How to Create Beautiful DIY Photo Albums

In our digital world where precious moments are viewed with the swipe of a screen, there's a special kind of nostalgia attached to thumbing through a handmade photo album. They’re lots of fun to make and easier than you think! Read on for some awe-inspiring DIY photo album ideas.

3 July 2023

Creating a DIY photo book is about celebrating the amazing chaos of life, cherishing the smiles and the scenery, the milestones and the monuments, and even the mundane. It’s about keeping treasured memories alive, not merely in the cloud or on your phone, but in a form that you can touch, feel, and experience. Each photograph tells a unique story, and there’s something profoundly personal and irreplaceably beautiful about hand-curated collections of memories in your very own handmade photo album.

For many, the thought of creating DIY photo albums might seem daunting, but rest assured, you don’t need to be a dab-hand at design or a crafting connoisseur to embark on this epic adventure. It’s not about perfect alignment or impeccable detail. It’s about creating something uniquely you.

Join us as we explore the wonderful world of handmade DIY photo album ideas, simplifying the process and offering handy tips and hints. We’ll provide guidance and inspiration. And remember, there are no wrong choices. Every handmade photo album is a masterpiece, because it’s a reflection of a unique journey.

Before we start, just a quick word of caution. Please take all reasonable safety precautions, especially when dealing with tools for cutting, punching holes or using adhesives.

Without further ado, here are some of our favourite handmade DIY photo album ideas.

Good Things Come in Small Packages

Woman cutting card for a photo album. (Credit: YorVen via Getty Images)

If you’re looking for simple yet satisfying DIY photo albums, we’ve got you covered! You can buy small pieces of card with rounded corners online or at your local hobby or craft shop and each one can be designed with different patterns, words or even covered in fabric, wrapping paper, or pages from a book. Mount your pictures on the pieces of card, punch a hole in the top left corner of each one and add a metal or plastic ring to hold them all together.

Fabulously Flippable

Old photos in a box (Credit: Nico De Pasquale Photography via Getty Images)

This is one of the easiest DIY photo album ideas to make at home because it requires just a few elements. A nice square piece of wood mounted on a base and two hooks. Equidistant from either side, embed the hooks around an inch or so down and punch small holes onto the top of your photos, right in the middle. Then all you have to do is hang your photos from the hooks. The beauty of this one is that you can have a photo on each side and you can change them as often as you like!

A Noteworthy Notebook

Photos in a notebook (Credit: Carol Yepes via Getty Images)

Go into any funky stationery shop and you’ll find dozens of cool notebooks. For this particular handmade photo album, spiral or ring-bound notebooks look great. You can decorate the cover or leave it as it is, but inside you’ve got a blank canvas to be as creative as you like. Mount your images straight, sideways or at odd angles and accompany each one with a handwritten note about what you were up to, how you felt or indeed any thoughts you like. You can also add reminders, such as train, plane or bus tickets, menus, postcards or any other mementos you have!

Happy Holidays

Assortment of scrapbooking tools (Credit: Carol Yepes via Getty Images)

Part scrapbook, part picture book, this is one of the handmade DIY photo album ideas that will stay with you forever. Create front and back covers using thick card and your inserts – also on card – can include photos, journal entries, mementos, indeed anything that you want to save as a keepsake. Punch holes in each card and bind them together using binder rings. Add as many adornments as you like for a unique DIY photo book of your memories.

The Most Brilliant Book

Eric Carle’s “The Very Hungry Caterpillar”. (Photo by -/AFP via Getty Images)

We all have a favourite book that sparks happy memories. Maybe yours is an Agatha Christie mystery, the Beano annual, War & Peace or The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

Combining well-loved books with your favourite images makes for perfect DIY photo albums and all you need is a glue stick. Images sleeping in a bed of words look great and they stack pretty well on your bookshelves!

It’s worth noting here that using a favourite book for this project will permanently alter the book. Be careful to choose one you’re willing to modify in this way or buy a duplicate.

Upcycled Cereal Stories

Upcycled photo album (Credit: LoraLiu via Getty Images)

What do you do with your empty cereal boxes? Most people recycle them, but you can upcycle them into a cool DIY photo book. All you need do is cut out the two big sides and either cover them in fabric, wrapping paper or wallpaper and add your photographs any which way you like. You can either bind them together with clips or even stitch them. You can also glue the edges, but make sure you can open the book if you’re using an adhesive.

A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Words

A grandmother and her grandson, creating a scrapbook together. (Credit: Tetra Images via Getty Images)

Making a DIY photo book is about cultivating your ideas and letting your creativity flow freely. It’s about personalising a keepsake that will last a lifetime, one that you can share with friends, family, and future generations. This journey is not just about the destination but equally about the process, which tells your own fascinating story.


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