(Closed) What is the purpose of a guest book & are they necessary?

posted 7 years ago in Paper
Post # 3
815 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2015

It’s just a keepsake from the event. As far as I am aware, at least.

Post # 4
8469 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2012

You’re right! 

Don’t waste your money on a guest book. My mom bought us one, and I figured I’d turn the pages and see all nice sayings from our guests….only ONE person wrote a beautiful paragraph. I don’t even know where the book is! 

My mom made an adorable scrapbook for us. It had the RSVPs of the ones that didn’t just check off the box, but wrote “can’t wait” or something like that next to it. 

Trust me, you won’t regret not having a guest book. 

Post # 5
47458 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

@vess5:  The original purpose of the guestbook was for the guests to sign after the ceremony attesting to the fact that they had witnessed the marraige and would testify to its’ legitimacy.

It evolved to be a record of the attendees and something the couple could use to reminisce about the wedding.

The fact that most of those books were rarely ever opened led to the alternative guestbook ideas we see now. The goal is to have something that you will look at or even display in your home.

If you don’t want one, don’t have one.

On your last point, I would start a spreadsheet to keep track of addresses, rsvps. thank you notes. etc.

Post # 6
52 posts
Worker bee

I like the idea of engagement album guest books and I do a lot of them. Printed like a regular photo book, on each two page spread you have nice engagement photo on one side, and on the other side, a fun prompt… things like, what should we name our kids, what’s your suggestion for a date night, etc. Makes it a little more involved and you would have fun reading the ‘words of wisdom’ (especially if guests are drinking) AND it’s something that you can tuck in a bookshelf with your other books since it’s not a weird size.


But if you don’t want one at all… there’s no real reason. I think the traditional guest book is silly too.  

Post # 8
1723 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: December 2014 - 13th ~ TN

View original reply
@julies1949:  +1

Post # 10
9129 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL

They are not necessary.  We didn’t want to have one either because we had the same feelings.  We only changed our minds after finding a vinyl album guest book on Pinterest.  We loved the idea that we can frame it along with a copy of our personal vows and put it on the wall as a piece of art rather than something to get tossed in a box or junk drawer.  We picked our favorite album and bought the vinyl off Amazon then had our guests sign it with china pencils.

We also plan to have another vinyl album at our baby shower so there’s a keepsake for us to frame and hang in the nursery.

Post # 11
1589 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

Yeah I don’t think it’s necessary because people usually give a card at the very least.

We might do it only b/c Fiance really loves the idea of a baseball bat and base “guestbook.” He’s in charge but he has a tendency to forget about things so yeah, I’m not banking on it.

Last time I was at a wedding I forgot to sign it.  

Post # 12
1643 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: January 2015

View original reply
@vess5:  I saw a cool “guestbook” idea where the guests all wrote notes on jenga blocks, so that every time the couple played it would remind them of the day.  I guess you could do something similar if you wanted something, but didn’t want a book?  Or scrap it entirely! 🙂

Post # 13
1213 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: January 2004

I didnt have a guest book. mInstead I had everyone write their name and a message on a piece of matte board that would later be the border of a wedding photo. mIt is framed in my home now.  Here’s an example I found on google images : 


Post # 14
268 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

We aren’t having a guest book, and I don’t think you need one either. You don’t even need an alternative. There are so many extra things like that, that if it doesn’t mean anything to you, you don’t need it! 🙂 

I didn’t like the guest book idea either but we got this awesome guest book alternative on Etsy! It’s a canvas that your guests can sign and then they will personalize your name. It’s a nice alternative because I know if we had a guest book I would have it sitting in a drawer somewhere and never see it! 


Here’s the link if you’re interested:




This is what ours looked like :): 



Post # 16
1119 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

We’re not having a traditional guest book either. I have a $30 promo code from Shutterfly to make a photobook. So I’m throwing photos from my fiance and I’s 4 year and 4500 mile-apart courtship in there and having everyone sign in (so I know who to send thank you cards to), and then draw funny things or leave other messages. There’s also a page for a message from the bride’s parents and another for a message from the groom’s family.

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