Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Mariposa Paper Bag Album

Just had to share pictures of the Mariposa album that my daughter & I have been working on (it seems like FOR EVER). Finally got it finished & listed on ETSY.

The cover is made from matte board cut to size and covered with scrapbook paper. I used the Mariposa stacks (prints & solids) by DCWV. A scrap of black velvet upholstery fabric was the perfect finish on the spine - it adds a lovely texture as well as helping stabilize the 3" book. A piece of gimp finished with antique brass brads edges the velvet. The paper was so beautiful, I didn't add any embellishment except the button closure - a vintage one from a local antique shop that I love. A piece of copper jewelery wire was threaded through a glass bead to cover the button holes and secure the button to the cover. Punched a hole, threaded the wire through, covered with matching paper and lots of glue for stability then finished with a piece of woven ribbon.

This is the thickest album I've even made! Talk about real estate - there's space for 41 photos (6" X 4"). More photos can be tucked into the large pockets formed from the bag's tops. I die cut 26 tags (6 1/4" X 3 1/8") that are decorated on the front and backed with solid ivory paper for even more space for smaller photos, ephemera and journaling. I added 24 mini tags (1 5/8" X 3 1/4") for fun little places to journal or tuck in things like ticket stubs, fortunes from a special Asian meal, small pressed flowers from a special bouquet (like the wild flowers my grand kids bring me). The only limit is your imagination!

Typical construction of paper bag albums usually use the bottom of the bag. I was very frustrated by the unevenness of the bag's construction, so I cut the bottoms off and made small pockets from card stock to replace the discarded bottoms. This created additional storage for even more tags.

The amount of time Katie & I spent on this album really shows in the details. We wanted this album to be special and I think we achieved that.

All the tags were die cut using my Big Shot. This particular one was stamped, a butterfly image cut out, smaller butterflies punched and Stickles added for a bit of bling. I left the small butterfly wings loose on the edges and shaped them a little with a ball tool I use for shaping paper flowers. This gives the feeling that they are just hovering above the paper.

The large pink tag is representative of all the tags designed for the pockets created from the bag itself. The edges are die cut and holes hand punched on the front for added interest. A small ribbon bow adorns the tag and helps us grab hold of the tag to remove it easily from the pocket. This tag was masked with a piece of coarse cotton lace and sprayed with teal Glimmer Mist. Each tag opens like a greeting card and is completely plain except for those that were masked and sprayed, leaving a lot of space for large photos and other ephemera. Click on the pictures for a larger version that makes it easier to see the details. (The vintage crocheted table runner was made by my British grandmother in the early 1950's.)

This open green tag shows its simplicity, allowing more space for all those 4" X 6" pictures we sometimes have trouble placing in our albums.

This paper stack stretched my comfort zone, using color combinations I wouldn't normally use. I discovered several that I'll be using again thanks to the creativity of the paper's designers. Hope you guys enjoyed seeing what we've been up to. Hope you'll take time to add a comment - all comments are most welcome and we look forward to hearing from you! Till next time - take care!

On a personal note - today is my baby's birthday - Happy 27 Katie - I love you!


  1. Hi Ann. I came across your blog while googling ideas on how to make a paper bag album. I just had to leave you a message to let you know your albums are absolutely gorgeous!!! I can only imagine how many hours it takes you and your daughter to put them together.You can absolutely see the love you put into them on every page :)
    Take care,

  2. absolutely gorgeous!!!!!
    i love those papers!!!!!