Family heirlooms, pictures and objects deserve to be kept safe, clean and cherished. Keeping these special mementos organized or stored in appropriate places is important. Storing them in the wrong place can lead to damage, misplacement or even potential loss. These tips will help you store your memories and mementos.
Easy Ways To Store Your Memories and Mementos
Use these ideas to organize your family memories.
Decide What To Save
The first step in any organizing process is to decide what should be kept or discarded. Deciding what to keep for your mementos or family memories is no different. The truth is not everything will need to be saved for future use. When going through items you have to ask yourself: Is this as important to my family as it is to me?
Keeping random items that have little to no meaning for anyone besides you can cause a bunch of clutter. Some items that are typically kept include pictures, fine china, collections (coins, dolls, etc.) or antique items. Anything that is of high value or stands to increase in value as time goes on should certainly be kept.
Do a regular upkeep of these items. You may find that you no longer have a desire to keep certain items. Additionally, you may want to add newer items to your keepsake pile.
Where To Store Items
Deciding where to store your special keepsakes can take some time to figure out. It is important to find a place that is clean, dry and out of the way. Bear in mind that these items are not something that you will pull out or use everyday. Therefore, they don’t need to be in your daily space.
Some storage areas might include: the attic, areas above the garage, basement and an off site storage unit. Always make sure items are being kept in sealed plastic boxes such as storage totes or something of similar nature. This will ensure that weather can’t destroy the contents. Also, don’t store sensitive items anywhere that gets too hot or too cold. Simply put some thought into where you are storing each item and the longevity of the storage plan.
Protect Them From Elements
Depending on where you store your items, it will be important to package them correctly. It might be a good idea to vacuum seal items that can be susceptible to moisture damage. Sealable Ziploc bags can work in a similar way if you don’t have access to a vacuum sealer. These might include paper items, things made out of fabric or super delicate mementos.
For breakable items like fine china or glassware, use bubble wrap. Make sure to tape the bubble wrap around these well so that it doesn’t become unraveled. Newspaper can function as an alternative to bubble wrap, but just be sure to use enough of it so that the item is protected well.
Valuable items you may want to consider storing at a bank’s safety deposit box. This will keep items extra secure. These might include jewelry, savings bonds or valuable antiques. Just make sure more than one person is on the list as having access to these items just in case something happens to the main keyholder.
Consider Going Digital
Creating a photo catalog of items is a good alternative to keeping physical items. Additionally, this can allow others to have their own memento of whatever the items is, even if they don’t have the physical object itself. For example, take a picture of grandma’s favorite pearl necklace and distribute it among her loved ones. This will allow everyone a chance to have a piece of her cherished memory.
For actual pictures, scanning pictures might be a good idea. Backing up physical prints helps cut down on the chance of anything being lost. Also, many photo editing programs can help you restore images go their formal glory. Printed pictures get worn and faded with time, especially older ones. By scanning and storing them in a good place on a digital platform, you will have easy access to them at any given point in time.
Creating Something Special
Condensing memories and mementos into one area might seem like an overwhelming task. However, it really doesn’t have to be. Once you get your pile of keepsakes down to a manageable pile it might be a good idea to put them in one place.
A company called, The Life Chest, makes beautiful hope chest like wooden boxes that can hold many items. They come in a variety of shapes, colors and price ranges. Large life chests around around $850, but make a great place for all of your items.
There are many other options if you want to go a different route. Amazon carries nice hope chests for around $149.99 that can serve a similar purpose.
Shadow or memory boxes can also be a great way to make individual mementos more organized. Companies such as Savor, have many options for special occasion keepsakes. One example is their “Vault Pet Keepsake Box” which runs for about $60.
Stay On Top of It
When it comes to family mementos and keepsakes, it is important to stay on top of it. Tossing items you want to save in the back of the closet is not the right way to do it! Take the time to go through everything that you want to keep. You can do this in a day or as you go.
Another thing to consider is to divvy up important items among different family members. Spreading these kinds of items around will give everyone a piece of the responsibility that comes with holding precious family memories. Also, having items in different places can help cut down on any devastating losses such as a house fire, flooding or a burglary.
Start a memory box for each of your children from the time they are born until they reach adulthood. This will help get them started on their own preservation journey. Also by doing this you can instill the importance of passing down shared experiences, stories and familial history.