This has been by far my favorite scrapbook to create. The more I scrapbook the more I learn what makes me happy during the process as well as flipping through the album after it’s complete. Since learning about pocket-scrapbooking, I’ve completed two (Summer 2014 & December Daily 2014) and started another (Project Life Sept 2014). I have enjoyed making each book and have learned something from each one. I hope by sharing my process and some of my techniques it inspires you to create your own pocket scrapbook for a trip, an event, or even to document your whole year. You can watch my YouTube Video walk-through here.
This past June we took our children to Disney World for the first time. Georgia was 4 years old and Conroy was almost 2 years old. Before we left I knew I wanted to make a 6x8 album for our trip. So far that’s been my favorite size album to use. It fits nicely on a shelf, but is still big enough to include many different photos and sufficiently tell our story. For most of the trip I had my “big camera” (aka my Canon Rebel DSLR). I wanted to get great images, so I committed to wearing that what feels like a 5 lb camera around my neck or over my shoulder the entire trip. I am very happy I did.
The main difference between this scrapbook and any other memory book I’ve made in the past was that I gave myself a deadline! By doing so, it allowed me to enjoy each part of the process. I was able to fully indulge in saving every single piece of paper, ticket stub, and brochure I could get my hands on! I took a special shopping spree to Michaels just for specific supplies. Best of all, within under 3 weeks I was able to show our album off to my family and friends.
As I said, I knew I wanted to make this album before we left so I had the album in the back of my mind while I was taking photos. I used my “big camera,” my iPhone, plus any photos my parents or my aunt took while we were on the trip. Knowing these photos wouldn’t just be lost somewhere on my computer made it that much more exciting to take them in the first place. I wanted to remember the little moments and big ones. This meant taking an extra minute to get the photo. When we were all packed into the back of the airport shuttle bus I asked a stranger to take a photo of us. Many times I’d subtly snap a shot when no one was paying attention, but I’d also ask people to get together and pose more than usual. I knew I wanted to show our trip through the eyes of our kids so there was lots of squatting down to take photos in order to get on their level. Knowing the purpose of your photos before you take them often helps you get the photos you want. Also, thanks to digital, my new philosophy is “just take the photo.” If you don’t like it you can delete, but if you don’t take it you’ll never have it.
While on the trip I uploaded the photos at night and collected my favorites that other people had taken. Once we were back in Brooklyn I spent two evenings, after the kids were in bed, narrowing down the photos and deciding which sizes I wanted to print them. Thanks to some advice from Amy Tan, I downloaded the app PicFrame, which allowed me to put six 2x2 photos on a 4x6 print and two 3x4 photos on a 4x6 print. This took a little bit of time, but was much faster than doing it in Photoshop. I ordered all my photos from Snapfish and they were here in a couple days.
Then I took several hours from the weekend to lay out all the photos in chronological order and put them into the pocket protectors. I’ve found that if I break things down into steps I am much faster and it is more enjoyable. I don’t worry too much about if the layouts are exactly how I want them just as long as there’s space for photos and journaling cards.
Once I got all the photos roughly into pockets, the fun part really began. Embellishing and memory recording!! I like to lay out all my stickers, markers, extra paper, and stamps so I can see what I have to work with!
Before we left for the trip I saw these amazing Disney themed cards on the Big Picture Classes Instagram feed. I LOVED them, so immediately went online and ordered them. Yes, I paid more in shipping than on the cards themselves, but I really wanted to support the company. I have taken classes from them in the past. Plus, they have wonderful content and products. I couldn’t be happier with them and would do it again in a heartbeat. If you are ordering online, I’m sure you can buy more and possibly get free shipping.
Adding to the reasons this book is my favorite so far was my mini-shopping spree. Typically I have a decent amount of supplies in my studio. But for this book I took a special trip to Michaels. I bought a Mambi sticker set specifically for travel, plus a set that included some chipboard stickers that I loved. I first discovered this company’s modern designs and relatable sayings while making our December Daily album. I even had some stickers left over from that project.
I splurged on some Disney related stickers, including a red sparkly alphabet pack and a really nice embroidered “Disney” sticker for the cover. I chose a 6x8 SN@P album with a black spine and picked up a pack of multiple colored SN@P alphabet stickers. I loved having multiple colored letters in the same font. I was able to easily mix and match while keeping the page cohesive.
Since I had given myself a deadline, I allowed myself to keep everything I wanted….and I mean everything! I knew I would come home, use what I could use, and trash what I didn’t. Oftentimes I hoard so much paper memorabilia and never get to put it in a book. For this project, I gave myself a rule: I’d either use it now or get rid of it. Knowing that, I was able to fully enjoy myself.
Below are some of my favorite mementos that made the cut.
When we arrived at Disney both kids were given “1st Visit” souvenir pins. I knew right away that I wanted to keep them. We attached them to our stroller for the day and I put them in my keepsake bag when we got back to the hotel. At home I used an exacto knife to cut the back of the pin and then popped out the paper. I trimmed it with scissors to make it smooth. This is the second time I’ve preserved a pin using this method and I love it. It takes up so much less space and allows me to save the memento.
Our tickets to the park were credit card style cards with images of the classic Disney characters on the front. Immediately I knew I wanted to save these. I ended up cutting them to fit into the 2x2 pockets. I used a large paper cutter to do this and made sure I pressed firmly when cutting to ensure it stayed in place.
Georgia had a smoothie with an umbrella in it the day she spent at the pool with my mom. When she brought it upstairs I giddily slipped it into my pile of memories. This is the perfect example of something I might generally tell myself not to keep because “I would never actually use it” but, since I was determined to create this scrapbook as soon as we were home, I didn’t feel guilty at all. To incorporate it, I simply cut the middle off so it would lay flat and then I used a Mambi Chipboard embellishment to cover up the hole. I put it right next to the photo of Georgia with the umbrella in her hair drinking her Mango Smoothie. Perfection! (Seriously, this probably shouldn’t make me so happy.)
Emergency Room Reminders
Ok, the more I write this post the more I realize how deep down I truly am a paper hoarder!! After our visit to the ER (don’t panic, Conroy just had a fever and my cousin works there) I saved both our wristbands, plus the extra tongue depressor they gave Conroy to play with!! But seriously, I think it adds so much to the two-page spread. Plus, since they are securely glued to the photos and inside the plastic pocket, I know they won’t fall out or get lost.
At the end of the Disney Junior show, gold confetti fell from the ceiling. Georgia spent a good 5 minutes collecting the “treasure” before we could convince her to leave. She nicely asked if we could “keep them forever” – which is something she says often these days. Knowing I was going to make this scrapbook I, of course, replied “definitely” and Chad put them in his wallet. When it came time to make this spread I forgot where they were since they weren’t with the rest of my stuff and almost didn’t include them. When I was almost finished, Chad found them in his wallet and reminded me he had them. Knowing how important they were to her, I changed a couple things and made sure to include them. I loved that they were slightly transparent, so I made sure I didn’t completely block them on the backside. I love how, because of the pocket pages, you can see through them.
Even though I had my big camera around my neck and my iPhone in my back pocket there were a couple really great memories that I didn’t take a picture of. It actually makes perfect sense. I was so “in the moment” that I didn’t even think to snap a photo. I really wanted to capture these memories so I simply “reCrafted” them!
The first one was the Ariel Ride. We went on it once and then when it was time to pick another Fast Pass ride, Georgia chose the Ariel Ride again. Since this trip was about her I said, “Ok, let’s do it.” Chad, Georgia, Conroy and I all squeezed into the beautiful seashell. To reCraft the memory I did a quick Google Image search for “Ariel Ride.” I found a photo of some people on the ride and I had two copies printed at CVS. The page I had to work with was the twelve 2x2 page. I chose one section of the 4x6 image I had printed and cut it into four 2x2s. I inserted 3 of them. Then I cut another 2x2 from the second copy I had printed. If you look closely you can see how the people on the ride appear twice. To customize this memory, I cut out small photos of our heads from some of the extra photos and then glued them over the faces of the people from my Google Image. Looking at this page makes me smile from ear to ear.
The second reCrafted memory was the photo of Gaston. We probably spent close to 15 minutes watching Gaston take pictures with people while he boasted about how handsome he was. He was very arrogant, but pretty funny. Georgia found it very amusing. When we got home I couldn’t believe I didn’t take a photo of her watching him. To remember this memory I did a quick Google Image for “Gaston in Disney World.” I really think the photo I found was of the same exact Gaston that we saw while we were there. To embellish the photo I added some cardstock with the word “Handsome” written on it.
The Art of The Dillydally
Georgia has perfected the Art of The Dillydally. This is such a part of who she is right now I knew I wanted to remember it. She has seriously taught me to slow down and smell the roses. I documented this in two places and because this is so her, I didn’t have to reCraft any photos. I did change up the layout a little bit. The photo I took of her smelling flowers was so good I didn’t want to cut it into 6 squares to fit the current layout (and honestly this wasn’t posed…she was really smelling the flowers and I snapped the photo). I took a page from Kelly Purkey and allowed myself to mix layouts. She often glues two different pocket page layouts together. Since I liked the small photos on the top and bottom, I simply cut an extra pocket page so that the 4x6 photo fit and then glued and stapled it to the middle of the twelve 2x2 page. To keep things consistent I purposely used the same green card stock on the page behind it. This is one of my favorite photos in the whole album.
My Dad & his GoPro
My dad is kinda known for his gadgets and gizmos. For this vacation he bought himself a GoPro Camera. He took it everywhere with him. While we were on the Dumbo ride, he had his camera flying high right with the friendly elephant. A staff member came over the loud speaker and said, “ALL GO PRO CAMERAS MUST REMAIN IN THE VEHICLE AT ALL TIMES.” I don’t think my dad heard him the first time, so he said it twice. It made us all laugh and I knew I wanted to remember it. I simply used some alphabet stickers and an ultra-fine point sharpie marker to write the words. I included this memory next to a couple photos of my dad and his GoPro and the spread turned out perfectly!
Completing the embellishments and memory recording took about four sessions. I stole a couple hours from the weekends and stayed up late a couple weeknights to make sure I met my deadline. Making my deadline public on Instagram truly helped me finish the project. To be completely honest, I actually finished the album on July 3rd, instead of the 1st, but without the deadline I doubt it would have ever been completed. Plus, since I made up the deadline it was totally fine if I didn’t hit it exactly!
I hope this inspires you to make your own pocket scrapbook. I’d love to see them or hear about them. One of my guilty pleasures is watching other scrapbookers walk through their Project Life Albums on YouTube. It’s a little embarrassing how many hours I’ve spent watching them. However, I learn so much and love seeing how people tell their story. I hope you enjoyed my walk-through video for this album. If you have any questions, feel free to email me or leave a comment! Happy memory keeping!