Project Life 2012: printstagram edition

Hi there.

As I talked about here the other day, I came up with a few projects to make use of the stack of 365 printstagrams I bought a couple of years ago. A lot of them were perfect for fun and quirky photo greeting cards. But an equally large stack were too specific and personal. They actually represented 2012 quite nicely, the second half of 2012 at least, after I got my iPhone. And luckily printstagram calendar prints are a nice size for Project Life, somewhat smaller than a 3×4″ pocket. That was just luck – I don’t think I had considered doing Project Life when I ordered these prints.

I couldn’t organize the photos in chronological order, or rather, I couldn’t be bothered to do so, and I didn’t think that was the right approach. I decided that this would be an incomplete year anyway, so it would make more sense to organize the pages thematically. I sorted my pictures roughly into groups based on Stacy Julian’s Library of Memories categories which I hear about all the time on the scrapbooking podcast The Paperclipping Roundtable. Basically she organizes her albums into 4 categories – places we go, things we do, people we love, and all about us. It seemed like a really good way to organize these random pictures.


I had a lot of selfies which are all about me/us. Trip pictures were a mixture of places we go and people we love (because our trips were with family and friends) so I divided them into scenery pictures (just a small selection of those) and shots with people in them. I had other pictures from work that were a mix of people pix and event pictures (things we do). I also had pictures of projects I did, like the Sketchbook Project. The random daily life pictures showing favorite foods and the view from our front window seemed like a kind of “all about us” topic.

I found it a really useful way to divide a large collection of photos. I should note that I didn’t create titles or dividers or in any way indicate these categories in the album. I just used it as a loose way to group pictures together. But it definitely confirmed that Stacy’s system could be useful. I have considered tagging my digital pictures in these categories too, but I don’t know if I will ever really get around that. I think it’s a good idea though.

I used gorgeous woodgrain papers from Studio Calico for a simple consistent background. I had several different patterns, but they had the woodgrain look in common. They are also double sided, so I saved time and paper by sticking a photo on each side. I knew that could limit my flexibility when organizing the album, but since this was a quick, simple project it really didn’t matter. I got all the pages done in two afternoons, so once the order was settled, I didn’t second guess things. I chose one woodgrain pattern for each page, with the same or a coordinating pattern for the facing page.


I cut down a few damaged-in-the-mail page protectors (which Studio Calico very decently replaced and let me keep) to make 3×8″ “insert” pages. They helped a lot when I had 6 pictures from one event/theme instead of 4. I’ve been using these half page protectors from time to time in my regular PL album to hold special event photos above and beyond the regular week’s pictures. I’m so glad I was able to salvage something that I had thought was ruined. Luckily the big divot in every page protector was in the lower right corner, easily cut off.

damaged page protectors salvaged

I haven’t added any journaling or titles. I could add a note to the white part of the photo, but I don’t think I need to. We’ll see if I feel differently later, but I think the photos and the general theme layout says enough. These are already well worn memories, pictures I have revisited often since they were taken. And the details are not always important.

2012 PL pages

When I was done, I had a good sized stack of pages representing some of the best parts of 2012. Luckily my Jan-June 2013 Handbook was not very full, so I was able to put my 2012 pages in the front of that album. It’s full now! July-Dec was already full with extra pages and ephemera from our Disneyland trip.

the finished pages in the album

I would never have bothered to create a 2012 Project Life album from scratch because I had a really comprehensive blurb book covering that year already. But since I had these pictures printed out already, it was really nice to be able to put them into scrapbook form without buying any new supplies at all.

I’m so glad the printstagrams didn’t end up going to waste. I still have a small stack of card-suitable pictures to play with, and a small stack of extra/duplicate/unusable pictures to (probably) dispose of, and another fairly large stack of Mimi Pug pictures. I don’t know what I’m going to do with those. I might make some more PL pages, or maybe I’ll come up with a different project for them. A few of them might even become greeting cards.

Thanks for stopping by again.

I have one more Project Life post in mind for the very near future, showing how I’ve been handling this project lately. Keeping it very simple.

See you soon!




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1 Response to Project Life 2012: printstagram edition

  1. Elisabeth Demmon says:

    Thanks for the great ideas! Elisabeth D. (Written between lectures:) )

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