October 11, 2021 6 min read
Pulling out your wallet and seeing your loved one’s photo in it can make you smile, maybe laugh, and even remind you of what’s important in life.
While we’re all about decluttering your wallet and keeping it as slim as possible, there’s one thing we never want to get rid of: photos of our loved ones.
If you have special photos of your partner, kids, close relatives, and, hey, even yourself, then keeping a copy in your wallet can be a great way to carry around a nice memory.
With all that being said, a fading photo with dents in it just won’t have the same effect. So, here’s a brief guide from us on choosing the right size photo for your wallet to keep it looking as good as brand-new for years to come.
Believe it or not, the size and dimensions of photos are established by ISO (International Order for Standardization). While this varies by country, size names are typically represented in the nR format. Here, n represents the size of the photograph’s shorter side (in inches), while the longer side tends to be 2” inches larger.
Size matters when it comes to achieving the best results. Indeed, for every subject of your photos, there’s an ideal photo format. So, it’s worthwhile to check out the different types of photos.
Here are some of these according to international standards:
This photo size doesn’t exactly fit in with our formula above but remains a very common photo size. If you’re ever snapped a Polaroid before, then it probably came out in similar dimensions. To give you a reference of how small this print is, keep in mind that your credit card is about 3” x 2” inches.
This is another photo size that doesn’t fit our formula, but makes for a great photo if you’re into the retro look. Plus, it makes a great size for creating a photo collage.
If you remember the good ol’ days of snapping photos with a disposable camera and getting them developed at the local print shop then this photo size will definitely be familiar to you.
It’s the most common photo size to print due to its 3:2 ratio, which makes it perfect for framing photos, making greeting cards, and printing postcards.
This size photo is just slightly larger than the 4R, so it can pretty much be used for the same purposes. If you find a slightly bigger photo frame, for instance, then use this size to display photographs.
And if you want to create slightly larger postcards and greeting cards, then it gets the job done just as well.
We skipped over 6R because it’s a rarely used photo format. As for 7R? It simply doesn’t exist. Luckily, the 8R photo format is incredibly popular and is one of the most commonly used for printing large impactful photos, portraits, and small works of art.
If you have a portrait you want to print, this is the perfect size for it. To give you an idea of its size, a standard notebook page measures 8” x 11.5” inches.
If you have several photos to print, you can fit them all into the 10R photo collage style. It has the perfect size and proportions to accommodate four photos side-by-side, saving you from printing and framing multiple photos.
We won’t bore you with the remaining photo sizes because there are truly a ton of them. Besides, the sizes used most often tend to err on the smaller side. Just know that photo sizes can go all the way up to 30R.
As you might have guessed, this measures 30” inches in width. You also might have guessed that very few people want to print photos this size and like to stick to prints that can fit in a photo album or, in our case, a wallet.
Technically, there’s no standard size for a wallet photo, so there aren’t exact dimensions for it. Instead, the question we want to ask is:Which photo size can your wallet accommodate?
To answer this, you will first need to know the dimensions of your wallet and the ratio of the measurements. For wide wallets, the base will range from about 2.5-3.5” inches, and the height will go up to 3” inches. When it comes to tall, slim wallets, the height can go all the way up to 4” inches.
Once you know the dimensions of your wallet, you want to pick a photo that is slightly smaller so that it doesn’t fold and wrinkle. If you want to go by standard photo sizes, then the 2R—which is 2.3” x 3.5” inches—is the perfect size for most wallets.
Or look at it this way: If your credit cards fit comfortably in your wallet, then a photo of a similar size should do the trick.
Although there are dozens of different wallet types, a wallet photo pocket is not a standard feature on any of them. So all the different parts of a wallet—the clear ID display, the credit card slots, the coin zipper, and the bill compartment—are not designed to be used for storing photos.
With that being said, there’s no rule against using any of these compartments to keep a photo of your loved ones. The only rule you should follow is to avoid storing photos in a way that can damage them, which makes the bill compartment and coin slot off-limits.
But with the right-sized photo, you can easily insert it into a credit card slot. Just make sure to avoid placing it next to a credit card you use most often, as this can cause friction and fading. Better yet, designate the photo in its own credit card slot.
If your wallet has a clear ID display, then you can place the photo behind your ID. This should be safe because we rarely take out our IDs—this is the whole point of the clear display. Better yet, put the photo in front of your ID so that you see the picture every time you open your wallet.
Unless you’re carrying around an original photo, you can rest easy knowing that your wallet photo can always be reprinted in case it fades. With that being said, if it’s something you can avoid, then you absolutely should.
So, here are some tips for making your wallet photo last you a long, long time:
We’re completely with the minimalist movement when it comes to your wallet. Decluttering will help you get more organized, make your wallet look better, and even improve your posture. Plus, we heard—on several occasions—that you can pull out your phone if you want to look at pictures of your loved ones.
Well, that doesn’t always do the trick as well for us. There’s something special about a physical print of a picture, especially when you find it in an unexpected place. So, for this reason, we think that if you have people in your life that you love, then keeping their pictures in your wallet can be a special way to be reminded of them throughout the day.
Just make sure to get the measurements of your wallet—these should be available on the wallets offered for sale—and print out a photo that is smaller than these dimensions to prevent folding and wrinkling.
Once you have that down, follow our tips for keeping your photo in tip-top shape. As for step three: Enjoy being reminded of the important things in your life.