Katie Jaynes Photography Blog





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For Brides

November 12, 2020

Guest book Alternatives

Guest books are such a small part of the wedding day, that a lot of couples don’t even think about it until the last minute. We have loved seeing some creative, new ideas for guest book alternatives.

What’s the Purpose of a Guest Book at Your Wedding? 

That’s a great question that we didn’t think about until we were looking back at ours. 

First of all, it’s a sweet keepsake from your wedding that physically shows all the guests who loved you enough to come to your wedding. You can look back at those names and see all of the friends and family that made the trip to enjoy your special day (you can also have proof of those who didn’t show up). 

The guestbook also offers your guests a place to write a note of congratulations, advice, well-wishes, etc. Not everyone brings a gift or a card, and keeping a card from every guest would take A LOT of space. With a guest book, it brings all of the names and words of wisdom together. 

Wedding Guest Book Alternatives

Maybe you like the idea of your guests sharing advice and marking the day, but you want something unique and different. Great! Nobody says you have to use a traditional guest book. 

In fact, through the years of photographing weddings, we’ve seen a lot of really cool ideas.

1. Picture of The Happy Couple

This is something a lot of couples are starting to do because it serves two purposes. One, it helps you remember all your guests AND it makes a great piece to hang on the wall. 

Instead of using a traditional guest book, bet a BIG Canvas of your and your soon-to-be spouse printed (or even painted) and then leave it at the front of your ceremony spot. Be sure to choose a photo with lots of negative space so that there is plenty of room for writing!

After it’s all said and done and you’ve recovered from the excitement of your wedding, you can hang it up where you’ll always see it. We actually did this for our closest friends and family and had it out at our rehearsal dinner the night before our wedding for our family and friends to sign!

2. Personalized Puzzle 

This is a REALLY fun one with so many different options. We seen people use puzzles in a lot of different ways. 

One option is to get a plain wooden puzzle that has your initials and wedding date in the middle. Then put the blank pieces in a bucket at your ceremony with some black sharpies. Your guests get to sign their piece and then you put it all together. It’s sweet and looks amazing.

Another option is to get a customized puzzle with a picture of the happy couple. Then the guests get to pick their favorite piece and then leave some wisdom on it. 

3. Bible

This is a sweet and sentimental option. We have seen several couples use this option and allow guests to highlight their favorite verse and then sign their name beside it.

We have also seen the Journal Bibles with margins on the side of the pages, so people can write a little note with their name.

These days, you can find custom painted Bibles that are absolutely beautiful! Etsy has alot of these options to choose from. You can customize the cover and back cover with images or words that are personal to you. We had a bride have a local artist paint there’s with a view of Falls Park on it, where her groom proposed!

4. Wooden Bench

Some of our best friends had this option at their wedding. They had a friend make a small wooden bench for them and had all of their wedding guests sign it. It now sits in their home under the windows in their living room.

It’s such a neat addition to their home and its something that they will actually see everyday and get great use out of.


No matter what you choose, make sure to make it special and don’t be afraid to think outside the box!

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