Mum-of-three divides opinions by sharing the school photo hack she swears by that saves her loads of cash

mum-of-three divides opinions by sharing the school photo hack she swears by that saves her loads of cash

A MUM-OF-THREE has caused quite a stir online after revealing a thrifty hack which has saved her over £30 per year – but not everyone is impressed.

The cost-of-living crisis has caused energy bills to soar in households up and down the country – so it's little surprise people are coming up with creative methods to help save cash.

mum-of-three divides opinions by sharing the school photo hack she swears by that saves her loads of cash

Vickie Garraway, 38, from Loughborough, revealed her “savvy” hack to capture memories of her little ones without of forking out a fortune for professional school photosCredit: Jam Press/Vickie Garraway

mum-of-three divides opinions by sharing the school photo hack she swears by that saves her loads of cash

Vickie decided to take some photos of her children at home using the app Free PrintsCredit: Jam Press/Vickie Garraway

Vickie Garraway, 38, a primary teacher from Loughborough, Leicestershire, shared her “savvy” hack to capture memories of her little ones, Em-Jay, 11 and Vienna, six, without of forking out a fortune for professional school photos.

Prior to lockdown, the mum-of-three often purchased sibling school photos, rather than individual ones, in a bid to save some pennies.

However, this was axed due to Covid restrictions and instead, the cheapest option cost £18 per snap, compared to £9 in previous years.

As she was pregnant with her third child, Freddie, now nine months, she started looking for ways to cut back on any unnecessary costs.

As luck would have it her friend showed off her kids' school photos, which were all taken at home and Vickie knew she was onto a winner.

“I saw how good [my friend's] were and I knew I had to do it too,” she says.

“It wasn't even a proper shoot, as I simply took the usual 'first day' school photo and then discovered an app, which I tried out with the snap I'd taken that day and it looked so good, that I decided to use it.”

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Vickie downloaded the app Free Prints, and clicked on the “deals” section, before selecting “school photo bundle.”

Next, she uploaded her picture, selected a different background, which included studios and novelty ones, and the process was complete – all for free.

Sharing share her “savvy” hack online, she uploaded the process and results on Facebook – and it wasn't long before it racked up 11,000 likes.

However, the “nifty” trick has left parents totally divided, with many praising her and others, “slamming” her for not supporting small local businesses.

“I get that photographers need to charge those sort of prices and agree that it's a decent price,” wrote one.

“But even for a digital download to have to pay ££ to download it from a certain page is still outrageous.”

A second penned: “Omg amazing! I have two in secondary and one in primary! I am definitely going to do this so I can have a pic of them all.”

A third commented: “We do this!!! Not paying school prices especially when they always take photos after dinner and all kids look a mess with dinner all over and hair all over lol.”

Meanwhile, a fourth noted: “Crazy, it's almost like a photographer is trying to make a living from their work.

“For the time, training, electronics, printing, editing, storage space, etc, that they've put in.”

Another said: “While the free prints option is good for those on a tight budget the quality just isn’t there.”

Another added: “”We have paid for a photographer to do a mini shoot at home or in a park. Much nicer and you are still supporting a small business.”

I'm in no way slating professionals and I fully appreciate all the time and work that goes into what they do – but for a lot of people, their services are a luxury that many can't simply afford anymore

Vickie Garraway38, from Loughborough, Leicestershire

In response to the comments, Vickie explains: “It's been interesting, as many people have reacted positively and thanked me for sharing.

“For reasons being cost of the outcome of photos, such as if their child had PE before and their hair was all over the place, or they were upset because they didn't like the situation – so that's been good.

“Then, there were others who reacted in a way that made me out to be putting professional photographers out of business or telling me how I didn't realise the amount of time or effort that goes into it.

“I'm in no way slating professionals and I fully appreciate all the time and work that goes into what they do – but for a lot of people, their services are a luxury that many can't simply afford anymore.

“If you can still get a photo to remember your children's milestones and it looks professional, yet costing a fraction of the price, then it's a no brainer.”

Now, the mum is hoping to carry out the trick again this year and claims the process has helped her children feel more relaxed while taking photos.

Vickie adds: “I've also been able to take as many photos as I'd like until I'm happy.

“One person said the top of my daughter's head was missing, but in years to come, I will more likely benefit from the money saved than I would have done from the memory of an inch from my daughter's head.

“Sometimes, it's just the little things that can really help.”

mum-of-three divides opinions by sharing the school photo hack she swears by that saves her loads of cash

A non-school uniform photo shoot done by Vickie Garraway, with her daughters Em-Jay, Vienna and son FreddieCredit: Jam Press/Vickie Garraway

mum-of-three divides opinions by sharing the school photo hack she swears by that saves her loads of cash

Vickie is hoping to carry out the trick again this year. Pictured, daughters Em-Jay and Vienna in their school uniformsCredit: Jam Press/Vickie Garraway

mum-of-three divides opinions by sharing the school photo hack she swears by that saves her loads of cash

When Vickie fell pregnant with her third child Freddie, now three (pictured), she started looking for ways to cut back on any unnecessary costsCredit: Jam Press/Vickie Garraway

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