How to Make a Memory Box for a Bugout Kit

How to Make a Memory Box - Memory Tin - Small Memory Box

Learning how to make a memory box is a quick and simple process. It can be as simple as grabbing mementos around your home for a quick memory dump or a memory box can be a simple art project. There are a couple of reasons I really enjoyed making a mini memory box. I first came across the idea on Pinterest. It reminded me how my grandparents would collect small objects such as a marble, an interesting coin, jewelry charms, etc and put them in several keepsake boxes around their home. My mom, sisters, and I would visit them once a week to dust and clean for them. We loved dusting what we called the treasures boxes because they would let us explore the wondrous contents contained within. As I got older I enjoyed collecting memories in the form of photo journal aka scrapbooking. A memory tin is the best of both worlds (keepsake box & photo journal).

In this post, I’m going to show you how to make a memory box out of an Altoids tin. If you are wondering what you would do with a memory tin I’ve got a few ideas for you.

  • Fire Bag or Fire Safe – My sister had her house burn down many years ago. None of their important documents, photos, or valuables were protected. She has since then replaced many things that were lost but there are photos and keepsakes she misses very much. A memory tin could easily fit in a fire safe to be safeguarded against flooding and fire.
  • Bug Out Bag – Natural disasters can hit so unexpectedly, destroying everything in its path and leaving people with nothing but what they are carrying. Pack a bag with a few essentials items and a memory tin. Having a bug out bag is recommended by government agencies so you can evacuate a bad situation at a moments notice.
  • Give As A Gift – A memory tin is a great gift idea for a birthday, anniversary, or holiday. A trip down memory lane is one of the most precious gifts you can give a loved one.


How to Make a Memory Box Tin Kit

Items Needed:

1. Tin – clean an empty Altoids tin or pick up a rectangular hinged tin from a craft store. I used a craft tin that measured 3.75 by 2.45 by 0.8.



2. Card Stock Scrapbook Paper – This is to line the top & bottom of the tin and make an accordion photo insert.

How to Make a Memory Box

3. Scrapbook Adhesive Tape – This tape is pretty forgivable. It makes it easy to move a taped item if you don’t like its placement.


4. Stickers & ribbon – these are not necessary but it can add some fun to this art project. The ribbon is helpful to bind the accordion photo insert so it lays flat. I used a fancy paper clip instead of a ribbon.


5. Mementos and photos – gather small tokens that hold meaning for you. For example, the small car I inherited from my grandmother. The rock below it is a fossil found in one of our favorite hiking places, Arches National Park. The Idaho spud represents a festival we have fond memories attending. The coins represent the foreign countries we’ve visited. Each memento has several fond memories attached.


How to Make a Memory Box - Memory Tin - Altoids Memento Can - Photo Tin Kit


Click on the image below to get a FREE Memory Tin Template 

How to make a memory box - the memory box pdf template


If you’re like me and enjoy craft projects and prepping then you should consider making your own memory tin. They can be a great opportunity to organize keepsakes. We safeguard important documents, valuables, and our identity from theft. We should also safeguard a few photos and mementos.


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About PreppersSurvive 136 Articles
Welcome to my site! My name is Nettie and I started this blog to provide simple tools to help Preppers.  I am a Girl Scout Prepper. “Be prepared! A Girl Scout is ready to help out wherever she is needed. Willingness to serve is not enough; you must know how to do the job well, even in an emergency" (the motto, in the 1947 Girl Scout Handbook). Being a Prepper has been a blessing to me, my family, and friends on more then one occasion. You'll find these stories throughout this blog.  You will also find prepper supplies checklists, prepper events, cheap food storage ideas, emergency heat sources, survival books recommendations, reviews on power outage lights, printable prepper pdfs, and articles on emergency disaster preparedness.  Click here to read more

1 Comment on How to Make a Memory Box for a Bugout Kit

  1. My friend had her house burn down about five years ago. She had moved across the states, so she not only lost mementos from her current social group, but she lost all photos and trinkets from her old friends she wasn’t able to see, and she said those were the worst. Photos might not have been *as* bad, since everyone nowadays had a few digital copies of those lying around, but she lost jewelry, graduation cap tassels, yearbooks and scrapbooks, letters from her extended family, and (obviously) more.

    What I’m getting at is, I wish she had been given a nice firesafe as a gift at some point, to at least give her memories a chance. even a couple items would have made the world to someone who lost everything else.

    I feel like too many people in the prepper community focus on survival and basic comfort, and less on what makes a home a home. Especially when so many got into prepping because of their families.

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