Jan. 11, 2013, 7 a.m. by SMARTBRIDE

Real Green Destination Wedding: That's Amore! Green Wedding in Italy


Katie Triolo and Jordan O’Brien were married on May 22, 2008 in Vernazza (Cinque Terre), Italy.

Both Jordan and Katie have always been environmentally conscious, so planning their wedding with eco-friendly elements was more of a foregone conclusion than a decision to be made. At the time, Jordan was working towards his MBA in Sustainable Enterprise & Real Estate Development to go into green building, so he was especially focused on sustainability and the nuances of greening.

Eco-Chic Wedding in Italy

Our friends at The Green Bride Guide are sharing a few ways this couple managed to use local materials and create DIY personal touches to make their wedding unique and green.

  1. Location
    The couple chose to have their wedding in the lovely village of Vernazza, Italy. Vernazza is one of five villages that make up Cinque Terra, Italy, which is a Unesco World Heritage Site and National Park.  These remote villages were only connected to the outside world one hundred years ago by a railway line. Today, they maintain an “Old World” simplicity and charm, where walking paths, boats, and trains are the only means of transportation between the villages. Katie, Jordan, and their guests took advantage of this; 90% of their travel to and from wedding events was by train, bus, boat, or foot.

    Vernazza Destionation Weddiing

  2. Invitations
    Katie and Jordan's invitations, locally printed postcards of the location, were sent one year ahead of the wedding to ensure the guests had plenty of time for planning their travel. To save paper, the postcards were the only printed item; all other communication was through the couple's wedding website, email, and phone calls.

  3. Ceremony
    Jordan and Katie were wed on a breathtakingly beautiful cliff overlooking the sea in front of eighty guests. Vernazza, shaped much like an amphitheater and set atop a rugged mountain, provided such lovely scenery that the couple didn't need any additional decoration for their ceremony.

    cliff-side ceremony

  4. Flowers & Reception Decor
    Friends and family picked all of the flowers and herbs from the hills above the village of Vernazza, which were then made into bouquets and boutonnieres, as well as table and napkin décor for the reception. The couple added many DIY touches to their reception as well.

    DIY napkin tags

  5. Food & Beverage
    Jordan and Katie's reception was held at the Gambero Rosso, where the food was locally and sustainably grown and/or caught. According to the couple, “the town is so isolated that most food products must come from within 5 miles.” This also includes the local white wine and limoncello (an Italian lemon liquer).

  6. Local Tradition
    After the ceremony, Jordan and Katie took part in a wedding tradition singular to Vernazza. From a balcony decorated with tied ribbons symbolizing their union, they tossed chocolates and candies to the crowd of villagers that gathered below. 

    local Italian tradition

  7. For all the details on this lovely wedding, visit the full recap on GreenBrideGuide.com.

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