Long before I’d heard of acid-free paper, I started a simple photo album / scrapbook of Halloween snapshots, stickers, and other decorations. I’m sure it isn’t “archival” by today’s standards, but it’s still the first book the grand-boys want to read when they visit at any time of year. They love seeing their dad and uncle dressed up as the Giant Pumpkin or Sherlock Holmes, or even a not-so-scary-clown.
Although it’s to make an online photo book with a service like Shutterfly.com or Mixbook.com, the old-fashioned add-a-picture-as-you-go photo album is a great alternative and doesn’t have to be a labor-intensive, huge project. Keep the focus on the goal: to save your photos and give them a bit of context.
Start with an acid-free album with acid-free paper or archival plastic photo sleeves. I admit a weakness for paper pages so I can handwrite captions or include notes from other members of the family. Use acid-free photo corners to attach the pictures to the pages, and look for acid-free stickers at scrapbook stores to add a touch of spooky fun. It’s tempting to use adhesives or double-stick tape, but the longevity of most adhesive products has not been thoroughly tested and proved.
Our old album is most likely not archival by today’s standards, but I’d rather have it just the way it is, than not all. I’m making digital images of each page as if it were an old family album, and can print a reproduction copy anytime. Right now, however, I’m busy adding new photos of the grand-boys in their own Halloween costumes.
Preserve Halloween Costumes
To preserve Halloween costumes, or children’s dress-up clothes, follow these four tips:
- Always store freshly laundered clothing to discourage pests from moving in for a snack.
- Avoid using mothballs.
- Roll or pad folds with acid-free tissue to avoid creases at the folds.
- Store costumes inside acid-free boxes or a clean cotton pillowcase.
Find more ideas for bringing life to vintage and old costumes in Resurrect and Preserve Heirloom Halloween Costumes for the Next Generation.