Making Wedding Memories: Ideas for Clever Keepsakes

Remember: the day will go by so fast but the memories will last forever.


I didn’t think enough about capturing my wedding for posterity. I had a photographer, like most people do at their weddings, but that was it. I didn’t even have someone recording video! This is the only thing I regret about my wedding. After you’ve put so much work into making your day perfect, make sure you can remember every detail by planning your memories. Cover the basics—photographs and video—but get creative about other ways to record the day. Involve your guests in the project too. Remember: the day will go by so fast but the memories will last forever.

The idea of a time capsule is romantic and nostalgic. It allows you to freeze a moment in time, to capture something transient and fleeting. The fact that you won’t open it for many years adds to the romance of the concept. This is a way to preserve something ephemeral about your wedding, something you can’t get from photographs or old invitations at the bottom of a box in your closet. Ask your guests to bring something to add to your time capsule—a note, a photograph, a token of your lives, something that will remind you of the things that matter. Make sure guests write their names on the items so you can identify the giver a quarter century from now.

Vintage Cameras of All Sorts

Many couples place disposable cameras on guest tables to encourage guests to participate in the image capturing, but disposable cameras are incredibly hard on the environment. Instead, visit friends and family and collect old cameras: polaroids, super-8s, betamax, novelty Micky Mouse cameras, and whatever else you can find. You shouldn't have to worry about giving guests access to expensive vintage cameras. At weddings, the honor system usually works like a charm. There is still old film available online and, if you don’t have a traditional photo shop in your town, you can send the film away to be developed. You’ll end up with an incredible array of images—from the grainy black-and-white of early video, to the reddish hues of the 1970s, to the home videos of your youth. Your wedding memories will be as timeless and indelible as time itself.

A Family Tree of Thumbprints

Draw a large family tree on white recycled paper and set it up next to your guest book along with an inkpad. Ask your family members to add their thumbprints next to their names on the tree. After the wedding, put the family tree in a vintage frame and hang it near your wedding portraits. It’s a symbol of the love your family has for you, something you can cherish forever.

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