Snapshots of Moments in Time

I believe very strongly that a wedding isn’t just about making a commitment in front of our friends and family, but it is about celebrating where we came from and where we’re going. Thus, I’d like to have old family pictures around the venue to show pictures of our families, baby pictures, etc.

Photo by: Laurie Bailey on Laura via

I’ve seen some really great walls and displays that people have used.

Southern weddings - ideas for displaying family photos
Photo by: Nathan Westerfield Photography on Southern Weddings via

Seriously, aren’t they so freaking cute?

Photo by: Nancy Ray on Southern Weddings via

Our venue has a bit of a built in method to hold pictures. In the cocktail hour area, there is a mantle that wraps around the room. I’m thinking of just placing the pictures around the mantle so it will be a nice background for our guests to enjoy while sipping their amazing cocktails and awkwardly making small talk. They will have the time to walk around and see everything if they chose to, but no one would force them to if they weren’t interested.


In terms of categories, I was originally thinking of:

  1. Baby pictures of me
  2. Baby pictures of PBear
  3. Family pictures (old wedding pictures, old family pictures of various relatives and older generations, ways of showing that we don’t live in a bubble, etc) of my family
  4. Family pictures of PBear’s family
  5. Pictures of us together

All in all, five categories and I’m thinking five to six pictures from each category, making for 25 to 30 pictures total.


Now, I have absolutely no concept of whether of not that is an appropriate number of pictures. five to six pictures doesn’t sound that crazy, but 25 to 30 pictures seems like a lot. The pictures won’t be that big and they would be scattered around the place. I want the place to feel like we’re getting married in our own home…you know if we were rich people from Downton Abbey. But I don’t want it to be overwhelming, as well.

Are you planning to display family pictures? How did you organize it? Anyone have a good source for cheap frames?


Mrs. Panda

Boston, MA
Wedding Date:
June 2013
Enough Dilly-Dallying
Meeting of the Parents

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  1. Guest Icon Guest
    futuremrshockey, Guest @ 8:58 am

    What a great idea! I dont think that is to many pictures at all! We are not having assigned seating so we are just putting pictures of past generation family weddings on the tables instead of table numbers. Our venue also has a couple of trees we are going to hang pictures of our relationship on.

  2. Member
    beckys0 2263 posts, Buzzing bee @ 9:00 am

    I love it! I think once you start putting them up 25-30 won’t seem like too many- that’s a pretty large mantle area to fill up!

  3. Member
    Miss Ariel 83 posts, Worker bee @ 9:15 am

    I made a photo guestbook that included all the types of photos you mentioned that was a big hit. One of my favorite photos is of my grandma and moh’s mom ,going through the book together. My only regret with it is that I scanned so many family photos, some of my favorites didn’t make it in.

  4. msmongoose Member
    msmongoose 264 posts, Helper bee @ 9:34 am

    I love this idea–I’m considering doing something similar. My first step is to try to find some cheap, vintage picture frames. I’ve got to check out Homegoods or TJ Maxx one of these days.

  5. bracelet Member
    Mrs. Bracelet 279 posts, Helper bee @ 9:37 am

    I got several mid-price frames in Germany, a few nice ones at PotteryBarn, and then filled in the gaps with frames from Walmart. Just sleek black ones or brushed metal. Target also carries nice silver-plated frames.

  6. Member
    mrsjjc 246 posts, Helper bee @ 9:41 am

    We displayed photos of all the married and engaged couples who came to our wedding — basically, celebrating the institution of marriage in a visual form.

    All our frames were metal or metal-toned (silver, gold, brass), and we purchased most of them for a dollar apiece by hitting up thrift stores and Dollar Tree. You’d be surprised how cute the frames are from Dollar Tree — they’re cheap plastic, but they LOOK good, which is all I wanted.

  7. Member
    MrsKeAloha 1044 posts, Bumble bee @ 10:26 am

    We had a display of all grandparents brothers sisters parents aunts uncles and wedding party wedding photos. We wanted to show the variety of wedding styles, from court weddings, big fancy, cabin outdoor and beach. We had them displayed near guest book. On the cheap… I used my frames around the house, also some of my mothers frames and picked some up on clearance and at dollar store. I ran out of frames and a friend who lived near our wedding city brought some from home. many of the pics I gave back to the couple but I told them I’d mail it. That way i didn’t give away others frames.

  8. Member
    purpeley 84 posts, Worker bee @ 1:43 pm

    Frames are actually surprisingly cheap at antique/thrifty type stores. Sometimes they’re a little beat up, but I think that adds to the character!

  9. Member
    mrsmayabee 118 posts, Blushing bee @ 2:04 pm

    We had a picture frame display at our wedding. I left my mom and my MIL in charge of it. They said it was a really fun bonding experience for them. We used not only single-picture frames but a number of frames that had multiple picture slots. If you go during a sale at Michael’s/AC Moore AND use a coupon, you can usually get a good deal. Ikea also does cheap-er frames. And then for the holidays we re-used the frames to gift wedding pictures to our families. Win!

    Here’s a link to some of our wedding photos: You’ll see the frame display in the background of the reception dancing pictures at the end.

  10. bat Member
    bat 285 posts, Helper bee @ 3:42 pm

    I love this idea and hope to do something similar: in lieu of the picture slideshow (love seeing the picture, but one doesn’t really fit into the timing of our day!). I definitely don’t think that many pictures is too many!!

  11. mspony Member
    mspony 9265 posts, Buzzing Beekeeper @ 6:42 pm

    Downtoon Abbey reference made my day :)

  12. panda Member
    Mrs. Panda 1359 posts, Bumble bee @ 2:50 pm

    @futuremrshockey: Ooh that sounds like it’ll be absolutely gorgeous
    @BeckyS0: I sure hope you’re right!
    @Miss Ariel: that’s really sweet. I hope we have a moment like that as well. I do worry that I’ll have a million favorites, that it’ll be hard to pick which ones get in.
    @Miss Mongoose: @Mrs. Bracelet: @purpeley: thank you! I have a starting point as to where to look!
    @MrsJJC: that’s really sweet, we don’t really have that many married/engaged couples coming to our wedding, but if we did, that sounds like so much fun
    @MrsKeAloha: that sounds like a good idea, I have to see what types of frames I have sitting aruond
    @Anj: your wedding pictures are beautiful! I really love the display!
    @Miss Bat: Yeah a picture slideshow just didn’t seem to really fit the flow of our wedding either, I think this is a good compromise
    @Mrs. Pony: =) yay

  13. graywolf Member
    graywolf 725 posts, Busy bee @ 11:16 am

    your venue seems a lot like ours and i was thinking of doing this for cocktail hour too! i think it’d be subtle and maybe some people might not notice it, but would be cool when they did.

  14. Member
    missmovies 351 posts, Helper bee @ 6:55 am

    Love the idea and your venue! Also check out the goodwill; I always find gorgeous old frames there. They sometimes need a coat of paint, but the end result is always fantastic! We are considering something similar, but haven’t yet figured out the logistics at our venue.

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