EMERGENCY!! Take Care of this NOW!

I've been told since day one of scrapbooking to remove all photos from the old style photo albums called Magnetic Photo Albums.  You've probably heard the same thing.

Yesterday, at a crop, I decided to remove the photos from two of 4 albums that has this style photo album.  I have to tell you how ill I got when I realize I allowed several of my photos to ruin.

Here is a pictorial journey of the process of removing the photos and showing you the damage it caused.  The photos were taken with my Blackberry.

The Magnetic Album did not seem to have damaged my photos at all in the beginning...
just yellowing on the album page itself.

You can see the yellowing here.

Make sure you have something to store you photos in until you can scrapbook them.

Make sure you have a photo safe pen to identify the photo later.

There is damage here, but barely noticeable.

With the close up you can see the yellowing that migrated onto my photo.

The migration of the yellowing does not stop at the edge of the photo.  The yellowing will continue under the photo and continue to damage your photo.

The worse damage of all.  The entire photo of my daughter's first professional photo in the hospital has yellowed.  You can tell it's not just the photo when you see the edge has yellowed.

My photos easily came out of the album.  That is not always the case.  Undo would help in removing the photos.  Here is a website that gives a different way to remove stubborn photos.  I haven't tried this, but it is interesting.  Here is an explanation from About.com of why this yellowing and damage occurs:

These were made from a thick paper stock and coated with glue strips. There was a Mylar plastic covering both sides of this stock and it was claimed that this was a good way to preserve photographs. After being on the market for about fifteen years, conservators recognized that the glue being used had a very high acidic content. So much so, that after only ten to fifteen years in storage, new photographs were starting to show signs of deterioration. The acid was eating through the backs of the photographs and the Mylar was sealing in the acidic fumes causing a deterioration on the image side as well.

It upsets me that I did not take the photos out sooner.  Learn from my hard lesson and find the time to get your photos out of the magnetic albums.  Oh yes, there are still a few out on the market.  Pioneer Photo Albums does make an acid free Magnetic album.  I highly recommend that you do not buy a magnetic album unless, like Pioneer, states that it is acid free

Gratitude List
1.  rest
2.  God answering prayers, both yes and no
3.  the wonderful relationship my husband and I continue to build
4.  God's strength through changes
5.  God's protection while driving


  1. we did this to my mom's albums a bit ago and it was a nightmare!

  2. hopefully you can scan your photos and have them digitally enhanced and fixed! I've done this for a number of my moms photos. those albums are terrible and i know my mom still has photos in them! I'm gonna tell her to remove them asap and put them in a nice box!

  3. It's terrible that all those years ago we didn't know any better, and there weren't better products out there....

  4. I too had to remove some pix from these kinds of albums. What I didn't know was that the damage continues unless you arrest it.I did that by placing each photo, or group of photos between a couple of sheets of acid free white paper. They were between these sheets for over a year. When I took them out just last week, The white papers were almost brown where the pix had been! I still have them seperate from my other pix,and have them between new acid free papers. I hope it stops it all because these photo's are about85 yrs old! My mom abd her sisters when they were children!I can't stress enough that people need to protect their photos.

  5. Debby, for the most important photos, like that hospital pic, take them somewhere with a KIM (Kodak) machine with a scanner. The editor on them is very good and can probably make you a print pretty close to the original. I work at the camera counter sometimes at Osco, and I've helped people do this successfully. Good Luck!

  6. Amazing isn't it? Glad you got them out without too much damage. I have seen much worse.

  7. The Flip Pal introduced at CHA that will be available in October should be good for scanning and fixing the photos in these albums. If it looks like they cannot be removed they can be scanned while still in the album and you can start again with the new photo. Sometimes they just are too stuck and you do not want to tear them. The photo editing software does help restore a lot of the problems. If you do remove the photos use a deacidifying spray - expensive but helpful.

  8. That's really interesting. I always wondered why the pictures from my childhood were so yellow and "hard" - I'm sure you know what I mean. I thought it was the film used in the '70s but apparently it's the albums everyone kept those photos in. I'm sorry you had to learn the hard way - what a bummer! I'll call my mom later today and tell her...although I'm more than sure she'll have to learn the hard way, too - she won't sit down and take all gazillion pictures out of the crummy albums. *I* will probably be doing it in 15-20 years.

    Beautiful blog - I really like your gratitude list. What a neat concept! I found your blog thanks to the FB post. Great place - I will definitely be back to visit often! Even though I don't scrap, you've got tons of useful information on your blog for everyone involved in the scrapping community. xx

    PS - I just had to tell you the "word verification" CAPTCHA code for my post? "grailike" I thought that was amusing. :)

  9. TracyM #67734:22 PM

    Scary times Debby!!! Thankyou for sharing your story and good lucky on getting all the photos scanned, fixed and scrapped. Funny thing is, I always thought the yellowing was an "olden day" thing associated with the printing techniques of the time and papers used...


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