Not all of the fun is over after your wedding and honeymoon. Once you return, you get to pour over your photographer's pictures, decide which keepsakes from your wedding you want to store, and read the thoughtful notes in your guest book. Unfortunately, this collection of well wishes gets stored in the back of the closet with a dried up bouquet and unused extra invitations.
1. Vintage Atlas
Have your guests sign the pages of a vintage road atlas, highlighting the cities they are traveling from or destinations they know the couple is interested in exploring. Great idea for brides and grooms that have either a case of wanderlust or an appreciation of vintage books.
Vintage road atlases, various prices, etsy.com
2. Painted Globe
We love bookshelves when the rows of books are broken up with fun knick-knacks and modern treasures. Use this chalkboard painted globe as a guest book on your wedding day, and then afterwards on the shelves in your den or home office.
Chalkboard Globe, $61; etsy.com
3. Re-Use Wine Bottles
Whether you "message in a bottle" your guest book by reusing old bottles (below, left) or have your guests sign the labels of bottles to be opened in the future (below, right), this is a perfect idea for a vineyard wedding. Make sure to include metallic Sharpies if you want your guests to sign the actual bottle, so that the ink shows up on the dark glass.
Wedding Guest Wine Labels, $15; etsy.com
Sharpie Metallic Gold Fine Point Markers, 6 Pack, $15; amazon.com
4. Polaroids & Washi Tape
Encourage your guests to make a traditional guest book completely unforgettable by DIY-ing one for you! Have them take funny pics with the Polaroid and then affix it to a scrapbook with one of many types of washi tape. Use a scrapbook with plenty of space for them to share stories, or help them out with pre-written questions at the top of each page.
Polaroid Instant Camera, $120; amazon.com
Innocheer 12-by-12-inch Scrapbook; $28; amazon.com
Building Chrissy Glitter Foil Washi Tape, 6 rolls, $13; amazon.com
5. Advice Coasters
It can never hurt to have a little helpful marital advice at the ready. On your welcome table have a basket of blank coasters for guests to fill out with advice and funny memories. You'll end up using these, especially during the first year as you are using your wine glasses and getting settled into your new digs together.
Printed Party Wedding Advice Cards, pack of 40, $13; amazon.com
6. The Sweetest Dictionary
Never met a game of Scrabble or a crossword puzzle that you couldn't dominate? Then chances are that you live for your dictionary. Place colored felt-tip pins out with signage explaining that each guests should circle a word that describes the two of you, and then add a little note in the margin. The result will be the most beloved dictionary you will ever own.
Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, $13 - $18; amazon.com
7. Shadowbox Art
Like a fun game of Plinko, these wooden hearts are signed and then dropped into this bright blue shadowbox (below) to be displayed behind a thin pane of glass. Many different shapes are available for both the frame style and the wooden tokens. Find one that symbolizes the two of you, or DIY one that suits your wedding theme!
Ginger Ray Boho Drop Top Wooden Frame, $30; amazon.com
8. Modern Prints
Find a cool print of your monogram (this one below uses the couple's fingerprints) with plenty of white space and have your friends and family sign it. Later, you can proudly display it in your new home (it's important to pick one that will mesh with your decor style). If you like this idea, but don't want people to sign on the actual print, have them sign either the back of the print or the frame.
FlutterbyePrints Fingerprint Guestbook, $45; etsy.com
9. Game Board
Who doesn't love a good game night with the besties? If you regularly have these parties with your nearest and dearest, then it makes complete sense for you to use a game board (or Jenga blocks, or puzzle pieces--whatever you play) for your guest book. Each time you bring out Monopoly you'll remember all the warm memories from your big day!
Hasbro Monopoly Classic Game, $20; amazon.com
10. Snail Mail
Love getting something from the postman? Ask your mom (or any other patient and indulging friend or relative) to take home the stacks of postcards your guests signed and have her mail a couple to you both each week. Remember to provide stamps!
Koolemon Vintage Flowers and Plants Postcards, set of 30, $8; amazon.com
11. Autographed Vinyl
If you two are all about the music, scour garage sales and find old albums to use for your guest book. After all, you wouldn't want to use your favorites for this task. Afterwards, you can create a modern piece of wall art to hang over your stereo and record storage.
Vintage vinyl record albums, various prices; etsy.com
12. Nostalgic Notes
Provide your guests with a Mad Libs-style questionnaire. After the wedding, collect them all and make a book out of them by placing two back-to-back in plastic sleeves in a binder style album. It's a casual and humorous way to look back on your wedding--sort of like a yearbook.
InvitationHouse Gold Heart Marriage Advice Libs, set of 48, $15; amazon.com
13. Guided Questions
Let your guests vote on the big decisions coming up in your new life together by giving them guided questions, such as naming your first pet, anticipating when you will add to your family, or where you will live in 10 years. Some guests might struggle with having something to say on a blank page. Here, they will appreciate being given a topic.
14. Holiday Decor
For your first major holiday as newlyweds you probably won''t have much moolah to spend on decor. For a Christmas idea (great for weddings scheduled directly before the holiday season), buy glass ball ornaments in colors you want for your tree. Provide your guests with paint markers and Sharpies so that they can draw or sign one. We bet that at least a few will be so well done that they will take up permanent residence on your tree each year.
Vickerman Gold Shiny/Matte Finish Christmas Ornaments, set of 50, $13; target.com
Sharpie Fine Point Paint Markers, set of 3, $9; amazon.com
15. Date Night Inspiration
How many newlywed spats begin with the question, "What do you want to do?" Save yourself those woes, and draw an idea from a jar of ideas given to you by your wedding guests.
MessickVinylWorking Wedding Date Jar, $30; etsy.com