On a recent visit to London, Anna and I decided…
We’ve all been there; you’re relaxing and enjoying yourself at a wedding, when suddenly the guest book is in your hands, and the pressure is on. If it’s not passed to you, you’ll no doubt be asked several times during the wedding party if you’ve signed it, so there’s no getting away from it – it needs to be signed, and you’re not leaving until the deed is done! So, what do you write in a book which is going to be treasured by the happy couple for years to come, and read by everyone at the wedding reception who signs after you? How do you represent, for example, 15 years of friendship in three sentences? Should you be serious or funny? If thinking of something appropriate to write gets you a little hot under the collar, take a look at our tips below, and face your next wedding guestbook in a far more cool and confident manner. It’s all in the planning!
- Sign it
This tip should go without saying, but many people have forgotten to write their name next to their comment in wedding guest books – I am assuming this is down to distractions, or perhaps alcohol. I’d recommend writing your comment earlier on in the evening if you are drinking, so what you write makes sense and is legible!
- Make it personal
Imagine sitting down with your new husband or wife to read through your wedding guest book, only to find that it is full of 70 messages that just read ‘Congratulations’ or ‘Best wishes’. Do feel free to wish the happy couple well, of course, but add a personal touch to an otherwise generic message – write about a pleasant or amusing memory you have of the newlyweds, or a story about when they or you met.
- Keep it nice
You might not like your friend or relative’s choice of new husband or wife, but now is not the time to express it. Instead, write something along the lines of ‘I hope to meet someone who makes me as happy as Rachel makes you, Steve. All the best for a lifetime of happiness together’. Keep it simple.
- Use someone else’s words
If you’re really stuck for what to write, use a relevant quote instead – for example: “Grief can take care of itself, but to get the full value of joy, you must have somebody to divide it with” (Mark Twain). This article has 50 quotes about love and marriage to get you started. Unless you have an excellent memory, jot your chosen quote down, and copy it out into the guest book at the wedding reception.
- Use humour
If you’re the type of person who really doesn’t do sentimental, then opt for a humorous comment instead. However, unless you know the couple really, really won’t mind, keep it clean and tasteful! Remember: the guest book will be read by many people, including all of the bride and groom’s relatives.
- Offer advice
If you are already married, or perhaps an older relative who has been married for many years, you could offer the newlyweds some advice for the years of marriage ahead.
An example of a guestbook entry:
“Congratulations on your wedding, Rachel & Steve! I knew you’d get married from the first time I saw Steve share his fish and chips with you, Rach – that is true love! Wishing you a lifetime of happiness together. Always remember to make time for each other – ‘date night’ works great for us. Enjoy your honeymoon in beautiful Bali. Lots of love, Suzie and Stuart xxx”