A big photo box from your local craft store or variety store – basic chronological storage.
For storing printed photos in chronological order, the best tool is one of the standard photo boxes from a big box craft store. They’re inexpensive, stackable and have a label holder on the front. You can easily improve the “organization” of these boxes by adding “sticky note” dividers – I prefer the plastic sticky notes to paper because they are far less likely to fold over. You can use our large Shut Your Flap Tabs, or any plastic sticky note from the office supply store. I usually write on the “wrong” side of the sticky note (the sticky side) so I can “stick” it to the backside of the first photo in a group.
Organizing "photos only" for a scrapping project
When you’re ready to organize your photos for scrapping, you’ll want to use something smaller that allows you to break your photos into groups by layout. (If you need help with this, read – How to organize photos for scrapbooking in 3 easy steps).
A couple of benefits to Fab Files – they’re small, just 3 inches wide. The size is perfect for being able to grab off your shelf with 1 hand. They pack easily if you’re headed to a crop or class. The locking lid insures that nothing will fall out and they only hold about 300 photos. The fact that they only hold 300 photos, forces you to choose what you’ll use and prevents you from having 1000 or 1500 photos (what a large photo box will hold) to go through when you’re ready to scrap.
Fab Files have a small footprint, so they occupy a small amount of space on your desktop. The photo file folders help you to keep photos organized as you work. You’ll only need to pull out the file of photos for the particular event your scrapping – if you read the post, How to organize photos for scrapbooking in 3 easy steps, think about the Disney example. When I scrap my Disney trip, I can work on the Character pages without having to sort through Rides, Parade, etc.
Another option for sorted photos
The Flippin' Storage Binder is a great option for storing photos that you have sorted for your scrapbooking projects. Each page in the Flippin' Storage Binder will hold 6 or more photos. The front side pockets on the FSB are 4x6 and the back pockets are 5x7, so if you like to scrap in both sizes, this is a great option.
Organizing Photos - Project Prepping
I use Project Prepping products, when I’m ready to put together a holding album that is going to include everything I need for a specific scrapping project.
If I stick with the Disney examples, I would use the Perfect Six Storage page to sort my pictures into double page spreads. Each Perfect Six page will hold enough photos for 3 12x12 double page spreads or 6 12x12 single page spreads.
I usually store all the mementos and journaling notes I accumulated on a trip or at an event in an Expanding Project Planner (EPP).
Honestly, I just load things into the EPP by size. EPPs are easy to travel with, if I’m on a trip I’ll just put an empty one in my suitcase before I leave.
Each day of the trip I’ll clean out my purse or back pack of all the post cards, mementos, maps, etc. – and fill the EPP.
At the end of the trip I’ll add my journal to the EPP and store it until I’m ready to scrap the trip/event.
I digress, back to Project Prep, once I’ve sorted photos by layout, I’ll go through the EPP and sort through the mementos sorting them to match my layout plan. I usually use the Double-Sided Duo 4x1 or 2x1 pages for sorting mementos to go with each layout. I like these pages because the large 12x12 back pocket is ideal for holding large things like maps and brochures, the smaller front pockets are perfect for postcards, napkins, ticket stubs, etc.
I’ll layer the photo pages with the corresponding memento storage pages and use either a ScrapRack Divider or a Shut Your Flap Tab to label each section. If I have “special” embellishments or papers for the event, I’ll add these as well. In general, I only add these types of things if they will ONLY be used for these pages.
When to add paper and embellishments.
Going back to the Disney example, – I would add the Disney papers and embellishments I purchased for this event because I’ll ONLY use them for this event. I don’t go to Disney often so there’s no need for me to hang onto Disney supplies when I’m done.
If I was scrapping my son’s freshman year of football, I would not add football things to this Project Prep binder because I will use football stuff over and over again at different times. (Football stuff would stay stored in the Themes> Sports> Football section of my 4 Sections System – learn more about the 4SS.)
If you need more help getting your photos organized, please watch the Get Organized Challenge Photo Organization Class. I'm sure you'll find it helpful.
If you need more information about photo organization and storage products, you can find examples of all of our product here.
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