A bit of background: I've never enjoyed the idea of having a random book that people wrote vague and ambiguous best wishes for our future life together. I knew I wouldn't just leaf through it over the years, and that house guests really weren't interested in knowing that my Tante Denise wishes us 'La joie et...' well you get the picture. Of course our guests wish us well, that's why they were invited.
We also didn't want a 'Wish tree' where guests write well wishes on little cue cards and hang them up on branches of a fabricated tree. What were we going to do with those little pieces of paper after?
It all just seemed like a colossal waste of paper and energy.
Until- I read about the 'Wedding Tree' online. Guests would put their thumbprint as leaves, sign under their 'leaf' and abacadabra we have a guest book that is framable and wouldn't collect dust somewhere in a drawer. Since our wedding was in Autumn it was even better- Fall coloured leaves!
I bought fancy schmancy water colour paper at a local art store, some gouache water colours and a paintbrush. A couple of hours of penciling in what I thought the tree should look like, three hours of painting the actual tree and letters and we were ready for the wedding. Hah, I had no idea that actually creating this guest tree would involve almost 5 hours of actual art-y work.
Tree post paint+our seating chart 'Value Village' frames. Each table was named for places Andrew and I had been together- this one was at Lorenzo's Restaurant in Enderby BC.
The printing in process! My wonderful friends had handy little diagrams all ready, the paints were in Value Village tea plates- yay! The frame behind (an old one from home) explains how in lieu of favours Andrew and I donated money to the Canadian Cancer society in memory of our family members who fought against Cancer (the most recent being my Uncle Walter a few months before our wedding).
I was SUPER worried that with both of our mostly old fashioned families would balk at having to dip their thumbs in paint to 'sign' the tree. So much so that I stationed two of my lovely 'BTA' (Bridal Team of Awesomeness) to stand guard, explained the deal and make sure everybody signed. Overall, they assured me that it was very well received (and the fact that we had bowls of water, a wash cloth and a bathroom nearby was helpful).
Every time I see the signatures and careful thumbprints I think about our family and friends who were with us that day to share in our love and commitment. Seeing the ridges and shapes of their thumbprints, something I'm sure many of them haven't done since they were children, makes me smile. It's like having a tangible snapshot of that person's presence during that moment.
article and photographs copyright of EcoYogini at ecoyogini.blogspot.com