Documenting my Christmas Ornaments

Documenting Christmas Ornaments 1

Now that I know how to use my camera, I’m taking on an ambitious project: taking pictures of our Christmas ornaments.

Do you document new Christmas ornaments?  I think it’s fun to remember what year we got each thing for our tree.  I’d like to document the ones Mr. P and I got each year since we moved in together.  That was 8 Christmases ago.  Yikes.

My goal this year is to capture all the ornaments from the first three years, plus keep a record of the ones I didn’t capture so it’s easier to do next year.

As we unpacked our decorations a couple weeks ago, I used post-it notes and took quick pictures of all the ornaments so I can remember which goes with what year.

Documenting Christmas Ornaments 2

Focusing on the first three years, I try and get a really nice photo of each ornament hanging on the tree.  This usually involves 10-15 photos each while I fiddle with settings.

One slightly annoying thing here is light.  Even if I take the photos all at the same time, the light is so different on each part of the tree!  I’m ending up with photos that individually look awesome but the lighting and thus coloring on the tree branches really varies!  I wonder what it will look like when I put these together in a scrapbook.

When I move the photos to my computer, I delete a ton of them and keep the best 2-3 for each ornament.  When I scrapbook this in the future, I think I’m only going to keep the one I decided to use for the book.  For now, everything gets sorted into folders by year and is ready for me to work with whenever I want!

10 thoughts on “Documenting my Christmas Ornaments

  1. I’ve been wanting to do a project like this for a couple of years now! I love the photos that you’ve taken so far. It’ll be fun to see how you put your project together!

  2. I have been wanting to do this for many years. But for me it is a rather overwhelming project … My parents were married at Thanksgiving. And Mom’s story is their first Christmas that tree was full of cheap, identical, boxed, boring ornaments. She worked at making some and buying nice ones in the following years.

    After I was born – and my 2 cousins – all within a few years of each other, she decided she didn’t want that to happen to us. Sooo, since I was about 3 years old, it has been family tradition to buy an ornament for every person!! Some years we would receive 3 or 4! When I had my first tree, in my own home, it was fully decorated with my own, heirloom and unique ornaments! From Lenox and Hallmark to the homemade – some of my favorites are the 2 remaining traditionally made “snowflakes,” hand-cut when I was a child, decorated with gold and silver glitter. 🙂

    Now, my husband and I have picked up some in our travels, I am still occassionally given them as gifts. I will buy somethiing to mark a memorable moment or something unique in our lives that year.

    The last few years, I have debated abobut taking pics of the ornaments on the tree, or in the boxes. Or whatever … I will be VERRY interested to see how this project of yours develops!!

    • That is so awesome! I’m such a fan of a fun, unique Christmas tree rather than a “design” tree. It’s what I grew up with and I like that each ornament has meaning for us.

      It would be totally overwhelming to do this project all at once, so I suggest maybe when you take your tree down, group the ornaments together in piles on the dining table based on year (to your best estimate). Take a picture of each pile with a sign saying what year it was. Then keep those pictures for next year. Set a goal for yourself to photograph 1-3 years each year you put up the tree (that’s my plan). So yeah, it’ll take me a while to catch up, but I think it’ll be fun to do every year!

  3. I never thought of photographing them, that’s a good idea. I keep a list in my ornament box and every year when we unpack them all, i update it with newly acquired ones so I know the year and places we get them all. =)

    • I should have been keeping a list! Figuring out which ornament came from what year was quite a process! I’m glad I have a record now! As far as what I’m going to do with them, I’ve seen people put together minibooks or mini albums for the coffee table showing each ornament and what year it came from that they put out during the holidays. I think I’m going to incorporate my pics into my main scrapbook.

  4. Just this past year I completed documenting my Christmas ornaments. I wanted to be sure that my kids would one day know what the sentiment was behind each and every one. Each has a meaning. Lots were gifts. The photographs are strung on a large ring in chronological order and on the back I’ve written about it. It was fun to do, but exhausting.

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