Family Photo Books: How to Create them Super Fast, Frugal & Easy!

Hi there! Welcome to Little Hat Family!

‘Modern Motherly Advice for the Millennials’

Family + Adorable Kids= pictures!!! And lots of them! In the technology age we all have such great resources available to us to take amazing pictures, every day! And most of us do take pictures every day. I can, without shame, state that I have 6,225 pictures stored on my phone alone… and as many on the walls! 😉 99% of them are of Harry! I know many moms want to display their pictures in frames on the wall, or in a photo book to cherish forever. These pictures aren’t just for your Facebook and Instagram feed! Your photos thrive on social networks of course, but I love to preserve them, remember the wonderful memories, and even give them out as gifts and keepsakes!  My sister-in-law and I were just discussing the best methods & ideas to easily keepsake your photo memories!


I have assembled some great ideas for making your family photo books. The books can be made super fast, it doesn’t have to break the budget, and it can be very easy! 

There are 3 main resources to create your Family Photo Book:

  • Scrapbooking (DIY)
  • Apps
  • Photo Book Services



I jumped on the scrapbooking bandwagon years ago and enjoy that technique very much!  I love the creativity, the control you have over the whole project and it also relaxes me! However, I can see it may not be suited for everyone. It is VERY time-consuming, you have to be creative, and of course you have to print up all your pictures ahead of time. However you have complete control over what the book looks like; you can add in your absolute favorite pictures & memories. And you have the possibility of making the book as large or a small as you want! I still love to make my own family photo albums DIY, whenever I can!



And the one super frugal tip that I utilize for the DIY scrapbooking route: 1 roll of regular wrapping paper (for a dollar!!), cut this into your desired shape to fit the scrapbook page. I’ve done this brilliant hack before!! You can use less than 1 total roll of cute wrapping paper $1 total for an entire scrapbook!! Compared to .85-$1 PER PAGE for the cute paper for the 12×12 scrapbooks at the craft store!! This will save you $20-$30 right off the top!



Moving forward, I’m going to give you advice for how to utilize photo Apps & Photo Book Services. These photo services can automate photo books for you based on your saved photos in your phone. You can have a little bit more control and create a photo book yourself with a photo ‘drop-in’ style through services like Walgreens or Shutterfly.

This means you do not have to buy an empty scrapbook, there is no filler paper, you do not have to supply backgrounds, you do not have to print your own individual pictures. Which I understand, is appealing to lots of busy moms! If you use a service, you design it or set it up ahead of time. This could be as in depth, minimal involvement, or as simple and hands-off as you would like! You pay one price for the photo book to be professionally printed and shipped/ picked up. For a service fee, There are actually apps that simply send you the photo book each month, automated. You do not have to think about it at all. (It is based on your photos stored in your phone). I am not an affiliate of these photo programs- I just utilize them and love them. And most people do not know the wonderful possibilities of what they can create in these Apps! AND the best part is- I always find coupons & deals for my projects!!


Pin this image now, and Save for later!!


These are the main services I use for my Photo Books & Projects: 

WALGREENS: I am always on Walgreens Photo, printing, designing and searching for coupons! 😉  this enables me to stay in budget, and yet print as much as I want to. About every 2 weeks the site offers 40% off of your entire order of Prints, Posters, Enlargements, Photo Books, etc. Great offer!!  I usually have photos printed individually, I create Photo Books, and I make picture collages such as this:



I am currently working on creating a one year birthday photo album for Harrison! I did this all through my iPhone! I designed it Month-by-Month, dropped in the photos chosen from my phone,  and in the Walgreens picture collage option, it will organize and lay out the pictures for you. You can even hit the re-arrange button, or swap pictures around yourself. It’s very simple, and the site talks you through it!! Then you may also choose a background color, and you can even personalize it with a heading title! The 8×10 option Collage is normally priced at $4.99, and then I always apply my coupon code at checkout!

To make baby Harry’s one-year photo album,  I used a combination of the Walgreens collage templates and admittedly, a bit of my own DIY scrapbooking also. This is what works for me! And most importantly, I enjoy it!!


SHUTTERFLY also offers the services of prints, enlargements, Photo Books & gifts (photo mugs, blankets, bags, etc).  If you are a part of the Shutterfly email list they will also send you coupons.  Shutterfly is a little bit more hands-on. You also still have a lot of control, you can decide on templates, text heading, colors, your own designs, etc.  You drop in your photos (saved from your device), and you pick & choose your layout & theme. You create your photo project and they ship it directly to you.



For a little more Automated or No-Brainer photo service, you can try one of the many photo Apps.

I like FreePrints.  The app is free, there are no subscription fees. You get 85 prints each month for about a $9.99 shipping fee.  That’s it. You simply choose the photos you want to be printed, they send them to you. It is pretty straightforward.  They will even send you an email reminder at the end of the month to have your photos printed.

Ive also used Chatbooks, “Photo Books that Create Themselves”. It is super user-friendly, it takes literally 5 minutes to complete. The books are so modern, adorable, and a great little size! You can personalize them more with your own text input as well. I would say it has more of an intimate feel for a photo book. It’s an awesome, no-hassle, worry-free, no-brainer photo option for the busy mom! All of my friends who use it love it.


There are endless apps and services you can utilize to print your photos and/or create Photo Books. I have personal experience with the list I mentioned. I am happy to utilize these specific services for the speed, the templates already set up for you, and the price! I am a huge fan of any service that will reward you with coupons and deals!

I hope these suggestions were helpful to you today.

What suggestions do you have for keepsaking your perfect family memories? We love to hear from you!

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Hi, I am Kelly! Creator and administrator of Little Hat Family, I absolutely adore my squishy, smiley, 10-month old son, Harrison (Harry), and my kind and cooperative husband Stefan. Our little millennial, hipster family lives in Chicago and yes, we do love hats!
As a professional nanny for 11 years in Chicago, and now a new mommy myself, I have picked up so much useful, modern, mommy advice and life hacks! I would love to pay it forward to my fellow mommy tribe!
I also love creating thrifty projects, organization, an organic lifestyle, dancing, blogging, cooking and spending time with our large families!
I absorb every drop of Mama advice I can get; and I’ve created some Modern Motherly advice along the way! We Modern Mommies have to stick together! Subscribe to my blog today, and let’s connect our Modern, Family Tribes! ~Kelly


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