Summer is the perfect time of year for simple and portable projects! This mini-album is not only small, but mailable; it is made with pre-folded blank greeting cards, stacked and tied together into a mini that will fit perfectly in the matching enve
lope. A little book like this would be a perfect brag book (to send off to the grandparents), vacation journal (to send home with an exotic postmark), or overnight-camp journal (to send to your camper for mail call!). We’ll be using ours for theater day-camp memories later this month! To make your own easy mini, you’ll need:
- premade greeting cards (mine were 5×7 inches, and came from a craft-store value pack, which always include more card bases than I can possibly use!)
- matching envelope
- thread or twine
- small hole punch or sturdy needle (or even a hammer and nail!)
I printed some 2×4-inch rectangles to use as side borders on 4×4 square photos:
I also made numbers 1-10 (one for each day of our 2-week camp). I wanted these to look somewhat imperfect, so I turned the circles in various directions and purposely typed the numbers in non-centered positions. After typing each one, I changed the layer style to “linear burn” and decreased the opacity to 75-90% (each number has a slightly different opacity). I’d sized the circles to close to 1 inch, so I could punch them easily. Remember, when punching, to flip the punch upside down so you can see exactly where you’re punching!
I also premade a set of journaling prompts and a couple of full 4×6 pages with plenty of space for journaling.
I wanted to distress the edges of my photo prints to give them a more rustic look, so I used sandpaper to rough-up all the edges.
To assemble your book, lay your cards in a flat stack, then punch a small hole about 1-1.5 inch in from each side and thread thin ribbon, twine, raffia, yarn, or other thread through the holes. You can tie it inside the centerfold of the book, or leave the knot on the outside spine for a bit of decoration. (Be sure if you have printed on the pages, as in the photo above, you have them stacked in the proper order!)
Now begin adhering your printed kit bits into the book. I used 5×7 cards so that 4×6 photo prints would fit easily with a small kraft border around each page.
I doodled some borders and journaling lines on the pages because my mini has a definite handmade look; this worked for me! If you are going for a more “polished” look, you may want to do this with your computer, either directly on your card bases or on your digi print-outs. Keep in mind that if you plan to hand-write journaling on photo prints, you’ll need a pen that won’t smudge. (American Crafts Slick Writers are handy for this; a fine-point Sharpie will work beautifully too.) Consider including an autograph page, space for tickets or other memorabilia to be glued in, or blank pages for doodles and drawings, as well as more traditional journaling prompts and writing lines.
When your book is complete, slip it into a coordinating envelope and it will be ready to send (or receive!). Even if you don’t plan to mail your mini, the envelope can be handy for storage and can help protect the pages. I ran the envelope through my printer to give it a title, too. (If you’re hoping your camper might mail their completed journal home to you, be sure to pre-address the envelope and include plenty of postage!)
Other Articles by NikkiFB:
- A Treat for Santa... and for You! - December 24th, 2012
- Thanksgiving Countdown Banner - November 6th, 2012
- Personalized Hanging Hooks - October 12th, 2012
- Quick Hybrid Photo Mat - September 21st, 2012
- Hybrid Wrapped Wreath - August 27th, 2012