Today, we are back to the Clear the Clutter Challenge! We are now tackling our spaces on a monthly basis for the remainder of the year. This month we are focusing on photo organization. Each month, I am co-hosting this challenge with Keri and Kate, so be sure to check out their organized spaces as well!
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In case you are new here, the last challenge we left off on was master bedroom and home office organization. I shared my jewelry and accessory organization in my master bedroom.
I also cleaned up my office which doubles as a guest room. I am trying so hard to keep this desk clear of papers.
This past weekend, I found a wall file organizer and I’m so excited to get it hung (pictures soon!).
Clear the Clutter: Photo Organization
Time to talk about today’s challenge!
I will admit that I still have some work to do on getting ALL of our pictures organized. But when I sat down to work on this challenge, I realized I already had a few systems in place for organizing my photos! I have some ideas that have worked well for organizing and also displaying all of our pictures. I’m sharing several of my favorites today!
Gone are the days of printing off all of your pictures from you camera at the local Walgreens. Now, we take a million pictures but yet rarely print out that many of them! I have tried to get better at printing some of my favorites lest they end up down the black hole of my phone.
One of my favorite ways to use my pictures from the phone is to create a yearly photo collage. Collages are a great way to use a ton of pictures especially ones that are special but might not make it to the cutting room floor of a photo album. I use Collage.com (they ALWAYS have coupons) to create a 16 X 20 collage print of 100 or so pictures. (160 pictures is the max). All you have to do is upload the photos you want to use and then they place them in the collage. You have the ability to swap pictures around to your liking.
This site allows you to personalize the collage in a lot of ways including adding a title. I always add the year of the pictures. This will be the third year I have ordered one of these collages and we really cherish them. As of now, since we only have three, we add them to a wall going along our stairs. Eventually, we will have to find another space as we accumulate more of these prints.
I bought these white frames from Ikea for the posters. I bought three at a time to save on shipping and to make sure I had the same frame for several years! Thankfully, these frames are still available as I’ll need to purchase another couple of them.
A few years ago, after seeing this product featured on an episode of Shark Tank, I signed up for Groove Book. For $3.99 a month, you can get a mini photo album of 100 of your pictures from your phone. You download the app and add pictures to your account and then you automatically receive a book for the month. As an added bonus of the book, the pages can actually be torn out. Every month the books have a different cover and I noticed their most recent covers are fun patterns.
I always write the month and year on the binding of the book.
The only thing to keep in mind with Groove Book is that you automatically receive a book each month. So if you don’t sort your pictures by the deadline, you won’t get to hand pick the photos. More info about Groove Book can be found here.
**I also noticed that Shutterfly has a monthly photo book as well for $4.99/month. Another option to consider!
One of my favorite ways to display our photos is with wall galleries. I love mixing pictures with other types of wall hangings for gallery walls. This particular wall is the second floor, where all the kids room are located. Therefore, I made this wall fun and colorful!
As a bonus to this space, we keep mini photo albums in those drawers of the console! The albums are mainly ones my mom has made for the kids of their special outings together. It is a great spot to store these books because it is near the kids’ rooms.
I’ve currently got one more gallery wall in our house that showcases more of our favorites. Gallery walls are great for rotating out pictures or keeping some of your old favorites! I designate each frame for a certain type of picture or a member of our family and then just update those frames accordingly.
Photo Albums & Books
The other day I mentioned on Instagram that I still needed to finish my third child’s 1st year baby book! After some work this weekend, I can say that I am almost done!
Many years ago, I used to enjoy scrapbooking but now the idea of it sounds so overwhelming! So, once the kids were born, I decided I would just create a scrapbook for their first year! It took a lot of (my own) pressure off me to narrow this job down to one book per child.
As I mentioned last month, each child has a memory box to keep school pictures, certificates, school moments etc, so I don’t have the need to create an album.
I do have many old photo albums and it definitely is a storage issue, so I don’t imagine I will make more more photo albums with printed pictures.
Photo books from places like Shutterfly and Snapfish are great because these books take up so much less space than regular photo books! P.S. You can create a free book through Shutterfly with my affiliate link.
I’ll admit that this is one I need to work on online organization. The best way to ensure you don’t lose your photos is to store them on a photo site like Snapfish or Shutterfly. Plus, it’s a good idea to purchase icloud storage for your iphone pictures. I pay for the $2.99 monthly option to ensure I can’t lose my pictures from my phone.
This month, I’d like to go through all of my pictures and cut down on the ones I have on my phone! I have WAYYY too many.
it is so easy to get overwhelmed with all the pictures and methods for storing pictures. I definitely recommend picking one or two ideas for organizing your photos and making those work for you. Break up your project into smaller, manageable goals that can be done in smaller amounts of time!
Clear the Clutter Challenge
I still have some work to do on my photo organization but I’ve got a few methods in place to make it a little easier. As I mentioned, we are slowing down the pace of the challenge now and focusing on one space per MONTH. In March, we will take on bathrooms and medicine cabinets. I will be working on my kids’ bathrooms. Hope to see you back here next month!
Be sure to check out all the link up challengers as well (see below)!