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How to Plan a Sustainable Wedding in Rhode Island

March 18, 2015

By Mariah Ashley

Have you ever considered planning a sustainable wedding in Rhode Island? We had the pleasure of photographing Jackie and Matt’s beautiful Castle Hill wedding last June and it was brimming with amazing food and flowers locally sourced from Rhode Island and the surrounding area. I asked the knowledgeable vendors of this wedding to weigh in on how they created such a  lovely and sustainable soiree. I hope this will help anyone who is thinking of adding sustainable elements to their own party!


“When Jackie and Matt came to me about designing their wedding, they wanted to incorporate local and sustainable as their key elements in order to share their love of conserving with their friends and family. We mixed elegance (candles, fabric draping, linen napkins) with sustainability. We used moss in most of their design, so that it could be re purposed after the wedding. Flowers were sourced at local farms.  Sustainability to Jackie and Matt also meant local dining resources, so almost all food and beverage were sourced in New England.”

~Stephanie Fraizer Grimm, wedding planner, and founder of Couture Parties

sustainable wedding in rhode island0001“This wedding had an entire vibe of sustainability, meaning to decrease the impact of the event on the planet. All of the vessels, votives, and containers were rented from us to eliminate the possibility of any of the items being thrown away.”

~Kim Lamothe, owner and floral designer Greenlion Weddingssustainable wedding in rhode island0002 “As many of the flowers as possible were sourced locally in order to fit the brides vision. All of the peonies we used where 100% organically grown  and came from Vermont farms.  All of the ranunculus where sourced from New Jersey and almost all of the flowers where sourced from the USA. We kept imports to an absolute minimum.”

~Kim Lamothe, owner and floral designer Greenlion Weddings
sustainable wedding in rhode island0003Jackie enjoys some champagne with her fourteen {!} bridesmaids before the festivities begin.sustainable wedding in rhode island0004Matt’s father helps him with his cufflinks.sustainable wedding in rhode island0005Jackie’s mother helps her with her earrings and veil.sustainable wedding in rhode island0006Jackie has a sweet moment alone with her father before he walks her down the aisle.sustainable wedding in rhode island0007Matt is all smiles waiting for Jackie at the altar.sustainable wedding in rhode island0008The view for the I Do’s, definitely a “local” flavor!sustainable wedding in rhode island0009This is not an angle of the ceremony that we are accustomed to snapping, but Jackie and Matt really wanted a photo of them at the altar with all of their friends and family looking on, so fun!sustainable wedding in rhode island0010Married! sustainable wedding in rhode island001124! Phew! Luckily Trish is an expert at posing large bridal parties and Castle Hill has endless beautiful locations… even for a group this size.sustainable wedding in rhode island0012A little quiet time for the newlyweds before the cocktail hour on the beach at Castle Hill.sustainable wedding in rhode island0013Jackie’s Anne Barge dress was stunning, she was a vision from every angle.sustainable wedding in rhode island0014

“Giving back to local farmers was a very important element in Jackie and Matt’s wedding so we also created a menu for guests that listed the farm names of where the harvest came from! Jackie works for Boston Food Bank so she is very passionate about local fisherman, farmers and distributors.”

~Stephanie Frazier Grimm of Couture Parties

sustainable wedding in rhode island0015

“It was such a pleasure to work with Jackie as we have the same values about sourcing locally. Her cake flavor was a delicious vanilla with a strawberry shortcake filling, a rich vanilla bean filling with fresh strawberries, sourced from a local farm close to Newport- in Seekonk MA, Four Town Farms.”

~Marie Soliday of Confectionery Designssustainable wedding in rhode island0016

“All paper items were printed on recycled paper with soy based ink. Table numbers were painted on reclaimed wood that we recycled from a house renovation.”
 ~Stephanie Frazier Grimm of Couture Parties
sustainable wedding in rhode island0027

Delicious local ingredients for Bruschetta {mmm!} all sourced from Rhode Island.sustainable wedding in rhode island0018

“As part of the favors for guests we included small sapling trees of local cedar, Japanese maple, Norway maple and balsam fir wrapped in burlap ( coffee bean bags from a local coffee shop- Coastal Roasters ) . We carefully dug the saplings from local farms and gardens in the weeks before the wedding to get them semi-established in their root balls.”

~Kim Lamothe, owner and floral designer Greenlion Weddingssustainable wedding in rhode island0020The newlyweds took the famous Castle Hill golf cart out to the lighthouse for a sunset smooch right before dinner.sustainable wedding in rhode island0021

“Post event, all florals were donated or composted and as little floral foam as possible was used {the head table was moss with rested blooms and submerged blooms}. At Greenlion, we also donate the leftover wax from floating candles to a local gentleman to be melted down and made into fire-starters for wood stoves. We hate to throw anything away!”

sustainable wedding in rhode island0022

“Our forty acres are lush with natural wildlife, but Castle Hill is also a haven for farming our own vegetables. Down by the Marina, red Rambo radish, bright light Swiss chard, and spicy micro greens are only a few of the ingredients grown in our raised garden beds. Behind the Chalet, the air is rich with fragrance from lemon basil, wild marjoram, and orange thyme at our herb and garlic garden. Our culinary team regularly incorporates and builds dishes around these on-site offerings.”

~The Culinary Team at Castle Hill:

sustainable wedding in rhode island0023

“The Castle Hill chefs were so accommodating in our requests for local vendors, they source local products as much as possible so it was great to team up with them and really learn more about their dedication to the local community as well.”

~Stephanie Frazier Grimm of Couture Parties

sustainable wedding in rhode island0024Have you ever had Yacht Club Soda? It’s a Rhode Island favorite!sustainable wedding in rhode island0025

“It’s imperative for us to use as much natural ingredients as possible and support local farms and their products. It’s extremely important to use local food, not only for the quality, but also to keep revenue local too.”

~Marie Soliday of Confectionery Designs

sustainable wedding in rhode island0026We hope that this post was helpful for you if your are planning a sustainable wedding in Rhode Island! Best of luck with your local sourcing and re-purposing!

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