Get Inspired By This Backyard Bash Wedding

When it comes to planning a wedding, getting inspiration for ideas can be foun best in real-life weddings. In the case of Holly DeCarlo and Alex White, they were looking for an intimate budget-friendly day at home in their backyard with family and friends that consisted of local, organic fare and a little help from guests. 

Here's a peek at their big day so you can get a bit inspired!

Holly and Alex met in high school while working in a coffee shop. Their two best friends insisted that they go out on a double date with them and they have never stopped staying in touch to see each other. Alex joined the Army and Holly went to college in New York City and Italy. They were long distance for 7 years flying back and forth to see each other every few months until Holly moved from New York City to live with Alex in Hawaii. The rest is history!

Holly worked in events in New York City so she was very familiar with how much waste and consumption is leftover as a result. Most facilities didn't even have the proper recycling capabilities.

She found that living in Hawaii means recycling is a way of life. Since resources are limited there is a concerted effort to repurpose, reuse and recycle as much as possible.

Holly met an eco-friendly event planner Aubrey Akana of Savoir Faire Events. She was the inspiration for Holly's Real Green Wedding. Aubrey's events were always green and low budget but they never appeared as such!


  • Holly and Alex borrowed a lot of their decor or bought items from vintage stores. If they bought new then every product was made from eco-friendly materials. All of the dinner plates were palm leaf.
  • Vintage paper straws were bought for sipping drinks. Cut flowers were placed in sterling silver sets borrowed from Holly's grandparents house and heart shaped sparklers in celebration of July 4th were placed at every table setting.
  • All of the menus and signage were made from homemade photoshop by the bride and groom. A wood sign made by the bride's mother with different states and countries was placed next to tiki torches for an added design element! This sign represented all of the different places that the guests traveled from to see Holly and Alex tie the knot.
  • It's easy to find salvaged wood signs made from repurposed findings. Turn your backyard bash into a shabby chic affair with beautiful handmade signs.


  • Flowers were provided by Anne Dancu of Blue Pear, Holly's cousin. Hydrangea and grapevines from Holly's mother's garden were wrapped around the poles in the tents for a sleek and simple woodland design!



  • All catering for the main dishes was by local eatery Santoni's. Guests enjoyed pasta, fresh salads and midnight subs made by the bride.
  • A delicious chocolate sheet cake with all natural butter cream vanilla was bought from Whole Foods and a show cake was made by the newlywed's friend, Bari Cadel.


  • A table with a polaroid camera was out in the open for guests to take photos and write comments on them. The photos were then clipped to wire holders attached to a pretty piece of wood. Photos were left for the bride and groom to look at and enjoy!
  • Holly and Alex found that reusing as much as possible of what you have in your home and family member's homes saves a lot of cash for rentals, time spent shopping and planning, and also avoids waste.
  • When they couldn't find certain items to borrow, then rentals were the next green way to go. Re-using rental items instead of buying new is a great alternative. 

They also learned that the internet is a valuable resource for your planning stages and it should be implemented in your research for finding all things green!