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Photo Sleeves

A look at the world of photo boxes, the photography world, and more box varieties.

Photography is a popular hobby for many and while the rise of digital cameras means that photos can easily be stored electronically on a PC, many people still like to print out copies of their pictures. Having somewhere suitable to store these can be a good idea and photo sleeves are one of the simplest options for doing this.

Photo sleeves are basically clear plastic folders into which a photo can be inserted for safekeeping. They are typically available in a variety of sizes to suit different photos and many can come with a pre-punched edge to make them easy to store in a folder. In many cases a sleeve for a photo will accommodate one photo, although in others two or more photos can be inserted into one sleeve. Many are manufactured form acid free material to better protect the photo and these are typically archival style products.

The obvious advantage of using a photo sleeve is that it protects a picture from dirt and dust and will help to keep it in a better condition over a longer period of time. However, they can also help to keep a photo collection better organized, making them easier to view and also simpler to retrieve when required.

There are a few manufacturers that produce photo sleeves and the styles available vary from a basic to archival quality sleeves. Avery is a company that produces a range of affordable sleeves for photos and these are set up to store a range of photo sizes. This varies from those that can accommodate twenty small slide style photos to those that are set up for storing and displaying four standard 4 x 6 inch photos. The cost of the sleeves is around $5 for a pack of 10 and they are pre-punched to fit in a standard three ring binder.

Light Impressions is another company that has photo sleeves for sale and these are aimed more at the archival market. The PhotoGuard ID Pages 3 Pocket 4 x 6 sleeve, for example, is manufactured from heavyweight, archival polypropylene. Each sleeve is capable of storing three 4 x 6 inch size photos, with one stored in landscape and two in portrait. This is a more expensive product with one sleeve costing around $19.

Other companies that have photo sleeves available include BCW Supplies, which has individual 8 x 10 size polypropylene sleeves available. A pack of 100 costs around $6, although the price will reduce if a larger number of packs are purchased. For 10 packs the cost is around $3.90 per pack. Jennibick Bookbinding on the other hand has photo sleeve albums available and these range in price from around $20 to $100, with the cost largely depending on the number of sleeves included and the album cover material.

Storing photos safely is important if they are to remain in good condition and photo sleeves are a simple way to do this. They ensure that the photo is protected from dust and dirt and ensure that a collection of photos can be viewed and enjoyed without having to remove them from the sleeves.