Want to Make Your Wedding Weed-Friendly? Here’s How
Recreational marijuana use has now been legalized in eleven states and Washington, D.C—and some wedding professionals in these places, and even in states where marijuana isn’t legal yet, are making it known to their clients that they are “cannabis-friendly,” meaning that they are comfortable either helping clients incorporate marijuana into decor and food, or just being around it if it’s part of their client’s lifestyle.
Photographer Leah Moyers explains: “Alcohol at weddings is widely accepted, but some couples aren’t really into drinking and although they might provide alcohol for their guests, cannabis is their ‘drink’ of choice.” Couples may choose to smoke before or after their wedding, or they may include cannabis buds into the floral decor, or even provide a weed bar for the guests, complete with a “budtender” to offer guidance.
Wedding vendors in Colorado seem to be leading the charge in terms of elevating the image of cannabis use at weddings, providing couples with cannabis inspiration, and streamlining the business of connecting cannabis-friendly vendors to couples. One such leader in this movement is Niki McDonald, who started the website, Love and Marij. With the motto “Cannabis is the new champagne,” Niki’s team has amassed a directory of cannabis-friendly vendors, “wedding-friendly” dispensaries that offer discounts and wedding packages, links to cannabis products they recommend, and they’ve even started a cannabis wedding registry service.
Moyers sees the move toward a more cannabis-friendly industry as part of the larger progress the wedding industry has made in recent years, saying, “There has been progress in how couples choose to declare, signify, celebrate, and take on the responsibilities of marriage.” Additionally, she says, “There has also been progress in the way LGBTQ couples are served in the wedding industry after same-sex marriage was legalized.” In general, she sees the industry celebrating more unconventional couples and celebrations. While she has been “transparent and enthusiastic about serving same-sex couples,” she also feels that it is “necessary to distinguish [her]self as a photographer comfortable with couples using cannabis at sessions or wedding celebrations.” The way she expresses this to potential clients? The first line of her bio reads, “I’m cool with all of your dreams, eccentricities, vices, fears and ways you express love.”
Photographer Jeremy Lawson echoes these sentiments and says he is all for the incorporation of cannabis at weddings: “My goal as a photographer has always been to capture the idiosyncrasies of the couple’s relationship. It seems only natural that couples who make it a part of their regular lives should have it be a part of their wedding day.” He aims to capture an honest story and doesn’t want anyone to have to hide a part of themselves on their wedding day.
Chas Thompson is the florist behind Wildflower Portland, and she is well-practiced in incorporating cannabis leaves and flowers into her custom designs. She says, “More than anything, being cannabis-friendly creates a space for open dialogue. The joy in my job is knowing my couples can talk to me about the ‘taboo’ and that together we can collaborate on a vision that is honest to them.” Not to mention, she finds that potential clients perceive her use of the marijuana plant to be creative and forward-thinking. She says, “A majority of my couples come to me wanting something unique, and because I am cannabis-friendly they wonder, what else can she do? The answer is a lot!”
At one of her favorite weddings, she incorporated Sativa branches into the floral arrangements and cannabis flowers into the boutonnieres. “You could see the boutonnieres getting smaller and smaller as the night went on, which was both hilarious and my exact intention,” she says. “It’s not as if cannabis wasn’t at weddings before, but bud was in the background.” She says that bridal parties, friends, and family who smoked often did it in secret because they felt they had to hide it. “Now, on the west coast, cannabis can be enjoyed at wedding receptions, and it’s a detail that can be as thoughtful as the decor or the catering.” Chas looks forward to the day that wholesale floral markets offer cannabis garlands, but she knows at that point “the creatives and I will be on to something else.”
There's a whole new world of cannabis-friendly wedding professionals out there
How to Plan a Weed Wedding
Your wedding day is all about what you want, whether it’s specific colors, certain themes, and even the involvement of cannabis. With the legalization of recreational marijuana in 11 states and Washington, D.C., throwing weed wedding now comes with a plethora of options.
Professional wedding planners in the emerging cannabis wedding industry reveal the best ways to incorporate the plant into your wedding day. From prewedding activities to food to party favors, see our guide on how to throw a weed wedding.
Make Sure It’s Legal
Before you do any kind of planning, make sure you confirm that your wedding is in a location where recreational use of marijuana is legal. In some states, only medicinal marjiuana is allowed.
Not sure if your wedding location permits the recreational use of weed? Check for yourself and contact your wedding planner as well to confirm. If incorporating weed into your wedding day is super important to you, go the extra mile to ensure you’re in a place where it’s allowed before you secure your deposit.
Incorporate Weed Into Your Registry
If you’re thinking about having a weed wedding, consider incorporating it into your registry. Niki McDonald, wedding planner and CEO of Love and Marij, tells The Knot that her company has developed a cannabis registry tool, which allows couples to make appointments with their favorite dispensary’s top budtender to help them select their signature strain.
The getting-ready process is typically associated with mimosas and beer, but maybe you’d rather skip alcohol in favor of marijuana. Anything from lighting up in your limo to gifting your wedding party custom bowls to hotboxing your getting-ready room is fair game—the possibilities are endless.
Light Up Your Ceremony
Looking for a meaningful way to incorporate weed into your wedding ceremony? Bec Koop, co-owner of Irie Weddings & Events in Colorado, tells The Knot that there’s one popular way couples are doing so. Incorporate a “unity bowl,” which is a double hitter glass pipe with two flames to light the single bowl, Koop says. This device allows couples to take their first “married hit” together.
Add Weed Into Your Flowers
Involving weed into your wedding day doesn’t have to mean using it. If you love the way the green plant looks, work it into your floral arrangements. Whether you want it as an accent to your other blooms or you want it as the main focus, there are a million ways to work weed into your wedding day flowers.
Get Creative With Your Menu
The pros agree—one of the best ways to integrate weed into your wedding is through food and drink. One of the more popular approaches includes marijuana-infused food on your menu, MCdonald says. Another possibility? Replace traditional wine pairings with weed pairings. “It’s not about ‘getting-high’—it’s about pairing a small hit of specific cannabis strains to bring out the flavor of food, wine and craft beer,” McDonald says.
It goes beyond just the dinner meal, though. In lieu of champagne, consider toasting to the happy couple with a glass of sparkling cannabis-infused elixir. Or try working the plant into your dessert bar. Low-dose strain-specific edibles are a fun and creative way to incorporate weed into your wedding.
But there’s one exception to this idea: Homemade edibles. “For a large group of guests, our advice is to stick with licensed edibles manufacturers that print their lab results on products,” McDonald says. “This will better regulate the potency [of the weed] you guests are ingesting.”
Another fun idea? Providing delicious late-night snacks for when your guests have the munchies, says Elizabeth Sheils, a planner at Bridal Bliss Event Planning in Oregon. One of the most fun creations she’s seen? Fried chicken with dill pickles and honey mustard on top of a mini biscuit.
Hire a Budtender
Corr tells The Knot that the most popular request she gets from clients is to have a weed bar with a budtender. Just like your traditional open bar of alcohol, an open bar of marijuana can offer guests different strains and different edibles. But it’s crucial that there’s a budtender to oversee consumption. They’ll be able to administer dosing so that nobody makes the mistake of having too much too fast.
Put Some Weed in Your Party Favors
Give your guests the gift of cannabis as a party favor. You can give them anything from a sample of of your signature strain, some boutique edibles, or a customized box of matches (or a lighter). Feel free to consult a professional wedding planner who specializes in this market for more ideas—they’ve seen almost everything.
Want to plan a weed-friendly wedding? Check out our guide to having a blazing wedding day.