How to Make a Very Special Wedding Guest Book

September 7, 2013 was our first wedding anniversary. Our wedding day feels like it was yesterday and every morning when I open my closet I see our wedding favor that still shares it’s wonderful scent of lavender.

Next to the wedding sachet I store our wedding guest book. I’m keeping it safe there until I find a perfect spot in our new home – which we moved into on the day of our first wedding anniversary. This precious book holds a lot of wisdom and wonderful messages from loved ones. I can’t imagine not having this keepsake. Remember, prior to your own wedding? You get all sorts of great advice from friends and family, and as they add their tips and hints your list of “I still need this” is getting longer and longer.

As the day of my wedding approached, getting a guest book was just one of the many items on my last minute to-do-list. Luckily for me, my work friends surprised me with a bridal shower at the office and Gayle Schliemann had a wonderful handmade gift ready for me, my wedding guest book. Hurray!

How to make a wedding guest book? Well, I asked Gayle and here she reveals her secrets.

“The ingredients:

  • A guest book (I found this one at Barnes and Noble)
  • A sewing/embroidery machine
  • Silk scraps, ideally from the wedding dress
  • Underlining or buckram from the wedding dress
  • Two spools of gold Isacord embroidery thread
  • Digitized wedding logo, initials, monogram, etc.
  • Craft glue for fabric, such as Aleene’s Fabric Fusion

“I wanted to contribute something original to Alice’s wedding, but I had just moved to the area and had to keep it simple. Inspired by her elegant, rustic theme for her wedding, I purchased a recycled journal to embellish from a local bookstore. The cover was easy for me as Alice had provided me with some silk cut from her wedding dress. I planned strategically to think out of the box by using a bit of buckram that was sewn to the underside of the wedding dress to give it its shape. The buckram also had a rustic look that I was keen to emulate. A friend of Alice’s had designed a modern logo using Alice and Dan’s initials, which Sylvain Bergeron digitized for her to stitch on her lavender sachets. I took the same design and embroidered onto the main ingredient of the wedding dress, the silk taffeta. After the embroidery was complete I trimmed away the excess material with a wavy edge rotary cutter.

“To attach the scraps of buckram and dress fabric to the book, I shirred the silk and used fabric glue to permanently adhere it. Naturally there was a spot for me to place the embroidered piece.

“Every designer needs to label their work and I did this using a pre-designed embroidery postcard design called “Letters Home” from Every Stitch Counts. I used my embroidery software to set the to and from names into this embroidered design. Then I simply glued it into the back of the guest book. I also wanted to make clear what the book was for and so I created a “Guest Book” label with a fun font from my embroidery software. I attached this to the front of the guest book just the way I had done with Alice and Dan’s initials.

“Still, the guest book wasn’t quite finished; it needed a little something to surprise Alice. I used some decorative stitches from my sewing machine and stitched along the edges of random pages, leaving the extra strings for an added rustic touch.”

What was to follow? A beautiful and unforgettable day for family and friends that all had a note to share that they wrote in my guest book that I brought all the way over the big pond from Chicago to Ronneburg, Germany.

As our story goes on, watch for some toddler projects to come in 2014. Our little baby boy is expected to join us end of March 2014!

*If you’d like to make your own lavender sachets, click HERE for Alice’s instructions.


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