Wednesday, August 24, 2016

9 Ideas to Help You Design a Vacation Themed Scrapbook Album

From my YouTube channel, I had someone ask me if I would video one of my son's school albums so she could get some ideas on how to carry a theme through an entire album.

While that is in the works, here are my 9 ideas for designing a themed album. While some may not work for every type album, these are the steps I used for my recently completed Galveston vacation album.  Watch this video where I share examples of some of these steps.

1.  First, select a color theme. This may be an entire kit or brand, but in the video, I show the "summer color kit" I assembled from my stash that included different brands.  All the cardstock was in the botanical greens and ocean blues; the patterned paper included the same color palette with simple designs.  Overall, it provided a cohesive look while not being too busy. For this type of album, I wanted to show off the photos more than the "art."

2.  Choose an "icon" to appear on every page.  In the vacation album, you will see that most of my layouts have one of these cute camera stickers:

It's just a little something that brings the reader back to the theme.  Anything can be used for an icon.  For my oldest son's school album, I incorporated stars, which are represented in the patterned paper, diecuts and other embellishments.  

Get your FREE layout sketches to do similar layouts!  Scroll down for the link!

3.  Do not journal on the layouts. This sounds contradictory, but sometimes, journaling can take away room for the many photos that can tell the story much better than words. Instead, think about creating a diary of the entire trip and highlight it -- as I did for an ending album page.
4.  Use simple titles.  I didn't use several different alphas for my page titles. I used one package of Thickers, and then added alphas for large titles.  

5.  Incorporate ephemra. This would include postcards, tickets, tokens, or other small items that can be included on a layout.  It can act as another photo to explain a particular activity.  In this layout, I used our hotel key, since it had a great photo of the resort where we stayed.

6.  Add fewer embellishments.  Again, since this themed album is to show off vacation photos, I felt that adding several embellishments on a page would detract from the story I was telling. Besides ephemera, a few choice embellishments kept me on pace. 

7.  Do a recap page with "odd" photos.  Some of my extra photos which didn't pertain to a specific activity were grouped together on a storyboard type layout which included short captions.  I didn't even use a title on this page. Instead of captions, a title explaining the photo series would be enough.

8.  Incorporate titles across two pages.  Sometimes different attractions or activities may not require a double page spread.  Even if two pages don't mirror each other, using the same color scheme plus titles that work separately and together, will help pages flow together.  For example, look at these two pages:  

The title on the left - "Our Trip" - is on the page with the brochures about what we did on the trip.  On the right, "Away to the Gulf" gives the location of the vacation.  On a whole, "Our Trip Away to the Gulf" brings both pages together, even though the pages have different goals. (I noticed later that on the second page, the Snap card that says "I {heart} to travel" also flows right into the title on that page!)  

9.  Create one page for vacation brochures. Just illustrated on the previous photo, I used one page and made a pocket to put all the brochures from Galveston.  Postcards and tickets can be added to a pocket like this if not included on other pages. I went with this route because I liked being able to pull out the brochure and read specific information that may not be seen when the brochure is affixed to a layout. 

Those are some of my tips for pulling together an entire theme into an album. From the page design to the flow of the story, a finished album like this is another family treasure.

Now that the kids are back in school, grab the free sketches I designed just for you, and get started on your vacation layouts while they are fresh in your mind. Don't wait four years.  Like I did.