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More of What Matters, Featuring: SoKind Registry

More of What Matters, Featuring: So Kind Registry **Editor Note: Thank you SoKind Registry for your ongoing support as a National Partner and believer in the BSB Mission!** bride Friends and family. That’s what wedding receptions boil down to, right? It would be a lot less work and cost if a wedding consisted solely of a ceremony. No need to worry about finding a venue or coordinating entertainment. No need to worry about menus or seating arrangements. Yet despite the hassle, many people still choose to commemorate one of life’s biggest events with a celebration. Meredith9 Why? Because, as humans, we’re hardwired for connection. Connection is what gives our lives purpose and meaning. And connection is what we crave when we celebrate momentous occasions. We want our loved ones to share in our joy and to support us with their presence. Yet U.S. consumer culture has created an expectation in this country that weddings must be extravagant affairs in order to be special, thereby distorting some of the most important milestones of our lives. Celebrations that should be joyful and meaningful are now often occasions that generate stress, waste, and debt. Sunset chaser SoKind Registry is a registry service designed to provide options for those of us who want to plan celebrations that reflect our lifestyles, promote our values, and enhance our lives. SoKind is for people who want to host more environmentally friendly celebrations, as well as for folks who simply refuse to start a new chapter in their lives with a mountain of debt. It’s for people who don’t view their wedding as an opportunity to impress, but rather as an opportunity to involve their friends and family in one of the most important occasions of their lives. fashion-men-vintage-colorful So go ahead, be creative. What gifts do you truly want? Donations to your favorite charity? Home renovation help? Catering help for the big day? A museum membership? Through SoKind, you can register for gifts of time, experience, and skill, as well as traditional material gifts and secondhand items. The registry is entirely customizable, so the possibilities are endless! Here’s to more fun and less stuff… to more joy and less stress… and to more love and less waste! For more information about setting up your wedding, or milestone, registry visit SoKind Registry today! 

Weddings That Give Back: Michelle and Joe- Key West, FL

One of our very own BSB Vendors, friends, and ethical fashion advocate, Michelle, of Michelle For Good and Co-Founder of The Tote Project, recently tied the knot in South Florida to her amazing guy, Joey!
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 True to form, Michelle and Joey made sure to incorporate as many ethical, charitable and sustainable wedding day details as they could and used their intimate destination wedding to shop small, waste less and serve others. Read more about how they were intentional throughout the post.
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Shop Small: ‘We are both advocates of fair trade and the sweatshop-free movement, so we tried to shop small when we could. We bought the flower girl basket and guest book from designers on ETSY, and I surprised Joey with a wedding day gift of a Brackish Bow Tie, (another amazing BSB find).’
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Michelle’s Bridal Jewelry: Her awesome bridal jewelry was designed by her good friend Destiny, of Destiny Conner Jewelry.  ‘She designed a custom hair piece and earrings for me. She donates 10% of her profits to the Imagine Foundation.’
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The Venue: The couple choose to get married at The Ernest Hemingway Home in Key West, FL.  The venue is a non-profit museum. The house was built in 1851 and purchased as Hemingway’s home in 1931, all of the furniture is preserved in it’s original form. The estate still remains to be the single largest residential property on the island of Key West.
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The Bridesmaids Gifts:  ‘I bought my maids of honor (I couldn’t pick just one, all my bridesmaids were maids and matrons of honor haha) Purpose Jewelry for their gifts and asked them to wear the pieces in the wedding. Purpose Jewelry is made by human trafficking survivors and 100% of the proceeds go to them. I also surprised them with Sand Cloud towels to go with the destination wedding theme. They donate to protect marine life.’
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Tuxes: The Wedding Party Tuxes were rented from Generation Tux.  ‘We didn’t initially see a give-back component on their site, so I tweeted at them and asked if they’d be willing to donate if we chose them as a vendor. They agreed and donated 10% of the price we paid to UNICEF to support Syrian Refugees. They also said they are working to incorporate giving back into their business model..woohoo!’ (<<<< TALK ABOUT CHANGE MAKER! Go Michelle and Joey!)
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Wedding Rings: ‘My engagement ring and wedding band were from Brilliant Earth, and Joey’s band was from another Black Sheep Bride vendor, Tenzabelle. It was super important to us to get conflict-free rings and Brilliant Earth gives back to communities negative affected by the illegal diamond trade.’
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Photographer: We chose Andrew Abajian as our photographer. He’s not only a great friend of ours, he also does humanitarian work and has photographed the efforts of Saddleback/Rick Warren around the world.
Wedding Invitations: We ordered recycled paper wedding invitations from Minted.
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All Photos courtesy of Andrew Abajian.

Real Wedding that Give Back: Kim & Ben- Weston Red Barn Farm, Missouri

There is nothing more rewarding than finding stories about amazing couples that have embraced the sheer impact their wedding day can have on those around them… Kim and Ben, YOU GET US + WE GET YOU!  We are truly so inspired by the sustainable and socially conscious choices you made on your Big Day! Thanks to Image Clairity for sharing their wedding images and the ‘Giving Back Story’ of their wedding with us! The Groom was just beginning his Master’s program in Sustainability and it came in quite handy, read below about all the ways they choose to be intentional and as locally sourced as possible… Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R10152 Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R6084 Kim’s family grew the flowers at home and Kim and her bridesmaids each assembled their own bouquets. Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R50791Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R11174
Kim is a childhood leukemia survivor so she purchased her gown at a Brides Against Breast Cancer Event-where all the proceeds went toward supporting breast cancer patients and their families.
Kim’s Ring was from her Grandmother’s and her veil was hand-sewn from her mother’s dress, as well.
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Ben brewed bottles of the beer, as well as baked the wedding cake himself. Ben’s best man created the cake topper out of 3D models of the couple and printed them from a 3d Printer.
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Ben’s cousins also contributed their own elderberry wine.
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Kim’s mother sewed the groomsmen vests. Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_MM14451DUG608004R10151 If all of this wasn’t enough they also used a local, all natural, all organic farmer to grow the meal and make the barbecue. Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R2031  Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R4054  Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R6086   Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R9134 Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R9139 Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R9140 Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R10154 Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R10155 Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R10156 In an effort to be less wasteful they opted for wooden/compostable utensils.  Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R10158  Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R10160  Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R11162 Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R11163 Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R11164 Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_CM14301dug000604R11169Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_MM14451DUG608004R10150    Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_MM14451DUG608004R10158 Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_MM14451DUG608004R10160Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_2602Bira_Bira_Imageclairity_2832
Photographer:  Imageclairity | Reception Venue: Weston Red Barn Farm

Stylishly Sustainable Wedding Inspiration – Houston, Texas

When our BSB Vendor, Smith House Photo, submitted this Sustainable Stylized Wedding Inspiration Shoot we were awe-stuck by the dainty, industrial, organic softness that came with such a big message: You don’t have to sacrifice beauty and details to have a sustainable wedding! Here is what she shared with us about their vision:  ‘Our goal in planning this inspiration shoot was to encompass all that Black Sheep Bride stands for: Gorgeous weddings that support and give back in the community. We wanted to show that simply by selecting vendors who GIVE BACK, your wedding day can make a huge impact.’   2015-06-13_0001 2015-06-13_0002 2015-06-13_00112015-06-13_0012 2015-06-13_0003 2015-06-13_0004 2015-06-13_0005 2015-06-13_0006 2015-06-13_0007 2015-06-13_0008 2015-06-13_0009 2015-06-13_0010 2015-06-13_0013 2015-06-13_0014 2015-06-13_0015 2015-06-13_0016 2015-06-13_0017 2015-06-13_0018 2015-06-13_0019 2015-06-13_0020   Participating Black Sheep Bride #VendorsThatGiveBack : Celia Grace Wedding Dresses We were so excited to include Celia Grace for our bridal gowns and we couldn’t possibly describe her business better than the designer does herself on the Celia Grace Website , “Each Celia Grace wedding dress is exquisitely handcrafted using vintage-inspired lace, exclusive hand woven silks, and stunning beading and detail work. Celia Grace wedding dresses are made in safe, fair, and empowering Fair Trade conditions and we give back locally with each dress sold. Our eco silks respect and protect the environment.” On top of that, each and every gown is totally swoon-worthy. Metalicious Metalicious is an incredible, hand made jewelry company that aims to leave the world a better place for our kids and future generations. Recycled materials are used in each step of the process, from the metals to the materials they’re shipped in. Not to mention, every single piece is gorgeous. Plan Our Day Event Services Inspired by the eco-friendly wedding trend, Samantha decided to push her creative boundaries to design a wedding that would reduce waste, and support sustainability without sacrificing a gorgeous detail. Vintage plates and silverware graced the picnic-style Bride and Groom table, and each place setting had a gorgeous stemmed glass. Scrap wood placecards were adorned with names and napkins were made of recycled materials. Smith House Photo From the moment the planning process began with Samantha, Becki knew her job of capturing the details would be easy. There is nothing more exciting than connecting with other vendors who have a heart for our community, giving back and perfectly planned details.   Other Local Participating #VendorsThatGiveBack: Floral Concepts by Cynthia Cynthia, Owner of Floral Concepts by Cynthia was an easy choice for our bouquets and floral arrangements. As a small, local business owner she aims to use in-season flowers to promote sustainability and always goes above and beyond for her clients. Jolly Roger Sweets Every couple wants something unique at their wedding, and Jolly Rogers Sweets is bound to be making appearances in the upcoming wedding season. This newly launched business is Houston’s first bicycle cart that serves vegan raw cookie dough! Jolly Rogers also makes delicious Jams that would be a perfect wedding favor. Allison Katherine Designs It’s no secret that calligraphy is a hot topic in the wedding world, but Allison Katherine is not your average calligrapher. While her paper goods are beautiful, we especially love her recycled mediums and unique signage. Plus, we never turn down the opportunity to work with another local business! Tout Suite Ever since this bakery opened up in our neighborhood, we’ve been fans. They use support local farmers, serve on recycled paper goods, and have a menu that tastes as good as it looks. Model: Annie C Patten