How to Create a Photo Desk Calendar

With a custom desk calendar, you can print your favorite memories from the past year or create a design that you wouldn’t find anywhere else. 

Your 2021 calendar can be much more than a way to check the date. Our photo desk calendar options make it easy for you to personalize it for your home, office, or holiday gifts. All you need are a few photos you’d like to use, and you can have a custom calendar printed within days. Find out how to make a calendar and gain some inspiration to start the new year off right.

Make a Personal Desk Calendar in 5 Easy Steps

You don’t need any design experience to create a personalized calendar through Shutterfly. Instead, we’ve done most of the legwork for you. All you need to do is decide which photos and backgrounds you’d like to use and pick a theme if you’re using one. From there, you can add your own messages for each month and rearrange the photos in the way that looks best to you. Follow these five steps to get started:

1. Choose Your Calendar Dates

The first step toward creating your calendar is simply choosing which month you’d like to start with. You can create a full year calendar or choose to begin on any month depending on when you need it printed. Our desktop calendars are all small monthly calendars, so they fit perfectly on your desk to help you stay up to date.

Desk calender for january 2021 with a happy couple on their wedding day

2. Upload Your Photos

Now for the fun part. Upload the photos you want to use from your computer, Shutterfly, or your social media accounts. When you upload your photos, we’ll save them so you have time to choose which photos will go where. Showcase family shots throughout the year or create a calendar with your favorite pets – it’s all up to you.

Polaroid photos laid out as ideas for custom desk calendar

3. Customize Your Layout and Backgrounds

With our personalized calendars, customization is key. You can make sure more than 10 photos fit on each page if you wish or pare it down to just a couple of favorites for each month. We don’t want everyone to take home the same calendar, so we let you customize the layout on every page as well as the backgrounds.

Shutterfly desk calendar layout and background ideas

4. Add Heartwarming Messages

Especially if you’re giving a calendar as a gift, the messages can be the highlight of each page. If you’re only adding a few images per page, you’ll have the option to add captions and messaging at the bottom. Consider noting where each photo was taken or include inspirational quotes for each month. 

Christmas greetings holiday message idea

5. Print Your Calendar

Once you’re all done, it’s time to checkout and send your calendar off for printing. Our printers will ensure your designs come out exactly as planned, delivered straight to your home. Before finalizing, just be sure to preview your calendar and make sure everything looks how you want it.

Printed Shutterfly desk calendar

Unique Custom Calendar Ideas

Stuck trying to figure out how to design your desk calendars? As long as you make it your own, it’ll be a welcome addition to your office or home. Consider the following ideas to make sure your calendar is cohesive and themed.

Showcasing the Kids

One of the best ideas for a standup desk calendar is featuring the kids. Whether you want to print photos of your children, nieces and nephews, or younger siblings, their photos will brighten up each page of the calendar. Calendars for kids can help your little ones learn about big events like birthdays, the start of the school year, and holidays. Make your calendar even more fun by asking them to pick their own photos – you might be surprised what they choose!

Young kids smiling at the camera ideas for desk calendar

Wedding and Anniversary

Another great idea is to make a calendar dedicated to your wedding, especially if you were married recently. If you have a big anniversary coming up, you can also theme your calendar around your partner or spouse and include some of your favorite photos together throughout the years. A wedding calendar also makes for a great personalized wedding gift. If you’re close to the bride and groom, you can design the calendar based on photos you have of them to give the gift of beautiful memories throughout the year.

Outdoor wedding celebration photo

Pet Spotlight

What’s better than being able to look at your pets every day? The only thing that beats the real deal is their photos. Creating a calendar themed around your cats, dogs, or other pets is sure to make you smile each month as you flip the page. If you choose pet photos, you can also make sure the background matches with paw prints or other pet-themed designs.

Pug pet photo ideas for Shutterfly desktop calendar

The Whole Family

A desk calendar with a stand can function much like a photo album that you get to look at every day. Personalized calendars with photos of loved ones will help you relive your favorite moments and memories with your immediate and extended family. Consider theming each month around a family member so they get their time to shine.

Family beach photo idea for Shutterfly desk calendar

Custom Holiday Calendar

It’s easy to shop holiday calendars anywhere, but a photo calendar can make yours much more personal. With a holiday theme, you can choose photos of holiday get-togethers throughout the year to commemorate each month. Choose your favorite Fourth of July photos and memories from Christmas, Thanksgiving, and more. Have some fun and upload your best birthday memories for your birthday month. With a custom holiday calendar, your memories can shine.

Holiday family portrait for Shutterfly calendar

Print a Themed Desktop Calendar

If our custom calendar printing offers too many options, you can always choose a pre-made theme. Create a modern look or choose one that offers more whimsical backgrounds based on each season. From there, it’s easier to create a calendar just by uploading your favorite photos. If you still can’t decide how to design your calendar, you don’t have to limit yourself. Create a desktop calendar for the office, a wall calendar for the kitchen, and an easel calendar for the living room.

Wrapping Up

Creating a desktop calendar can make for a great gift as you enter the new year. If you have more photos you don’t want to use in the calendar, there are plenty more products to help commemorate your favorite memories. Use your photos to create beautiful custom Christmas cards for the holidays as well as personalized ornaments. Be sure to check the latest Shutterfly deals and promos to take advantage of holiday sales.