Make Your Own Family Photo Calendar

Couple looking at photographs together
JGI/Jamie Grill/Blend Images/Getty Images

Looking for a personalized gift that will be enjoyed year-round? It's easy to create your own personalized photo calendar. Include images of friends, family, ancestors, or special places on your calendar to remind you of special people or events. Make your own calendar for grandma of the grandkids, or one of yourself for the special person in your life. Photo calendars are a thoughtful, inexpensive gift that can be used every day of the year.

Select Your Pictures

Find pictures from your collection that suit your fancy, and use your scanner to make them digital. If you don't own a scanner, then your local photoshop can scan the pictures and place them on a CD/flash drive for you or upload them to an online service. Don't be afraid to get creative and branch out from traditional photographs - scanned copies of a child's artwork or family mementoes (letters, medals, etc.) also make nice calendar photos.

Prepare Your Photos

Once you have your photos in digital format, use photo-editing software to add captions, or rotate, resize, crop, or enhance the pictures to best fit your calendar.

Create the Calendar

​If you'd like to create and print a photo calendar yourself, specialized calendar software programs make a printable calendar as easy as drag-and-drop. You may also already have software right on your computer which will do the job. Many word-processing programs, such as Microsoft Word, include basic calendar templates, as do many photo-editing programs. A number of free downloadable calendar templates can also be found online.

As an alternative, there are many calendar printing services and copy shops which can create a personalized photo calendar for you using your photos and special dates. Some of the most popular and versatile include:

Personalize Your Calendar

Once you create your calendar pages, it's time to customize.

  • Go beyond the basic calendar by adding your own custom colors and fonts. Unlike bland, mass-produced calendars, each month can have a different theme. Match photos to the month's theme—a photo of your parents on the month of their wedding anniversary, or a closeup of the family Christmas tree and its treasured ornaments for the month of December.
  • Add personal dates, including birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, and other significant events. Not sure when Thanksgiving or Mother's Day falls this year? Check out holiday calendars for a wide range of national and holiday dates.
  • Keep the family history alive by including photos of your ancestors and major events from your family's past. You may be surprised to find how many of your family members share birth dates with their ancestors.

Print Your Calendar

Once you've finished designing your photo calendar, it's time to print. If you plan to print the calendar yourself at home, begin by printing the photo pages preferably on good quality photo paper. Once completed, you'll need to reload the printed photo pages into your printer in order to print the monthly grids on the other side of the pages. Remember that each month's picture appears on the opposite side of the previous month; for example, you should print February's monthly grid on the back of March's photo. Make sure that you understand which side and end of the paper your printer begins to print from, to avoid mistakes with page orientation. If you're using a special calendar software program, look for specific directions and tips for printing your calendar.

Alternatively, many copy shops can print and assemble your finished photo calendar for you from your saved copy on disk. Be sure to check with them before starting to see what file formats they accept.

Add Finishing Touches

After you've printed and double-checked your finished calendar pages, you may want to take them to your local copy center to have them spiral-bound for a more professional look. Alternatively, use a paper punch and bind the pages with brads, ribbon, raffia, or other connectors.

Enjoy your custom family calendar. And make sure you're prepared to repeat the project next year because people will definitely ask!

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Your Citation
Powell, Kimberly. "Make Your Own Family Photo Calendar." ThoughtCo, Oct. 29, 2020, Powell, Kimberly. (2020, October 29). Make Your Own Family Photo Calendar. Retrieved from Powell, Kimberly. "Make Your Own Family Photo Calendar." ThoughtCo. (accessed March 27, 2023).