My very first Design Team assignment was challenging. It was Fancy Pants Designs, which I usually totally love, but this was one of those lines I looked at and just didn't care for. I knew as part of my DT assignments that I was likely to get papers I would never pick up for myself, so I was prepared. The paper is very masculine and one sheet has titles and quotes about Hero and Brave. Not my choice for fire fighter layouts, but I was sure I had at least one picture to use on it. One layout out of a handful of papers and a sheet of rub-ons just wasn't going to cut it! I've seen several takes on file folder mini albums lately and I vaguely recalled seeing an Accu-Cut die at the shop for one. I went rummaging through the stacks of dies and found two in different sizes. I knew at that point I was onto something. I cut two of the smaller folders and three of the larger. It made a very respectable sized mini album. Approximately 5x7 when folded. A mini album is an open invitation to embellishing my little heart out and I knew rub-ons just would not be enough. I snagged a set of BOY stamps from Creative Imaginations and then proceeded to raid the Creative Cafe wall.
I have to admit, I have a total weakness for the Creative Cafe. I can buy exactly what I need to embellishments without having to pick up a whole package of something. If I only need 3 olive toned felt flowers, I just get 3 olive toned felt flowers, in my choice of shapes and sizes. In the long run, I probably pay a bit more per piece for my embellishments, but as I USE everything I buy, I totally feel like I get my money's worth. Check out this layout I did of just Creative Cafe products -
Before I go off on my mini book ramble, I should show you the layout I did with the leftovers of the mini book, plus the one sheet of paper I didn't cut for it. My husband is a fire fighter to the core. I could not imagine him doing anything else for a living, but he's so much more than that. I really wanted to show the side I see all the time, verses the side everyone else sees. I think I pulled it off.
I know a lot of people struggle with mini albums or just avoid them completely. For me, mini's are a freedom from scrappy rules and restrictions I sometimes feel when I'm doing layouts. It's an opportunity to use a bunch of photos that wouldn't normally be related. To be honest, until very recently, mini books intimidated me. It's just been within the last year that I've really exploded with them. Now I'm completely addicted.
I poured through the last 4 months of photos and specifically pulled out photos of the new little man in the house and my totally rockin' DH. I have tons of photos of him and our girl and I knew I could have added some girly flair to the book, but what I really wanted was a book of my men. When printing photos for a mini album, I print a selection of photos in standard 4x6 and in wallets. I get two wallets, so if I muck something up, I've got a spare. If not, then I have extra photos for a project on down the road. For minis, I always print more photos than I think I'm going to need. You'd be surprised at how many photos I can put in a mini album. For this book, I printed 30 and to be honest, I really should have printed at least 32 - 35. I could have used a few extras. For the book, I ended up using 29. One of the 30 was a picture I had printed in box 4x6 and wallet. Since the book was covering four months, I wanted to unify the pictures, so I modified them all to sepia tone. This is one of my favorite color options and I do a ton of it. I have a stack of spare wallets in those colors that will someday very soon be a project of their own.
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