Save paper: make these digital wedding programs

May 22 | Guest post by Jenny D Schmidt
DIY this digital wedding programs for smart phones
By: Denis VahrushevCC BY 2.0

When my sister was planning her camping-themed wedding, she was adamant that (due to budgetary constraints and DIY overload) she did not want to have traditional paper programs.As a wedding planner and officiant, I like the idea of guests having a way to follow along, and know what they could expect throughout the day.

We tossed around the idea of some kind of wedding program sign, but everything we came up with seemed too difficult/costly/time-consuming. Enter the digital wedding program…

How to make your digital program:

1. Use a free hosting site with mobile optimization to create a web address for your program

Since we had already created a website to help guests find camping and non-camping accommodations, I created new pages on that same site for the program (we used webs.com, but there's also WordPress, etc.) If you add new pages to an existing wedding website that guests will be accessing before the day be sure to "hide" those pages from the navigation bar. I called my pages "Program" and "Program 2."

2. Design your program

Suffice it to say that the design/mobile optimization options on a free wysiwyg ("what you see is what you get") hosting site are limited. The best way to get around this is to either:

3. Upload

Now it's time to upload your completed program image to your program page.

4. Add links

Make sure it's easy for your guests to navigate from one page of your program to the next and "publish" your page.

5. Repeat

For each page of your program, repeat steps 2-4.

6. Go mobile

Make sure you enable mobile website optimization so that your guests can access the program using their smartphones.

7. Find a QR Code generator

Create a QR code that links to the first page of your digital program. (I used QRstuff.)

9. Use the QR code to make a sign 

Then frame your sign and put it at the entrance of your wedding ceremony.

Are you skipping paper programs? What are you doing?

Get your daily dose of Offbeat AWESOME

  1. That's a wonderful idea!!

    Unfortunately, most of our families are either too old or technologically incompetent so where that idea wouldn't fly at our wedding.

    5 agree
  2. Only foreseeable problem would be that not everyone has smart phones. Very cool though. I'm trying to think if adding a link as well might work but I'm not sure what flip phones are capable of. I know at least a portion of my family has them.

    2 agree
    • This was my initial thought as well but then I figured it would still be worth it, if you could cut down on the number of programs that needed to be printed.

      • Exactly, assuming people with smartphones don't take all the programs, you can get by with printing only a fraction of them. And, at worst, running out of programs isn't like running out of food or anything 🙂

  3. I love this idea! Whenever I go to a wedding I want a program so I can see how much longer it will be follow along but afterwards I feel guilty about throwing away the program because I'm not into keeping that shit THE ENVIRONMENT.

    11 agree
  4. SO MUCH LOVE!
    I happen to love wedding programs. There's almost always a good 15-45 minutes of waiting at any particular wedding depending on how punctual everyone is, so I rely on the wedding program to keep me entertained. Originally, I wanted to have our wedding programs be a kind of favor as well: handmade books with photographs, quotes we love, funny or sweet anecdotes, profiles on our wedding attendants, and general thanks to everyone.

    However we want an almost exclusively paperless wedding. I loathe the wasted money, time, and natural resources associated with traditional paper invites, STDs and programs. And, as much as I love the handmade book idea, I am not crafty by any stretch of the imagination. Not to mention the fact that anything digital geeks me the f*&$ out!

    About 85% of our wedding are "plugged in" in one way or another and around 60% have iphones. I am very tech friendly and I don't want people to feel guilty about having their technology with them at our wedding. I think we're probably going to have run up a flag on this one and see how it goes over. But I'm officially in love with this idea!

  5. Great idea…as long as you are okay with not having an unplugged wedding obviously. Since guests will have their phones & tablets out to follow the program, they are more likely to keep them out to take photos and live post your wedding…things to keep in mind when deciding whether or not this option is for you.

    Also, don't forget to make sure there is a signal/internet access where you are ahead of time…otherwise your guests wont be able to access the website!

Join the conversation

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

No-drama comment policy

Part of what makes the Offbeat Empire different is our commitment to civil, constructive commenting. Make sure you're familiar with our no-drama comment policy.

Biz owners & wedding bloggers

Please just use your real name in your comment, not your business name or blog title. Our comments are not the place to pimp your website. If you want to promote your stuff on Offbeat Bride, join us as an advertiser instead.