Friday, June 11, 2010

♥ big apple photo book! ♥

you'll have sussed already that i ♥LOVE♥ this project, and i'm afraid i will not be evincing any additional modesty as the post goes on; so if you're not in the mood for shameless bragging, best to move along now. no hard feelings. i totally understand! :)

ok, so right after stef and i came home from our awesome new york city trip, that lovely lady sent me a 6x6" blank chipboard book shaped like an apple. she thought i might like to fill it with pictures from our trip, and she was right about that. what she didn't know was that i decided immediately to fill it with pictures from our trip...and send it back to *HER*!!! (what can i say...i ♥LOVE♥ surprises...i think i almost like giving them even more than getting them; there is something about benevolent plotting that i really enjoy!) :)

i decided to keep it really simple and minimalist... (ok, ok, simple & minimalist for *ME*!) ...and because i liked the way the shaped pages lined up together, i wanted to try to work FLAT so they would continue to lay nicely when the book was closed. this was a BIG challenge for me--more so even minimalism, actually, 'cause you KNOW how much i love my embellies!--but i did it. want to see? (say yes, say YES!!!)

i used photos taken by stef and i on the trip. i amped up the contrast and saturation a bit in photoshop, just to make them pop a little more.

the biggest decision was what to do about journaling. i'd already made a travel book, for one thing, and i wanted stef to be able to make her own book...with her own words...if she wanted to; so i really pondered for a bit.

finally i decided to go with quotes about new york. a simple google search found me PLENTY of sources and i copied my favorites into a text document.

then it was just a question of matching the best quotes with appropriate photos, and fitting the text on in broderbund's printshop*.

i added a rhonna farrer swirl brushes to each page as decoration--and ok yeah--sometimes to cover up a bit of distracting background or blank space!

i used a bit of vintage new york map for the inside front and outside back covers. the edges of the chipboard pages got colored black with a sharpie marker & i inked the edges of the photos and map papers before gluing them on. (i almost always cover chipboard in this way: i am *FAR* too lazy to trim 10 times around an apple shape with an exacto knife; i just use my regular scissors to cut slightly smaller than the page & gluestick those babies on there!)

et voila! a one-of-a-kind souvenir for a one-of-a-kind travel companion! ♥♥♥

*i made a sort of mock-up of the page shape but it still took quite a few test printings to get the size right. in future, i would just SCAN the shape and use it as a digital template! (i know, i know, this seems OBVIOUS in retrospect. most simple engineering solutions do seem obvious to me in--and ONLY IN--retrospect. sad but true!) :)

(~materials~ apple book: studio 18; software: pse5 for photo enhancement & broderbund printshop for layout and text; digital brushes: flourish clusters by rhonna farrer, house of 3; font: mom's typewriter downloaded from; photo paper: kodak premium; chipboard letters: heidi swapp; puffy heart sticker: sticko; various bits of ribbon, book ring & blue rhinestone flourishes: michaels; adhesives: uhu gluestick, 3m foam tape)


  1. Girl, this rocks!!! Great book, love all the extra touches!!

  2. You really are the Queen of Lovely Surprises.

  3. well this is pretty much BRILLIANT!!!!

  4. pure Big Apple perfection!!!! Love all the crisp colors!

  5. How fun! For you *and* Stef! :)
    Tragically, my visit to NY (OMG, 20 YEARS ago) was neither so fun nor did it end with such a special keepsake. You, my darling, have ROCKED IT! :D

  6. i have been sadly away from many of my fave bloggies lately and decided i NEEDED my lauren fix and got an AWESOME reception!

    HOLY GORGEOUSNESS Batman! You AMAZE me with each and every thing you do but this. This. THIS. O. M. G. Perfection!!! Gonna have to make sure to stop by more often again!!!!

  7. This.

    Can we please go on vacation together?? ♥ Miss you!

  8. You are the most thoughtful and creative friend. I can imagine smilin' Stef smiling so big for days ...after receiving this fantabulous gift...her jaw is really getting sore from the pure elation to have a Lauren treasure!

  9. too cute, girl! wow! LOVE your minis!! super project!!

  10. Actually, Stef's first reaction was to cry ... seriously, this was the most beautiful and thoughtful gift I've ever received ... reading each page brought back a flood of memories ... I've been smiling since it arrived. Thanks again dear friend for sharing the experience with me.

  11. I can totally understand why Steph cried.. It's a lovely gift. But then again you are a lovely person so no wonder you came up with the idea to create the book. Linda

  12. so fun!! so perfect!! I can not even begin to describe how much i LOVE your style!!


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