After a complete cut-off for large gatherings and events in 2020, weddings started to trickle back into action last year, with a complete wedding revival in full force expected for 2022! Spring is already peeping around the corner, which means wedding season 2022 is about to burst into life. And the word on everyone’s lips? Sustainability.
Weddings have long been highlighted events to talk about. Whether it’s a high-profile celebrity celebration or your cousin’s low-key ceremony, magazines, social feeds and blogs are filled with big day news and break down commentaries of the day, food and outfits. With such importance pinned on one day, it’s easy to get swept up in the trendy wedding fashion styles that we see across the media, and often with it, the expensive price tag.
But as 2022 comes into fruition, sustainable weddings of all sizes have started to come into their own, adding to the ever-growing demand for sustainable and eco-conscious living. As well as being kind to the planet, sustainable weddings are also kind on budgets. Just because the cost of living is rising, doesn’t mean you have to forfeit the wedding of your dreams, as you’ll read below, it’s all about compromise.
As with all fashion trends, our big days have their own seasonal and yearly must-have wedding fashion items that come into style as quickly as they fall out of it. However, with the rise of sustainability and eco-conscious fashion, maybe the huge rollout and appetite for fast-fashion wedding trends are on the decline?
A great question. Wedding fashion from the bridal gown to guests are notoriously known as one-time-wears and with thousands of weddings taking place each year, that’s a lot of hardly worn outfits clogging up wardrobe space, or worse, landfill.
The one argument against sustainable fashion is the affordability of these pieces, and yes, sustainability and eco-conscious fashion can typically come at a higher financial cost than fast fashion. However, with re-styling, re-wearing and vintage fashion also making a striking comeback, sustainability doesn’t always have to mean splashing the cash, even when it comes to weddings!
Below are a few up-and-coming, sustainable wedding fashion trends hitting church aisles, civil ceremonies, and intimate after-parties in 2022.
Did you know most clothes are given a short lifespan of only two years, with many items only being worn on average five times before they’re thrown out! Obviously, for big occasions such as weddings, it’s unlikely you’ll wear your wedding outfit (bride, groom or guest) the recommended 30+ times before throwing it away, replacing or donating it. However, there are ways to re-imagine, re-style and re-wear your wedding fashion pieces that prolongs their life and allows you to enjoy them beyond the big day.
The long-standing tradition for brides to wear their mother’s wedding dress is a great way to prolong the life of a wedding dress. Whether you wear it in its original form, re-style it to suit your personal style, or use its statement features to create your own unique gown, it’s a great way to add a flare of sustainability and family history into your day (as well as contributing to your ‘something old/borrowed’).
Of course, re-wearing a relative’s dress isn’t an option for everyone, however there are plenty of ways you can use your own dress to keep it wearable long past your wedding day.
- If you want to keep your dress intact, keep it for future generations to wear and enjoy
- Send your dress to a local tailor to shorten and re-work it into a more wearable fashion piece
- There are lots of small seamstresses on Esty that will transform your wedding dress into a bear for a newborn, jewellery, ornaments and even photo frames
- When buying your outfit, keep wearability in mind! Wedding jumpsuits and two-pieces have seen a huge rise in popularity which are classically more wearable after the big day
Did you know there are enough clothes in the world to fully clothe the population three times over? That means we could stop clothes production completely and there wouldn’t be a shortage of clothes for anyone, in an ideal world. This also means that whatever your personal style, there’s likely already an outfit out there for you, which is what makes shopping pre-loved and vintage so good!
Thanks to much loved period shows such as Bridgerton and The Crown, vintage style gowns have taken wedding fashion by storm. Think puffy sleeves, high necklines and soft fabrics. Although plenty of vintage style dresses are popping up in bridal shops, you can’t get any closer to the authentic, elegant vintage look than the actual thing.
Vintage styles have remained a consistent classic throughout the years of changing wedding fashions. Even though there are numerous wedding venues available for couples (enough to suit pretty much any preference), traditional, rural houses and stately homes continue in popularity, making vintage style wedding dresses the perfect style to fit these venues’ traditionally elegant fashion aesthetic.
Vintage dress and accessory shopping can vary from visiting high-end (but often high budget) vintage shops to scrolling through pre-loved online fashion platforms such as eBay, Depop and Vinted. You never know where you’ll find that hidden gem, so don’t rule out charity shops either. Whether it’s a dress, veil, gloves, necklace or shoes, charity shops and pre-loved stores not only give a second lease of life to often hardly worn items, they can also add a flare of personality and uniqueness to your big day!
For grooms and groomsmen, renting suits has been a well-known option for years. Although renting wedding dresses has been around for as equally as long, it hasn’t been normalised in the same way renting suits has been. However, more dress rentals are now popping up in cities and online for brides, bridesmaids and wedding guests for sustainable wedding fashion.
Over the last year, promotion for outfit renting has significantly increased by sustainability influencers who are open about renting their extravagant outfits, shoes and fashion accessories for that one perfect photoshoot or event.
The growing popularity in renting outfits and buying clothes from charity shops is slowly breaking down negative stigmas around wearing second-hand clothes. If more and more people are choosing to wear second-hand and rented dresses on the arguably most important day of their lives, then that’s a real win for pre-loved and second-hand wedding fashion, budgets of all sizes, and the planet!
Sustainability doesn’t have to be at the forefront of your wedding. It doesn’t even have to be noticeable to your guests if you don’t want it to be. Much like marriage, sustainability is often about compromise. It’s not about struggling to do everything perfectly, but rather what you can do to your best ability.
Interchangeable wedding outfits are the perfect sustainable compromise for brides looking to wear two (or more) outfits on their wedding day. Outfit changes aren’t uncommon at modern weddings, with more brides now opting for a comfier outfit at the reception and evening party.
For brides who don’t want to buy two dresses, interchangeable accessories such as detachable sleeves and trains, hook-able skirts to create a shorter dress, and removable outer garments can all transform one extravagant ceremony dress into a simpler, lighter dress for dancing the night away.
These sustainable wedding fashion trends are just the start of an eco-friendly overhaul that we think will continue to grow over the next few years. Rather than just being a quick fashion trend, sustainability is undoubtedly here to stay, saving both the pennies and the planet!
Looking for a luxury venue for the bespoke wedding of your dreams? Visit The Great House, one of the most popular wedding venues in South Wales and the perfect intimate setting to showcase your sustainable wedding fashion.