The photos on this page depict an alternative to a Disney character autograph book. Now, don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with having a Disney autograph book, I just personally like to have souvenirs that serve a useful purpose. I am probably the least frivolous person I know and I have a really hard time blowing my hard-earned money on bric-a-brac or what I consider a useless item – even an inexpensive one.
Which brings me to the traditional Disney autograph book. While it is great fun collecting autographs from favorite characters, I really don’t see the point of the book – besides being something to buy and then cart around the parks on your vacation! And even my kids will agree that the books really have no purpose once you return home. They often just get put away or lost in the caverns of a young person’s bedroom.
Well, I decided that if I was going to spend precious vacation time waiting in line for character autographs, it was going to be with a purpose!
So, I came up with the idea of a Disney character autograph photo mat. What a simple and easy idea!
Before our trip, I ran over to the local craft store and purchased three photo mats.
The ones I bought fit in an 8 by 10 frame and hold a 5 by 7 photo, but you can use any size you want.
I also picked up a couple of fat markers in various colors.
Note: Many of the character costumes cover their hands and it is easier for them to handle the fat markers than a regular sized pen.
Then, throughout our vacation, the kids had the characters sign these photo mats.
We didn’t carry them around every day, just the first few and only until the mats were full of signatures.
We made sure that we saw the favorite characters and that all of the marker colors were used on each mat.
After returning home, each of my sons chose their favorite photo of himself to frame with the mat.
We then placed the mats in the frames and hung them in a prominent place in our home.
We enjoy these photos each and every day – much more than we would ever enjoy the autograph books!
Here are tips for collecting Disney Character autographs:
- Use fat markers. The retractable ones are even better!
- Have the marker and item to be signed ready before you approach the character.
- Book a character meal with your favorite characters – you’ll complete the project in no time!
- Look for the white glove icon on the park maps – that’s where you’ll find the characters.
- Get to the parks early – many characters have meet-n-greets when the parks open.