Vegan weddings are on the rise! With this lifestyle becoming more and more popular, many couples are choosing to incorporate their values into their big day. So, what exactly is a vegan wedding? We asked our Unconventional, Willow & Rust, to shed some light on this topic. We’ll be debunking misconceptions, sharing some advice, and recommending some awesome ethical wedding suppliers. Spoiler – it’s about more than just the food!
Words by Willow & Rust | Feature photo by EKR Pictures
Breaking It Down...
What Is A Vegan Wedding?
A vegan wedding is about more than just the food, although this is a large part of it. Couples who choose a vegan lifestyle apply these values to all aspects of their lives, not eating, using, or wearing anything that is derived from a living creature or exploits an animal in any way. Veganism is about different things to different people, but a consideration for the environment is usually also a core value, due to the positive environmental impact this lifestyle has.
Naturally, this translates into wedding plans. In order for a wedding to be authentically vegan, everything must be cruelty-free and not contain any animal products.
Veganism will touch every part of your wedding day. A silk wedding gown, for example, would be a no-no as silk comes from silkworms. All items must be considered carefully, from shoes and belts to makeup and hair products.
With the number of people going vegan constantly growing, your wedding is a great opportunity to support small, local, vegan businesses that value eco-conscious business practices.
Deciding to have a vegan wedding is a big commitment but, done well, can be just as amazing as any other wedding day.
How To Plan A Vegan Wedding
For me, the most important aspect of a vegan wedding is the food and décor. If you can nail the food on any wedding day, then you’re well on the way to a great event that both you and your guests will really enjoy. For a vegan wedding, a lot of your non-vegan guests will be sceptical about what they will be eating. So if you can show them that vegan food can be just as tasty, enjoyable and photo-worthy as a non-vegan menu then that’s a big win.
One thing I would definitely advise is to look for a caterer who specialises in vegan cuisine rather than someone who simply does vegan options or variations of their normal menu. Whether it’s for a sit-down meal, buffet, or food trucks, they are the specialists and will create something amazing for your day.
Being a planner and stylist at Willow & Rust, decor is a big part of what I do. Being a sustainable business, I always try to look for more eco-friendly options and ideas. A lot of planet-friendly choices can also be vegan friendly too.
For example, choose natural fabrics like cotton or linen for your table linens and make sure that these are dyed with plant-based dyes.
Sustainable Wedding Flowers
You may think that faux flowers and foliage are a good sustainable option, as they can be saved and reused, but there are arguments both ways. These are not always vegan friendly as they can be made from silk and usually have plastic parts to them. Plastic can use animal derivatives in its processing and of course, plastic is not eco-friendly.
Real flowers and foliage are a great option from both a vegan and a sustainable point of view, as long as they are locally sourced, in season and not arranged using foams or plastics. Real flowers and foliage can also be foraged from the local area to be even more sustainable. For a slightly different twist, you can also think about using fruits and vegetables in your décor – these are colourful, interesting, and definitely vegan!
You might also love: How To Rock A Sustainable Wedding
How To Find The Right Vegan Wedding Suppliers
There are so many brilliant vegan wedding suppliers out there. Choosing suppliers that are already vegan or eco-friendly will mean you have to do a lot less legwork in ensuring everything is vegan, as a specialist supplier will just ‘get it’.
A vegan MUA, for example, will know what products are vegan friendly and already have vegan brushes and applicators so you don’t have to worry about all of these details.
As with finding the right suppliers for any wedding, make sure you ask lots of questions and get to know them. If they are a food or drink-related supplier, go to tastings to ensure they are providing exactly what you want, and don’t be afraid to check out their credentials. Make sure that your suppliers have the same ethos as you and you won’t go far wrong.
Check out the vegan & eco-friendly supplier recommendations at the end of this blog!
Keeping non-Vegan Guests Happy
Many guests will be a little skeptical about a vegan wedding if they are not themselves vegan. I would say always let your guests know that your wedding is vegan on the invite and maybe include a little about why, what this means to you, and what exactly this involves. This will likely reassure them about the food and drink!
Another tip I have is to always take a non-vegan friend or family member with you to tastings for the food, cake, wine, etc. Then you will get a non-vegan, outsider’s opinion before you make your choices.
There is no reason why a vegan wedding should be any different on the surface from a non-vegan wedding. You can still have great food, cracking entertainment, an Insta worthy backdrop, and beautiful wedding wear. It’s more about the work that you as a couple put in and you can always choose to seek help from a specialist wedding planner or stylist. At the end of the day, it’s about you as a couple and making sure that your wedding reflects your beliefs and lifestyle and that you have the best day ever!
Easy Vegan Wedding Ideas
Website & online wedding invitations
This not only saves you money but is kinder on the environment as you’re not using any physical materials and you’re not posting them out to guests. It also means you don’t have to worry about finding a stationer that can provide a completely vegan product, it’s just one thing you can tick off your to-do list.
Why not make donation on behalf of your guests to your local animal shelter? Or, if you would like to actually gift your guests something, you could source some beautiful vegan truffles or a tiny plant in a ceramic pot.
A Sustainable Wedding Dress
If you’re having a wedding dress, why not look for a preloved dress made from vintage lace or satin? As long as you can verify what fabrics it is made from, a preloved dress is a great way to stay true to your vegan ethos and be more eco-conscious. Shopping vintage, second-hand, or with an environmentally conscious dressmaker is a great way to look show-stopping whilst keeping sustainability at the core.
Here's some Ethical & vegan wedding ideas from our Awesome Unconventionals:
Willow & Rust - Sustainable Wedding Planning & Styling
CrzyBest - Eco-Friendly Silversmith
Jessica Diamond - Vegan Wedding Violinist
Jessica Diamond provides beautiful wedding entertainment, from simple solo violin to ‘modern fusion’ showcases with bespoke backing tracks and light shows! From western classical music to Bollywood, your guests are bound to be amazed.
‘What does violin have to do with veganism?’, you may ask. Jessica is deeply passionate about veganism and is full of ideas for making your day as cruelty-free as possible!
View Jessica’s listing here.
Limewood Flowers - Eco Florist
Ms Moo Make Up - Vegan MUA
Ms Moo is an award winning cruelty-free make up artist based in Nottingham. Sali doesn’t use products tested on animals, or containing anything that comes from an animal (such as beeswax in mascara or animal hairs in brushes). Look like your best self on your wedding day without compromising on ethics!
Check out their listing here.