As an eco-friendly wedding planner, sustainability was at the forefront while planning and designing this wedding, starting with the venue. The shoot was beautifully photographed by Linnea Marie Photography at Succop Nature Park, which is part of the Audubon Society of Western Pennsylvania, an organization that is focused on the education, conservation, and protection of birds.
The styled shoot was inspired by natural elements, particularly rocks and crystals and the trees and forestry found at the park. While most couples opt to say their vows at one of the other beautiful areas this venue has to offer, Succop Nature Park has a gorgeous pine tree that can hold a very small, intimate ceremony inside and around it, and I really wanted to feature it in this shoot. The trees and scenery made for stunning backdrops, which cut down on the need to bring in extra rentals and décor.
Amethyst, rose quartz, and moss were the inspiration behind the color scheme. Rocks and crystals, some of which were sourced from a yard sale, were placed in the hanging tree orbs and scattered throughout the shoot to provide a sense of earthiness.
Bramble & Blossom, who is perhaps the most sustainable florist around Pittsburgh, provided the florals. They use only seasonal and American grown flowers and forage many of their own florals and greenery locally. They found some very unique blooms from a few nearby farms to incorporate into the arrangements for the shoot.
The “moss bark” linen used for the cake table was another great inspirational piece and was meant to fit right in with its earthy surroundings. The cake was purchased from Butterwood Bake Consortium, a bakery that uses clean and organic ingredients, and was repurposed as a birthday cake afterward.
The furniture, dinnerware, and linens were rented from Event Source and Mosaic, two rental companies that utilize green cleaning practices, among other sustainable operations. Most of the remaining décor was borrowed or pre-used inventory. The pillar candles consisted of beeswax, a great sustainable wax alternative.
The invitation suite was made by Sal Studios and consisted of handmade wildflower seed paper. The menu was a reused sample from Minted Weddings, and the other stationery pieces were made from petals and bark. To keep paper usage to a minimum, I displayed one menu on the table, rather than at each place setting.
The dress and accessories were provided by Bridal Maven, a wedding dress consignment shop. Other attire, such as the groom’s attire and bride’s shoes, were pre-used from the couple’s closet or borrowed. The rings consisted of a topaz gemstone ring, which added a little “something blue” to the day, and a pre-loved wedding band. Hair and makeup were done by Lightning Hair Lounge & Wellness Center, which prides itself on using 100% vegan and cruelty-free beauty products.
As someone who loves to delve into personal and spiritual growth, I love the healing nature of crystal jewelry and thought that a handwritten quote from Rumi was the perfect romantic detail to add a touch of spirituality to the shoot.
The couple who modeled for the shoot was a real, newlywed couple that owns Steel City Selfies, an event selfie station business in Pittsburgh. Their love for each other was apparent during the shoot. Kevin helped Jessica carry her train and protected her from the bees, who were also enjoying the florals and scenery that day. They laughed with each other and enjoyed soaking in a second take on a wedding.
Overall, this eco-friendly styled shoot focused on doing more with less, and I hope it will inspire couples to use what’s found around them in nature when planning and designing their big day.
Linens and Coverings: Mosaic, Inc.
Equipment Rentals: Event Source
Beauty: Lightning Hair Lounge
Dress Store: Bridal Maven
Reception Venue: Succop Nature Park
Floral Designer: Bramble & Blossom
Event Planner: Eco & Ivory Event Design
Photographer: Linnea Marie Photography