNA is based on the idea of transmitting a symbolic object, combining aesthetics and exceptional quality! So go and ask your friends and family to hunt down their little gems of the past! In addition to being eco-friendly, it’s symbolic and it makes everyone happy!
Finally, don’t hesitate to suggest to your guests to wear an item of clothing/accessories that is already present in their wardrobe! It will give a modern touch to your wedding!

Made in France
We’ve been talking about it a lot for a few years now: reducing the carbon impact also means consuming locally!
Think about all the artisans around you, especially those who have control over an important part of their production chain. 
At Maison Calypso for example, we work with companies that have a Living Heritage label and make everything from A to Z in France! This also allows us to value unique know-hows recognized all over the world!

Flowers & decoration
For the flowers, we would suggest to choose varieties produced locally and in season (peonies in winter that have traveled 6000km to be here is a major no no), and we don’t hesitate to use potted plants that can be replanted, it’s very symbolic, in addition to being eco friendly!
If you have flowers left on your hands, a solution can be to bring them to a local retirement home, it will put a nice smile on every face!
For the decoration, don’t hesitate to rent! Many caterers offer this option which is often more qualitative, ecological and economical!
For example, it is easy to find providers offering a mismatched atmosphere with pretty plates/cutlery/glass for a vintage ambiance (lanterns/vintage chairs…)
An idea for a vintage/low toned feeling can be to ask well in advance, all guests or a smaller group of them,  to hunt for candlesticks (flea markets, attics…) and to bring them for the dinner. It also allows the guests to participate in the wedding in a poetic and diverting way.

Digital invitations
This is one of the most obvious…and yet ambivalent! For those who want to, the most eco-friendly option would be to send only digital announcements!
For those who still want a paper announcement (it certainly has charm!) we prefer recycled paper!

A vegetarian and locally sourced menu
Meat has a significant carbon impact. In addition to animal welfare and health considerations, a vegetarian menu might be the right option for you!
Caterers are increasingly offering gourmet meatless options (risottos, vegetable tartars, nude cakes ….) with locally sourced ingredients. 
Don’t hesitate to challenge caterers and try several. It encourages a change in mentality!
If meat is a must-have, try to have meat produced in a respectful way in partnership with local farmers.
Avoid supermarket meats that come from all over the world, are of lower quality, and undergo unknown breeding conditions.
For drinks, we suggest choosing organic wines, and do away with sodas. We can offer watermelon or citrus flavored waters served in nice glass fountains with a tap!
Finally, don’t hesitate to ask your caterer for small (cardboard) takaway boxes to put leftovers in, we avoid food waste!

Local providers:
It’s obvious, but worth repeating, try to use a maximum of providers locally based.

A wedding gift in the form of a donation to an association involved in ecology
More and more wedding lists offer this, in the form of a tree planted for a few extra dollars,and it has a real impact!
In your description, you can for example commit to donate a percentage to an association involved in ecology. It can be to save the coral reefs or to fight against waste, there are many different options that will fit with your personality and your convictions. In addition, it has been shown that it is easier to increase the amount of your wedding gift if a portion is donated to a charity.

*Source: La Mariée aux Pieds Nus

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