Photo-Booth Speech Bubbles, Minus the Chalk

I am so flippin’ excited that we’re going to have a photo booth at our wedding! And yeah, I know it’s one of those things that’s been done everywhere at this point, but I honestly don’t care about that in the slightest. The idea of giving our guests a fun, non-dancing activity during our reception is totally worth it to me. (Not that we don’t want people to dance, of course. We just want them to have options.) Our photo-booth package includes a box of props, which is great because it means we don’t have to raid the Halloween stores on November first to find our own (although that did sound kinda fun). But we still wanted to find a way to personalize things just a bit.

I’d seen pictures of those awesome chalkboard speech bubbles, and I thought that might be our answer. But when I talked to Mr. FW about it he seemed concerned. It’s not that he thought it was a bad idea, no no. He just thought it would make me freak out to be near chalkboards on our wedding day. See…I have a bit of a chalk phobia. For realz, just typing out the word “chalk” makes me shiver. I can’t stand anything about it—the way it feels in your hand, the way it sounds when you’re writing with it, the dust it creates when you erase it. Ugh…seriously, it’s a problem.

So Mr. FW went searching for alternatives, and he discovered the ingeniousness of white-board contact paper. Yep, it’s contact paper that you can write on with dry-erase markers. You can probably purchase it a lot of places, but we’re online people so we bought ours on Amazon.


{GoWrite dry erase rolls on Amazon, $8.99}

Mr. FW banged out two bubbles in just a few hours, and each step was pretty simple. Here’s a little tutorial we put together for you.


We have a lot of cardboard boxes around the house lately, so Mr. FW cut up a few of those to use as the backing for our bubbles. He sketched out both a speech bubble and a thought bubble, then he got to cutting.



First he cut out the bubbles, then he used those as templates to cut out the white-board paper. A little note here: We found out the hard way that the contact paper isn’t super thick, so we could see the writing on the cardboard through the paper. Mr. FW said that if he was doing it over again he’d also cut out a single piece of printer paper to attach first to the cardboard, under the contact paper.


To give them just a little extra oomph, I inked on a simple blue border with a Sharpie marker.


Mr. FW attached some paint stir sticks (is that what those are called?) to the back, and then they were finished! We haven’t tested them yet with the dry-erase markers, but I feel pretty certain they’re going to be fine because all the reviews of this contact paper were very complimentary. Just in case, though, we’re packing up a small spray bottle of cleaner and napkins. Now I just can’t wait to see how creative our guests will be with these!

Any other chalk phobes out there? Also, I can imagine a lot of other uses for these little bubbles besides a photo booth. What would you use them for?


Ms. Ferris Wheel

San Francisco
Wedding Date:
November 2011
A Keepsake?
The Cheetahs Got Married!

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  1. Member
    Ms.Bookworm 215 posts, Helper bee @ 6:17 am

    I’m totally with you on the chalk phobia. I hate it. It’s making my hands feel dry and nasty just talking about it. As a kid I did gymnastics and we had to use chalk all the time…it was awful!

    Very cut speech bubbles!!! That’s going to be super fun!

  2. hyena Member
    hyena 2537 posts, Sugar bee @ 6:23 am

    I didn’t know you could get white board contact paper … so useful! These are cute!

  3. ladyfingers Member
    ladyfingers 1257 posts, Bumble bee @ 6:30 am

    These are awesome! I would have never thought of using dry erase contact paper.

  4. Member
    BreeninBoston 160 posts, Blushing bee @ 6:47 am

    These speech bubbles are so cute- what a great way to get around chalk phobia!

  5. porcupine Member
    porcupine 633 posts, Busy bee @ 6:50 am

    These are awesome!

  6. Member
    ktell16 31 posts, Newbee @ 6:59 am

    Thanks for the tutorial, Ferris Wheel! I just pinned this and will be trying it myself for my photo booth :)

  7. Member
    MissSharp 32 posts, Newbee @ 7:00 am

    those look great!

  8. Member
    TamJam 211 posts, Helper bee @ 7:05 am

    Just knowing this paper exists gave me some great ideas! Your bubbles are super cute!

  9. msfox Member
    msfox 1635 posts, Bumble bee @ 7:29 am

    Genius! So interesting about your chalk phobia.. but you certainly found an awesome way to overcome it! And I’m with ya on the photobooth.. don’t care if it’s over done, I LOVE it!

  10. sunhat Member
    sunhat 1453 posts, Bumble bee @ 7:36 am

    Um these are freaking awesome! I found us chalkboard speech bubbles at JoAnn’s for $1 each! I was going to have my dad cut them for us out of plywood and then paint them w/ chalk paint but for $1 a piece, it’s another thing off the list. I didn’t want ppl touching regualr chalk while they were all dressed up so we are using chalk markers. But I’m pretty envious of your bubbles!

  11. Guest Icon Guest
    texasbride, Guest @ 7:48 am

    great idea!!! I love it.

  12. mspony Member
    mspony 9265 posts, Buzzing Beekeeper @ 7:55 am

    These look great and you don’t have to deal with chalk, win-win!

  13. Member
    redherring 1815 posts, Buzzing bee @ 8:30 am

    Make sure to test that the writing is visible. I had a dry erase board with markers at our photobooth, and the writing isn’t even visible in a bunch of pictures, leaving me with what looks like our guests holding a blank dry erase board.

  14. honey Member
    honey 1684 posts, Bumble bee @ 10:06 am

    These are SO cool!!

  15. ticket Member
    ticket 501 posts, Busy bee @ 10:37 am

    Such a great idea! I’m with you on the chalk hatred.

  16. Member
    hisbahamamama 994 posts, Busy bee @ 11:26 am

    So great! I think the blue border really makes it look whimisical and pop off the picture! Your going to have great photos!

  17. Member
    sarap2012 1753 posts, Buzzing bee @ 3:00 pm

    wow that’s awesome! I might have to try this! Thanks for the tutorial!

  18. ferriswheel Member
    ferriswheel 356 posts, Helper bee @ 3:14 pm

    @Ms.Bookworm: Ugh, I could never have been a gymnast – for that reason, among many others. 😉

    @ktell16: Yay! Hope it works out for you.

    @TamJam: Right? There are so many uses for this!

    @Miss Sunhat: OMG, $1?! I’m so jealous. For that price, maybe I could’ve found a way to deal with the chalk. Can’t wait to see yours in action!

    @redherring: Oh my gosh, thanks for the head’s up! I will definitely test them first now.

    @hisbahamamama: Aww… yay for whimsical!

  19. parasol Member
    parasol 2955 posts, Sugar bee @ 3:47 pm

    These are great, FW! And chalk totally kind of freaks me out as well. Though I swallowed my discomfort and featured several chalkboards throughout our wedding, and it all worked out. Though the dry erase boards are a great alternative!

  20. ferriswheel Member
    ferriswheel 356 posts, Helper bee @ 10:12 pm

    @Mrs. Parasol: So relieving to know I’m not the only person out there with a chalk phobia. And good for you for facing your chalk fear head-on. :-)

  21. Guest Icon Guest
    Jill Smith, Guest @ 10:36 am

    That is amazing! Just ordered myself a roll – it was way too easy!
    I can’t wait to see what the guests come up with in the photobooth!
    Thanks for a great post

  22. ferriswheel Member
    ferriswheel 356 posts, Helper bee @ 10:45 pm

    @Jill Smith: Oh yay! Glad this was so helpful for you. :-)

  23. Guest Icon Guest
    Szasza, Guest @ 5:04 pm

    Thank you so much for your step by step instructions! This was very helpful, and we are definitely using this for our daughter’s wedding. Unfortunately no one has heard of the white-board contact paper here in Canada( not at Michaels or at Staples), but as you mentioned I have ordered it through ( doesn’t have it), so thank you so much again!!!

  24. ferriswheel Member
    ferriswheel 356 posts, Helper bee @ 1:56 am

    @Szasza: So glad you found this helpful! I’m sure yours will come out beautifully!

  25. Guest Icon Guest
    Thambu Nadesu, Guest @ 2:52 pm

    I actually feel that this can be very helpful and can be a very useful way to try to make speech bubbles for many people to try it in a resourceful way to proceed for example French projects and I just feel that I can try it one day if that I have a project or I can try it now and practice for a project just in case .

  26. Guest Icon Guest
    Lisa, Guest @ 8:51 am

    These are adorable! I am going to use them in my classroom…as a dual purpose item: promote writing skills AND keep the noise down. (No, I will not be using them ALL day! LOL) When we do have a time slot for it, students will “write their thoughts or what they’d like to say”, but of course it can’t be done out loud…except with their dry erase marker. Thanks for the idea!

  27. ferriswheel Member
    ferriswheel 356 posts, Helper bee @ 11:02 am

    @Lisa: So glad you like them! Hope they work out in your classroom. :-)

  28. Guest Icon Guest
    MS. V, Guest @ 4:31 pm

    Where could I buy the dry-erase contact paper?

  29. Guest Icon Guest
    Jennifer Boyd, Guest @ 3:37 pm

    I absolutely love this idea. Thank you so much for sharing!!!

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