7 Unique Photo Book Ideas

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Looking for unique photo book ideas to make a special gift for grandparents or for loved family members for the holidays? This list of clever photo ideas is a great place to get inspired.

A DIY photobook is on a coffee table.

Do you have a mountain of digital photos on your hard drive?

Do you ever do anything off screen with them or are they hiding in the dark reaches of your computer?

I love to print enlargements for a wall gallery I keep above our fireplace but otherwise generally forget to make prints for myself and for family.

The hardest part of knowing where to even begin with my photo book was deciding which photos I wanted to include and what the theme of the book should be!

I'm too Type A to just toss a bunch of recent ones in and call it good.

If I'm going to take the time to design it and print it out, it needs to be a "project"!

As I looked through my photo library, I found several clusters of photos that would make super fun themes.

If you're looking for your own inspiration, you could start with one of these suggestions.

Photo Book Ideas for Personalized Gifts

1. A Year of Holidays & Special Occasions

Skip the everyday and just showcase all the festivities from a calendar year.

Be sure to include the silly little "Hallmark holidays," too.

This is an especially popular theme for grandma.

Also makes a cute book to teach seasons to your little ones.

2. Personality Profiles

Gather photos of your kid in all their may moods:

Happy, silly, sad, sleeping, tantrum-ing, laughing.

I love my book like this from the toddler years when they are truly little characters.

3. Sibling love

Gather all your best photos of the kiddos in family clusters.

I easily could have made an album filled with photos of my girls cuddling, playing together, goofing off together, etc. Showcase their relationship over time.

4. Summer List

Is your family working through a summer bucket list?

Document the fun with photos to put in a season-end summary book.

Check out my tips on summer family photography here.

5. Family Favorites

An adorable snapshot in time of your family could include shots of your favorite:

  • places to go
  • things to do
  • foods to eat
  • go-to outfits & accessories
  • important friends
  • anything and everything that is most important to your family right now

6. Photos of Mom

Moms have such a hard time getting in the family photos. Dig through your photo library and pull up all the best photos you can find and make an entire album just for her.

Guaranteed waterworks when she opens that thoughtful gift.

7. Everyday Family Photos

Family photo books don't need to just capture the best of the best highlight reel moments.

A photo album of your everyday moments can be even more priceless down the road.

Why not do a Day in the Life photography project and make an album for each year?


  1. "The hardest part of knowing where to even begin with my photo book..." for me is to find at least ONE good photo out of the hundreds on my hard drive.

    Anyhoo....you've got great pictures ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. I followed a link to your wonderful blogspot! Your ideas are fun for families,yet you have found lovely,tender, thoughtful ways to establish a Pay it Forward approach. Your genuine kindness shows though out your boards and your blog. Thank you for sharing,@AnnaMCE.

  3. How did you get the cute frame around the picture? I'm using blurb for my books but it needs something bc they are kind of boring now.
    Thank you!!

  4. How did you get the cute frame around the picture? I'm using blurb for my books but it needs something bc they are kind of boring now.
    Thank you!!

  5. Hello. I just love the details and frames of this book. Do you take images and then create books? I would really love a book of my toddler. Would you be able to tell me how you created this specific book?
    Houston Area

  6. Awesome ideas, the potential for creative photo books is huge! Thanks for sharing ๐Ÿ™‚

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