I don’t know about you, but I’m very interested in learning more about where I came from. What countries were my ancestors from? What did they do? Who was the first to come to America? An uncle on my father’s side has traced us all the way back to King Charlemagne – it’s really quite fascinating. I don’t have much on my mother’s side yet, but I do plan to look into that, as well. The following is a guest post from Suzie Kolber about creating a family tree as a gift. No gift could be more personal or have more meaning than a family tree!
Researching your family history can teach you a lot about your ancestry. It also makes a wonderful gift once you have completed your research. Give it as an anniversary present, birthday gift or for other special occasions. If this is your plan, you need to begin early, especially if you plan to go in-depth with your research.
Set a Goal
You have numerous options for how you want to create your family tree. You may want to select a template that covers three or four generations related to the recipient of the gift. This option will have special meaning since the person already knows the people listed.
You may prefer to be more historic in your approach and select a ten or eleven generation family tree template. This option makes for a wonderful gift that will appeal to many people. Just be prepared that the research could take you several months so plan far ahead if this is the approach you choose.
Another option is to take smaller templates and create multiple family trees. For instance, you may decide to cover the ancestry of all of the person’s grandparents. You would create four separate templates that could be placed together in a large frame. You would probably select three or four generation templates to ensure that everything fits in the space and isn’t too overwhelming.
Choose a Template
Once you know what kind of research you will need to do and how much information you want to present, you need to decide on the format. Numerous options are available to suit many tastes. A landscape family tree template is a classic choice with ovals where you can put either information or photos.
Bowties and wide or tall trees are other options that are ideal for three or four generations. They often allow you to include photos or more information other than just the names to personalize your design.
For more in-depth research, you can also use the bowtie design. You may also want to try a circular pattern to fit more names into the space. A chart format is another option when you have a lot of names to include. It is easy to read and keeps everything organized. To be more decorative, choose a template that includes a border. You can even find ones that allow you to input the family crest.
Give the family tree as a wedding or anniversary present, and include both families of the couple on your template. A bowtie design is the ideal choice for this gift and is easy to read.
When giving a gift of a family tree to someone, you want it to be visually pleasant to look at and easy to follow. You may want to include photos or more data to create a gift that is interesting and will have meaning to the recipient. This is both a unique and heartfelt gift that you put a lot of time and effort into. Choose the right design for your gift that fits the information you collected and puts it into a lovely display.
Suzie Kolber created http://obituarieshelp.org/free_printable_blank_family_tree.html to be the complete online resource for “do it yourself” genealogy projects. The site offers the largest offering of family tree templates online. The site is a not for profit website dedicated to offering free resources for those that are trying to trace their family history.