It’s a wedding ritual that creates a lasting memento of everyone who came to your special day. Yet the wedding guest book can too easily be relegated to the shelf; one hundred pages of ‘good luck’ messages never to be read again. Many couples are now finding creative new ways to put their own, personal spin on this sentimental tradition. At printed.com, we’ve listed our top five creative alternatives to a traditional wedding guest book to inspire you.
1. Wish you were here
It’s always fun to encourage guests to elaborate on the usual ‘good luck’ messages. Why not design a range of personalised postcards to give your guests plenty of room to get the creative juices flowing (along with the wine). Think of a provocative request, such as ‘tip for a healthy marriage’ or ‘date night idea’ and ask for the answers on a postcard. Make a postbox to keep them safe and then display the keepsakes in a scrapbook or photo album. This is also a great way to cut the queue for signing the guest book.
2. In the frame
Find your favourite photo of you as a couple, perhaps at your engagement party or sharing a tacky cocktail on holiday – just make sure it’s an image you won’t get sick of! Mount the photo and then ask all the guests to sign the border with their names and well wishes. This is great for intimate weddings, but if you’ve got a lot of guests, have the image digitally enlarged to poster size. This can then be framed and hung at home and will make you smile for years to come.
3. Token of love
Another way to combat the queue and create an ornamental piece for your home is to ask your guests to write on a small object with permanent marker. Think of things that mean something to you, such as pebbles if you both love the sea. These could be arranged on the soil around potted plants, in a glass vase or scattered along your garden path.
4. Photo opportunity
The ‘Polaroid washing line’ is so much fun to do and leaves you with a great-looking reminder of the day. If you’re using a real Polaroid camera, you can hang a rope or string across a corner of the reception room and attach a name tag for each guest. Then ask your friends and family to replace their names with a Polaroid of themselves, perhaps with a message on the back. These can then be displayed at home like bunting, or put in a scrapbook for safekeeping. A modern, inexpensive alternative is to use group or individual photos taken on Instagram and send them to printed.com to be made into Polaroid-style prints. Perhaps make up a photo booth and leave a camera phone in it for guests to use, or have a designated Instagrammer snap everyone at the do.
5. Make a wish
If you have the time, a wishing tree is especially cool. Collect some dry branches from the park and fill a large vase with florist’s foam. Arrange the branches in the foam, spray them silver or gold and then decorate the base of the ‘tree’ with flowers. Have a supply of cut ribbon on-hand (and someone sober to supervise the activity). Make sure each guest has a place card on the table, with a hole punched on the back corner. Then just ask your guests to write a wish on the back of their card and tie it to the tree with the ribbon. printed.com supplies beautiful, personalized place cards on a range of luxury papers.
Have you used a creative alternative to the traditional wedding guest book? We’d love to hear about it. Please comment below or tweet us a pic using the #ShowItOff hashtag.