Wednesday, June 6, 2018

nature's bounty keepsake album

There is nothing like the beauty that nature presents to us each and every day. 
I am always awed by the details that can be found in something as simple as a piece of tree bark or as glorious as a cloud formation. I wanted to create an album to house small bits of this natural wonder in one place to spark inspiration or simply pass time in admiration. This album needed to have spots to jot down a note or two about something seen as well as for the inclusion of a snippet, or memento, here and there. The mini album I created allows opportunities for all of these things.
 I started with a bracket edged stagger mini album from Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts. This album contains six pages with various edges that are staggered to allow small glimpses of the pages below. The album comes with rings to keep all of your pages together, forming the album.
Since I  have an idea for how I hope to use this album, I search through my paper stash to find some papers that will work best as a base for embellishing and note taking. I also look for patterns that coordinate to cover the "back sides" of each page, since the album is designed to open completely and lay flat if desired. Once the papers are selected, each album page is outlined on the paper and fussy cut to fit. *Tip: mark each page and its respective paper with a coordinating letter/number to make it easier to distinguish what goes where later on. I mark my papers (on the reverse sides) with 1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, etc. Assembly is much simpler when you know where everything belongs.  
Once I cut everything out, I begin the process of assembling the album. Each paper is adhered to the chipboard album page with collage medium and allowed to dry. I find it easiest to do all of the "a" sides and then come back after these are dry, turn them over and adhere all the "b" sides. I make sure to place something weighted on top of the pages while the adhesive is drying to ensure that everything stays flat. 
  When the covered pieces are ready for embellishing, I consider each pair of pages that coordinates when the album is open in the flat position. I select a sub-theme that follows nature's inspiration, and then, appropriate embellishments, stencils, stamps and inks to work with. A baroque panel is cut for each upper page. I begin to lay out each spread and when I am satisfied, I create the pieces. When all of the pages are complete, I fasten an eyelet at each page hole location. This will facilitate turning the pages, since they have so many embellishments.
 Pages 1b and 2a contain some treasured feathers collected on a nature walk. I have always wanted a special way to display the "heart" feather, and love that it now has a forever home.
Pages 2b and 3a will be the perfect place to document all of the wonderful moths and butterflies that visit the gardens each year. I hand stitched a small booklet from vellum for wing pattern sketches or color and size notation. 
Pages 3b and 4a are created with beautiful leaves that I collected last fall, when the colors were at their prime. I brought them home and coated them with resin to keep the rich colors intact. I was so happy to use a few of these in the album.

Pages 4b and 5a will be perfect for storing plucked wildflowers, clovers or seeds. There are so many textures and patterns and colors to be found amongst the plants. I even created a mini envelope in coordinating paper to tuck things into.

Pages 5b and 6a are left mostly open for note taking or if there is something significant to be added. I took the opportunity to include a stem from one of my favorite signs of spring, the pussywillow. I create the sentiment "inspire hope, embrace imperfection, see possibility everywhere" which really encompasses all that I hope for this album to become a keepsake of.

These are some-close up  pictures of the inside spreads, showing some of the smaller details like textures, stenciling, stamping, and ink colors. 
I hope that you have enjoyed my nature's bounty keepsake album. Whether it inspires you to take an extra moment to admire your surroundings or create something of your own, I believe we can all benefit from taking a moment to pause and reflect on the beauty in nature's details. 
Enjoy each day to its fullest. 
I sincerely appreciate you stopping by today.

Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts used:


  1. Love this Ann and how you decorated each flip.

    1. Thanks Nancy, it flowed so nicely and the laser cut was nice and sturdy so it could handle all I was hoping to accomplish. I loved that the rings allowed me to make the pages pretty dimensional and it could still close flat. hugs.