For Mother’s Day this year, we decided on a fun “Love you to the moon and back” photo gift for the all the moms and grandmas in our co-op.  Since my mom wasn’t here in Colombia on Mother’s Day, I saved hers to slip into her luggage as a surprise gift when she arrived home today.  These projects are sure to put a smile on the face of anyone you love to the moon and back.

DIY Photo Gift for Love You To the Moon and Back with FREE Printables

The trickiest part was posing for the photos!  After some trial and error, the ladder against a white wall outside was the best option.

Love you to the moon craft - Photo pose

Note to self:  Girls with ponytails look bald when you cut them out…have the girls wear their hair down next time.  Also, make sure that both hands and feet are visible when taking the picture, or else it looks a little funny after you cut it out.  Oops!

Love you to the moon craft photo mistake

We printed the photos as 4×6 inch, and obviously had a grown up carefully cut them out.  This size was perfect for one child on an 8 1/2 x 11 sheet of  paper.  (I prefer to get special crafts like this on letter size paper so they can easily go into sheet protectors for safe keeping.)

Love you to the moon craft photos

For the background paper, I would definitely recommend using cardstock to support the weight of all the sticks.  Now this is where the choices (and our free printables) come in!  We included a color version for those who wanted to paint the background like this,

I love you to the moon and back-ENG

and a black and white version that you could print on any color you choose.  (We chose navy blue for a night sky.)

I love you to the moon and back-BW-ENG

The version we got inspired from on Pinterest used popsicle sticks.  I think they are definitely the cuter option…

I love you to the moon and back-

but not the most practical.  After collecting these types of projects for over 10 years now, I know that in a couple of years the paper and photos will fade.  So now my criteria for any photo or handprint craft is that it MUST be able to go through the laminator.  Here is my laminate-able version using paper to make the ladder.

I love you to the moon and back-ALL-PAPER LADDER

I wanted to make a large format version for grandparents with multiple children, and used a sheet of posterboard cut in half.  I think it turned out adorable, although it was tricky to get the children positioned right on the ladder.  If you are not a perfectionist, and can just slap them on anywhere not worrying if feet and hands are lined up on the rungs, then you have it made.

I love you to the moon and back-ALL

If I ever do this again, I would definitely stand in the same spot to take all of the children’s photos.  I moved backward and forward to try and get the best angle, but the finished product meant the two year old was the same size as the eight year old.  Also, I would print the pictures a little smaller for the large format version, so it would be easier to fit them all on the ladder.

Click here to download the free To the Moon and Back Printables!

We wanted to make these for our English and Spanish-speaking grandparents.  If you would like to make this for someone you love “de aqui a la luna” click here to download the Spanish version.

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  1. Such a creative & unique gift idea. Your tips about posing, trials & errors, presentation & any artwork needing to be able to be laminated are spot on. Thankyou for sharing.

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