Erin Whittle and Greg Vilines’ countryside harvest wedding was a bonanza of defining details that made their October 18 wedding earth friendly. Erin’s career with The Nature Conservancy focuses on protecting natural habitats and provided inspiration for choosing her outdoor wedding venue: Historic Cedarwood, a Tennessee farm estate that has remained largely unchanged for 175 years.
Erin wore a ‘recycled’ vintage family wedding gown that was worn by her grandmother and aunt, altered slightly for a more modern fashion sensibility. A photo tribute of brides in the heirloom dress let guests appreciate its family significance. A welcome table on the front lawn greeted guests with hot spiced cider and tea cookies. Handcrafted escort cards hung by clothes pins on a twine line between massive front lawn trees. Tables dressed with linen and burlap overlays, fall flowers, twigs, berries, pumpkin and gourds were named for Nashville landmarks and identified with art collage table numbers. A harvest-inspired home style dinner with locally sourced southern cuisine began with biscuits, butter and jam pre-set on the tables and ended with wedding cake and home made pie.
Using the Nature Conservancy’s carbon footprint calculator, Erin and Greg were able to reduce their wedding imprint on the environment. Here are a few ways this eco-conscious couple worked with Cedarwood to ‘green’ their wedding:
- Having the ceremony and reception at the same venue eliminated travel emissions and the couple provided shuttles for out of town guests to reduce traffic.
- Instead of traditional favors, Erin and Greg purchased carbon offset contributions through the Nature Conservancy.
- Outdoor settings for the ceremony and celebration saved energy.
- No plastic! All food service and bar ware were re-usable china and glassware. The venue also recycles and composts organic materials from their flower design studio and catering kitchen.
- Served beer by the barrel (kegs) purchased product from a local brewery instead of bottles to reduced landfill waste. No bottled water – the venue provided chilled filtered water instead.
- Cedarwood designers included seasonal produce and flowers from the farmer’s market as part of their ‘farm fresh’ arrangements of natural, renewable flowers and greenery for wedding décor.
Linda & the Cedarwood Event Team
Wedding venue: Cedarwood
Floral and design: Cedarwood
Photos: Jim Veezy Photography, Krista Lee Photography and Cedarwood
Favors: The Nature Conservancy
Cake: Patty Cakes