I’ve had guestbooks on the brain for a while, and I knew I wanted something that would become a keepsake after the day, not just sit in a box and gather dust for 50 years. Maybe I’m weird in this, but signing a “traditional” guestbook, where guests just sign their names on the next available line, has always reminded me of signing a funeral register.
NO FUN ALLOWED / Photo via Carter Funeral Home
Not exactly a vibe I want at the wedding. Plus, why would we just want to read our guests’ names line by line? We wouldn’t, is the answer. If we want a list of who was there we can keep a copy of our finalized guest list. No, I wanted a guestbook with a bit more personality and meaning than that.
I actually got my idea for the guestbook in December of 2010, way before we were even engaged. (That happened a lot.) We were at Mr. Wizard’s cousin’s wedding, and they had a giant photo mat for everyone to sign. I thought it was the cutest idea—guests could write messages, draw little pictures, and whatever else, and then the couple could hang it with a wedding photo in their home to always have their guests’ well wishes there on display. I loved it! Much better than writing your name on a line in a book.
So when it came time to decide on our own guestbook, I knew I wanted to do a photo mat. Mr. Wizard liked the idea as well. I headed to Michaels and found a framed 16×20″ mat, with space for an 8×10″ photo, for 55% off—it came to $13.49. Score! I also picked up a little easel for it to sit on, to make it more of a display and less of a…thing-lying-on-the-table. I got it in gold, to match our wedding colors. (The photo frame will stay black because that matches our home better, which is, of course, where this will eventually end up.)
I ran home excitedly and assembled the mock-up. When our guests walk into the reception, this is what they’ll see:
Personal photo / I’ll tell you about those flowers soon!
Except imagine it with our photo (I didn’t want to take the plastic off in case the mat were to get dirty, so I couldn’t put our photo in it yet), plus a pretty cup full of pens and a little sign that says “Please sign our photo mat!” Actually, you don’t have to imagine it, because I Photoshop’ed it for you:
Ooooh, hive, this makes me so freakin’ excited! This was our very first “complete” project with all the pieces (well, we don’t actually have them all, but they’ll look nearly identical to the Photoshop’ed version—I’m even buying that exact pen cup!), and it is SO exciting to see it all coming together, instead of just having bits and pieces and having to imagine the final product. I’m relieved to say that this came out exactly how I had pictured it in my head. Here’s hoping the rest of the wedding turns out that way…
What kind of guestbook are you having? Were you excited when things started coming together?