Friday, January 29, 2010

Weddings, Etc.: Creative Guest Book Alternatives

Confession... I don't like guest books. Guests don't like them (I know I'm not the only one here!) and couples just tuck them away on a bookshelf or in a box labeled "Wedding Stuff." Well, that isn't the case any longer. Guest books are no longer just books but can be pieces of art and decor for your home and I couldn't be happier to bring you a few of my favorite guest book alternatives for this edition of Weddings, Etc.

Type It, The Old Fashioned Way... If your middle name should be vintage, than your guest book should be a typewriter. A vintage typewriter that is. Etsy is brimming with them and vintage aficionados have begun to put these near extinct type tools to work at their weddings. Not only does it make a great prop, but if you find a working one (see these Etsy gems below), guests can type their message for a unique way to send their well wishes.

{From Left: Typewriter Guest Book Photo by Olivia Leigh Photographie via Ruffled, Manual Typewriter by Thrifty Lucy via Etsy, Corona Typewriter by Old World Order via Etsy}

Paint It... I saw this next idea in Modern Bride a few years ago and it's probably my favorite idea on here, especially if your a creative couple. For this fascinating alternative, your guests won't write their well wishes on paper, but rather collectively contribute to a painting, each painting a square on a gridded image. This is so fun for a cocktail hour activity and makes a great piece to hang in your home post-nuptials. Artistically arrange the paintbrushes and provided fun paint colors, like these eco-friendly options from The Bees Knees.
{From Left: Guest Paint Project via One Love Photo, Paint Brush Display via Apartment Therapy, Eco-Friendly Paint by The Bees Knees}

Write It, With A Twist... If you still like the idea of a guest book then consider doing this: replace the traditional book with a coffee table book. Let me explain... Purchase a coffee table book on a topic you and your fiance like, see a few suggestions below, and have your guests sign inside the cover. Then you have an interesting book to place in your living room, rather than a small one nobody will be looking to pick up.

DIY It... Not interested in those I pictured above? Well here's a few little DIY projects (and other ideas) that can also work fantastically for remembering the loved ones you shared your celebration with. Wedding wish trees are very popular right now. Try this DIY wedding wish tree  or this twist on one from Lovli DayMartha Stewart offered an idea that isn't so much a guest book, but an interactive way for guests to remember and reveal when they first met you by placing flags (with their names) on the year you were first introduced. 

And this last idea (far right) is very different, a little pricier, but can act as a memory that hangs somewhere besides your wall. It's a chandelier from Pottery Barn, that comes with just the bare bones-- and 35 clips. The purpose? They suggest hanging photographs or holiday cards, but I immediately thought "Guest Book." Why not provide different sized cards on different delicate papers (It comes with a few, but I recommend crafting your own) where your guests can say their thoughts and clip it to the chandelier. What a great conversation piece in an office, guest bedroom or even your dining room if your daring enough!
{DIY Manzanita Wish Tree via Wedding Chicks, Flag Conversation Starter via Martha Stewart, Wedding Tree by Lovli Day via Etsy, DIY Chandelier by Pottery Barn}

Aspiring to Inspire,



  1. Just stumbled across your blog. Looking forward to following along! Love the "wedding tree" idea for a guest book. I've been thinking of doing something similar.

  2. Wedding tree sounds like a lovely idea. I'd like to share a free event planning software that I heard recently. Its cloud-based technology makes it easy to work together with your team. It's like an all-in-one event management system that can show you your wedding in virtual reality before it happens.


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