When was the last time you printed out a physical photograph and framed it or, and do you remember these, put it in an album? My parents have dozens upon dozens of photo albums from when we were kids, from first Christmases to holidays, days out, summer afternoons in the garden, those random candid moments when we fell on are arse and they just about caught it on camera. I love looking back on these photos, remembering the memories or hearing the stories behind them.
Since getting into blogging (more years ago than I care to admit!) one thing I’ve noticed when scrolling through the gallery on my phone is that most of my pictures are of things. The food I’ve ate, the wine glass I drank from, the funky table decorations or the contents of my skincare drawer. I have pictures from nights out where I’ve barely taken any of the people I was with, but plenty of the cooky ceiling or a boomerang of those shots we shouldn’t have had. Maybe it’s an age thing but right now, I find this really sad. Am I really going to want to look back in 30+ years time and share images of chicken wings and lamps with my family? There not really the photos stories are made of, are they?
One YouTube black hole I repeatedly fall down is that of memory keeping projects. A traditional photo album is great and all but sometimes it’s nice to have something a bit fancier don’t you think? If you’re looking for some album inspiration and fancy going back to a more traditional way of telling your family stories here’s a few ideas that have really stood out for me!
Think of this as a month long diary of all the magical things you get up to over the festive period, with added pictures and story telling to go along with it. I absolutely love this idea, as someone who turns into a literal Mrs Claus as soon as that Christmas tree goes up, we always do so much more over Christmas than any other month - and wouldn’t it be a great tradition every Christmas to look over previous years albums?
This is probably the one I’m going to start with first. I’ve collected all of my favourite pictures from 2017 and saved them in a folder. The plan is to get them printed in a photo book and journal the stories to go along with them - thankfully I keep a traditional ol’ dear diary so I can remember most of the stories! I had planned on doing this in the New Year when everything was still sort of fresh in my mind, but yeah….it’s May now….oops.
A culmination of scrapbooking, journalling and a photo album all rolled into one! What I like about this is it can be as creative or as simple as you like. It’s based off a pocket card system, so you simply slot the cards into the pockets to make your spread. Less glue and washi tape involved in the beginning which sounds ideal for someone like me who doesn’t necessarily have all the gear (or the funds!) starting out! These are supposed to be year long projects, so those will be some big, in-depth story telling binders!
If, like me, you have a half dried out glue stick rolling around the desk somewhere and not much else, the prospect of one of those super pretty die cut covered scrapbooking spreads is seriously daunting! I know this post is all about vamping up old school photo albums by stepping back from the digital age, but hey, I guess it saves the trees if you create the spreads digitally! There are some amazingly cute images and decor you can download online and create your own pretty album spreads without a glue stick in sight. I’m thinking you could technically pair this idea with the photo book idea giving you pretty, physical spreads to look back on - and you won’t be finding glitter in your carpet for months to come!
I think the problem these days is any of the above projects take time. It’s going to take you longer to put together one album page than it is to upload your pictures to Facebook or Instagram so why bother with the printing and the gluing and the effort? How do you pass down an Instagram account to your friends and loved ones? Remember Myspace? What happens when Facebook and all your Facebook albums go the same way? Where will your pictures go? Where will your stories go?
What do you do with all the photos you take?
Until next time,
Header image by Vladimir Proskurovskiy