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By: Marie Torgueman

Getting organized is not about getting rid of memories; it’s about making them more accessible. Photographs represent your life history. Organizing and protecting your collection will allow you to enjoy your photos now and ensure they remain intact for future generations. If you’re faced with decades worth of loose photos, here are some tips to get you started on this worthwhile project. Not only will you enjoy the wonderful trip down memory lane, but you’ll also cherish the priceless results!

1.Sort and separate photos by time period as accurately as you can.


2.Start with the most recent photos first. They will be the easiest to tackle because you’ll be familiar with the people, locations and events depicted in the photos.


3. Zero in on clues that might help you identify when the photos were taken. Look closely at the clothing styles, note the cars being driven, and try to recall momentous milestones that took place. Collaborate with friends and family to identify unknowns.

4. When you’ve finished separating as best you can, begin placing pictures into photo albums. Keep the albums numbered in chronological order and label pages with names and dates next to the photos if possible. Don’t write on the backs of photos, as that can damage them.

5.Carefully remove photos from unwanted, old frames and place any oversized photos in scrapbooks or photo albums with full-page sleeves. They’ll be a pleasure to view all in one book, even if they’re placed in any random order.


6.When purchasing albums or scrapbooks, avoid the “magnetic” pages that can cause damage to your photos and get permanently stuck together.

7.If placing pictures into photo albums seems too tedious for you, consider buying a set of photo storage boxes. Make sure you purchase boxes that are of manageable size – not too heavy or overwhelming to access.

8.As a back-up, save photo negatives, memory cards and video camera tapes in a fireproof box or safe. This will protect against an unexpected disaster destroying your precious memories. You can scan prints, too, for extra back up.

9.Be sure to upload and save more recent digital photos to your computer as often as possible. Online and cloud photo storage sites serve as a safe haven for your pictures and are a convenient way to organize and share them. Don’t neglect digital photos just because they’re stored and you don’t “see” them.

Happy Organizing!

Marie Torgueman is a Professional Organizer and the owner of Hangers Plus. If you would like more information or need professional organizing services, call 917-797-3057.