5 Fun Toss Alternatives Your Wedding Guests Can Throw Instead of Rice

Toss the rice. No, not at the bride.
Toss alternatives
Photo: Jenna Leigh Photography


If there’s one thing we learned from retro wedding movies it’s this: The marriage isn’t legit without everyone tossing rice.


Now, as an older, wiser society, we know a few more truths.


One: Stray dry rice can be fatal for unsuspecting birds looking for a quick snack.


Two: There are a ton of replacements for the rice toss that are way cuter, way more fun, way less painful (who wants to get pelted with a bunch of sharp, tiny rice pellets on their wedding day?) and way less harmful to the environment. Here are our favorite alternative toss ideas that will make you wonder why rice ever reigned supreme. Just remember to check with your venue before doing any of these! Many venues have rules about what can be tossed, how much trash can be left over after the event and what kind of cleanup is required.



Let’s start with the obvious: Few things make our pretty-loving hearts flutter quite like a classic shower of flower petals raining down on happy newlyweds on their jaunt back down the aisle. We could devote a whole list of our favorite types of petals (a red and pink mix! A range of yellow-golds! Ethereal all-white!) but, really, why stop there? Throwing whole flowers, with or without stems, make for a beautiful sight, provided they’re of the smaller, lighter (and probably less expensive) varieties like little roses, daisies or carnations. Also a gorgeous idea? Whipping up paper cones out of pages from novels, doilies or music sheets in which to hold the blooms. Tuck the cones into a basket at the entrance to the ceremony seating, or put one on each chair.



The only thing that could tickle your childlike bone more than throwing things in the air is blowing bubbles en masse. You can find tiny individual-size bubble bottles in appropriately wedding-y shapes, such as hearts or doves, all over the internet and in craft stores. Just make sure guests know when to start blowing—a large sign or a prominent note in the program could do it. Or, have the check-in attendants give a quick heads-up when they give guests their bottles, and install a family member or friend in the crowd to start things off at the right moment, giving everyone else the cue to follow suit.



Dried lavender buds have made their way into the trendy confetti-alternative sphere, and they couldn’t be more darling. Lavender can be difficult to find, but using any other abundant herb from your own garden gives a personal dimension to the tradition. Just add a tag, sign or note to the cone, bag or basket so guests know the story behind the style.


Biodegradable confetti

Toss alternatives
Photo: June Cochran Photography

Cute and colorful, rustic Kraft paper laced with metallic, oversized and angular, teeny and frilled—confetti is versatile, and oh so fun, plus it’s a super-easy D.I.Y. project. You can tailor the type of confetti to your tastes and theme with small tweaks, like purple gem-tones to match your bridal party’s dresses, chunky geometrics to go with your modern art aesthetic, or dove cutouts made using a paper punch, to echo your logo. Look for biodegradable paper online (you can find already-made biodegradable confetti, too!), and put one or two dear Team Wedding helpers in charge of vacuuming or sweeping up the mess later.   


Sparkly, biodegradable sprinkles

The edible (and environmentally friendly) alternative to glitter? Shiny, glittery metallic cake sprinkles! Raiding Mom’s baking drawer may put you in the doghouse, so try buying in bulk online. And, at the risk of sounding like Grams, be wary of ants! Just because these guys are biodegradable doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to scoop up as much of the fallout as possible at the end of the night.