What is the purpose of a guest book at a wedding? Are guest books still used at weddings? Do you really need a guest book at all? These are just a few of the frequently asked questions asked by couples while they’re preparing the big list of things not to forget at your wedding.
Today we’re going to talk about whether you really need a guest book, if guest books are still used at weddings, and what you can expect for modern + cute ideas for guest books at weddings to inspire you. Let’s get started!
Guest Books at Weddings
To begin: are guest books still used at weddings? The short answer: YES! More couples are using guest books than ever before, most likely because of how many fun and alternative ideas for guest books.
And everyone loves a keepsake that includes the signatures and well-wishes of your loved ones.
What is the purpose of a guest book? A book or alternative is used as a way to record signatures of your guests in attendance at your wedding. Many times, it is also a way to have guests write-in their addresses, which is helpful to have for the future when sending your thank you cards (and future correspondence, like birthday or holiday cards to keep in touch). It is quick, easy, and a nice memento to have from your wedding, even if you choose the most basic, simplest wedding guest book.
Where do you place your guest book? The guest book should be placed in a well-lit area at the entry of your reception. Having your guest book at a visible area of your reception will ensure guests do not miss it. Because you would rather skip a guest book completely than have a guest book that no one signed!
To draw more attention to your guest book, you can include these guestbook signs by ZCreateDesign.
And this acrylic style for modern weddings (from the same shop here).
Your guest book — whether a classic book style or alternative — should be placed on a flat table with a few pens located next to it.
One often overlooked detail: what kind of pens to use.
Pens for Guest Books at Weddings
The best pens for guest books at weddings (and believe me, I’ve tried many!) is the ultra-fine point permanent marker. You can get a large pack here or a two-pack of guest book pens here. (and it is best to have a bunch on-hand).
What makes these the ultimate guest book pens? Easy: they’re permanent, so they won’t rub off or fade over time. This pen is easy to write with, featuring an fine point tip that feels like a marker but writes like a pen. It dries instantly and doesn’t smudge. In addition, it can be used on almost any surface, so it won’t transfer, rub-off, resists water, and won’t smudge. It also won’t bleed through the page of most books (but test it first if you’re using a guest book with thin pages).
How much does a guest book cost?
You can choose any kind of guest book that suits your style, your wedding theme, and your budget. You can get guest book cards (an alternative) for as low as $12.99 or spend upwards to $100 for a custom leather bound guest book.
The bottom line: it doesn’t matter that kind of book you choose for guests to sign in. All that matters is that you like it!
Here are a few examples of classic guest books for weddings.
Personalized Hard Cover Guest Books
This beautiful dusty blue book is stylish and custom-made for you! By Paper Peach Shop.
This lovely style is made with gold foil or rose gold foil on the cover in an elegant style, as shown here. By SipHipHooray.
Photo Guest Book
Tell guests to strike a pose with one of these photo guest book signs by Rich Design Co.
Guests take a photo, use the adhesive to add their photo, and sign in your guest book. I love this keepsake idea. Books by StudioTenebris in a wide variety of styles and colors.
Leather Guest Book
This beautiful leather-bound guest book is by Gallery Leather.
Ooh, this luxe velvet guest book is a beautiful style! Available in many colors to match your decor. By ClaireMagnolia.
Guest Book with Prompts
This is a classic book style, but it’s so much more! This interactive style is a wedding guest book with prompts, which makes for a very fun and unique collection of well-wishes, sweet sentiments, and more from your loved ones. It is by Lily and Val.
Acrylic Guest Book Sign
This acrylic trend is taking off and we’re loving the way it looks! It makes a great acrylic sign for your guests. It can be placed flat on a table or displayed on an easel like this. By ZCreateDesign.
Wooden Cover Guest Book
This guest book makes a perfect choice for a rustic wedding. The hard wooden cover features a personalized front with your names and the wedding date. By WeddingsByEli.
What kind of guest book should you buy?
From classic guest books that have a binding and pages (lined or unlined) to guest book cards with prompts, there are several alternative ideas for guest books at weddings today. Here are a few suggestions so you know what is available when you’re making the decision on which kind to get for your event.
Alternative Guest Books for Weddings
This puzzle idea? My new favorite! I wish Minted would’ve had their new custom puzzles when I got married. They’re such a cute idea (and I love doing puzzles).
Puzzle Guest Book
This custom guest book is a puzzle! Yes, your favorite photo is turned into a high-quality, beautifully-made puzzle from here for a fun guest book alternative idea. You can choose a 60-piece puzzle or 252-piece puzzle, depending on the size of your guest list.
The assembled puzzle measures 10″ x 14″ can be signed on the back of the puzzle pieces (again, use these guest book pens!)
There are many beautiful designs you can choose from for your puzzle guest book alternative, making it a one-of-a-kind gift you’ll enjoy putting together after the wedding. It arrives in a keepsake bag, box, and has minimal puzzle dust. You’ll also receive an artwork card included.
Here are a few cute examples of the new puzzle guest books from which you can choose.
To see more puzzles, shop here.
Whiskey Barrel Guest Book Alternative
This whiskey barrel lid is a fun and unique option for a guest book! By HackInGrain.
Also loving this whiskey barrel guest book by WhiskeyMade.
Memory Block Guest Book
Stack ’em! Guests sign this classic game right onto the wood blocks. By Ginger Ray.
These sweet papers are rolled like scrolls and inserted into this keepsake wooden box. By RusticLoveandWood.
This personalized wood guest book sign is one of my favorites! I love the way the script looks and the wedding date makes it extra-special. By SpringMeadowCo.
This rustic tree is an artistic option you’ll love as decor at home after the wedding. By GuestBookEnvy.
3D Guest Book Alternatives
Instead of a book, these framed 3-d tokens are a fun way to invite guests to sign in at your wedding. There are many themed guestbooks to choose from, like these three favorites at TokenGram. These picks are great for a travel themed wedding, starry night wedding, or baseball themed wedding, just to name a few.
Are you planning a travel themed wedding? This globe guestbook is a fun alternative to a book! I love this style and the gorgeous hand-lettering by SelahGraceDesigns.
Drop a heart-shaped wooden token into this mason jar for a sweet alternative to a book. By GingerRay.
Sign Guest Book
This is one of the most popular alternative ideas for guest books at weddings: a 3D mountain themed sign your guests can sign. This makes a lovely home decoration piece after the wedding. It is handmade by Small Town Timbers on Etsy.
Drop Box Guest Book
Instead of a classic signature book, guests use this alternative for guest books: a drop box! Sign a wooden heart and place it into the box. Cute idea. By Y&K Molish.
Similar to the sign alternative, a large monogram letter is one of the wildly popular guest book ideas for weddings this year. Your monogram — large and made of wood — is easy for guests to sign with names and short messages. You can get one like this by Celebrate With Us.
Guest Book Dish / Platter
This keepsake platter can be signed by guests and baked in your oven to seal those signatures forever! Your platter includes a marker. By BrushStrokePlates.
How To Make Your Own Guest Book for Under $20
Feeling crafty? If you’d like to make your own wedding guest book, here’s an easy way to do it for under 20 dollars.
• Buy a custom guest book decal from Oh Happy Party Co., starting at $3+
• Get a plain scrapbook from here or a local store
Just add the decal to your book (maybe you already have a blank journal you’d like to use) and you’re done! We recommend choosing a notebook, scrapbook, or photo album that is lined, so it is easier for guests to write on one line and it keeps everything neat and organized.
Where to Buy Guest Books for Weddings
To buy a guest book shown here or find out more details, simply click on a link of a shop or its image to purchase / get info + pricing.
So now that you know that guest books are still used at weddings, and you’re aware of the purpose or importance of one, we’d love to know: are you using a guest book at your wedding? If so, will it be a traditional guest book or do you prefer alternative ideas for guest books at weddings?
Tell us in the comment box below! And tell us which of these cool ideas for guest books are the ones you like the most for weddings this year.
P.S. Want more guest books? Sure thing! Here are some of our favorite related posts on the topic:
• Most Unique Guest Book Ideas
• Classic Guest Books