Monday, January 23, 2006

The Responsible Registry

Show your sustainable style by registering for eco-friendly stuff you'll really love. From bed to bath to table, retailers are responding to the growing consumer demand for recycled, earth-friendly goods. Crate and Barrel has bamboo furniture, trays, cutting boards and more, and specialty online retailers such as Green Sage sell everything from organic sheets, to really cool vases made from recycled wine bottles.

Check it out:

Green Sage
Crate and Barrel

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Just A Quick Note

As you enter the wonderful world of being a bride, you should know that writing thank you notes is about to become your second job. At first, you will write long heartfelt words of gratitude to each person kind enough to send you an engagement gift. But, by the time you get to thank you note number 190, believe me, you will be more concerned with keeping track of who sent what, their correct address is, and if you've already sent a note to them. Avoid this stress and create an Excel spreadsheet. List your gift-givers alphabetically in one column, then their gift (one for engagement, one for the wedding), and the last column is so you can keep a record of when a note has been sent. And, this list will double as your wedding invitation list.
For some really cute eco-friendly notecards, check out:

Friday, January 06, 2006

Do Your Own Thing

Even though I was an expert in the wedding business, when I got engaged, I felt drunk with the many options I had before me to spend money, buy beautiful things, to indulge myself in the narcissicism of being a bride. Luckily, I managed to get a hold of myself, and didn't let myself get distracted by the intense level of marketing messages coming my way. I made a decision that I wasn't going to let others dictate what my wedding should or shouldn't be. And there isn't a single thing that I would change about my wedding day. I urge you to find the same resolve, and don't fall victim to the pressure to "fit in." It helped me to think about my great-grandmother's wedding. Obviously I wasn't at her wedding, but I do have a copy of her wedding announcement. She was married in her parent's home, with the bannister decorated by a garland of paper flowers, punch was served in the parlor, and she wore a dress made by her mother. She and her husband were married for fifty years. And let's face it - that is what matters most.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

The Truth About Diamonds

When she chose the title for her new book, Nicole Richie probably didn't know that there are some not so pretty truths about diamonds. Unfortunately, the diamond industry has some issues to resolve when it comes to the mining of these sparkling gems. When you and your fiance choose your engagement ring, you might want to consider an alternative to a diamond, such as a ruby, emerald, or even an aquamarine. But, if you are like 78% of brides-to-be, you probably really, really want a diamond ring. If this is true, you can still be eco-chic. Ask your jeweler to provide a certificate of origin for your diamond. Diamonds from Canada are most likely not conflict diamonds, but South African diamonds probably are. You might even consider a beautiful antique diamond ring and follow the reduce, recycle, reuse adage. Whatever you choose, just remember that change can begin with you. Leading the way, Tiffany & Co. has a commitment to sell only conflict-free diamonds. As consumer demand for these diamonds increases , other jewelers may be more inclined to do the same.

Eco-Chic Resources:

More Information About Conflict Diamonds:

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Budget Basics

Creating a budget for your wedding should be the first thing you do. Do not go into debt for your wedding. It simply isn't worth it. Although most bridal magazines have more advertising than content, their websites often have some helpful information. Case in point, the Bride's Magazine site has a budget planning tool, and it's free. It allows you to prioritize all of the elements, like the dress, flowers, venue, menu. It then gives you a breakdown exactly how much of your total budget should be spent on each item. It's a simple way to get a handle on your budget. And please don't go into debt.

Monday, January 02, 2006

Eco-Chic Bride

Your ring, your dress, your shoes, your hair, your environment? Being green may not be top of mind right now, but it should be. Let's face it, you are about to spend more money in the next six to twelve months than ever before in your life. And retailers know this. Each year, more and more companies are spending millions of dollars marketing directly to the bride and groom. Why? Because the bridal market is an almost 200 billion dollar industry. So although you may not be interested in hearing about the bigger picture given the enormous task you have before you, take a brief moment now to ponder this reality: Your purchasing decisions will have an impact on the earth, and on the global economy. And Eco-Chic Bride is here to give you stylish, simple, tasteful ideas to make it easy for you to be a conscious consumer, keeping an eye focussed on sustainability.