January Photo Book is Done!

I am so happy I finished my January photo book today! It really wasn’t too bad and since it was my first mini-album from scratch, I learned quite a few things. Like #1 – having a solid outline of exactly how you want to include photos, journaling, embellishments, etc., is very helpful. I figured it out as I went along and would have benefited from having some things figured out beforehand.

But anyway, you live you learn, right? Here’s how it went…

First I gathered all my supplies. I ordered my prints from Mpix and was VERY pleased with them. I will be using them for my prints in the future. I ordered some chipboard, binder rings and paper from Amazon. They have really great “add-on” items that are only a couple bucks when you order $25 worth of other stuff. So I got quite a few of my supplies for really cheap.

Making sure I have all of my supplies before I get started.

Scrapbook paper, washi tape are optional depending on how much you want to decorate your book. Paper cutter is a necessity.

Book rings, hole punch, graph paper and chipboard

I also ended up using some twine and buttons to decorate the cover, along with a glue stick and glue dots for adhesive. I actually ran out of both 3/4 of the way through and had to use mod podge to finish it up.

After gathering my supplies, I sorted my photos so they were in order by date. That just seemed the best way since it’s a monthly album. I also printed the January Capture Your 365 prompt list to use to label some of my photos that went along with the prompts.

Next I cut out the numbered prompts because I was going to use them as labels.

Super easy and takes only a couple minutes.
Then I measured a piece of graph paper a little larger than the size of my photos (4×6) to use as a guide for the chipboard (as well as a guide for where to punch holes later on). I wanted the front and back covers to be just slightly larger than the photos.
I got the front and back cover out of just one piece of chipboard.

Next I hole punched the chipboard covers and each photo. If you are mounting your photo on cardstock or using sleeves, then don’t worry about this step. Make sure you line up your photos to be facing the right direction for placement in the book before you start hole punching. Upside down photos are a bummer when flipping through a book!

I was only able to punch about 4 photos at a time with the hand held hole punch.

Once everything was hole punched, I started adding scrapbook paper and a small bit of journaling about each photo on the back. After getting through several photos I decided I didn’t really care for this method and probably won’t do it again. I will forego the decorative scrap paper and just add a note about what the photo is, date, etc. Minimal info. Otherwise, I prefer a larger size book to keep the decorating on the same side as the photo.

It’s much less time consuming as well if you forego all the decorating on each photo. The cover on the other hand, I wanted to look cute yet simple. Mostly because I just wanted it done…lol! And secondly because I don’t have a lot of embellishments right now to use. So, I added some scrap paper to the edges, a big #1 since it is the 1st month of the year. I ran out of both glue stick and glue dots, so I had to use mod podge as adhesive for these. It was kind of a bonus because mod podge works better anyway. At first I was going to use a rubber band as a latch, but decided on the twine instead with the button. And yes, I hand sewed that silly button through the chipboard (with the start of the twine underneath of it to secure it in place).

I opted to put the month info on the inside of the front cover. It helped to cover up the ugly threading from the button. 🙂

Once the covers were done and every thing was dry, I put it all together and voila! Super simple, DIY, mini photo book complete!

Now that I’ve learned some lessons in what to do and what not to do, I am excited about starting on my next mini albums!

Thanks for stopping by.

~Amanda Brown


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