Take the book out of guest book with options that double as home decoration.

Is It Ever Too Late to Send a Sympathy Card?
Credit: Anson Smart
  • If your wedding has a theme, extend it to the guest book. For example, for a seaside exchange of vows, place a bounty of shells on a table with a gold-leaf marker and a footed glass bowl. Guests can sign the shells and place them inside the bowl. Getting married in a ski town? Order a pair of vintage wooden skis, or even an old sled, from eBay and have guests sign it instead.
  • Provide smooth rocks from a sentimental location (perhaps the lake where you first vacationed) and ask guests to sign them with paint-style oil markers or enamel-based metallic pens (check with supplier). Place them in a glass cylinder, then display.
  • Prop a canvas from an art-supply store on an easel and place paint, brushes, and felt-tip markers nearby for guests to sign and illustrate. You’ll take home an original piece of art.
  • Place a variety of pre-stamped postcards on a table so guests can write you short notes that will greet you when you return home from your honeymoon. Open one a day for as long as they’ll last, or save them and read them on your first anniversary.
  • Provide a stack of construction-paper strips (like the kind used in grade school to make paper chains) and ask each guest to write a message on one link that he or she then attaches to the chain. Beginning the day after your honeymoon, remove a link and read it together to relive your big day.
  • For a destination wedding, hang a vintage map of a region (see vintagemaps.com) in a special place at the reception and ask guests to sign it. Frame the map and hang it in a place of pride at home.
  • Purchase a bisque platter from a local pottery shop and ask guests to sign it with a special pencil or marker (ask the pottery expert for advice), then return it to the shop to have it glazed and refired. Hang it on a wall, or rest it on a key piece of furniture.
  • Pick up a gorgeous coffee table book that relates to your interests as a couple or to your wedding destination, then encourage guests to jot down notes in the page margins.
  • Create a makeshift photo booth with a digital camera, a tripod, and a chalkboard. Guests can write their well wishes on the board and display it in the photo. (Make sure the camera has a timer so that guests have time to set up the shot.)
  • Hang small squares of fabric from a string and encourage guests to sign them throughout the evening. (Yes, your guest “book” will double as decoration.) After the wedding day, pay a local seamstress or quilter to fashion the squares into a sentimental quilt.