Science-y, steampunk-y vial place cards

Updated Oct 12 2015
Guest post by shovelbumbride

Sciency steampunkey vial place cards 3We're trying our best to make the dining table look like the desk of a (mad?) scientist. For some reason — I have no idea why — I really fell in love with the idea of using tiny vials somewhere in the wedding. So these are our place cards! They're all itty bitty glass vials with a label and some contents. We made 11 different types. I designed the labels: we used our ordinary printer and ordinary paper, and we glued them on with an ordinary glues stick. The label names are geeky references. The contents are mostly things from the pantry. And then we're gonna put the name cards on top.

Here are the geeky references with their vial contents:

Sciency steampunkey vial place cards 5

Sciency steampunkey vial place cards 4

  • Mithril (Lord of the Rings): sparkly sugar
  • Oxytocin (is a real chemical that has gotten the nickname "the love hormone"): turmeric
  • Star Dust (could be anything. But we do love the Stardust movie): really pretty glitter
  • Tylium (Battlestar Galactica — notice the cut corners!): smoked salt

Sciency steampunkey vial place cards 1

  • Polyjuice Potion (Harry Potter): water with food colour
  • Athelas (Lord of the Rings): dried peppermint leaves
  • Adamantium (X-men): silver sugar pearls
  • In Norwegian: "Getafix Mighty Magical Strength Potion Effective against Romans, Vikings, Pirates and bullies in general" (Asterix and Obelix): olive oil

I am super psyched about how well they turned out. We'll try to distribute them so that people next to each other have different ones. Hopefully they'll work as a bit of an ice breaker too.

  1. I can't tell you how much I love these!
    Such a cool idea!
    We had a Hogwarts themed Christmas one year and I made lots of jars of sweets like this.
    We even had butterbeer! You could have butterbeer at your wedding, if you wanted to.
    I love butterbeer lol.
    Can't wait to see more details of your wedding xx

  2. Is there a small printed sticker on the bottom with the real ingredients (like the turmeric) or warnings of "do not consume" (like the glitter)? I know it's common sense not to taste mysterious substances, but you know humans …

    In all, I purely love this idea!

    • Haha! Nope, we didn't – and as far as I know no vials or their contents were consumed! (wedding was two weeks ago) Which is kinda surprising actually, our guests were an awesome mix of insane and curious. 😉

  3. This is by far one of the most wonderful things I've seen on this site. Simple, wide-covering, PRETTY geekiness! I would brag about these for the rest of my life if I were, props to being such an imaginative person. Also I totally noticed the cut corners.

    • Ooooh boy, I just read "props to being such an imaginary person" and had a brief existential crisis.

      And yay, thank you! We didn't even get to keep one of each, most of the guests took their home! 😀

  4. This is awesome! I've been trying to come up with something unique to hold our table names, do you mind if I possibly steal this idea?

  5. OMG this is fabulous!!!! I love it so much!

    And I grew up on Asterix & Obelix comics so that was my favorite part!

    • When we arrived at the reception venue, but before we sat down for dinner, I noticed that one of the guests was wearing an Asterix and Obelix tie! He'd been assigned one of the other vials. So I had to quickly grab my brand new husband, pull him aside and sneak into the dining room to change them 😛

  6. Absolutely FANTASTIC!
    I was about to say hey polyjuce dies not look like that, and then realized that for an absolutely myserious reason I was convinced that it was thick, opaque and orange…
    maybe I was eating carrot soup when I read the book…

    • [nerdy]
      It actually changes appearance, depending on the personality of the person you're changing into.
      [/nerdy]

  7. ha! i wanted to make those for our wedding, but with wild flower seeds in them. but now that i see those pretty cool labels, i might re-think 😀

  8. I love the BSG Tylium! Extra points for such perfect attention to detail. And your adamantium is ON POINT!

  9. This is pure genius!! I love this idea but where does one get the place card holder ring thing ontop of the vial, is it sold in craft stores?

  10. So I've been obsessed with this idea since I first saw it, and started brainstorming ideas immediately, and now we're getting close to the wedding and it's time to make them. My fiance and MOH really don't want us putting any liquid in because some leaked out when one trial vial got knocked over. Did you have any problems with that? Thanks!!!

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