Back to the Past with Fujifilm Instax Mini

After getting into college, I did countless searches on dorm decor—hoping to recreate the picturesque dorm rooms I saw on Pinterest, Youtube, and other platforms. This proved to be no easy task. Freshman year, I kept my decorations sparse with a floral decal and two paintings (from SPB paint night!) that managed to cover a large portion of my wall. My room in Hillside didn’t have a ton of wall space, so I didn’t try to go over the top with decorations. Fast forward to my Sophomore year, I was pleasantly surprised to discover my double in AMS had more wall space than I had plans for. Not only is my new room bigger, but the ceiling is also much higher. 

For the entirety of the fall semester, the only decor I had was a calendar and landscape tapestry. While scrolling through Instagram over winter break, I came across multiple posts featuring Instax mini pictures. I always wanted to decorate my room with photographs and Instax mini pictures seemed like the perfect way to add meaningful decor to my room. 

Next came the hard process of choosing what kind of camera I wanted to invest in. My favorite color is pink, so I knew right off the bat that I wanted a pink camera. I started off my search by looking at the options I had: the Flamingo Pink Instax Mini 9 or the Blush Pink Instax Mini 11. I gravitated towards the more vibrant Flamingo Pink, but I didn’t like how I would have to manually preset the camera each time I took a picture in a new setting. I almost had my heart set on the Blush Pink Mini 11 when I decided to take a scroll through Urban Outfitter’s website after learning they also sell Instax mini cameras and accessories. It was there that I finally found my current camera, an Instax Mini 11 in the color Dusty Rose. With my camera all set, all I needed was film. 

Film is definitely the biggest caveat to owning an instant camera because of how pricey it is. If you know me, you know that I refuse to pay the sticker price for almost anything and will often wait until the items I want go on sale before purchasing. However, this was a bit more tricky since Instax mini film is not a seasonal item. While Amazon and eBay offer competitive prices for film, I found that I score the best deals buying film on marketplace apps such as Mercari. Usually, the classic white film averages around 0.60 to 0.80 cents per sheet. Prices on Mercari are usually steady around 0.60 cents per sheet. However, sometimes prices can get as low as 0.43 cents per sheet. Sellers on Mercari also often offer bundles of film with a variety of frame designs. 

Over Janplan, I took advantage of all the free time I had and tried to scout out good opportunities to snap some pictures. I was able to amass enough pictures to build a photo wall to help decorate my walls and fill up a good portion of the empty space. 

Whether or not you have empty wall space to fill up, I think owning an instant camera is a fun way to record your memories.