scrapbook project
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The first step in preparing a heritage album is to gather and organize your photos and research. For your first album, don't try to document the entire family, instead try for an overview or sampling of a family or individual's life. One or two pictures per page and keep things simple; anything else can be overwhelming for the creator and recipient. I recommend the 8x8 albums for beginners; the 20-page format is just the right size.

While gathering photos from friends and relatives, don’t forget to ask for names, dates and locations. Any stories that are easily related in print are a wonderful addition to the album.

Plan out the album before you begin. Select photos, information, papers and embellishments for each page and place them into a sheet protector, in chronological order, and then into the album.

In scrapbooking, page “layout” means the method that you chose to display the information. When making a heritage album I prefer my layout to be chronological, with earlier photos at the beginning. This method of organization will help the viewer make sense of what they are viewing; like a story unfolding.

Another form of “layout” deals with the backgrounds that you select for the album pages. There are several things that you can do to make your album layout look attractive and well organized.

  1. Coordinating Pages: Two pages that face each other in an album that share like color schemes, patterned papers and embellishments.
  2. Individual Pages: Single pages that each contains their own color scheme and theme. The pages are not related visually, but are facing each other in the album.

It is a good idea not to use original one-of-a-kind photos in your album. You can be sure that once the photos are in an album for all to see, someone is going to want a copy of it. Instead of tearing it out, consider scanning them and placing them on CD to share with family members. This can be time consuming, but you only have to do it once and it can be a valuable family resource.

If you are in a hurry to make several copies of an album, consider making one and copying the rest. The 8x8 format is easy to copy or scan. Place the copied pages in their own album as the finished gift or as placeholders until you can finish duplicate handmade pages.

Family Memories
Designer: Susan Cobb

scrapbook project
Click to enlarge



  1. Mat a 4"x6" family photo on the dark gray sponged paper, leaving a 1/16" border; mat again on light gray sponged paper, leaving a 1/4" border.
  2. Attach the matted photo to the right side of a 4 1/2" strip of dark gray paper. Attach two turn mounts, one on each side of the photo, to the mat.
  3. Cut out and attach two art pieces, with foam tape, to the left side of the mat. Adhere the mat centered on the gray net paper.
  4. Journal the names of the family members in the photo onto white paper, and also the date. Mat the journaling with light gray paper. Knot a 10" piece of gingham ribbon, and attach it across the page with Zots™. Adhere the journaling spots over the ribbon and under the photo, as shown.
  5. Cut out word fragments and attach them with brads to the top of the page.

Sports Hero
Designer: Susan Cobb

scrapbook project
Click to enlarge



  1. Trim 1/8" off of a piece of ivory cardstock, and mat it onto green cardstock.
  2. Tear 2 1/2" off of the right side of the collage paper, and 1/2" off of the left side. Adhere the torn paper close to the left side of the mat as shown.
  3. Mat a vertical photo onto ivory cardstock, leaving a 1/16" border. Attach the photo to the right side of the mat as shown.
  4. Journal onto a piece of ivory cardstock, and journal the names onto a strip of ivory cardstock. Attach the journaling to the lower left of the page. Adhere the strip over the ribbon fragment and attach it below the photo.
  5. Mat the art cut-outs with ivory cardstock, and tear the bottom for a rugged look. Attach the cut-outs as shown, use foam tape to lift the word fragments off of the page.

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