DIY Polaroid Place Cards


Our wedding guests were only our nearest and dearest friends and family so I wanted our place cards to be intimate and something guests could take home to remember the special day.  I’ve always loved place cards that doubled as souvenirs such as sand dollars or messages in bottles, but although they matched the beach location of our wedding, they didn’t feel personable enough.

While working on my photo booth, it suddenly hit me to use polaroids of old photos with our guests as place cards!  In addition to keeping the event intimate and thoughtful, it also allowed me to use guests’ first names or nicknames  without any confusion.  These ended up being a huge hit and even better – conversation  starters!  Everyone was remembering where their photo was taken, retelling stories from those memories, and sharing them around the party like trading cards.  On top of it all, everyone smiled or laughed when they found their seats.  I couldn’t have been more pleased!

Although these took a bit of time and effort, they were very much worth it.  Here’s how to copy this idea for your event:

1.  Download the polaroid frame template here and resize it to fit your tablescape.  The standard size for a polaroid frame is 3.5″ x 4.25″, but any size will work.

2.  Find a memorable photo for each guest.  This is the most time consuming part, but also the most rewarding since you can flip through all of your old photos – something I do far too infrequently.

3. For guests that are missing a photo or for guests’ plus ones that you haven’t met yet, find a photo to use as a place holder.  Although I could’ve taken some missing photos off of Facebook, I wanted all of the polaroids to be authentic memories with my husband and/or myself so I used a cute friendship photo as a place holder.

4. I used Photoshop to add the guests’ names onto the polaroid frames, but you could easily do this by hand, letterpress, a calligrapher, stamps, or an embosser.

5.  Print and cut!  I used glossy photo paper to copy the look of a real polaroid and a paper cutter to keep my edges straight.

Happy DIY-ing! :)


16 thoughts on “DIY Polaroid Place Cards

  1. Hi!
    I found your blog recently while researching Japanese food, and I am so glad to see that you are back. You sound like a lovely person and I wish you and your husband all the best. I look forward to reading your future posts.

    • Hi Jo! Thanks so much – that’s so sweet of you to say :) Are you a huge Japanese food fan? What’s your favorite? My parents were just in town and were surprised at all of the options!

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  3. I am loving your whole blog. It is not only beautiful, but you have such unique ideas!!! I can’t wait to see more!!!

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  5. What an amazing idea so thoughtful i love it. My background is Chinese and Kiwi so i have a large family this idea would be perfect. x

    • Hi Sonya! So sorry for my late response. Chinese and Kiwi – how cool! The place cards went over really well with the guests. It was a great way to bring up old memories and also as conversation starters!

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  7. I think this is a lovely idea. I really like it. How did you display them at the reception? For your guests to find their card and table number.

    • Thank you, Natasha! At the reception, I used them as place cards sitting on top of each place setting. For my guests to find their table number, I used welcome drinks & straws. :)

  8. Hi there! This is awesome and I’m planning to do something similar. :) I downloaded the template but how do I add photos to it?

    Thank you!

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