If your photo collection is cluttering your drawers and closets, you are not alone. Organizing a lifetime of photographs is a sentimental and emotional task, often leading to procrastination. Take your time following these steps:
1) ASSEMBLE IN ONE PLACE – The first step is to gather together all of your photos in one place. Count on the project taking a while so choose a space that can be out of commission. A week before Thanksgiving is not the time!
2) FIGHT MONOTONY – Ask a close friend or family member to help. The company will make the task much less tedious.
3) SORT – Organize using categories that make sense for your collection. Some possibilities include Year or Spans of Time, Events (weddings, reunions, graduations), Family Group (e.g. his and her sides of the family). This is the stage where people tend to slow down, getting caught up in reminiscing. Stay focused!
4) DECIDE ON STORAGE UNIT – This may be traditional photo albums, scrapbooks, or a series of boxes.
5) TRASH THE WORST – This may be difficult, but throw away the excess. If a photo doesn’t bring you happy memories, get rid of it. Let go of those shots that are blurry and out of focus. Why keep pictures of people you don’t know? Trash the photos that are unflattering, are too dark, or too light. Either get rid of doubles or give them away to friends and family.
6) LABEL – With a photo-safe pen, write on the back of each picture what you remember – date, event, names of people, and where the photo was taken.
7) ASSESS PHOTOS ON DISPLAY – Your home will look cluttered if too many photos are displayed at one time. Try rotating them once a year with some of the great pictures you uncover during the decluttering process.
8) DIGITIZE – You’ll feel great once your photos are organized by category, but you may also want to think about scanning at least some of them so you can share with those friends and family living far away.
9) PLACEMENT – Putting each photograph in a categorized album is tedious. Patience is required! Can you ask a friend to help?
10) REPEAT WITH DIGITAL PHOTOS – If your Smartphone or laptop is cluttered with photos, then some organization is also needed there. With our electronic devices, we tend to snap multiple pictures of the same thing from different angles that all look similar. A lot of trashing is probably in order.
Fall is upon us, with cooler temperatures and shorter days. It’s the perfect time to tackle an inside project like organizing all those photos collecting dust. Call Potomac Concierge at (240) 200-4824 for help, and we’ll set you up with one of our personal assistants experienced in photo decluttering.