Scrapbook Organization: Getting your Pictures Together

Before you even begin to look at paper or stickers, you need to get organized! Scrapbook organization allows you to spend less money and less time in the end.

Let's start by organizing your pictures. I know, I know, that can be a rather daunting task! But now's the time to put on a pot of coffee and start sifting through all those boxes and envelopes. As you begin, try to remember the last time you looked through these boxes. Has it been a while? Years maybe? That's ok, remember...that's why you've decided to make a scrapbook. Once you've finished, your pictures will be on display in a memorable album that you want to look through and share with your family and friends frequently.

Are you a digital photographer? Organizing digital photos is a snap with the right equipment!

Picture Keeper - 4GBPicture Keeper allows you to backup and organize your photos. Built in software that works with PC or MAC automatically finds and copies all of your photos. Even non-techies can use it: just plug Picture Keeper into your computer, click “Start Backup,” and it does the rest! Every time you plug it in, the Picture Keeper automatically finds new pictures and add them.

It comes in 4GB, 8GB and 16GB

Now, back to those pictures. The first step in scrapbook organization is organizing the pictures. Try to determine what the theme for your album will be. Is this a heritage album? A baby book? A wedding album? Once you've decided on your theme, you can begin sorting your pictures.

Need some scrapbook ideas and themes?

Find all the pictures that relate to your theme. As you sort, toss out the pictures that are out of focus, too dark, or where everyone has their eyes closed. If you're one of those people that just can't throw a picture away, appropriate scrapbook organizations says to put them into a photo safe storage box - but remember, chances are that box will go right back into the attic and will sit for 10 more years (at least) before they see the light of day again!

scrapbook organization file cabinet When you sort your pictures, think of a file cabinet. The theme of your album is like the file cabinet. Now you need to sort through all those pictures and create "folders" for different apsects of the theme. Scrapbook organization begins with photo organization.

For example:

  • If I am creating a baby's first year album, I would sort all the pictures from that first year by month. Each month becomes a folder in my file cabinet.
  • Creating a wedding album? Sort the pictures chronologically through the day.
  • A Heritage album? Sort by decade or branch on your family tree.

Sorting chronologically usually works well for this first round, but some albums lend themselves to other methods of organization. For example, an album about a family reunion might be sorted by immediate families.

Now, are you sitting on the floor with pictures piled up all around you? Consider purchasing some photo storage organizers. Small expandable portfolio folders work well to keep your scrapbook organization and photos streamlined.

Cropper Hopper Photo Case This compact size Cropper Hopper Photo Case holds up to 864 4"x6" photos and will also accommodate 4"x7" or panoramic size photos. Memory Dock - Photo Dock A little more expensive, The Photo Dock box contains 15 photo holders that can store 70 photographs each up to 5 x 7 inches (that's over 1000 photographs)Expandable File Folders can make great photo organization, especially if you need to take your photos on the go.

Once you have your pictures sorted by theme (Baby's First Year) and theme aspects (Months), it's time to start organizing your pictures into page layouts.

**Keep in mind that you can generally expect to fit 4-6 pictures on one 12 x 12 two page layout.**

scrapbook organization 12 months

For example, in my son's First Year book, I had approximately 20 pictures in the 12 Months folder. Looking through those pictures, I could see which would work well together on a page layout. There were 5 pictures of him in the bath, 10 pictures taken at his first birthday, and 5 pictures of him reading books. Those would make 3 very different pages.

scrapbook organization bath

When sorting pictures into page layouts, I like to use a piece of 8 1/2 x 11 typing paper, folded in half. This allows me to keep all my 12 month pictures in the same section of my expandable folder without mixing them together. This scrapbook organization technique also provides me with a place to make notes about layout and journaling ideas.


...your pictures are sorted and you have begun your scrapbooking organization. Now you can start thinking about scrapbooking layouts and ideas for your page layouts!

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