Creating a Pocket Style Album using Digital Printables

So you're either planning a trip to a Disney park or you've recently returned from one, and you're thinking, “How can I get these memories in an album?”
As I shared in my recent post “Documenting Disney With Project Life,” I love using pocket scrapbooking to get my photos and stories into an album. My sister and her family are lucky enough to be planning a trip to Disneyland (they're in the double digits now!) and when I posted about my Disney album from last year on my own blog recently, she commented that she'd love for me to do her album when they get back.

I had that idea in my mind when I saw the most amazing new product from Sahlin Studios and Brittish Designs and thought, “When they get back? Why not before they even leave?” Wouldn't it be amazing to have an album ready to go when you get home from a trip… just add pictures and journaling?

Here's the product that inspired me:

Created by Brittish Designs and Sahlin Studio, Project Mouse offers a wealth of filler and journaling cards perfect for most pocket scrapbooking systems. For my sister's gift album, I chose to use a Simple Stories 6×8″ album. Simple Stories offers a variety of page protectors with different pocket configurations and I thought that by using a variety of these, my sister could personalize the album as she puts it together after her trip.

First, I started by purchasing and downloading the digital files. After downloading the files, my downloads folder looked like this:

From here, each file will need to be extracted, or unzipped. You can do this individually (if you don't know how, I suggested doing a search for your operating platform and the word “extract”) or use an unzipping utitlity to unzip them all at once (I like UnZipThemAll). Unzipped, your files should look like this:

Now you'll need to decide how to print your files. You have a variety of options, but I'm going to discuss two. The first is printing at home using the 8.5×11 print files included in the downloads. The print files look like this:

If you have a decent home printer, these are super easy to print. Just click on the file and print as you would any photo. Many who print at home recommend Epson Matte Presentation Paper. I'm a fan of Bazzill White Orange Peel cardstock. You can also just use any cardstock you find at your local art supply store. It may help to adjust the print settings on your printer to get the best quality. Then you'll need to have a decent paper trimmer for cutting out the cards. A paper trimmer can be picked up for under $20 at your local box store and will help you get those straight lines you want when cutting cards for your albums.

The other option would be to upload the digital files to an online printer and have them printed and shipped to you. I chose to do this and also chose to use Persnickety Prints because they won't just print the files, they'll cut them to size for me and even round the corners if I want rounded corners. Persnickety is a great option for pocket scrapbooking because they offer the most common pocket sizes for prints — 4×6, 3×4 and 4×4. The easiest way to do this is to upload the individual files to Persnickety. Create an account and choose the “upload prints” yellow button in the right corner of the screen. It looks like this once the files are uploaded:

Your next step is to add these prints to your cart. Select the files you want and push “order prints” This will result in a pop-up asking if you want to pick up your prints or have them shipping (obviously, unless you live in Utah, you'll want to have them shipped). The pop-up looks like this:

You'll want to chose the order with more options choice on this screen. The next screen will show you all the files you have added to your cart and give you options on how to print them. I started by choosing all the 3×4″ cards I had in my cart. In the pull down menu, you'll see an option for Project Life 3×4 Cardstock, and then a further option for the cardstock you would like:

I printed using Matte Card Stock for my sister's album but I love the Linen Card Stock as well (I used it for my December Daily album that I also did using a Simple Stories album). You'll need to repeat this process for each size of journal card you're printing; Project Mouse includes both 3×4 and 4×6 files. In the past, I've sometimes found it easier to create separate albums for each size so I know what I'm ordering and don't need to try to figure it out from the thumbnail, so there's always that option.

Finally, you pay for your order and it arrives in the mail a few short days later. Persnickety Prints is seriously fast. Then it's time to assemble. Here's my supplies before I started assembling:

Then I got to put cards into the album. I started with the cards with room for journaling because I wanted those fairly evenly spaced throughout the album. Then I went and filled in spaces with what I consider “filler” cards becuase they just look so pretty and make it all come together. I tried to leave lots of space for 6×4 photos (the most common size of photos) but also left some 3×4″ spots free for adding more journaling or even autographs or tidbits from their trip. Here's some photos of the album once I put it together:

Wrap it up with some pens, maybe a set of blank cards and a guide book for Disneyland and you've got a great gift for the Disney loving, memory keeping family in your life.

Want more Project Mouse inspiration? Check out these amazing pages!

layout by CMM team member Heather

layout by CMM team member Tanya

As a huge fan of pocket scrapbooking, I love Project Mouse… and there's more sets to come, too! In fact, here's the latest bundle from Brittish Designs and Sahlin Studios:

Have fun with pocket scrapbooking and document those stories!

  • Kristen

    Great post — I’ve been thinking of doing something similar for my own upcoming trip. For the journal cards, have you printed them using Persnickety’s photographic paper before? I noticed this is what they recommend, but I’m wondering how they would be to journal on (especially for the character autographs :). Thanks!

    • Kim

      I have printed on their photographic paper for journal cards (mostly because I was putting a photo and a journal card onto a 6×4 canvas to save money). I prefer the cardstock for journal cards, but I think it’s fine if you like the look. The photographic paper is thinner than the cardstock. I use the Sharpies that click open and they would definitely be find on a photographic print.

  • Gab

    Wow, thank you so much for this. I’m not a digi scrapper and have wondered whether I could use some digi supplies to print elements out. This post is just perfect!!!

    • Kim

      Oh good! That’s exactly how I wanted to write it… step by step for someone who has never opened Photoshop! Have fun with it!

  • Gab

    Oh, and the album looks amazing!

  • Nancy

    Thank you for the step by step guide very helpful; but I have a couple of questions. I uploaded all of my Project Mouse files then followed your steps but I’m not sure about two things. One: If I do not want rounded corners I only see two options in the drop down (No cut or Rounded Corners). Will they cut them without the rounded corners? If so, how do I choose this option? Two: I don’t see an option for Project Life 4×6 cardstock only photographic which makes my order $156.00 (YIKES!) which option do I choose?

    Help! What am I doing wrong?