Monday, March 5, 2012

21COFH - My Quick & Dirty Photo Sort - Week 10

This week, our project is A Quick & Dirty Way to Start Organizing Photos. Here's what I did with one liquor box of Dad's family photos.
  • Since the pictures all are 4x6 inches or smaller, I selected a box and archival photo envelopes that would hold that size. See picture below.
  • Started at the top and took out a box that originally contained Canterbury Chocolates. Some of the pictures were loose while others were in an envelope.
    • The envelope had the note, "Dick Jr. & his Daddy & Mother" written on it. I removed the photos and placed them in an archivally safe envelope. The original envelope with the note went in the back of the archival envelope. Since there is a divider in the envelope, that will act as a barrier between the old envelope and the photos.
    • Then I put the photos of Dick Jr. in the front of the archival envelope.
    • The loose photos I quickly divided into 3 groups:
      1. Portraits of Dick Jr.
      2. My newborn pictures.
      3. Old pictures from grandma's side of the family.
    • Each of the archival envelopes was appropriately labeled in pencil.
    • Using an index card, I made a divider for the new storage box labeled, "These were in a Canderbury Chocs box." Not very exciting but it tells me these pictures were all together at one point for some reason. (The index cards are regular office supply variety. Since the pictures are now in archivally safe envelopes, there is a barrier. I'll get more appropriate dividers set up later.)
  • Back in the liquor box, I went on to the shoebox that was underneath and went through the same process, making a divider for the box labeled "From the same shoebox." If the pictures were in an envelope together, I kept them together. If the envelope had something written on it, I saved the envelope with the pictures.

  • Then I went to the big envelope tucked in the side of the liquor box and made a divider for the archival box labelled "Together in envelope"
    1. The negatives went into one archival envelope which was so labeled.
    2. The pictures that were clearly from the same roll of film and had been stamped with a September 1954 date went into their own appropriately labeled envelope.
    3. The envelope addressed to my grandmother's sister c/o my grandfather that was full of labeled family photos went into another archival envelope with the original envelope containing the return address in the back section of the archival envelope. (Had to force myself not to stop and get distracted by these pictures!)
  • When I was finished, I made a temporary label for the box using a yellow sticky note. 

  • Last but not least, I updated my inventory and wrote a very short descriptive paragraph. A printed copy went in the box. Now when I'm rooting around for something, I'll have a better idea as to whether this box might contain what I'm looking for.

Here's what the completed box looks like. Nothing special but I've taken another baby step toward conquering this photo beast in my home.

Whew! I'm glad that's done. It was hard not to get distracted by some of the interesting pictures that showed up. Now that there is some semblance of order, I can go back and browse when I've got a little time.

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© 2012, copyright Michelle Goodrum

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