Find creative memory box ideas and inspiration on how to put together a themed keepsake box full of memories and mementos to be treasured for a lifetime.

Most people are in the habit of preserving memories. Many of us save our favorite photos in albums, photo books, scrapbooks, and even digital albums. We collect souvenirs from places we visit and mementos from special events, such as weddings and family reunions. We do it all to remember the most important moments in our lives so that we have something to look back on and reminisce about.

One great way to preserve memories from a specific point in time is to save them in a memory box.

You can use a beautiful personalized keepsake memory box, or any box that you have at hand. You can even create your own special keepsake box from an old shoe box, cigar box, gift box, or plain box you can get at a craft store. It’s a good idea to make the box look special so it doesn’t get accidentally misplaced, lost, or thrown away. But what matters most is what you put inside the box.

What can you put in a memory box?

What you put in your memory box is completely up to you. You should, however, try to curate your keepsake items so they tell a story. Some boxes will be easier to put together than others; some will take no time at all, whereas others might take years to collect. But the most important criteria for what you put in your memory box is that each item has a meaning behind it and sentimental value.

Memories are important to preserve, especially for once-in-a-lifetime events, such as a wedding or the birth of a baby. Memory boxes are also a wonderful way to remember our loved ones and keep them forever in our hearts.

This guide will show you how to create beautiful memory boxes full of small treasures, souvenirs, and memories you can cherish for years to come.

1. Baby memory box ideas

For a newborn baby, you can store tons of precious things in a memory box. Some parents like to create shadow boxes so that the items can be displayed in a frame, but that means that what you put in the box has a limit. With a bigger box, you can include the baby’s first blanket, first outfit, first toys, and much more.

Feel free to start your baby memory box with items you collected prior to baby’s birth, such as ultrasound photos, baby shower mementos, baby reveal souvenirs, etc. Next, move on to baby’s birth to include a hospital tag, first cap, mittens, booties, socks, first pacifier, and anything else you hold near and dear. You can also include the newspaper from the day the baby was born or baby’s first book.

Other fun items to preserve in your baby memory box include the baby’s birth hand print and foot print, birth announcement, newborn photos (the photo of baby on the hospital scale is a classic), and any congratulations cards you received from close friends and family. Once you have the important things, get creative and include fun items you want your sweet baby to have one day.

2. Memory box ideas for kids

Kids’ memory boxes can be a lot of fun. You can use them to store keepsakes from an entire school year, a special vacation, summer camp, or another memorable time in the child’s life. What the kids will decide to store in their memory boxes can be up to them, but you can guide them on which items are worth preserving.

The keepsakes can include photos, awards, medals or certificates of accomplishment, report cards, and special notes and letters from friends and family. You can include some of their drawings, art projects, or things they made and anything handwritten. You can even include some of their favorite small toys and accessories, such as a favorite hat they’ve outgrown or hair accessories. If the keepsake box is from a vacation or trip, include postcards or souvenirs from the places they visited and random things they’ve found or collected, such as seashells, rocks, leaves, etc.

Letting the kids decide what to put in their memory boxes is a good idea because it will help them think about what’s important and what they want to remember. Once they choose their keepsakes, you can figure out what else to add to the memory box before placing it in storage. It’s also a fun idea to decide when the memory box will be opened in the future; you may want to do it during a special birthday or a specific day in time.

3. Special occasion memory box ideas

Special occasion memory boxes provide the perfect way to save special keepsakes and souvenirs for kids, teens, and young adults. Whether it’s your child’s baptism, First Communion, bar or bat mitzvah, a milestone birthday celebration, graduation party, or another big celebration you want to remember, a special occasion keepsake box will help you preserve those memories.

A baptism memory box can contain the baptism clothes, bib, hat, and shoes that the child wore to receive the sacrament, along with baby’s blanket and any other accessories. You can store the candle that was lit during the ceremony and any other mementos from the service. You can also preserve items from the party or celebrations that followed, such as the invitations, greeting cards you received, favors that were given to guests, and more. You can do the same for other religious occasions that are important in your child’s spiritual life.

Milestone birthdays, school graduations, and other special events are also great opportunities to create a keepsake box. Save the party invitations, greeting cards, photos, small accessories, and other memorable items from the important day. If you don’t think you have enough items to put together a standalone memory box, consider including these items in the child’s or family’s memory box.

4. Wedding memory box ideas

Creating a wedding memory box is a wonderful way of remembering the details of your important day. Your keepsake box should be large enough to hold important items, such as your wedding cake knife and server, champagne glasses, or the cake topper. You can also include one of the wedding favors you gave to your guests or personalized matches, coasters, napkins, or any other custom details you created for the ceremony or reception. Many couples make a program that lists everyone who is in the wedding; this is another great keepsake to include in your memory box, in addition to the wedding invitation and other personalized stationery.

Other wedding accessories worth preserving include wedding flowers from the bride’s bouquet or groom’s boutonniere, or the vows you spoke written down on paper. Some couples also save the cork from the first champagne bottle they enjoyed as husband and wife. The bride and groom should each contribute one item they wore or had with them on the day. For the bride, this can be the handkerchief or garter; for the groom, it can be the tie bar or cuff links.

If you’d like, you can include souvenirs from your honeymoon here too, or create a separate memory box just for those mementos.

5. Memorial keepsake box ideas

When a loved one passes, it’s important to keep their memory alive, and one great way to do that is with a memory box. In addition to photos and letters, you can keep some of their favorite or most used items, such as grandmother’s favorite earrings or grandfather’s smoking pipe he used daily. If they were frequent travelers, save their passport with stamps to all the places they visited. If they were avid sports or music fans, keep some of their ticket stubs from memorable events. If they were artistic, keep some of their art projects or crafts.


Kasia Lorenc is a writer and editor at Personalization Mall, covering gifting, home decorating and more.

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