To help me with some of these activities, I have amassed quite a collection of interactive cards, forms, posters and signage that I not only regularly use myself, but also sell to like-minded entertainers.
35 years in the graphic design and print business has given me a good base to create some interesting bits ‘n’ bobs which I’m going to share with you here. One thing to bear in mind is that all the items I use are professionally printed, trimmed, sometimes laminated and carefully stored before I unleash them on clients and other DJ customers. I don’t advise using amateur ‘home-made’ materials with your clients, this is another case where being 100% professional is exceptionally important.
These tactile items not only work well at actual weddings and parties, but when used at wedding fayres and client meetings they will often ‘get you the gig’. Many clients will not have seen this stuff anywhere else and with some good sales spiel you can convey how it will really fit in with (and enhance) their weddings.
So, in no particular order, here are some of my goodies:
Pearls of Wisdom Advice Cards
‘Pearls of Wisdom’ cards are a great ice-breaker for daytime wedding receptions. Asking family and friends to complete a card each at their tables creates fun and can be much better than passing a guest book around. I have produced 12 variants at A6 size. There are a couple of ways these can be used.
The first option is to have one waiting for each guest when they sit down for the wedding breakfast. They can swap them with each other and write some funny, romantic or wise words for the newlyweds. There are pictures to draw, poems to write… all sorts. And there is enough variety in the ‘deck’ so that no two cards will appear on the same table twice.
Alternatively, as DJ / Wedding Host, you may want to work the tables distributing them, giving each guest their very own ‘Pearl’. This is great for building rapport with everyone early on in the day.
However you choose to get them to the guests, collect them back after the meal and then pick four or five of the best ones to read out just before introducing the speeches. This can work as a great ice-breaker and a perfect ‘warmup act’ for the first speech.
After the wedding, you can of course present your couple with the cards. There are various options here; you could frame them, compile them into an album, pop a treasure tag in the corner… or just stick them into that big empty guest book you find at most weddings!
Wedding Lotto Bingo Cards
It's Wedding Speech Bingo! But I prefer to call it 'Lotto'. 24 unique cards filled with all those words and phrases used in every wedding speech you've ever heard. There's a grid of 16 squares, ready for guests to mark with lines or a full house.
This game is popular with couples who are worried about boring wedding speeches, or those who are nervous about making a speech. Dish out these cards, either one per guest or one per couple, and explain the rules before the speeches. Then it’s eyes down and the whole speech scenario gets an extra dimension. It’s important to discuss with couples whether guests are allowed to shout “line”, “house”, “bingo” or preferably a word or phrase the couple have chosen during a speech or if they should wait until it has finished. Prizes should be given to winners at the end of the speeches.
One of my favourite tips is to give one of the cards to the best man in advance and encourage him to make a single sentence using all the words on it!
Don’t forget to supply pens or pencils for all the guests.
'Guess The First Dance' Cards
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The full review can be found in Pro Mobile Issue 102, Pages 58-64.