Including foraged, found items in your décor & wedding flowers has always been a fun & easy way to re-purpose, cut costs & find little ‘not available in the flower market’ treasures.
Last year I saw more & more wedding people (me included) dropping the ‘foraging’ option as a wedding / budget ‘tip’ & now with Greenery being the 2017 Pantone color (little eye roll) I anticipate more & more brides, florists & planners turning to Mother nature directly to provide what the flower markets maybe can’t yet.
Mother Nature has so much to offer and if you look closely there is an endless supply of inspiration and small wedding day décor to be found in her.
This said, we all know how seeing nature as an ‘endless supply’ can devastate landscapes and the delicate balance of fauna and flora…
So if you want to take full advantage of this Greenery trend but in a semi decent way here are a few of my own tips inspired by my “foraged” African elopement.
- Say no to repeat business.
Don’t repeatedly forage in the same place Or from the same plant.
It takes time for the life cycle of plants to come full circle so make sure you aren’t cutting out any stage of that regeneration by not giving the plant or patch of nature time to restore itself.
- Don’t take it ALLL
Try not take the entire plant or all the flowers or seeds from a plant.
That delicate life cycle we were talking about needs adult plants, flowers for pollination and seeds to be spread. If you take all of them not only do you interfere with its next generation, there are tons of little creepy crawlies, bees and birds that could be affected by the lack of pollen, fruits or seeds.
If you do want the entire plant look into renting or buying potted plants that will carry on living long after your event is done.
- Try forage things that have already fallen.
It’s always better to try and forage things that have already fallen vs still growing. This is especially true for fruits or edibles (It’s amazing to save something from waste rather than pick something that could later be eaten)
The up side to this is that once a leaf, seed or branch has fallen it is normally at its peak of interesting’ness or beauty and you can get some amazing textures and colors that are just so much more exciting than green.
(I say this like green isn’t interesting but you know what I mean)
- Sometimes foraging is Illegal.
In South Africa it is illegal to pick wild flowers and foliage form parks, reserves and/or open public spaces. So make sure wherever you are looking to forage you have permission and aren’t breaking any laws.
Also don’t use ‘foraging’ as a nice way of stealing! If its food, crops or flowers they probably do belong to someone/thing else, so don’t be a shit – ask/consider them first…
- If it’s someone’s home leave it alone (no matter how pretty it is).
Possession is nine-tenths of the law (or so I’ve heard in movies) so if that ‘oh so stunning’ something is some creature’s home admit defeat and move on…
There is plenty of pretty to go around without needing to demolish a little critters home. Karma is real peeps!
- FYI Some things are poisonous.
So, this caution is more for you than nature… but unless you really know a thing or two about plants it’s always better to err on the side of caution. There are a number of plants, leaves, fruits and mushrooms that shouldn’t be touched never mind used for table decor.
Very, very basic rule of thumb – if you are in a wild area and the fruit tree or delicious looking treat you want to include in your wedding decor has not been touched by a bird or insect you probably shouldn’t touch it either.
I have 3 more really cool tips for responsible foraging in part 2 of this blog please go have a read…
Until then do what you can, tell other people about what you learn through sharing this blog and don’t underestimate the bigness of your small actions, because they do count!!!
PS. This was the amazing team behind these images.
Photographer: Page & Holmes |Concept, styling & flowers: Runaway Romance | Venue: Emily Moon River Lodge | Décor: Amatuli Artefacts | Stationery: Rebelle Design | Hair & Make up: The Art of makeup | Bridal gown: Loca Vintage Bridal | Jewellery: Katy Valentine | Hike and getting ready outfits – Stitch & Steel | His & Hers Mini Cakes: Clares cakes