With loads of inexpensive printing options and software on the market, it’s never been easier to turn your family snaps in to a coffee-table-worthy photobook. But if the thought of trying to edit and organise your thousands of digital pictures into something special is a little daunting, we’ve put together 15 inspiring ideas to get you started …
1. N is for naptime
Steph at Modern Parents Messy Kids created a personalised alphabet book for (and starring) her son – photographing objects, people and places that meant something to him to represent each letter.
2. Anatomy of a weekend
If cramming a whole year (or more) in to a photobook is more than you can manage, how about restricting it to just a weekend? Liz at Paislee Press documented her girls’ weekend in Vegas with a book of the group’s iPhone photos, featuring timestamps and captions to capture each moment.
3. Feelings book
It’s a win-win: You get a gorgeous photobook full of your cherubs making unique and crazy faces, and they get a personalised book that will help them learn to name, process and deal with different emotions. Check out this project at Delia Creates.
4. Baby timeline
Facebook doesn’t have dibs on your timeline. This DIY idea from Martha Stewart involves recording baby milestones and photos in an accordion-fold notebook.
5. Interactive photobook
For a Father’s Day gift, Ashley Campbell included blank pages in her photo book that featured a question or prompt – a place for kids’ handprints, drawings, and handwritten notes about why they love their dad. See more on this idea at Design Aglow.
6. Blog books
If you have a personal blog, then chances are that you already have a pretty awesome record of your family life. But if it ever makes you feel slightly uneasy to have all those words and pictures floating untethered in the digital abyss, here’s a way to pin them down. Turn your blog in to a yearly book, like eighteen25 did.
7. Ring binder album
If you prefer DIY to high-gloss printing, here’s a cost-effective and flexible solution. Create your photo layouts at A4 size so you can print them yourself – then hole-punch and file in a cute binder that you can add to over time. This example is from Paislee Press.
8. On the day I was born
Bree at The Creative Mama made each of her sons a personalised book before the birth of her youngest child. The book told their own birth story and celebrated the fact they were becoming big brothers.
9. The book of awesome
Inspired by Neil Pasricha’s The Book of Awesome, Angie S created a ‘year in review’ book featuring her family’s favourite things. Being piggy-backed anywhere = AWESOME!
10. Instagram photobook
11. One frame a day
Take one photo a day, write a sentence about it, and save it somewhere. If you can commit to this idea, it’s a winner. Erin from The Creative Mama admits to falling off the wagon a few times, but says persistence is key. She now has several amazing coffee table books documenting the beautiful ordinariness of everyday life.
12. 10 reasons why I love you
If you know your way around Photoshop, then grab this ‘I love you because’ template set by Ali Edwards and go to town. Make a book for every person that you love. Go on!
13. A week in the life
This Blurb book by Lynnette from Nettio Designs captures a week in her and her partner’s life – including photos, journal entries, daily outfits and even notes about what websites and TV shows they consumed.
14. Instant camera scrapbook
Digital designers spend ages creating layered, handmade effects complete with scratchy handwriting and textured shadows. So why not get out your scissors and markers and make a ‘real’ version? Elsie from A Beautiful Mess used an instant camera, some file folders and colourful tape to pair photos with song lyrics written by her partner… Now all you need is a cool musician boyfriend to write a love song about you and you’re set!
15. Your own family cookbook
You don’t need to be a TV chef to get a book deal. Sarah at Clover Lane converted her dog-eared folder full of family recipes in to a personalised cookbook. By combining the recipes with family photos, she now has an incredible, useful keepsake.