Signage ranks high on the list of commonly forgotten details brides plan for. It’s a shame too because signage is a great way of adding personal touches to your big day. If you’re still not sure that signage is important to weddings, let me show you…
Image Above| Row 1: Mr. & Mrs., Seating Instructions, Welcome, Photo Booth | Row 2: Just Married, Cake Topper, Seating Chart, Detailed Décor
Image Below | Row 1: Table Numbers, Programs, Reserved Seats | Center: Directional Signs | Row 2: Menu, Instagram, Unplug
Signage is everywhere at weddings. It's very functional and as you can see, there’s a lot you can do with signage for your wedding. Keep in mind that like every other aspect of your wedding, the signage you choose is a personal choice. What do you want to share…? Are there things you need your guests to know…? There are no hard and fast rules. Make a list of all the notes you need to hit and go for it. Be sappy. Be funny. Be informative.
And while you’re at it, be creative! In addition to the functional uses of wedding signage, it is also an important element of décor. Signage can add color, style and interest in otherwise plain spaces. Posters and prints are pretty standard options for signs. They make great choices because they can be very cost effective. However, other media like mirrors, wood, and lights have lots of unique style elements perfect for weddings. Figure out what media works best for you based on your wedding style; you might actually have some of the items you seek in your own home (friends and family might also have some things you can borrow). With the proper preparation, signage doesn’t have to be costly.
Getting started, I made a list for my signage needs, crafted the phrase for each sign, and got to work designing them. If you’re not the most talented in the sign making department, all hope is not lost. There are a number of Etsy shops who offer wedding signs for purchase. Even better, there are shops and websites that offer free downloadable signs; with some even offering the option of customizable text and colors. Pinterest is full of resources to help you find downloads.
As you assess your wants and skill level, it is important to consider the location, size and materials needed for your signs.
- How big does the sign need to be (for effectiveness)?
- Are there restrictions on hangings or yard signs? Does the sign have to be freestanding?
- What are the standard print sizes? What are the standard sizes for complementary frames?
- Will you use special materials or tools instead of printing them?
Obviously, the answers won’t be the same for every sign. However, all of the decisions you make will factor into the overall cost of your project. Each sign must cover the big three: 1) base, 2) lettering, and 3) display method. The options are endless. Here are some ideas to get your creative energy flowing:
Wedding Signage Base Selection
Should you choose to forgo printing, use your imagination in the selection of your base. It's an opportunity to reimagine and reinvent everyday objects. What's your fancy? Posters, driftwood, fabric, mirror, wood board, chalkboard, and glass (pictured above). If your heart is set on using something you don't have, perhaps the item could be rented or borrowed.
Wedding Signage Lettering Method
The fun doesn't stop in selecting your base. Go basic or choose a unique lettering method for a little more pop. Options include print, paint/calligraphy, lights, individual letters from a variety of materials, flowering, balloons, and glitter, of course (pictured above).
Wedding Signage Method of Display
Choosing a method of display is the most functional (and probably the most important) decision you have to make in creating a plan for your wedding signage. It depends on the size of your sign, the type of medium chosen, and restrictions on how signs are permitted to be displayed. Don't be intimidated, be inventive and resourceful. Options include sandwich boards, leaning frames, string/ribbon, yard stands, ladders, alternative yard stands, easels, freestanding posts.
To help keep my costs down on the backend, I surveyed my collection of already owned frames, mirrors and stands before I began the design process. I also surveyed printers like Best Value Copy, Vistaprint, and Walmart (for large photos) for their best prices on prints to fit the frames. My primary objective is to spend as little money as possible by repurposing what I have—it will only be used for a day, so I don’t want to buy a ton of things I can’t use later. And my print purchases will be based on the lowest price available. Having my signs ready early on gives me the opportunity to buy at the best sale price and to flex my creative hand on extremely personalized designs (if I decide to go that route).
I know I just hit you with a lot of things to think about. Relax, relate, release. Like every other task, the hardest part is getting started. To get you on your way I have a gift for you, a signage worksheet. The wedding world is full of checklists, so what’s one more OR two OR three? 🙂 It's a prettier version of the scraps I started with and I thought it might be a helpful tool to add to our chest of DIY planning.
Keep in mind this list isn’t intended to be all-inclusive. It bears repeating that your wedding is your wedding. You won’t find every answer here; the hope is that you'll find a little inspiration that draws you closer to your own unique vision. Trust yourself and your ability to think outside the box. If you have more ideas to offer to this conversation, please do so in the comments section. I love hearing the creative ways of all the BSBs out there!