Archival Wedding Albums and Why You Want One - Grier Cooper Photography

Archival Wedding Albums and Why You Want One

archival wedding albums from Grier Cooper Photography

Not long ago I became the keeper of my grandmother’s wedding albums and realized the importance of archival wedding albums-and why you want one. My grandmother was married in 1938, and the albums are still just as beautiful now as when they were created. I remember when I was a kid and first discovered the gorgeous blue leather albums sitting right there in plain sight on our bookshelves, like a magical gift from the past. The gold embossed printing on the cover read “Casa Mia” and I wondered who all these glamorous people in those photos were and what they had to do with our family. You see, my grandmother’s story had a tragic end: she died when my mother was one year old, so my mother never knew her, and neither did I. But I was able to get a sense of her and the life she lived as I studied the photographs. Not only did I get to relive the day and see members of my family as they were back then, I felt as though I had traveled back in time and gotten a glimpse into a totally different era of gorgeous 1930s fashions, fancy cars, and a wedding that would still make any modern bride envious.

I thought I’d share the album for you to enjoy, too. See what I mean?

My family’s story so plainly illustrates why you don’t want to skimp when it comes time to choose your own wedding album. Maybe you like the idea of archival wedding albums, but hesitate over the price. You might think I’ll do this myself. I could put my own book together, no problem, and it will be just as good.

Except it won’t. Not all wedding albums are created equal.

Somewhere in the molten center of your heart, you already know this. So let’s chat about why archival wedding albums really are worth it.

Archival wedding albums equal highest quality.

I have found a wonderful US-based company that produces Hand-crafted albums of the highest quality and lasting durability. The covers made from sumptuous, 100% natural, Italian leathers that come in a gorgeous selection of colors. Light, textured, animal-friendly linen is another cover option.

Judge a book by the way it’s printed

There is an enormous difference in image quality between press print books versus photographic printed books (aka archival wedding albums). The main difference between them, yet not the only one, is the technology and paper used for printing them. While photo books (the type you buy from online suppliers like ) are printed by digital presses on regular (double sided) paper, in a process very similar to the printing of a business brochure, wedding albums are printed using a different photographic process onto photo paper, similar to 8×10 photo prints. Look at these two images and the level of quality is immediately apparent.

press printed image next to photo printed image

Archival wedding albums are put together the right way

The type of binding and the process and the materials used also play a significant role in the lifespan of your wedding album. For example, the archival wedding albums I carry are bound in a true leather cover in a manual precise process. While photo books use leatherette or low cost (leftover) leather, this type of binding will also impact the way the books lay and, more importantly, how long it will take for pages to fall out, if they do. If product A has 15 years durability and is half the price than a product that has 100 years durability, it’s probably a perfect choice for a fridge magnet, but not for your wedding memories.

Another important factor to consider: each page in an archival wedding album is printed as one photo and the pages lay beautifully flat, so you don’t lose any of the image in an unsightly fold, preserving the full impact of your design.

So much thought and care goes into planning a wedding, requiring thoughtful decisions on every detail from choosing a fairytale venue to finding a wedding dress that makes your heart sing. After all the energy you’ve put into creating a spectacularly joyful and memorable day why would you skimp on preserving those memories? Instead of asking “can I afford this?” ask yourself “can I afford not to?” One day your grandchildren will look through them with wonder, just like I did-and still do.

Are you looking for gorgeous, long-lasting wedding photography? Contact me for a free consultation and pricing guide.



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DESIGN BY: Hannah Robinson