By Heather Brooks

 

 

Nearly a year into the pandemic and we’re still sorting out ways to socialize and celebrate safely, and one way that may not come to mind right away for the eco-conscious bride is disposable dinnerware. 

When I started planning my wedding I knew that disposable was the way to go for my purposes. The savings and the simplicity meant I could spend more on other things I felt were essential or special. However, I felt a lot of guilt associated with that idea. How can I care about the environment if I am using disposables? But remember, just by having a vegan wedding you’re already making a huge positive environmental choice. With a few strategic choices you can feel good about moving forward with some single-use items for your wedding reception without sacrificing ethics or style.

While there is no perfectly safe way to gather with others outside of our households right now, there are ways that can help reduce risks, and we all know those: wearing masks, washing hands, not touching our faces. It’s also safer to use single-use and individually packaged items during Covid. Even the queen of hostesses, Martha Stewart, has published articles on her website about safer contactless meals combining the use of individually wrapped items in reusable and disposable options. 

So how do we marry elegance, environmentalism, safety, and veganism? Thank goodness for the internet! A simple search of eco-friendly options for disposables returns a wide range of options. Some options may be more vegan and cruelty-free than others, so just research each company and item you choose. This is also a task your caterer can take on if they are full-service and are willing to work with outside sources if they don’t have eco-friendly options that they offer. Additionally, there are many ways to serve food that makes it possible to have less contact, such as skewers, boxes, mini-cups and scoops. Creative caterers will have plenty of ideas on how to make your appetizers and meal service safer and still delicious and beautiful.

Companies like Sea To Sierra are a sustainable alternative to paper and plastic. Their stylish plates are made of palm leaves and are 100% natural, biodegradable, compostable, cut proof, microwave safe, liquid resistant, bleach and chemical free.

On the Bio & Chic website you can find a range of stylish eco-friendly dishes from small plates to dinnerware. You won’t feel like you’re giving in and using paper plates when you see all of the types of products they have to offer. Right now there are some limitations to eco-friendly single-use items. While most of them have a simple elegance and clean lines, you won’t find a lot of embellishments or colors to choose from. Just be sure to work on your tablescapes by adding color with napkins, centerpieces, and favors. The simplicity of these products means they are a blank canvas to build on.

With a vaccine program already beginning and better treatments becoming available, booking your 2021 event is less and less scary. Now you know that if you need to simplify, one place to do that without guilt is with disposable dinnerware.

Happy planning!

All photos Courtesy of Sea To Sierra Living

 

 

 

 

 

 

Heather Brooks lives near Washington, D.C.. She is the Wedding Specialist at D.C. Vegan Catering, a full-service catering company serving the DMV area, and is part of the management team. Heather is also an author of fiction, founder of the Women Authors of Maryland writers’ group and salons, and founder of The Write Women Book Fest.

Her journey towards veganism began with her daughter Amber, who decided she wanted to be a vegetarian at a young age. Heather is a big believer in empowering her daughters, so she worked at figuring out how to incorporate this new diet into their average American lifestyle. Read Heather’s articles

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