Remember when you walked in to a photo shop, handed over your roll of film, and waited excitedly to get your prints back? Today, you probably snap photos on your cell phone, post them to your Facebook or Instagram accounts, and then let them languish on your phone. But isn’t it nice to have actual photos to look at or show to your friends? Below are a few of my favorite options for turning cell phone photos into mementos.
• Photo albums The photo book sites keep making it easier to create professional- albums in mere minutes. One of my faves is Mixbook which has comprehensive editing tools for customizing your creation. It also offers templates including “year in review” ones that are perfect for right now.
• Stickers I love the kitsch factor of turning phone pics into stickers. Many photo album sites also offer stickers. Personally, I like Instagoodies which lets me quickly turn images in my Instagram library into a booklet of mini stickers ($14 for ninety 1” stickers). If you’d rather have larger stickers, Artflakes is a fun option ($21 for ten 4” stickers).
• Postcards Maybe it’s just that I like getting something in my mailbox other than bills, but I’m a big fan of snail mail! With Postagram you create your own postcards to be mailed out to whomever you choose. It costs just a buck to have a card shipped.
• Greeting Cards Using the free Apple Cards app, customize cards with photos and text for as little as $3 (including postage).
• Educational Games Pinhole Press is one of my favorite websites for making photo gifts. If offers options ranging from wall decals and gift labels to educational gifts for kids. Help kids practice their memory skills with interactive tiles showing members of the family ($20 for a set of 24 tiles).
• Wine bottles Wine is a go-to gift, but can come off as impersonal. Enter sites likePersonal Wine which let you create customized labels I’ll toast to that!
If you’re not super tech-savvy, fear not. Polaroid just announced Fotobar stores to help unlock your digital photos. You’ll be able to walk in with your phone and walk out with your art! Expect Apple-store style layouts and trained employees to walk you through the process.
If you’re going in reverse and have hard copies of old photos that you want to digitize – there are great services like PeggyBank that can convert home movies, cassettes, vinyls, and photos into electronic files—and, not to worry, it’ll send back your originals.