Unique Wedding Guest Books

Traditional guests books can feel boring and outdated. Many brides and grooms wonder, what are we going to do with a book full of signatures after our wedding? Will we even look at it again?

In recent years, wedding designers, planners and couples themselves have come up with many creative guest books that are unique, interesting and more valuable to the bride and groom after their wedding than the traditional guest book.

There are guest books that can be used to decorate your first home together. They can be used in the kitchen, provide personalized wisdom for your first year of marriage or hold memories beyond just the names of your guests.

Lets start with guest books that decorate your home for years to come and remind you of that special day each time you look at them.  Here are just four ideas, but I came across many more in my search to bring you the best home décor guest books:

Up next we have words of wisdom, advice, well wishes and memories. This is just a sampling of what can be found through an online search:

Photo Guest Books:

Polaroid guest books are very popular right now, as the Fuji Instax Mini Polaroid camera has just recently come on the photography scene. You can buy film for these cameras that have a space under the photo for your guests to sign their names or write you a special note. You can find film with white borders or a selection of colored or patterned borders. Once you have the camera and the film of your choice you just have to decide what you want the guests to do with the photos they take. You could provide a blank memory book, glue or tap and have the guest stick them in a book for you.  Another option is to have a place for the guest to display their photos through out the reception. (As shown below.) This type of guest books provides you with photos of all of your guests that you can enjoy for years to come.

Cookbook Guest Books
This one is very easy to accomplish.  Purchase one to three cook books you would use in your kitchen and have a sign made that asks your guests to leave a note next to a recipe they think you should try. Then through out the years when you’re using your cookbooks or looking for new recipes you will happen upon the notes. Not only do these create wonderful memories they are also very useful.

Some advice about guest books:

Much of the time guest books are over-looked by the guests and by the end of the wedding they don’t contain as many signatures, notes, photos or memories as youhoped. To make sure a majority of your guests sign or participate in your guest book, its best to have a friend or relative take charge of the guest book area. Ask them to collect presents and then request that the guests participate in the guest book. This will result in a more accurate accounting of who attended your wedding.

There are so many creative guest book ideas that I have barely scratched the surface. I hope this helps you to start thinking about what creative ways you can capture your wedding day and all of your family and friends who have taken the time to celebrate with you.

Visit my website www.bethericksondesings.com for more creative ideas, wedding, birthday, anniversary and graduation invitation designs and more! Feel free to contact me anytime for help with your next event!


The art of preserving memories

Preserving memories is important for most everyone, so that you can look back on them and remember important milestones in your own life, your children's lives or your family history. There are many ways to preserve those memories. You can create a scrapbook, digital photo album, a photo-book, a collage, a shadow box and much more.

I was married to a wonderful man just about a year ago. After our wedding we had a lot of things left over from decorations, extra invitations to pieces of lace from my dress that we don't really have any use for, except preserving the memories of that day. For about a year now those items, have just been sitting in my craft room collecting dust. I knew I wanted to do something with them, but it wasn't until I started this blog dedicated to “all things creative” that the idea of a shadowbox came to mind. I had never created a shadow-box before and decided it would be fun to give it a try.

The bonus of having a blog is that sharing my ideas with you, my readers is helping me to actually follow through on some of them, which is fun for me and helpful for you. In the following tutorial I will layout the steps I took to create my shadowbox in hopes that you can create one of your own by following along. I hope you enjoy the process of preserving your memories.


Step One: Purchase a shadow box. I found mine at Hobby Lobby, but any craft store will do. I also found some on Etsy that I really liked, but for the sake of time I did not go that route. The shadowbox I loved on Etsy is found here www.etsy.com/listing/252148720/stained-shadow-box-shadow-box-frame.

Step Two: Open your shadowbox, so that you have the back of it separated from the glass and frame. The back of a shadowbox may be foam and velvet, a hard wooden surface or a cork-board. Depending on what the back of your shadow box is made out of will determine how you affix your memorabilia.

Step Three: Start mocking up how you want your memorabilia arranged. Do not permanently attach anything until you are certain you have it arranged just how you want it. My shadowbox contains some patterned paper I liked, lace pieces from my dress, parts of our cake topper, an extra save-the-date and an extra invitation. I also purchased at Michaels the metal letters you see placed against the glass to form our initials. One way to add depth and interest to your shadow box is to put an item or two against the glass as seen in my photos.

Step Four: After you have decided how all the pieces will be placed, you can start attaching them to the back of your shadow box using pins or hot glue. (As you can see I changed the position and amount of items i was using as I started affixing them tomy shadow-box) After everything is attached assemble the shadow box and enjoy your work.

I hope you found this project fun and easy to accomplish! I certainly enjoyed making my shadow-box and now my husband and I can look back on some of our wedding memories and remember that wonderful day.

You can also use shadowboxes to capture the milestone memories of your child, like graduation, birthdays, awards won, trips taken and much more. Don't forget to visit www.bethannerickson.etsy.com to see what new printables we have on sale to use in your next craft project!

Coming next week: The art of mason jars and chalkboard paint