Good memories shouldn’t stay in the past; they should be brought into the present! One of my favorite memory-keeping tops that is fun, easy, and meaningful is to recreate a classic photo, whether it’s with family or friends—and display the old and new versions together. You might take the same posed photo every year (everyone lined up by the fireplace in winter or at the beach in summer). Or you might change up the pose but keep the location the same, or collect photos from the same holiday each year. I have gallery walls full of family photos, and each time I pass by these photos and mementos, they make me smile. Recreating a framed memory is easy, fun, meaningful, and a great way to spend time with family, especially if you follow my motto and DIT (Do It Together).

Photo Pairings
One of my favorite ways to create a grouping is to pair similar images. That could mean:

Going through your parents’ or grandparents’ or your own old photos to find a favorite to recreate. That’s what I did with this picture of my mother reading to me, once I became a mom. Displayed in the same frame, they show love being passed on through the generations.
Don’t forget friends who are family! Sort through your own favorite photos to find pictures with your best friends, and recreate those—you and your besties hugging at graduation, toasting at each other’s birthdays, or on an annual girlfriends’ getaway.
Filling a wall with holiday card photos or pictures from your annual vacation
Dedicating a wall to a single theme: Travel pictures (you and yours in front of different landmarks or sites) or family weddings

Taking the same photo of your child every month of the first year, or every year from one to 21, or every five years—at age 5, 10, 15
Snap a photo annually on a particular occasion like the first day of school, the first and last day of each grade, or blowing out the candles at a birthday.
Time traveling by hanging portraits of different generations side by side: Your senior picture, your mom’s, and your daughter’s
Grouping pictures of your kids all wearing the same thing, whether it’s the exact same piece of clothing (a hand-me-down everyone loves), or the same genre (each of them in their Halloween costumes, ballet costumes or soccer uniforms, or holiday pajamas)

Recreate photos taken in the same—or a similar—place. The houses are different, but this picture of my father’s family on their front steps inspired us to take our own version of front-step photos. Photos in specific locations inspire you to share stories about that time and place to the next generation looking at the vintage photos.

If you’re pairing old photos and new ones, and want a cohesive look, print out current photos in black and white to match the old ones.

Scrapbox Pairings
I also often pair a photo with an object in deep frames to create groupings I call “scrapboxes.” You can recreate a pairing in a new scrapbox, too, and display both next to each other. If you’re looking for photo/object pairings, you might try:

A photo of your parents’ wedding and invitation, displayed next to your wedding portrait and invitation. Here are my parents and me and my husband on our big day.

A picture of a graduate along with a diploma
A baby portrait along with the hospital bracelet or a little bootie (one for every kid in the family)
A photo of a party next to a birthday candle or party memento
A vacation snap next to a ticket, postcard, even a boarding pass

One of the most meaningful ways to group old photos is to go through and find pairs that match from different generations, then frame them in the same way. Not only does it make for a fun display, but it’s a great project for kids to go through old photos—and you can share the family stories that go with them as you choose and frame them. Plus, it makes a one-of-a-kind gift guaranteed to bring back happy memories. To make the scrapbox even more special, download our banner templates to create labels describing the occasion, date, or any other relevant info.


  1. Printer 2. Labels 3. Foam Dots 4. Metallic Marker 5. Shadowbox 6. Archival Glue  7. Label Cards  8. Double Frame  9. Stickers

photo credits