Scrapping Big Events

Birthdays. Vacations. Weddings. Special events…All BIG events. All HARD to scrap.

ocean-queenONE WEEK VACATION: 28 PHOTOS (out of over 600)

When we have hundreds — if not thousands — of photos of a single day/event in our lives, the thought of scrapping it can be overwhelming! It is hard to know where to begin, how to move forward, and how to call it done! The days and moments are important to us and so we need to approach them..not in fear but in freedom.

“Freedom in what?” you ask. My answer: FREEDOM TO NOT SCRAP EVERY PHOTO. Freedom to not even scrap all the good photos. Freedom to choose the best of the best (whether in quality of photograph or quality of story-telling ability) and leave the rest.

springbreak_450Click to Enlarge. 4 DAY VACATION: 32 PHOTOS (out of 400+)

Look at it this way: A birthday is an important event. However, most kids who live with their parents will have 18 birthdays at home. If you scrapped even just ten pages for each year, you would end up with 180 birthday layouts for one child. Is a birthday so important that it takes up that amount of space in an album and so much of your time to create the pages?

5thbirthday_450Click to Enlarge. 5th BIRTHDAY: 24 PHOTOS (out of 150)

There are numerous ways to tackle “the big events” when it comes to scrapping, and today I am going to share my most-used process. At the end, I will share a few other ideas as well.

My number one go-to strategy for scrapping events/days that I have hundreds of photos for is this:

Narrow it down, scrap a multiphoto layout (one or two pages), and call it done.

playndine_450Click to Enlarge. 4th BIRTHDAY AT DISNEY’S PLAY ‘N DINE: 31 PHOTOS out of 200

I know, I know. It sounds scary. How can I go from 200 photos to just a few? How can I capture the HUGENESS of this event on one or two pages? How can I not scrap all these photos? I ask those questions and then I answer myself with comments like,

“This event is big now, but not necessarily huge in the context of our whole story.”

“I don’t need 100 photos of my daughter’s 5th birthday in order to remember it.”

“I would rather scrap a few photos and then move onto other — just as important — stories.”

buildabear_450 Click to Enlarge. BUILD A BEAR WORKSHOP: 32 photos (out of 200+)

1. Narrow it Down: This is the hardest part of the process, but the most important. When I go through my photos for a big event, I try to ask myself, “What do I want to remember most about this day?” I choose photos that represents the bigger story for me. The rest of the photos I leave. I may revisit them later, maybe not. I usually end up with 20-30 photos that “tell the story” best.

2. Scrap a multi-photo layout. This is where I usually run to a template. Over the years I have created tons of multi-photo templates so that I have a starting point. With a template chosen (usually a two pager) I look to see how many photos I need. I then go through the favorites that I picked out and narrow it down again or add in a few more. I choose a kit that fits with the theme, share the story, and add to my album.

3. Call it done. For some people, this is the hardest step. When an event seems big to us, when it is filled with so much emotion, it is hard to have just one or two pages to commemorate it. However, when you look back on the event in years to come, it may not seem quite so big. And when you mix it in with the hundreds of other big stories in your life, your one or two pages will seem very adequate.

christmas2008_450Click to Enlarge. CHRISTMAS 2008: 20 PHOTOS (out of 500)


Obviously, there are some stories that are bigger, that need more space, that are worthy of more than a few pages. Examples that come to mind:


Once-in-a-lifetime trips

Stories that continue and can be added to: (people you love, places you have lived, recipes, etc.)

Special Milestone birthdays and anniversaries


Here are some other ideas for ways to scrap bigger events:

Scrap many different pages and put it album as usual
Scrap many different pages and add to a special album (Christmas, birthday, etc):
Create a Mini Album
DVD slide show


So how do YOU tackle your big events?