How to Make a Yearly Family Photo Book

How to Make an Annual Photo Book

Every year I say I want to do it. And every year I start and then get completely overwhelmed and just give up. But I’m pumped to say that I finally made it happen, folks! I got all of our photos together from my camera and each of our phones and edited out the junk and kept the precious stuff and got it all into a big beautiful book. Have you ever attempted an annual photo album or book? It’s a daunting task, right? Now that I finally have my act together, I can share with you a few tips that totally helped, and my favorite way to put a pretty printed book together.

How to Make an Annual Photo Book

Work On It Gradually Don’t try to sit down in December and sort through 12 months of photos, because I guarantee your eyes will cross and you’ll start crying and throw your computer across the room. Instead, create some folders on your phone or computer (wherever you store your digital photos). As you take images throughout the year, move your favorites to those folders so you’ll have them at the ready when you start making your book. Bonus points if you make a folder for every month!

Pick Your Photos Carefully I know that it’s so tempting to include every single photo you took the first time your baby tried green beans. And squash. And spaghetti. But you could fill a book with just those little moments, if you take photos the way I do. So try to focus on the images that really signify something special or remind you of a time that you want to be sure to remember. Edit out photos that are too similar or you’ll end up with an encyclopedia.

Use the Right Book-Making Tool Here’s the really crucial part, gang. There are so many ways out there to put together a photo book, but my favorite for this type of project is Blurb. If you’re a hands-off type of person, you can just upload all of your images and Blurb will magically sort them into a book — you can just push go and BOOM it’s done. If you like a little more control (cough me cough), they have a great downloadable program called BookWright that allows you to really get into the nitty gritty of customizing your book. But don’t let it fool you — I did an entirely custom book in about an hour. So easy, intuitive, and quick!

How to Make an Annual Photo Book

How to Make an Annual Photo Book

Make it Pretty Don’t just use the same layout over and over! I loved messing with the page layout options on Blurb, and I especially love that they have a full-bleed option that really features your images in a lovely way. Mix it up and make it interesting by using different layout for your photos.

That’s it! Our book came to our door and Ryan and I stopped working for a good while to flip through it and remember our year. I love that we have images there that we didn’t share on Instagram or anywhere else — photos that are special just to us, of adventures we were on together. There’s our first date alone after having a baby, trips abroad, and that time my niece decided we should throw her a backyard wedding so she could marry Henry (she made us do it twice because she forgot to walk down the aisle right the first time). I tell ya, as a mom, I look at this book and get a little overwhelmed about how many beautiful times we’ve had as a family.

Do you make annual photo books? They’re becoming more and more important to me, especially since so many of our digital images get taken and forgotten on our phones! And they’re a perfect idea for an annual holiday gift, too — don’t tell Mr. Lovely but Santa might stick this one in his stocking, even though he’s seen it already… xoxo

How to Make an Annual Photo Book

This post is sponsored by Blurb. All opinions are my own. Thank you for being supportive of the sponsors who help keep Lovely Indeed rocking!

  1. Tiffany on said:

    I just love this! Such a great idea esp with having digital cameras on our phones it is so easy for us to take photos but never print them and just ends up in our hard drive!
    Will have to start doing this for next year! 🙂
    Tiffany
    xoxo
    http://www.fromyourstruly.co.uk

  2. brittni on said:

    Super cute, Chelsea. I love the idea of making a yearly family book.

  3. Paige on said:

    I’ve actually been wanting to make a book out of my blog through blurb for a while now! I’ll have to give it a try now that I know you’ve had a positive experience with it!

    Paige
    http://thehappyflammily.com

  4. What a great idea! I’ve been meaning to do this for the longest time but I have a hard time finding time to go through the thousands of pictures I take! Lol. That’s a lot of “time” in one sentence. I’m seeing a trend… do you have some to sell maybe? 😛

    Love,
    Julie @ http://www.xfallenmoon.com

  5. Rachel on said:

    Do they allow text? I want to do these, too, but I want to be able to add some narration and tell some stories associated with the pictures.

  6. Valerija on said:

    Love this! Recently finally make a photo book with wedding pictures. Was kinda sad about all the pictures that remain on computer and you don’t usually look at them, grouping all the pictures in the annual book is an amazing idea, thank you!

  7. mary on said:

    I started working on a photo book 2 weeks ago and it is so overwhelming! Thanks for your tips.

  8. Ashley on said:

    That is amazing. I literally just ordered our annual family yearbook a few days ago and it was nothing like yours… I’m guilty of trying to do it all last minute and just putting every photo in there to get it over with! Will be taking a different approach next year for sure. How did you get the awesome ombre look for the front cover??

    • chelsea on said:

      Hi Ashley! That ombre look actually comes from the image that I used for our cover! Would totally recommend Blurb for next year though — start cataloguing those photos now. 😉

  9. Frida McKeon on said:

    Thank you for sharing. I was going to go with a photo album but this just what I wanted I just didn’t know it existed. Now I just have 6 years to go through lol. Going forward I will be more organized.

  10. Thanks for these great tips and inspirational photos of your book – it looks absolutely beautiful! I’m currently working on mine from 2015, a bit last minute but I did the stupid thing and didn’t edit and choose any photos during the year :/

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  14. noone on said:

    how many pages is your book?

  15. Jenny on said:

    Hello — just wondering if you have a new recommended site to make a yearly book? We make one yearly from our family blog — but Blurb (my favorite) no longer ‘slurps’ from the blogs — Looking for a replacement

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