A lot of people get stuck on what album size they should be using for their memory keeping projects. Prior to starting any project I ask myself 2 simple questions and by answering these questions honestly, I'm able to select the right album for the job.
1. How many photos and/or stories will you need for this project?
I always like to define my projects prior to starting and being realistic about how many photos and/or journaling I will want to include in each project is really important. For example; when I started the Ali Edwards Story Kits I knew I wanted most of the focus to be on telling stories and for that I would need a lot of space for writing. When I journal stories I'm just used to doing it on your standard 8.5x11 paper, so using an 8.5x11 album just made sense.
However, when it comes to documenting my Week in the Life projects I prefer to use something smaller and more manageable like a 4x4 album. The reason why the 4x4 album works so well for my project is because I typically only capture 1 to 2 photos a day, so that's 7 to 14 over the entire week and using an album any bigger just wouldn't make sense.
For my Project Life album, where I capture life's everyday stuff, I prefer to use a 12x12 binder for a number of reasons. The biggest reason I like the 12x12 album size is because of its flexibility. I love using my go-to Design A photo pocket page, but having the flexibility to use smaller pages like a Design H, which is a 6x12 size, or the 8.5x11 size which I use a lot for journaling bigger stories and printing larger single photos. Just because you're using a 12x12 binder doesn't mean you have to use only the 12x12 photo pocket pages. Getting creative with your album and using the page size that best fits your story makes documenting more manageable and stress-free.
2. What, if any, other project elements do you want to include?
Now that you've decided on the number of photos and/or journaling space you will need for your project, you should look at any other elements that you might want to add to include.
For example, do you want to include any memorabilia? Maybe you like to keep show stubs or drawings from your kids in your albums, if so you'll want to ensure you have the space for it. I used to do this in my 12x12 albums using the Becky Higgins Envelope Pages, until I found that the albums get way too bulky for my liking. For simplicity sake, I now just take a photo of my girls artwork or snap a picture of other memorabilia and include the photo in my album instead of the actual item. This is totally a personal preference, but one you should consider and make room for if necessary.
Another thing that you might want to think about is how much, if any, "decoration" you want to add to your pages. Do you like using scrapbooking embellishments, pretty papers, or other decorative elements. Adding those things will take up space on your pages and you'll want to ensure you have enough room for both your photos and journaling, along with any added decorative embellishments.
These are two pretty simple questions to ask, but if you take the time to honestly think about how you want your project to look and how many photos and journaled stories you can realistically include, you will find the perfect sized album for the job.
So what's in-store for the next post? Next time I'll share why I document my "everyday life" in themes, what my first theme for 2018 is in case you want to document along, and I'll also share some photo ideas that will help you capture the theme in a creative and simple way.
See you soon!