Alternative to Wedding Guest Books

polaroid photoWedding guest books are for your guests to sign and leave their thoughts, remarks and well wishes to help you remember what a fantastic day you all shared and a lovely keepsake for you both to browse over for many years to come.

There are many styles and designs of traditional and contemporary wedding guest books in various sizes and colours. With every bride looking for something different and unique when it comes to their own special day a new market is fast emerging - the alternatives to tradtional wedding guest books.

Guest books are normally stored away in a drawer or cupboard only to reappear on very rare occasions, if ever. Modern couples are now looking for something that can be left on display in their homes, serving as a constant reminder of their wedding day.

Listed below are some ideas on alternatives to guest books that can be displayed in your home.

Signed Plates

Plates purchased from a specialist company will be custom decorated with your names and wedding date and enough space around the edges and on the back for your guests to write their own personal message on.  The plate is then sent back to be over-painted, fired and glazed and returned to you to be hung as a wonderful keepsake in your home.

Signed Frame

Have your guests place their signatures onto the cardboard mount that is placed inside a photo frame.  You can then add one of your favourite wedding photographs' and display in your home.  For those having a lot of guests you can do this with two or more.  An easy way to organise is to have the photo mount on display on a table or pinned onto an easel at the reception with a good pen at hand.

Signed Canvas

A signed canvas is one of those unique mementos of your wedding day.  As well as signatures and messages, photographs of guests can be mounted in blank spaces and you will have a wonderful collage to hang up in your new home.

Video Diary

This will require a professional videographer or someone reliable, or even hire a video booth for your guests to leave a personal message. The option you choose depends on the quality of the finish you want, from a professional video to a bit of fun. Some may be camera shy and not know what to say so you can turn your video diary into a 'how well do you know the couple' memento by having a few questions on hand.  Or they can be asked to relay some funny memories of you both - the list is endless to what you can ask them and some creative answers may appear once people have had a drink or two and lost their camera shy inhibitions.

Engraved Silver Platter

silver platterA variation on the plate with the added bonus they are unbreakable.

Platters with diamond tipped pens can be purchased for your guests to permanently engrave their signatures and messages or you can buy an engraving pen to be used on a silver tray for a new family heirloom.

For those concerned some guests may misuse the platter or tray you can have the guests all sign a piece of paper which is then taken to a jeweller who will engrave it onto your chosen platter/tray.

Video Booth

Video booths are fast becoming popular at wedding receptions where guests can go and leave a message in 'big brother' style.  With just a button to press they can sit back and have their message and good wishes recorded and you will be given a DVD-Video of the evening's recordings.  You can even pop in yourself and leave a personal message to your new husband (or wife).

Polaroid Guest Book

Instant photographs can be taken at the wedding of each guest as they arrive/enter which can then be inserted directly into a personalised book and messages written next to the photograph.  For small intimate weddings bride and groom's can have their photo taken with each guest throughout the day and night or for larger weddings you can have one photograph taken at each table with a group.

Personalised Pages

When sending out your wedding invites (or just before the big day) you can add a page from a guestbook album and ask them to decorate and write their page and bring it with them to the wedding to be placed inside the guestbook.  This will give them more time to think of something rather than a hurried scrawl on the day and make your guest book more unique and much more personal.

Wishing Tree

A custom traditionally from Holland that involves cards shaped like leaves, hearts or stars and guests write their wishes to the bride and groom and hang them onto the 'tree' creating a spectacular centrepiece at the reception entrance.  Wishing trees can be made from cardboard or crystal, wood or plastic and decorated with sparkling strings of pearls, diamantes or twigs twisted around.

A real willow tree placed in a large pot and decorated with flowers and/or ribbons that coordinate with your wedding colours can be used and then planted in your garden at a later date for one of those everlasting mementoes.

All the cards can then be placed into a scrapbook, album or photo frame.

Wishing Jar

glass jarGuests write their wishes for the happy couple and place the cards into a wishing jar.  Jars can be porcelain or crystal and used in a front room as an ornament with cards read every now and then or a quirky one can double up as a cookie jar.

The wish cards can be designed in a unique and personal way and a collage can be made from the cards in a fun frame and hung in your home. For a truly unique wishing' jar' why not can use a white metal Victorian decorated bird cage.

Table Cards

Individual cards with matching envelopes can be placed at each table setting and guests' can write their messages, seal the envelopes and then place them into a basket or a 'posting' decorative box.  This is a lovely way of enabling your guests to give you a personal and private unrushed message which you can both have fun opening at a later date.  Cards then can be placed into a book or mounted inside a photo frame.

Short List of Other Alternatives

  • Signature Vase
  • Wish and Prayer Box
  • Online Guest Book
  • Signed Matching 'his and hers Aprons
  • Pillow Cases
  • Table Cloths and Runner
  • Jig Saw Puzzles
  • Crockery

With high quality permanent pens you can use anything for your guests to sign or leave messages and dittos on, even drawings can be done with short poems or paragraphs from songs that mean something special to you both and make you smile for many years to come.