If you're anything like me you probably have boxes, bags and drawers full of photos! I've tried to get them all in one place, but then I open another drawer and sure enough there's more photos in there.. not to mention the endless CDs from when digital first arrived. I'm ashamed to admit I've still got rolls of film that haven't been developed yet!
Like many of you I take photos all the time.. obviously it's my day job as a photographer, but away from work I'm always taking quick snaps on my iPhone. I tend to just leave these on the phone, but there's nothing quite as exciting as having an actual photograph in your hand is there? Do you remember how great it was when you picked your holiday snaps up from being developed (normally at the chemist) and you couldn't wait to look through them! It was normally a few weeks after your holiday so you might have forgotten certain things.. not like now where you see them instantly! There were normally a couple of duds in the pack.. a finger in the way, something you can't remember seeing or even those strange ones where you had 2 photos that merged into 1 during the developing process!
I think the desire to have hard copies of our photos has started to make a comeback; there's new Polaroid cameras, little mobile printers that print direct from your phone and endless companies that will print your digital snaps and send them to you.
But what do you do with them? It's a shame to just stick them in a drawer, where they remain unseen until you next decide it's time to organise. So I'm going to share some ideas of how you can store your photos and keep your precious memories safe.
One of the most obvious and most common ways of storing photographs; choose your favourite and wack it in a frame! You can then either stand these on surfaces or hang them from the wall. If you want to make the most of the wallspace you have available, why not get a frame that holds multiple photos?
To the left you can see this frame that I bought a few weeks ago from Amazon. Although it's shown in a landscape orientation, the photos I wanted to use were landscape so I actually have the frame itself in portrait. It's propped up on our hearth and I love it!
To the right is this frame from The Orchard. It holds 8 photos in both orientations and come with two different frames (the one above is the distressed version).
Both show lovely ways to dispaly more than one photo at a time, and both would look just as good off the wall as they do on it! (I don't normally hang these on my walls, I prefer to prop frames on surfaces).
Photo / Keepsake Boxes
Another way to keep photos safe, but together in the same place is to use photo or keepsake boxes. There's lots of different varieties and versions of these, so you should be able to find one that suits you.
Photo boxes tend to have pull out slides or drawers that then either have plastic wallets for you to insert your photos, or open up like mini boxes inside a larger box. This is a nice way to store photographs from certain events, or in months, years etc.
The photo box you can see below is also from The Orchard (the box is found here) and features 12 drawers that pull out. Each drawer then has plastic wallets that hold 12 photos, or 24 if you place photos back to back.The drawers also have a little label holder so you can easily find the photos you are looking for. This is a lovely way to store photos, and would be treasured by all the family!
Keepsake boxes are slightly different, as they are just one box. They normally have a flip lid, and fasten either with ribbon or a small latch. All photos just go in together, but it's a quick and easy way to put them all in the same place without too much hassle. It's also a lovely way to store letters and cards that bring you special memories.
I actually have a keepsake box, that has one very important purpose; it is where I store items associated with members of my family who fought (and in 2 cases died) WW1 and WW2. As you can see below this is a mix of photos of them, photos of the cemetries in France, letters, medals and other memorabillia such as items from their Army Regiment (always Leicester <3). The photo box I have is from Cowparsley (you can find it here), and is gorgeous. It fits perfectly on my bookcase, and keeps everything safe and together. I love the bumble bee design, and ribbon!!
Photo Albums / Scrapbooks
One of the oldest ways to store photos is in photo albums, and these days there are so many different kinds! You can be traditional and have pages that you stick your photos onto using photo squares, there are self-adhesive pages, slip-in albums that have plastic wallets, or even print your own photo books!
Which format you choose is really down to your own personal preference and the type of photos you want to put in them. There's no point buying an album that only stores photos of one size, if yours are all bigger than that! It's because of varying photo sizes and shapes that I've steered clear of slip-in albums, although they're definitely the quickest to fill.
I'm also wary of self-adhesive albums, as I don't want to damage the back of my photos and possibly tear them.. but I haven't used one of these so I can't say how well they perform!
Photo books are a great idea if you have lots of digital photos that you want physical copies of, and can be a lovely gift after weddings etc. I've done a couple of photo books for clients in the past, but there are lots of different companies out there and quality does vary so do your research!
For me, I prefer the more traditional albums that have plain pages, with protective sheets, that allow you to place your photos where you want them and then securing them using photo corners. But I found it so difficult to find one of these! And the ones I did find were extortionately priced which really put me off. I did eventually track down the one you can see below.. an eBay bargain that I absolutely adore.It was really easy to place the photos, and I love having complete control over the look and layout. I cannot wait to fill it!
If, like me, you struggle to track one of these albums down a great alternative is actually a scrapbook! The paper is acid free so won't damage your photos, and again, you have complete control over where you place your photos. And of course, you can stick other momentos inside and do some scribbles too!
Scrapbooks are a lovely idea for specific occassions, rather than just a general photo compilation. Maybe it's a special holiday, a big birthday, or like the scrapbook below a hen night!
Really Good's The Bright Side Collection (here) have a great range of books that include: school leaving, weddings, hen nights, babies, and more... all very reasonably priced too!
The Hen Night scrapbook is hardback, with a spiral bound edge (so you don't get bent out of shape). Not only is it a great way to remember a special night with your girls, the lettering gives it a fun feeling, and it comes with a selection of little stickers to add the finishing touch to your photos.
Now of course I'm sure there are many other ways to store photos that I haven't mentioned, but these are certainly the main options.
But because I know some of you are crafty devils ;), I've also put together a Pinterest board for you full of DIY ideas:
So there you have my top ways to keep your precious photos safe and secure. I'd love to know how you store your photos, please drop me a comment below!
Stay safe and keep snapping, x