Photo Booth Speech Bubbles, Minus the Chalk

DIY Photo Booth Speech Bubbles

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 with some photo booth speech bubbles.

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. He thought we could use this stuff to create our photo booth speech bubbles.

contact paper tube

GoWrite dry erase rolls on Amazon

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.


  • dry erase contact paper (via Amazon)
  • cardboard
  • X-Acto knife
  • permanent marker

pieces of cardboard


Step 1: Trace your designs. 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.

cutting cardboard with xacto knife

cutting out cardboard speech bubble with xacto knife

Step 2: Cut out your photo booth speech bubbles. 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.

cardboard speech bubbles for photo booth

Step 3: Add a border. To give them just a little extra oomph, I inked on a simple blue border with a Sharpie marker.

photo booth speech bubbles on sticks

Step 4: Put the bubbles on sticks. 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 photo booth speech 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. 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

  2. ferriswheel Bee
    ferriswheel 356 posts, Helper bee @ 10:45 pm

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

  3. 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!!!

  4. ferriswheel Bee
    ferriswheel 356 posts, Helper bee @ 1:56 am

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

  5. 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 .

  6. 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!

  7. ferriswheel Bee
    ferriswheel 356 posts, Helper bee @ 11:02 am

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

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

    Where could I buy the dry-erase contact paper?

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

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

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