I know many of us use photo books as great gifts for grandparents, for photo journals for ourselves, and I even like to use them to document my kids' schoolwork and artwork so I don't have piles of paper lying around. But have you ever considered using one to display the BEFORE pictures of your house??
If you follow me on Instagram. you know that we recently moved into our forever home. Room by room, we've been renovating it to make it our own (you can follow #ThePageProject progress on Instagram, or get answers to frequently asked questions on my Page Project page.). As you know (especially if you've been following my daily vlogs) we LOVE to entertain, and do it several times per week during the summer. We usually end up doing a home tour for our guests, and I find it hard to explain what the house looked like before our updates and renovations.
I had the idea to create a large coffee table “Before Book” so that our guests could walk around with it and see how much progress we've made!
It's fun to “wow” our guests, but also fun for us to remember how far we've come.
Mixbook challenged me to use their program to create a one-of-a-kind book, and to share about it if I liked it. It was not only super easy, but they are offering an EXCLUSIVE 50% off DISCOUNT to Freebs so it's definitely a company I would recommend! I wanted to show you how great this book turned out!
Fixer-Upper Photo Book: My Home Reno Photo Journal
Here's how I did it:
I didn't have much time to make the book (I mean, I have 5 kids…no way I could take 20 hours on it like I used to before kids!). So one thing I loved is that they made it really quick and easy. I went through my computer, found all the pictures I wanted in the book, and uploaded them to the program. The images can be dragged and dropped which makes things go nice and fast.
They have gorgeous templates which makes your book look seriously professional. I wanted my images big, and mostly full-page so I went for a plain white template…though, I was tempted by some of them. So so cute.
I organized the book based on the flow of the house. So I started with the front door and entryway, moved into the dining room, etc. It's so fun to see the look on people's faces when they see the before pictures above, and then see this in the flesh:
Oh, haaaaaay #PoorChubbyOllie!
See the difference? It's one thing to give a tour of your house, it's another for people to see how different it looks now that your own style and updates have been put into a house. Sigh. I LOVE MY BOOK!!! It makes my heart happy.
I went BIG on this bad boy! I got a 12×12 hard cover photo book with 115 pages, so it was an investment project. I wanted to make sure to get every “before” picture in the book, and to do it right the first time, since I plan on having this book for as long as we live in this house. I wanted it big, sturdy, and wanted it to last! This baby is giant…and I love it.
Good news…they are offering Freebs 50% off with the code FUN50 at checkout. HUGE HUGE HUGE savings, guys!
My book came within a few days, just in time for a family reunion I hosted on Saturday. I was busy with the food and couldn't show people around, so I simply handed them the coffee table book, and told them to go on a self-guided tour. It actually turned out great that way!
I even added pictures of the yard, since we host outside so often and the yard is constantly being fixed up. So it was fun for people to browse through while we were cooking on the grill.
My kids have enjoyed looking through the book too, because they forget how different it looked before we moved in. It's fun to see them notice things. “Oh! That's my room! Wow, it looks so different now!”
This would also be a fabulous housewarming gift for someone you know. Find a way to steal their “before” pics and surprise them with a book of their own!
Our heart and soul has been poured into making this house feel like OUR home. I love having this book that documents the progress we made. Bubba asked if I was going to make an “after” book, and you know, I don't think I ever will…because our home will constantly be changing and evolving over the years! I'm not sure there is ever an end point in making a house, a home…and I'm fine by that :).
So there you go!
If you recently moved or are renovating a house, this is a fun way to display the “BEFORE” pictures. But like I mentioned before, photo books make great gifts, and honestly, they make it fabulously easy to display your kids' cute school papers and artwork without it cluttering up your house! I snap pictures of my kids' art on my phone when they come home from school, politely throw it in the trash, then make it into photo books. The possibilities are endless, so give Mixbook a try!
Happy Creating 🙂