Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Works for You Wednesday: Organizing photos!

For my son's first year, we ordered prints on-line and put them in a traditional style photo album. The album was a gift, and it was definitely a quick and easy solution, but now that we're into his second year, I'm not sure how to store and organize photos. I would love to hear some of your ideas. One photo album per year would get pretty bulky after awhile, so I'd like something that takes up less space. I know a lot of people really like those photo books you can put together on-line, though if we go that route my husband wants to make sure we also have some actual printed photos. I don't plan to scrapbook, so I'm looking for simple ways to store and organize pictures. Thanks for sharing your ideas! (More requests can be found here.)


Crazy Daisy said...

Storing photos can be a tricky endeavor. One thing to always be sure of is the album, or other products you store printed photos in are "photo safe". Otherwise, the photos will eventually yellow.

An idea would be to have an album for each year(or however many fit in one) but limit it to favorite photos. Then use a photo box, CD, or other digital memory devise to store all other photos.

Deeapaulitan said...

I'm about to do this myself. I did scrapbook each of their first 2 years, but after that they are on their own. I'm going to use the storage boxes. I like that I can fit more than a year of photos in one box and use cards to indicate months, years, or even special events.

Anonymous said...

I have been putting photos in boxes (the kind created for storing photos) for the past several years. One box will hold at least two years (depending on the number of photos!). They don't come with enough dividers for my use, so I add some that I've cut out of cardstock. It's easy to label the divider and put the photos directly in behind it when I get the package. Sometimes I write on the back of the photos, sometimes not. But even if I don't, they are at least in a category such as Christmas 2007 or Trip to France 2004! I label the outside of the box by years -- such as 2004-2006.

I eventually want to take all of our photos out of albums and put them in these boxes. The upper shelf in our coat closet is completely full of albums. I am guessing that I could fit all of the photos they contain into two or three boxes. By stacking the boxes, I could fit LOTS more photos on that shelf!

I do have some specialty albums that I have created such as albums for yours and Monica's weddings and Dad's running achievements. I have a notebook for each grandbaby that I put full pages of printed photos such as the newsletters Monica does or photo collages that I've created/printed.

I hope you get some good ideas that work for you. Keeping up with photos is a challenge, but a worthy one! Love you, Mom

Frances said...

We rarely print our photos (our wedding being the most recent exception) but that might change when the Lord blesses us with children. For now, Picasa (free from Google) does a splendid job of organizing and displaying our digital photos on our computer.

kristin said...

Carrie -

Just yesterday I received in the mail my first attempt at a new service for a photo book. I am VERY pleased with it and the price is great. I stumbled upon the program as I was looking for coupons for an online photo book and am so thankful I did. The price is outstanding for a photo book, which is the best point for me! My book was 152 pages(!!) and total cost was about $50! It contained just under 500 photos and is a recap of all of 2007 for our family. I figure, to print that many photos and get photo albums for them would easily be that much, but now the project is done and looks great! I would love to show it to you sometime.

The name of the company is Blurb. It's actually for those looking to self-publish books, but they have many options beyond just that. You have to download their software and then you work locally on your computer. When you are done, you upload it to their site and order it. It's a fairly user-friendly program. I think I'm planning to use it moving forward for a book a year for our family and hopefully stay on top of things! The book that I got is 8x10, hard cover with a dust jacket on it! (all hard covers come with them) I think it looks great!

Hope that helps!

Have a great day!

mer said...

Hi Carrie...

First, I need to make a disclaimer...I am a traditional scrapbooker, and until a month ago, I was a Creative Memories consultant. Here is my system:

For each of my 3 children, I have a First Year Album that has the photo highlights from their first year.

After the first year, all photos go into a family album. I like to work chronologically through my photos, so I have a family album for every calendar year that spans January-December. (And I am currently working on 2006--just two years behind--woohoo!)

I'm completely digital now, so I make prints of only the photos I want to scrapbook, and I categorize the rest in monthly folders and save each month on a photo cd. I could probably consolidate and get more on a cd, but I like to be able to pull one cd out of my photo box, say June 07, and find what I need quickly. The prints that I want to scrapbook are stored in an accordian photo file.

However, I have a myriad of prints from before I went digital. I've gone through them and tossed the bad ones, and I have stored the rest in a CM Power Sort box (the big one) divided by season/year and stored under my bed. I can find what I need quickly if I need to. It was too tedious to sort all of those by date (my memory failed me more than once), so I just grouped them by season. Now I know that if I need a vacation pic, I would look in summer '04. My negatives are in a huge state of disarray and I keep them in my fire-safe lockbox.

I also have a Preschool album, and a School Years album for each of my kids. This is where I put all their school stuff, sports stuff, church stuff, and other extracurricular activities that are specific to each child...which keeps my yearly family album specific to family stuff. At the beginning of the school year I buy each of them a plastic file folder that closes with a string and every week when they bring work home, I carefully select what I want to keep, and put it in the samples/school projects. If I take photos of school events, I try to make prints and throw them in the file too. That way I have everything I need from, say 3rd grade, in that child's file when I'm ready to scrapbook that year.

I realize this is a lot of info, but you're smart to start thinking about it now. I think digital files are the easiest to organize, and my best suggestion is to only make prints that you want to use. That way you have less to keep up.

My very, very best tip, that you'll have to tuck away for later, is to take photos of your kids' artwork. I've done this since my oldest was 3, and have the photos of the bean collage, and the popcorn garland in his scrapbook long after I've tossed the actual artwork. I save only a handful of their very best work from year to year. The rest I have stored on a photo cd!

I sometimes worry about the longevity of photo cds, but I just can't let my mind go there. If for some reason they didn't last, I'd have my albums.

BUT, honestly, I scrapbook only about half of the photos I take.

Whew...sorry this was so long!!! Hope that helps!



I made a 'blog entry' on how I do mine; plus, I added a link on my blog to your blog because I enjoy it so.

You can read what I do on if you'd like.

I don't go into detail as your other people who've commented here, have - I think it's hard to determine what a person wants to 'keep' - how they want to store, etc. However in my entry, I've suggested the best way to 'copy' and keep 'handy', your favorite photos for 'hard-copy' viewing when friends & family want to take a peek, and firing up the computer isn't always the answer since it's hard to crowd around a computer (even a lap-top) and 'view'.

My son loves to use his lap-top as a 'viewing screen', but we all end up cranking our necks, and our backs get strained as we struggle to see the 'slide-show'.

Maybe being 65 years old makes me a bit more 'practical' in using 'old methods', but there are a multitude of ways to show photos; to KEEP photos, and to know when a picture simply isn't 'all that good', and to toss them (I use those for post-cards in the mail) I also use old photos that are going to be 'tossed' as quick notes (write on the back with a Sharpie) - clip to something I'm sending (like a newspaper article); it saves on throwing it away; doesn't use 'note paper', and usually the photo is still 'good enough' to generate a smile from the recipient. Diane

Anonymous said...

I like Cropper Hopper products. They make various kinds of photo storage items. A link to one version is below, but if you Google Cropper Hopper Photo Storage, you'll find lots of options.