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Saturday, July 17, 2010

KISS (Keep It Simple Saturdays) with Michelle ~ A Simply Made Mini Album Tutorial

Hi Everyone and I hope you are having a great weekend thus far!

This blog post is going to be about making a mini-album. Now I know there are tons of tutorials and videos showing the amazing and vast examples of mini-albums. This post (as with all my blog posts) is about taking the simplistic way to create a meaningful album by using very few tools and supplies you have already in your stash.

You may know that making these types of projects is not my forte. I love seeing them and appreciate the craftsmanship but then I wondered if one mini-album can be created quickly, beautifully and easy to assemble as well. Here's the story behind this mini album...

My girlfriend and I were 1 month apart being pregnant. Currently I am 6-1/2 months along (baby and I are doing really well) but my friend was having a troublesome pregnancy right from the get-go. A long story short, she had gone into labour early (being almost 24 weeks) and gave birth to a son named 'B' (abbreviated for privacy reasons). My friend is obviously going through a challenging time in her life right now. She is in the big city, away from family and friends, her home and surroundings all the while concentrating on helping her son fight the fight of his life. I wanted to give her an outlet to express herself and remember the private yet precious moments of her son's young life. Hence this mini-album (mind the pun, not intented here) was created for my friend.

To assemble this mini album quickly, here is my short list of supplies and tools required:
  • Die shape of choice (for this project I used a top note die which was big enough for journalling, photos and/or attaching pockets to). You can use any shape you wish whether it be from a electronic based machine or manual use.
  • Cutting machine compatible to cut/create the above shaped die of choice (I used my Big Shot but any die cut machine will do).
  • Binder ring
  • Embellishments of choice (I encourage you to dig through your stash and use it up)
  • Patterned paper of choice (again use up what you already have whether it be full sheets or scraps)
  • Stamps and ink if desired
  • Adhesive
While I won't go through the steps on how I created and assembled my mini-album; I will share with you my thought process on how I mix and matched my supplies:
  1. Gather up everything (I mean everything - from the above list of supplies) you want or think you want to use to create this mini album. Shop once from your stash and do not look again until the project is complete.
  2. Create separate piles within your stash that you would want to use on a page. Do not think whether or not you'll use the elements until you start creating.
  3. Arrange those piles in the order of the mini-album presentation. Decide at this point if you are going to make it double or single-sided pages.
  4. Start creating! The process on how you create each page is up to you - you can create page by page or in mass production (i.e. cut all pages first, layer on embellishments next and so on...).
  5. Assemble your pages together for your mini-album.
  6. Once you have assembled your finished project, take one good look over. Make any adjustments or changes but try not to re-do (remember this is supposed to be quick and easy). When you have made your final touches complete - DO NOT touch the album again! You are officially done.
My biggest tip for this type of project is... If you spend the time in the beginning to choose your supplies and elements plus arrange them in a way to make creating easy for you; you should not have to go back and make any last minute changes. Again this is my humble and personal opinion only.

Here are some of my favorite pages from this album (this was hard to choose):

I hope I have demystified and encouraged you to make a mini-album. After all paper crafting is not meant to be complicated or seem out of reach for some to be intimidated not to create. Take a deep breath and dive right in. Enjoy the creative process and relish in your finished projects. If you put your heart into it, your mini-album will be enjoyed by others for a long time to come. No matter how simple or elaborate your project may be.

Until next Saturday, Happy Crafting!

KISSes and Hugs ~Michelle


  1. Michelle, thanks for sharing this tut!! You are so right about getting everything together first!! That's exactly what I did when I made my son's girlfriends' album!! It worked beautifully. Everything was in one spot, and I didn't go back through my stash, because I already had everything set aside!! And because I did it in stages, over a few weeks, I placed everything in one box, that I could go to, to pick & choose embellies, etc from!!

  2. Just a quick note to let you know that a link to this post will be placed on CraftCrave today [17 Jul 12:00pm GMT]. Thanks, Maria

  3. Oh, this is pretty! What a fun album this is. Love the shape and the papers you have used, very pretty!!

    Love, Wendy

  4. Wow...your friend is sure to be blessed by this beautiful little album, Michelle. Perfect!



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