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The Best Ways to Organize and Show Off Your Summer Photos

A gallery of framed photos, a printed photo book, and a shadow box on the wall
Gallery Perfect/Mixbook/BONKON

Thanks to smartphones and digital storage, we don’t think twice about snapping a few photos when we’re having fun. But those photos add up quickly and can get lost in your phone or camera’s storage. Keep your summer memories alive with these fun ways to organize your pictures.

It wasn’t that long ago that people had to carefully choose which moments they wanted to capture on film. Cameras only held a certain number of pictures and film was expensive. Digital cameras and smartphones brought a new age of picture-taking, allowing people to store hundreds, if not thousands, of photos on their devices at once.

We’re not complaining about this by any means. However, modern technology does mean that you’re more likely to come home from vacation with hundreds of pictures instead of a handful that you can print and show off.

Instead of keeping them on your phone forever, organize and display all your fun summer photos with these tips and resources.

Make a Digital Photo Album

A photo collage from New York City

If you prefer to keep your photos online but want something more special than your phone’s default storage, make a digital photo album. Just like it sounds, this allows you to compile photos into a book or presentation digitally. You can access the pictures from anywhere and show off your pictures in style.

These are particularly useful for people who have friends or family who live far away from them. Instead of lugging around heavy photo albums when you travel, you can simply pull up a digital album on your phone or computer when you’re together.

MyAlbum is a popular website that lets you compile photos into sleek albums that have a professional feel. You can organize your pictures using templates that will convey a certain feel for the album, like playful or classic, for example.

Text boxes allow you to write down details for each photo and icons can add even more information, such as what the weather was like that day or what time the photo was taken. Because it’s all digital, you can even add photos to your album. A basic account is free, but you can upgrade your subscription for additional features.

Flipsnack is another company to try. They work in a similar fashion as MyAlbum but offer more templates to choose from. You can find specific templates for pretty much every type of photo album, including ones about travel, summer, parties, and more. Their free has quite a few limitations if you have a lot of photos, so you might want to consider a paid plan after a busy summer.

Create a Photo Book

Someone holds open a photo book on a bright background

If you want to print your pictures but don’t love traditional photo albums, you should look into creating your own photo book. These allow for the same customization as the digital photos albums above, and you end up with a physical book you can keep on your coffee table.

One of the most popular sites to create a photo book on is Mixbook. It’s easy to use while offering plenty of creative freedom. Choose from hundreds of different templates to find the perfect style you’re looking for. As you edit your album, you can change the layout and background as necessary and add text and stickers to improve the book.

Shutterfly is another place to check out photo books. Products are easy to create and the site frequently offers discounts so you can score a great deal on your book. They are a little less user-friendly than Mixbook, but still a great option. Their website also offers customized photo products like magnets, calendars, and mugs.

Frame Them

Many photos in frames on the wall
Gallery Perfect/Muzilife

Keep things traditional by framing your favorite photos from the summer at home. This option does limit you to displaying only a handful of photos, but that can be a fun challenge to take on. Picking out the photos you want to frame will involve you finding the ones that represent the most meaningful parts of your summer. This reflection may be more rewarding than displaying the photos will be.

This gallery wall kit lets you display nine photos in 12″ x 12″ frames. The result is a chic layout that compliments most home designs. You can choose black, white, or gray frames that each come with a removable white mat.

If you want something a little more casual, this gallery display kit comes with 11 frames in three different sizes. You can rearrange the frames on your wall however you would like. This kit also comes in five different colors so you can find the frames that will best compliment your home.

Casually Hang Prints

Photos hang on a wall display with clothespins and photos hang on string lights

If frames are a little stuffy for you, there are other fun ways to hang printed photos. These are usually different renditions of clipping prints to something like a string or cord. The result is a cute and customizable way to show off your photographs.

This photo hanger allows you to display pictures along with anything that can be clipped on with a clothespin. That might include postcards, flowers, jewelry, and other things relevant to the photos.

This option has fairy lights on every clip to create a twinkling display of your photos. It’s a great way to cozy up a living room or bedroom. It works best with small prints, but any sized photo will work fine.

Put Together a Shadow Box

Two different shadow boxes on tables

If you have souvenirs from the summer that you don’t know what to do with, a shadow box is a great way to display everything in one place. It can be filled with photos, plane tickets, postcards, and other momentos that you want to remember. Shadow boxes are also an easy way to avoid dusting and cleaning souvenirs you want to display. All you need to do is dust the shadow box every few weeks.

This basic shadow box is large enough to display a decent amount of things but small enough to fit anywhere in your house. It also comes in nine different colors to blend into your home. The linen backing allows for photos and postcards to be attached with a pushpin while the 1-1/2 inch bottom lets you place larger objects upright.

This unique shadow box is similar in design but features two small drawers on the bottom. These are perfect for holding any other items you can’t fit inside the box. It also features an attachment that allows you to hang it on the wall.

Compile Them In a Photo Collage

Two different photo collages on the wall

If you want to showcase a lot of photos in a small space, create a custom photo collage. These take less work to make than the framed photo galleries above but produce a similar result.

Snapfish is a well-known website that lets you make various photo creations including collages. You can make large wall prints, canvas prints, framed prints, and much more. Once you choose your template and upload all your photos, the site shuffles the images around until you find an arrangement that you like.

Canvaspop offers elevated photo collages printed on canvases or in frames. You can choose from a variety of templates and upload up to 36 photos per canvas. You’re also sent a digital proof of the product before it’s finalized and sent to you.

If you’re drowning in photos from the summer and don’t know what to do with them, these ideas will help you stay organized. Whether it’s displaying prints in picture frames or creating a digital photo album, there are plenty of ways to show off how much fun you had this summer!

Anne Taylor Anne Taylor
Anne Taylor is a writer with a BA in Journalism and a passion for storytelling. Her work has been published on a variety of websites including Mental Floss and Well + Good, and she recently published her first novel, What it Takes to Lose. When she's not writing, Anne loves to travel (19 countries and counting), spend time outside, and play with her dog, Pepper. Read Full Bio »
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