Stretch Your Stash: 12 no fluff, all-essential and extremely usable items that you need to have in your memory-keeping stash

stretch-your-stash-blog.jpg

One of the common myths about memory-keeping is that you must have all the things in your memory-keeping stash - all the patterned paper, all the stickers, all the washi tapes, all the trendy embellishments and all the fancy gadgets. It doesn't help that memory-keeping brands seem to come out with *new shiny things* all the time. You're probably thinking,

"It's so expensive to do memory-keeping!"

I hear you. I definitely had that mindset as well (and I definitely spent a lot more than I should have on all the *shiny* memory-keeping supplies!).

Stretch Your Stash: 12 no fluff, all-essential and extremely usable items that you need to have in your memory-keeping stash | Crafted by Pam

For two years, I bought into the marketing strategies and sales tactics of memory-keeping brands and spent close to $150 every month. I knew how important memory-keeping was to me but does that mean that I have to fork out $150 every month just do document my every day life and travel adventures? Just to give you context: $150 is about 30% of the average monthly salary of young adults here in the Philippines.

The sad truth is that while I was accumulating all these memory-keeping supplies, I wasn't really using most of it in my pocket-page layouts. It was either too trendy, not my style, or I probably forgot I even had these supplies. It was so wasteful and I have had enough.

One fine day, I stopped shopping for supplies, cancelled all my subscriptions and sold practically everything that I had (memory-keeping supplies, that is). I was left with around 5% of the memory-keeping supplies that I had before. Of course, I didn't recoup that what I spent on memory-keeping supplies by selling everything.

With very limited funds, I taught myself how to shop smartly for memory-keeping supplies and rebuilt my stash with items that I truly loved and items that I can actually use.

In this blogpost, I will tell you the 12 memory-keeping items that you need to stretch your stash!


The items that I will recommend to you are those that you can use over and over again and in many different ways - talk about getting the bang for your buck! I carefully curated each item based on my years of experience of buying way too much and then finally paring down to the essentials.

Just a quick note: I will NOT include items like albums, page protectors and pens in this list. Those are more of the basic supplies that you need to get started with pocket-page memory-keeping. This blogpost will be focused on helping you maximize your memory-keeping stash by being smart and purposeful about what you include in it.

If you have a limited budget to spend for memory-keeping, these will be your go-to supplies! Most of these items are re-usable or can be repurposed in a variety ways so with just these items, you can really stretch your stash and create more pocket-page layouts without having to purchase more memory-keeping supplies.

I have organized each item into a category to make it easier for you, let's get into it!

Paper

Stretch Your Stash: 12 no fluff, all-essential and extremely usable items that you need to have in your memory-keeping stash | Crafted by Pam

01. 4x6" Index Cards

Yes, index cards. The ones you buy for school or see in a library. Index cards are very versatile because (1) they come in lined and unlined versions and (2) the weight of the paper is pretty substantial. Instead of splurging on "grid paper," index cards are a more cost-effective option since a pack of 100 - which is a LOT - is around $9. Using something inexpensive as this will also encourage you to experiment and play around with certain techniques which helps you get closer to identifying your own memory-keeping style.

Here are some examples of how you can use index cards:

  • a base for adding in your photos, ephemera, embellishments or stamping
  • a card for you to write your journaling (this works well with the lined index cards!)
  • cut it apart to use as labels that you can adhere on top of photos

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02. Patterned Paper

Patterned paper are just pre-designed paper that comes in a variety of shapes with 12x12" being the most common. One piece of 12x12" patterned paper is usually around $0.98 so it's not that expensive, right? However, a lot of memory-keepers tend to hoard their patterned paper and over time, it turns into hundreds of dollars just sitting pretty in their shelves. It usually boils down to one of these three reasons: (1) the pattern is too trendy and it's hard to adapt to the stories that I want to tell, (2) the pattern is too big that it doesn't look good when trimmed down, or (3) it's specifically themed so I can only use it on very specific stories.

Despite these reasons, I still maintain that patterned paper is something that you should have in your stash BUT you have to be very selective of the designs so that you can make the most out of your dollar. Some patterned paper can be pretty to look at but a pain to use in your layouts while others have less of an impact visually but prove to be extremely usable.

My tips for you when you're choosing patterned paper is to:

  • Make sure that you like BOTH sides of the patterned paper - this will make you more excited to use it and you'll double your options without spending more money.
  • Choose a pattern whose size will work well for your pockets. For example, if the patterned paper is practically a huge 12x12" drawing, trimming it down for your pockets won't make much sense.
  • Choose paper that has actual repeated patterns on it like stripes, stars, hearts or gingham. You can cut apart the paper to use as embellishments (labels, borders, layering elements, etc.) on your pocket pages which means that a 12x12" sheet will go a long way.

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03. White Cardstock

Cardstock is basically the same as patterned paper except that it comes in solid colors and sometimes, different textures. So yes, there are other colors (like kraft!) of cardstock but I find the most use out of the white ones. I always keep at least two sheets on hand because it's extremely versatile!

Some of the ways you can use white cardstock is by:

  • stamping different shapes and fussy cutting them out to create your own embellishments and layering elements
  • cutting it out as a label for your journaling
  • using different mediums such as watercolors and acrylic paint to create your own pocket cards

Quick commercial break // This has been in the works for about a year and a half already... I'm launching an e-course on analog travel memory-keeping! I am PASSIONATE about introducing a better way to relive your travel experiences (yes, I am throwin' some slight shade on social media...), a way where you can TANGIBLY  flip through the stories of your past adventures.

This course - Craft Your Travel Story - isn't launching until May 2017 BUT I want to help you get started with travel memory-keeping while you wait excitedly ;) This is why I created this FREE comprehensive five-day e-mail course, The Travel-keeper Bootcamp!

Craft Your Travel Story - coming soon!

In this bootcamp, I will be sharing very practical + actionable tips, intentional systems and methods to help you document the details your travel experiences, take photos that accurately tell your stories, and gather ephemera as your "hard evidence." This bootcamp will prepare you a lot when it comes to finally creating your analog travel album.

You can join this bootcamp - did I mention that it's completely free? - by clicking here and signing up on that page or just leaving your name + e-mail below:


Stamps + Stamping Supplies

Stretch Your Stash: 12 no fluff, all-essential and extremely usable items that you need to have in your memory-keeping stash | Crafted by Pam

04. Alpha Stamp Set

Alpha Stamps are just clear stamps containing all the letters of the alphabet and sometimes, numbers and some punctuation marks. They come in a variety of fonts and styles - serif, sans-serif, decorative, etc. - and sizes. If you can only get one kind of stamp set, I highly recommend getting a basic alpha stamp. If you can, get a large one (~6x8") and a small one (~3x4") for even greater variety OR choose one serif font and one sans-serif font.

Just some of the things that you can do with alpha stamps are:

  • stamping out the names of locations, people, pets and other things
  • stamping out the initials on white cardstock and fussy cutting it out to create an embellishment
  • creating a stamped pattern by playing around with the different letters

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05. Numbers Stamp Set

In case your alpha stamp doesn't include numbers, then you can also get an additional stamp set for that. Similar to alpha stamp sets, these may come in a variety of fonts and sizes. A good serif font makes for a really beautiful numbers stamp set so you can start with that!

Some use cases for a numbers stamp set are:

  • creating a numbered list of things such as top ten songs you played on Spotify or your favorite dishes
  • stamping out the dates or creating a countdown such as the 12 days before Christmas
  • stamping out the time or date in a more impactful way

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06. Roller Date Stamp

Another inexpensive but essential item to add in your stash is a Roller Date Stamp. You can get this in practically any office supply store - the one that is used for businesses works just as fine as the ones offered by memory-keeping brands. Honestly, they're practically the same! You can use these roller date stamps for years so getting one is really practical.

Just some cool things you can use this for:

  • marking the date for your photos and stories
  • creating a journaling card by stamping out the dates of the week and writing out what you did for each day
  • creating a pattern by stamping the dates repeatedly on an index card (play around with how much ink you're using as well!)

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07. Black Pigment Ink Pad

If you can only get one ink pad, I highly suggest getting one is jet black. The reason being that black just goes with any color and is visible on top of most colors. It's a super versatile color that I use all the time. (I'm not even kidding, you can watch the process videos that I upload on Youtube channel and see me use it every single one of them!)

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08. A set of 2-3 Ink Pads (in your favorite colors)

To supplement the black ink pad that you have, you can add around two to three more ink pads in the colors that you love. This is not an invitation for you to buy every single ink pad in every single color available! Three additional colors is more than enough for you to create interesting stamp impressions that can really uplift your pocket-page layouts.

Embellishments

Stretch Your Stash: 12 no fluff, all-essential and extremely usable items that you need to have in your memory-keeping stash | Crafted by Pam

09. Washi Strips / Tapes

Washi tape is a decorative tape made with washi paper - a kind of Japanese paper. It comes in a variety of sizes, patterns, and colors. Aside from the different designs, an interesting characteristic of washi tapes is that it is repositionable. The adhesive, while it sticks well, can be removed and repositioned without leaving an ugly mess.

A few ideas to get you started with washi tapes:

  • tape off one edge of your pocket card or index card to add a pop of color or pattern
  • combine multiple washi tapes of different designs on an index card to create a background pattern for your photo
  • tear of a strip of washi tape and use it to adhere your photos (function and "fashion" at the same time!)

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10. Labels

Labels are pre-cut strips of paper that you can use to add captions and journaling on top of your photos, cards, and layouts. They usually come in different shapes - rectangles being the most common one - and they usually have some kind of border. You can make your own labels and print them in bulk so you can have them on-hand and ready to go when your working on your pocket pages. Some memory-keeping stores will have them for sale as well.

Some uses for labels are:

  • adding the date or caption on top of a photo
  • layer it on top of patterned paper and add stamped alphabet on top to create a title card
  • use the labels repeatedly on top of patterned paper to create a "list"

Miscellaneous

Stretch Your Stash: 12 no fluff, all-essential and extremely usable items that you need to have in your memory-keeping stash | Crafted by Pam

11. Digital Assets (printables, brushes, and templates)

Digital assets include printable pocket cards, tags & labels, digital brushes, and photo templates. Using digital assets is a great way to really stretch your stash because (1) it's an unlimited resource, (2) you can switch up the colors if you have a photo-editing software like Adobe Photoshop and (3) you can repurpose the digital assets into a lot of things.

You can do a lot with digital assets! Like:

  • resize the pocket cards to fit the size that you want (change rectangle cards to square cards)
  • combine multiple digital stamps to create a pocket card
  • print the pocket cards on specialty paper to get an extra oomph! in your layouts

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12. Foam Adhesive

Foam adhesive are little dots / squares of thick double-sided adhesive. You can use these under your paper embellishments to "raise" them from the background paper. It's an inexpensive way to add dimension and depth to your layouts.

Here are a couple of quick ideas for you to try:

  • cut circles (or other shapes) from your patterned paper and use foam adhesive for the three-dimensional effect
  • slightly overlap two photos together but use foam adhesive to the photo on top
  • use foam adhesive on your titles to add emphasis and draw the eye towards it

Wow, this was one long blogpost! I'm proud of you for making it this far ;)

I just want to remind you that memory-keeping doesn't have to be expensive. The purpose of memory-keeping is to preserve your memories, not burn a hole in your wallet. Sure, there are so many things that you can purchase to spruce up your layouts - which are all awesome if you have the funds for it! - but there's a LOT that you can accomplish just with the 15 items that I listed right here, especially if your on a budget, busy or just starting out.

Do you have questions about any item in this list? Want to share an item that you love and used a lot in your layouts? Leave a comment below and share your own tips!

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4 travel memory-keeping hacks you can try so you won't forget what happened in your trips

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It’s no secret that I love creating travel albums for my adventures. But you may be wondering (and yes, some people have asked me this before):

How do I remember all the details from my trip?

I’m sure you’ve had this experience in the past: while scrolling through the photos you took, you stop at a lovely shot of yourself against a beautiful wall mural and you can’t, for the life of you, remember where the heck this photo was taken. You know this happened sometime between Day 4 and Day 6, around the time that you went to that silly store with overpriced postcards. This used to happen to me all the time.

Four memory-keeping hacks you can try so you won't forget what happened in your trips | Crafted by Pam

Whenever you go to a new environment, there are SO MANY new experiences, new factors, new names and new sights. It can be very difficult to keep up with managing your itinerary, handling your budget, actually enjoying and experiencing your trip on top of trying to document every single thing.

There are so many details - street names, monument names, mountain names, the chronological order of your entire trip, people you’ve met, stores you loved, food that you ate - that are all begging to be remembered.

It’s overwhelming, I know.

Which is why I’m writing this for you! I’ve been traveling a lot for the past two years and I’ve figured out a system that helps me document most of the details of my trip, both the monumental and the mundane.

How good would it feel to recreate your entire trip down to the food you ate from that obscure pizza joint? Or be able to research more about a statue that you saw in Rome? Or to be able to remember the names of the places you went to when recommending it to a friend?

Here’s my entire system for documenting the details - small and big - of my travel adventures!

Before anything else, I designed a coordinating workbook for this blogpost! I'll explain more about this in detail below but if you want to get started (yay you!), then you can grab your free workbook right here:

Four memory-keeping hacks you can try so you won't forget what happened in your trips | Crafted by Pam

01. Create an itinerary and update it as you go.

Raise your right hand if you’re one of those people who just loves planning and creating itineraries. Hands up? (Mine is definitely up in the air, waving like I just don’t care!) Good for you - you already have one part of this system perfected. Not one of us? Don’t fret, I won’t tell you to start making detailed itineraries BUT I will still tell you to make an itinerary.

An itinerary in the most basic sense is just a plan of your journey or route. It doesn’t have to be a fancy ten-column spreadsheet or a color-coded planner. All you need is a chronological list of where you’re going for each day of your trip.

Print out a copy of your itinerary and bring it with you wherever you go. When you make changes to your schedule, go ahead and scribble those down on your printed itinerary. At the end of your trip, you’ll have a pretty good overview of what you *actually* did the entire time!

02. Take photos of signage and informational posters.

This one is a simple-but-also-genius tip. Since you’re already lugging around a smartphone and/or a camera and you’re probably also taking five hundred photos of everything, make it a point to take a photo of a signage / information poster every time.

This way, when you look through your camera roll, you’ll know where each photos are taken from. Here's how this would look like:

Four memory-keeping hacks you can try so you won't forget what happened in your trips | Crafted by Pam

Especially when I don't have the luxury of spending hours at a certain place, I can at least take a photo of the information posters and read more about it later. This neat hack helps me remember the names, numbers and specific details about each attraction that catches my eye.


Quick commercial break // This has been in the works for about a year and a half already... I'm launching an e-course on analog travel memory-keeping! I am PASSIONATE about introducing a better way to relive your travel experiences (yes, I am throwin' some slight shade on social media...), a way where you can TANGIBLY  flip through the stories of your past adventures.

This course - Craft Your Travel Story - isn't launching until May 2017 BUT I want to help you get started with travel memory-keeping while you wait excitedly ;) This is why I created this FREE comprehensive five-day e-mail course, The Travel-keeper Bootcamp!

Craft Your Travel Story - coming soon!

In this bootcamp, I will be sharing very practical + actionable tips, intentional systems and methods to help you document the details your travel experiences, take photos that accurately tell your stories, and gather ephemera as your "hard evidence." This bootcamp will prepare you a lot when it comes to finally creating your analog travel album.

You can join this bootcamp - did I mention that it's completely free? - by clicking here and signing up on that page or just leaving your name + e-mail below:


03. Use a daily note app / diary on your smartphone to document the little details.

Think of it as keeping a private Instagram app just for your travels. Snap quick photos (nothing too fancy or styled), add a descriptive caption and finally, add in the geotag. Keep doing this for the entire duration of your trip and you’ll have a stream of stories and small details that are usually forgotten. You can reference the library of stories when you’re creating your travel albums to make it richer - less generic and surface storytelling, more personal.

Here are some apps that you can try out:

  • Collect App (iPhone only)
  • Instagram - create an additional private account

A cautionary note: these micro-blogging updates are meant for your personal use only so don’t take too much time trying to take the perfect shot, write a caption that could win awards or adding a zillion hashtags to it. The purpose of this is for YOU to capture the mundane details and use it when creating your travel albums.

04. Consolidate and summarize everything into Your Travel Log.

The final part of this system is meant to be done after the entire trip. In this phase, you will use the outputs from Part 1, 2 and 3 to fill out this super cool workbook called Your Travel Log.

Four memory-keeping hacks you can try so you won't forget what happened in your trips | Crafted by Pam

Your Travel Log is an organized summary of your entire trip, down to the stories that you want to document and the photos and ephemera that go with it. I designed this workbook to house all the facts and the feelings for your adventures.

This log is meant as a guide as you create your travel album. It will help you remember the chronological order of events, the technical details such as names of people and places, and the little stories that will make your travel album feel more personal and complete.

Your Travel Log consists of five sections:

  • “What Actually Happened” Itinerary
  • Personal Landmarks
  • Daily Check-in
  • By the Numbers
  • Ephemera Index

Let me explain each section a bit:

“What Actually Happened” Itinerary

When traveling, you normally create an itinerary beforehand but often, you end up doing something different due to time constraint, unexpected issues, getting lost, etc. Because of this, you can easily get confused about the chronological order of events.

In this section, you can list down what actually happened so you’ll have a chronological record of your trip! It's so much easier to recollect this information when you just came back from your trip so make sure that you do this as soon as possible OR you can just resurrect the itinerary that you printed and updated in during your trip and transfer it over neatly into this section.

Personal Landmarks

Normally, we remember all the typical touristy landmarks well (and capture it in our itineraries) but we often forget our “personal landmarks.” These are the places that really spoke to you and places where you thought, “Ahhh, I really love this place. This is so me!” This could be a hole-in-the-wall store, a small snack stand or a wall mural that you just adored.

A great way to remember your personal landmarks is to review your camera roll. The signage and infographics that you took photos of should help you recover the details of any place you’ve been to, despite how unusual it is.

Daily Check-in

Check back on your diary app to review the stories that you’ve accumulated throughout your trip. For each day of your trip, pick a couple of stories as your Superstar Story and Not-so-super Story for the day.

This could be something small and super personal or something big that really stood out to you that day. Singling out these stories will help you document your travel album in a very intentional and personal way; sometimes, we fall into the trap of being superficial about what we record (I ate this…, I went there…, I did that…) that we forget the small details, feelings and emotions that make these experiences unique and of big impact to us.

By the Numbers

One thing that I love recording about my travels are the numbers. It can be quite fun tracking down all the different numbers in a trip - steps taken, money spent, distance traveled, temperatures experienced - as it provides a very objective aspect to your documentation. This section includes a list of popular numbers-related prompts that you can fill in for later use in your travel albums.

I usually like to decided beforehand which numbers I’m going to track so that I can make the necessary preparations for it like setting up my smartphone’s step counter. You can also use the blank spaces in this section to make your own prompts!

Ephemera Index

A simple worksheet that gives you a visual overview of all the travel ephemera that you've collected. While your creating your travel albums, you can reference this index to make sure that you include all the ephemera that you have into your layouts.

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It may seem like an overkill but it really isn’t! I made sure that each hack doesn’t quite interfere with actually living in the moment and your experiences. Each hack is integrated into something that you already do while traveling - looking at your itinerary, taking photos, uploading on social media - but the last hack, Your Travel Log, is what takes all of these hacks’ outputs and organizes it into a master document that can be used as reference for your travel album.

For your next adventure, try out at least one of these hacks and see if it helps you improve the stories that you tell about your trip! It certainly did for me ;)

Don’t forget to download Your Travel Log - it’s seriously one of my favorite resources that I’ve made recently.

Four memory-keeping hacks you can try so you won't forget what happened in your trips | Crafted by Pam

What methods do you use to document your travel details?

I'm curious (and eager to learn a thing or two) so comment below and let me know :)

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Day by Day 2017: February “Not Today” Layout (+ walkthrough video)

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Last week, I shared a Day by Day layout of a song that I was really into. This week, I'm sharing the other side of that layout which is also about a song  Since it was an insert for my album, I wanted both sides to share the same theme. In this layout, I filmed a process video on the song "Not Today" by BTS!

In case you’re new here (welcome!), a Day by Day album is a personal project of mine where I document my everyday experiences in a pocket-page album.

Day by Day 2017: February “Not Today” Layout (+ walkthrough video) | Crafted by Pam

This 6x12" layout follows a similar format to the Spring Day layout wherein I took four of my favorite scenes from the music video.

Watch the full walkthrough video:

Day by Day 2017: February "Make Stuff" Layout (+ walkthrough video) | craftedbypam

In this walkthrough, I show you how to:

  • re-purporse 12x12" page protectors for your 9x12" albums,
  • do my one of my favorite stamping techniques and,
  • how to incorporate traditional scrapbooking with your pocket-page layouts.

Close up time!

Day by Day 2017: February “Not Today” Layout (+ walkthrough video) | Crafted by Pam

Day by Day 2017: February “Not Today” Layout (+ walkthrough video) | Crafted by Pam

I really enjoyed working on this insert since it allowed me to explore my creativity a bit more. I've never been too fond of the "traditional" scrapbooking so this is a good compromise ;) If you liked this video, it would be awesome if you could give it a thumbs up, leave a comment (you can request videos!), and subscribe to my channel

Day by Day 2017: February "Make Stuff" Layout (+ walkthrough video) | craftedbypam

Have you tried traditional scrapbooking within a pocket-page album?

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February Favorites 2017

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February's done and over which means it's time to inspect what I have been loving last month in the memory-keeping department! At the end of each month, I will be sharing with you my memory-keeping favorites. This could be the tools that I’m loving, embellishments that I can’t seem to stop using or a technique that I repeated over and over again. And to make things more exciting, I’m also creating a 9×12″ layout of all my life favorites (books, fashion, music, etc.) that I will add into my 2017 Day by Day album.

February Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

My love list for February:

Photo Mosaic technique

February Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

I pretty much overused this technique in both my January and February layouts because it's super easy but it creates such a huge impact on my layout. I love creating a "panoramic" effect by printing my photo in 9x4" and splitting it into three 3x4" photos.

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Becky Higgins' Design E page protector

February Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

I've had these Design E page protectors in my stash for a loooooong time. When I started pocket-page memory-keeping, I bought one of the variety packs* because I wasn't sure which page protector style I wanted. Never really used these until last month! I cut it in half to create a 6x12" insert for my Day by Day album.

In fact, I uploaded a walkthrough video on this insert on my Youtube channel, you can watch it right here.

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Tsukineko Brilliance 'Matte Moonlight White' ink pad

February Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

The Matte Moonlight White ink pad* is one of my favorites! White pens, white markers and white ink pads are most of the time inconsistent / hit and miss for me but this one is definitely a winner. What I love about this ink pad is that it stamps a very opaque impression. One thing to note though: this is a very wet ink pad so you have to be careful not to slide around while stamping.

I love using this to stamp on dark photos and on kraft paper. It's a shame though that this ink pad does not dry well with the paper the comes with the Canon Selphy, most likely due to the protective gloss coating that the Selphy paper has. It stamped will with my other glossy papers though.

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White alphabet stickers

February Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

Another white favorite for the month are these white alphabet stickers; these ones are from Elle's Studio, Studio Calico (similar here from Ali Edwards) and American Crafts. Because I couldn't stamp on my Selphy photos with the white ink pad, I like to use white alphabet stickers instead. As you can see, I used up quite a bit of these (in fact, I recently made an order at Ali Edwards to replenish my stash!) because I use it all the time.

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Sharpie Industrial Pen - Extra Fine Point

February Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

If you've watched any of my walkthrough / process videos, you'll notice that whenever I write my journaling, I *almost* always finish it by underlining every line with a thicker pen. I use the Sharpie Industrial pen* for that because I am obsessed with how jet black the ink is and how consistently it flows on paper. I've had problems in the past where the ink flow stops midway and it annoys me a lot  I've never had that issue with this pen so it's definitely a favorite of mine.

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To be honest, I'm still loving e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g that I shared in last month's faves so check that out as well!


My February faves layout:

February Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

Still going strong with the square pockets! I think I might use this configuration for all of my faves, we'll see ;)

February Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

If you want to scraplift this layout, I made the sketch available for free download in my Layout Sketch Library! Click the image below (or right here) and pop in your e-mail address to get access. I'm working on building this library with lots of sketches so watch this space.

February Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

Spill it: what were your memory-keeping faves last month?

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Day by Day 2017: February “Spring Day” Layout (+ walkthrough video)

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Have you ever listened to a song and was just inspired to create a layout out of it? This happened to me when I listened to "Spring Day" by BTS (they're a Korean boy group) - so freakin' good! I listen to this song at least four/five times a day ever since they released it so I thought it deserved a special place in my Day by Day album.

In case you’re new here (welcome!), a Day by Day album is a personal project of mine where I document my everyday experiences in a pocket-page album.

Day by Day 2017: February “Spring Day” Layout (+ walkthrough video) | Crafted by Pam

I created a 6x12" insert for my 9x12" album and created a semi-traditional type of layout using the screencaps from the music video.

Watch me create the layout from scratch in this walkthrough video:

Day by Day 2017: February "Make Stuff" Layout (+ walkthrough video) | craftedbypam

In this walkthrough, I show you how to:

  • re-purporse 12x12" page protectors for your 9x12" albums,
  • do my one of my favorite stamping techniques and,
  • how to incorporate traditional scrapbooking with your pocket-page layouts.

Here's a closer look at the layout:

Day by Day 2017: February “Spring Day” Layout (+ walkthrough video) | Crafted by Pam

Day by Day 2017: February “Spring Day” Layout (+ walkthrough video) | Crafted by Pam

To be honest, this layout is one of my favorites so far. It all came naturally to me; once I saw the music video for Spring Day, the idea for the layout came right into my mind! I love inspired memory-keeping ;) If you enjoyed this video, it would be awesome if you could give it a thumbs up, leave a comment (you can request videos!), and subscribe to my channel.

Day by Day 2017: February "Make Stuff" Layout (+ walkthrough video) | craftedbypam

When was the last time something inspired you to do memory-keeping? I'd love to hear your story!

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FAQ #01: Where do I get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies?

memory-keeping-supplies-blog.jpg

Ever since I've started sharing my pocket-page layouts online, one of the most frequently asked questions was:

Where do you get all your pocket-page memory-keeping supplies?

This is especially an issue for my readers who are based in the Philippines since pocket-page memory-keeping supplies are not as accessible as they are in the US. I've shopped quite a bit (read: a lot) for memory-keeping supplies both at brick-and-mortar stores and online (local and international) so lucky for you, I do have a good idea on the best places to shop for pocket-page supplies!

FAQ #01: Where do I get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies? | Crafted by Pam

In this blogpost, I will recommend the best places - from personal experience - to shop for basic pocket-page supplies, kit subscriptions for different memory-keeping styles, and digital pocket-page resources. Whether you're based here in the Philippines or elsewhere, you'll find this masterlist quite helpful. Let's just hope that you don't burn a hole in your wallet! ;)

Shall we go shopping?

If you don't have the time to sit down and read through a full blogpost, you can grab the free Pocket Page Supplies Shopping Guide that I put together for you. It's practically a rolodex of where to get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies both online/offline and locally/internationally!

FAQ #01: Where do I get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies? | Crafted by Pam

Just a quick disclaimer: I am writing this from the perspective and experience of someone who is based in Asia, specifically Philippines, and has bought memory-keeping materials both locally and internationally. I understand that if, for example, you are based in the US, you have options such as Michael's and Joann's so this blogpost might seem lacking for you. If you know of a good place in your location to get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies, please do write in the comments section so that anyone reading this blogpost will know about it :)

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Basic Supplies for Pocket-Page Memory-keeping

If you're new to pocket-page memory-keeping and have no idea what the basic + essential supplies are, I wrote an in-depth blogpost on the tools and materials that you really need to get started. I'm talking essential so don't worry about having to buy every.single.thing.

Pocket-Page Albums + Page Protectors

FAQ #01: Where do I get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies? | Crafted by Pam

If you don't mind the shipping or if you're based in the US:

  • Amazon*, Becky Higgins (online) - for the Becky Higgins 'Project Life' brand and We R Memory Keepers brand (my favorite is their faux leather line!)
  • Studio Calico - they have a lot of exclusively designed albums as well as the 9x12" size format (this is where I get all my 9x12" Day by Day albums)
  • Scrapbook.com - basically the memory-keeping equivalent of a super store! They have a lot of albums from different lines and you can often find good coupon codes or deals for your purchase.

If you're based in the Philippines:

  • Fully BookedGourdo's - some branches sometimes have the old 12x12" albums of the Becky Higgins brand. Emphasis on "some." Make sure that you call the branch you're planning to visit to inquire about their stock. I've had luck finding pocket-page albums at the Greenbelt 5 Fully Booked branch and the Podium Gourdo's branch.
  • Lasting Impression (San Juan, Manila / online) - it's a bit hard to find this store since it's actually an apartment converted into a store (make sure to follow the instructions on their Facebook page!) but it's definitely worth it. They have a lot of memory-keeping items! They have mostly older collections but every now and then, they'll have in stock the new ones so just keep searching in there.
  • Bee Happy Crafts (online) - I've only recently heard of this online shop so I haven't actually tried shopping here but they do have a lot of brands and album formats to choose from so it's worth a shot ;) I'll update this once I've made a purchase from them!

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Pocket Cards

FAQ #01: Where do I get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies? | Crafted by Pam

There are a LOT of places where you can purchase pocket page cards. For this list, I'm going to focus on the ones I've tried and the ones that I think are really interesting. I won't be including kit subscriptions here because I have a separate section for that below!

If you don't mind the shipping or if you're based in the US:

  • Amazon*, Becky Higgins (online) - for Project Life brand core kits. I've only purchased the Midnight Edition* from Amazon and I have used it a LOT - almost every layout really. I really believe that you only need one of these to get started because there's around 600+ cards in each kit!
  • Ali Edwards - Ali periodically releases new sets of pocket cards revolving around a certain theme such as "celebration" and "gratitude." Each set is a good mix of 3x4" and 4x6" double-sided cards and the quality is really good!

If you're based in the Philippines:

  • Fully BookedGourdo's - Same case as the albums, they sometimes have the Project Life core kits in stock (super old editions) but I suggest that you call them first to inquire.
  • Lasting Impression (San Juan, Manila / online) - They definitely have a lot of pocket cards from different brands. They also have the Project Life core kits available in several editions and they're mostly recent as well.
  • Life Documented Manila - I love shopping from this store because they sell project Life kit shares. Basically, they break down a Project Life core kit into smaller kit shares since each core kit has a lot of duplicated design. This way, you can get the cards from the core kit without being stuck with 600+ cards that are similar to each other. They also have their own sets of original cards.

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Writing + Office Supplies

FAQ #01: Where do I get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies? | Crafted by Pam

If you don't mind the shipping or if you're based in the US:

  • Amazon (online) - This place pretty much has everything so you can probably find whatever writing tool or office supplies you need. The ones I've bought recently from Amazon are the Fiskars 12" Portable Rotary Trimmer* (+ replacement blades*).
  • Studio Calico - Every now and then, Studio Calico stocks up on pens and tools that are popular in the memory-keeping world such as the Tiny Attacher, WRMK Fuse Tool, Sakura Micron pen, brush pens and adhesives. They usually stock up on tools and supplies that are related to the newest trend in memory-keeping or to one of the classes/workshops that they're holding.
  • JetPens - I have never ordered from JetPens (primarily because most of the pens I normally use are available locally) but I have heard and read really good things about this site. They started out by selling Japanese brand pens such as Uni, Sakura and Kuretake but I think they've branched out to other notable pen brands as well . This is basically a pen lover's paradise. They have everything from fountain pens to highlighters and ink refills.
  • Scrapbook.com

If you're based in the Philippines:

  • National Bookstore - NBS has really stepped up their game in the pen department so I suggest that you visit a branch and check out what they have to offer. Last I checked (SM North branch), they had a wide range of Japanese brand-name pens / brush pens / other writing tools such as ZIG Kuretake, Marvy Uchida, etc. as well as the usual pen brands such as Sharpie, Dong A, and Pilot. I use the Sharpie Industrial Pen* for medium-thick lines and a Dong A Fine Tech RT 0.3* pen for my journaling. I also like to use Sharpies in varying thickness!
  • MUJI - I love the pens from MUJI because they write so well! The ink is so consistent for me. Simple but very effective.
  • Hey Kessy (UP Town Center / online) - You can purchases ZIG Kuretake brush pens here as well as advanced tools such as the Silhouette Cameo.
  • Common Room (Katipunan, Quezon City) - This is a local collective store which features works from local artisans but they also carry good brands for pens such as ZIG Kuretake and other calligraphy pens.
  • Scribe Writing Essentials - This store is heavenly, I tell you. They have a huge selection of calligraphy pens, brush pens, and just writing tools in general. They carry really good brands such as Pilot, Sakura, Tsukineko, Tombow and ZIG Kuretake. Be prepared to splurge when you visit this store!

FAQ #01: Where do I get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies? | Crafted by Pam

Going extra: Tools and Embellishments

FAQ #01: Where do I get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies? | Crafted by Pam

Now that you have your essentials, we can start talking about going the extra mile with tools and embellishments! This part is REALLY fun but it can end up being extremely overwhelming since there are so many tools and so many embellishments to choose from. Honestly, this part was really hard for me to write because there's just too many stores out there so I'm going to recommend the stores that I've purchased from and the ones that I really, really love.

If you don't mind the shipping or if you're based in the US:

  • Studio Calico - Stock-wise, Studio Calico doesn't really have much BUT what I can assure you is that they will have the trendiest and coolest embellishments in store. They also create a lot of exclusive stamp sets, pocket cards, and other embellishments such as stickers. I pretty much buy most of my embellishments here, to be honest.
  • Scrapbook.com
  • Simon Says Stamp - This site is well-known for their stamp sets as well as stamping-related supplies such as ink pads and acrylic blocks. They also have other memory-keeping supplies in stock.
  • Kelly Purkey - Kelly's stamp sets are one of my favorites! Her stamp sets are always so versatile and I find myself using it over and over again. She also has her own line of ink pads and pocket cards. Well worth checking out!
  • Ali Edwards - If you're looking for beautiful and extremely functional embellishments, Ali is your go-to. She always has embellishments that are versatile and not overly trendy - which makes it really usable in any kind of memory-keeping project. I am especially in love with the alphabet stickers/chipboard/thickers that she has on her shop (I recently stock up!).

If you're based in the Philippines:

  • Lasting Impression - So. many. embellishments. If you go to this store, you'll be greeted with display upon display of embellishments - from older collections to newer ones. I'm sure you'll find something that you like here ;)
  • Bee Happy Crafts - They have a really good line-up of stamp sets, embellishments and memory-keeping supplies. If you can't get any from the US-based stores above, you might be able to find it in here if you're lucky. They stock brands like Kelly Purkey, Project Life, Amy Tangerine, etc. so you're in good hands. I have not tried to order from them but I've read good reviews and I'm planning to place an order soon! I'll update this when I have :)
  • Hey Kessy (UP Town Center / online), Common Room (Katipunan, Quezon City) - These two shops are really great places to find washi tapes, stickers and other fun embellishments. They're not exactly memory-keeping stores but you can find cool + unique gems in here.
  • Life Documented Manila - Not a lot of embellishments for sale but if you're looking for embellishments from Studio Calico kits, they have a few on their site. They also have exclusive sets of pocket cards which are really good!

Digital (printable cards, tags, stamp brushes, etc.):

  • In A Creative Bubble - If you're a fan of well-designed pocket cards and stamps, IACB Shoppe is for you. Geralyn (the shop owner) designs really amazing pocket cards, stamps, printable tags and digital templates. Her stamps are one of my personal favorites because the typography and the design is just on point all the time!
  • Ali Edwards - Another cult favorite is of course, Ali's digital products. She has a HUGE archive of digital pocket cards, brushes, and templates. Like her physical products, each digital product is made with intention, design and function in mind. Her handwritten digital brushes are so, so beautiful!

Quick commercial break // This has been in the works for about a year and a half already... I'm launching an e-course on analog travel memory-keeping! I am PASSIONATE about introducing a better way to relive your travel experiences (yes, I am throwin' some slight shade on social media...), a way where you can TANGIBLY  flip through the stories of your past adventures.

This course - Craft Your Travel Story - isn't launching until May 2017 BUT I want to help you get started with travel memory-keeping while you wait excitedly ;) This is why I created this FREE comprehensive five-day e-mail course, The Travel-keeper Bootcamp!

Craft Your Travel Story - coming soon!

In this bootcamp, I will be sharing very practical + actionable tips, intentional systems and methods to help you document the details your travel experiences, take photos that accurately tell your stories, and gather ephemera as your "hard evidence." This bootcamp will prepare you a lot when it comes to finally creating your analog travel album.

You can join this bootcamp - did I mention that it's completely free? - by clicking here and signing up on that page or just leaving your name + e-mail below:


Taking it further: Kit Subscriptions

Last but not the least, let's talk about kit subscriptions! I'm sure you're familiar with the idea of a subscription - basically paying a monthly fee and getting a package every month - but if you haven't tried a memory-keeping subscription service, then you can find my recommendations below!

Studio Calico

One of the more popular subscription services for pocket-page memory-keeping is Studio Calico's Documenter Kit. It's different every month but you basically get the following in each box:

  • 30 pocket cards (mix of 3x4" and 4x6"),
  • a small stamp set,
  • alpha sticker set and,
  • an assortment of embellishments.

Here's a look some of the past kits:

FAQ #01: Where do I get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies? | Crafted by Pam

From my personal experience, Studio Calico kits are really good. The pocket cards are usually themed (with a good mix of statement cards, journal cards and prompt cards) and well-designed. They have a good weight to them so they're pretty sturdy as well. I love that they provide you with a stamp set and an alphabet sticker set each month so you can slowly build up your stash. Something that you need to know though is that Studio Calico kits tend to be on the trendier side of things which can be good but challenging at the same time. Once the month / season / trend has passed, you'll need to a be a bit more creative in order to use up the remaining kit components.

Aside from the Documenter Kit, Studio Calico also has a Stamp Subscription. Each month, you'll get:

  • 6x8" stamp,
  • idea booklet,
  • digital version of the stamp and,
  • access to a digital classroom,

Here's a look at the past few stamp sets:

FAQ #01: Where do I get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies? | Crafted by Pam

I haven't really tried this subscription (since it's pretty new to Studio Calico as well) but I can see why this would be interesting. Once I've tried this subscription, I'll let you know what I think about it!

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Ali Edwards

A relatively new kit subscription service is Ali's Story Kits. Each month, Ali releases a new memory-keeping kit and stamp set which both revolve around a theme. Each Story Kit will include:

  • 10 pocket cards (mix of 3x4" and 4x6"),
  • acrylic word of the month's theme,
  • a sticker set and/or a chipboard set and,
  • an assortment of embellishments.

Here's a look at the last few themes:

FAQ #01: Where do I get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies? | Crafted by Pam

You can also subscribe to the Story Stamp to get 4x6" stamp:

FAQ #01: Where do I get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies? | Crafted by Pam

A unique "feature" of Story Kit is that each month, a subscription to the Story Kit or Story Stamp will give you access to the Story Subscription classroom. The classroom includes additional educational content (process videos, PDFs, etc.) that goes along with the month's theme. Oh, one more thing, if you subscribe to both the Story Kit and the Story Stamp, you'll get the digital (printable) version of those two kits for free!

I love the Story Kits because they are designed to be story-focused and versatile. You might have noticed from my walkthrough videos that I use a lot of the Story Stamps all the time. Compared to the Studio Calico kits, the Story Kit is a lot less trendy and it leans more on the "basic" and essential side of design. The Story Kit is really good for building your stash since the kit components can be used all-year round.

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Other subscription kits:

These are some subscription services that I haven't tried yet but seemed interesting + had good reviews in the memory-keeping scene. You might want to check them out!

  • Freckled Fawn Embellishment Kit - I love the idea of having an all-embellishment kit! When you're subscribed to other kits or when you've already bought a Project Life Core kit, sometimes all you really need are new embellishments to adorn your pocket page layouts with.
  • Kelly Purkey's Monthly Kit - This kit will include a stamp set, an alphabet sticker, a set of pocket cards and some embellishments. This is a much smaller kit than the Story Kit and Documenter Kit so I think this is perfect for those who already has a bit of memory-keeping stash.

There you have it! I hope this helped you in any way (especially if you're based in the Philippines like me!) to begin your pocket-page memory-keeping journey. It's the best, really!

Don't forget to grab your Pocket Page Supplies Shopping Guide; I organized this in a way that makes it easier for you to find the best store for the memory-keeping supplies that you are looking for.

FAQ #01: Where do I get pocket-page memory-keeping supplies? | Crafted by Pam

Have you tried a kit subscription service? Which one is your favorite and why?

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Day by Day 2017: February "Make Stuff" Layout (+ walkthrough video)

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The first week of February can be summed up in two words: make stuff. I've been doing a lot of making these days - Day by Day layouts, travel album layouts, memory-keeping blogposts and Youtube videos. It's difficult finding time to do all of it to be honest BUT I definitely feel happier now that I'm creating on a more consistent basis.

I wanted to document this - both the stressful and the exciting parts - so I dedicated the first Day by Day layout for February for this!

In case you’re new here (welcome!), a Day by Day album is a personal project of mine where I document my everyday experiences in a pocket-page album.

Day by Day 2017: February "Make Stuff" Layout (+ walkthrough video) | Crafted by Pam

If you want to learn how I made the layout above then,

check out this walkthrough video!

Day by Day 2017: February "Make Stuff" Layout (+ walkthrough video) | craftedbypam

In this walkthrough, I show you how to:

  • create a full 9x12" layout with just two photos,
  • use wood veneer as bullet points for journaling, and
  • create a title card with alpha stamps.

A closer look at the layout:

Day by Day 2017: February "Make Stuff" Layout (+ walkthrough video) | Crafted by Pam

Day by Day 2017: February "Make Stuff" Layout (+ walkthrough video) | Crafted by Pam

 

I really loved putting together this layout because it challenged me to work with just two photos! If you enjoyed this video, it would be awesome if you could give it a thumbs up, leave a comment (ask me anything!), and subscribe to my channel.

Day by Day 2017: February "Make Stuff" Layout (+ walkthrough video) | craftedbypam

What part are you struggling the most with making pocket-page layouts? Spill it all in the comments below!

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Day by Day 2017: January Layouts (flipthrough video!)

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I can't believe it. I'm actually done with my January Day by Day layouts before February ended?!?! I guess this is the magic that comes with having a dedicated space for memory-keeping! (I used to do my layouts on the floor at random spots in our house...)

In case you’re new here (welcome!), a Day by Day album is a personal project of mine where I document my everyday experiences in a pocket-page album.

If you're not done documenting your January layouts, don't fret! This blogpost + video might just be that little nudge that you need to finish the month.

Day by Day 2017: January Layouts (flipthrough video!) | craftedbypam

Honestly, documenting January 2017 in my Day by Day album was pretty tricky since I spent the first 23 days in the United States which meant that those days are going to be documented as well in a separate travel album. (You know your girl loves to make travel albums!) I had to decide between duplicating the layouts on both albums OR omitting it in my Day by Day album and including it only in my US travel album.

Find out what I ended up doing in my January Layouts flipthrough video!

Day by Day 2017: January Layouts (flipthrough video!) | craftedbypam

This flipthrough may be particularly interesting to you if you are:

  • struggling to document travel experiences in your everyday albums when you're also making a separate travel album,
  • not sure how to document days/weeks where "nothing exciting" is happening,
  • looking for a way to document a concert/play/show that you recently went to.

Some of my favorite layouts from the month

Day by Day 2017: January Layouts (flipthrough video!) | craftedbypam

Day by Day 2017: January Layouts (flipthrough video!) | craftedbypam

Day by Day 2017: January Layouts (flipthrough video!) | craftedbypam

Day by Day 2017: January Layouts (flipthrough video!) | craftedbypam

I have grand plans of doing this every single month to encourage myself to consistently work on my Day by Day album. So be on the lookout for that ;)

If you had fun watching this video, it would mean so much to me if you give it a thumbs up, leave a comment (ask me all your burning questions!), and subscribe to my channel.

Day by Day 2017: January Layouts (flipthrough video!) | craftedbypam

What was your favorite story from January? I'd love to know more about it so leave a comment below ;)

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January Favorites 2017

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A new year means a new blog series... inspired by my favorite YouTube content creators, I've decided to put my own crafty spin on the YouTube-staple Monthly Favorites! At the end of each month, I will be sharing with you my memory-keeping favorites. This could be the tools that I'm loving, embellishments that I can't seem to stop using or a technique that I repeated over and over again. And to make things more exciting, I'm also creating a 9x12" layout of all my life favorites (books, fashion, music, etc.) that I will add into my 2017 Day by Day album.

January Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

Here's what I loved last January:

January Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

Canon Selphy CP1200

I am loving the Canon Selphy CP1200* these days! The portability + cost efficiency is really what drove me to buy it and it definitely delivered. I still haven't used it enough to do a full review BUT I will copy here the "first impressions" post that I did on The Crafting Corner Facebook group (if you're not in there yet, join here!):

January Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

I will be using the Selphy for most of the photos in my albums and my old Pixma for larger prints and matte photos. Incorporating the Selphy made it so much easier for me to work on my layouts since I can print straight from my phone and I don't have to trim down photo paper to 4x6". And because it's compact, I can bring it with me when I travel!

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January Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

Instax photos (+ Instax Share SP-1)

Your girl loves going crazy with Instax photos and this month is no different. If I'm being honest here, every month will probably include the Instax Share SP-1* in the favorites list, ha! It's been more than a year and I'm still using Instax photos heavily on my layouts. It just adds a lot of character to my layouts with the least amount of effort. This little machine is definitely one of my best memory-keeping investments!

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January Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

'Laina' Alphabet Stamp by Studio Calico

In a recent Studio Calico sale, I finally got this big alphabet stamp that I've been eyeing for a while now. Laina is a big + thin alphabet stamp and it works great for titles and for adding an accent to your layouts. Each letter is around an inch high so it works really well for full pocket titles.

You've seen me use this in my Finding Your Personal Memory-keeping Style blogpost:

Finding Your Personal Memory-keeping Style | Crafted by Pam

What I normally do is use a dark ink (something like the Versafine Onyx Black pigment ink*) first and then go over it again with a lighter and more colorful ink, usually something from the Studio Calico Color Theory line. It creates a really cool shadow / outline effect!

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January Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

Fiskars 12" Portable Rotary Trimmer

For the last 1.5 years (or more, I believe), I've been using the EK Tools mini paper trimmer* and I was perfectly fine with it especially because it's portable. As lovely as that mini trimmer was, I needed something that can cut larger paper. When I visited the States last month, I finally got myself the Fiskars 12" portable rotary trimmer* and I am extremely pleased with it!

First of all, it's a 12" trimmer so I can finally trim my 12x12" patterned paper properly. I also like the grip stands at the bottom because it holds the trimmer in place while I'm cutting (no more slipping incidents for me!). Another cool feature is the "smudge guard" that holds the paper/photo while your trimming - this helps a lot in making sure that I'm cutting the photo straight and that I'm not accidentally moving it slightly while holding it down.

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January Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

IKEA Raskog

In my memory-keeping plans for 2017 blogpost, I told you how I'm planning to use the IKEA Raskog utility cart to store all of my memory-keeping tools + supplies. I finally assembled the cart and I've started to organize all of my supplies in it.

January Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

In general, the top portion has all of my essentials or the tools that I use for every layout (pens, glue runner, stamps, etc.), the second tier holds all of my pocket cards, alphabet thickers/stickers, washi tapes and some adhesive embellishments. I used the IKEA Antonius basket insert to organize all of it - it fits perfectly inside the Raskog with a bit of space at the back to tuck in alphabet sheets ;) The lowest tier will hold the lesser used tools such as watercolor, ink daubers, etc. and the smaller, loose embellishments such as wood veneer and sequins. I purchased these Artbins from The Container Store (similar here*) to organize all of the loose embellishments.


And now, my January faves layout:

January Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

SUPPLES USED: Studio Calico 9x12" page protector / Tsukineko VersaFine dry pigment ink - onyx black* / Tim Holtz Tiny Attacher* / Studio Calico Color Theory ink pad - something blue / Studio Calico white alpha stickers (similar here) / Tsukineko StazOn ink pad - jet black* / vellum paper* / Canon Selphy CP1200* / all pocket cards are from old Studio Calico kits that are no longer available

I had a lot of fun creating this layout! I think it was my first time using this page protector configuration. Who knew square pockets would be so much fun?

January Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

If you liked this layout and want to create something similar for yourself, I'm making the sketch available for your reference! A sketch is an easy way to "scraplift" a layout by retaining the structural elements (placement, composition, etc.) but still making it your own.

January Favorites 2017 | Crafted by Pam

How about you? What were your memory-keeping faves for January?

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Day by Day 2017: Cover Page (+ an announcement!)

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As soon as I came back from a six-week vacation in the United States, I sat myself down and started creating the cover page for my Day by Day 2017 album. I was so excited about this since I'm doing things a tiny bit different this year (you can read my memory-keeping plans blogpost for the full deets).

In case you're new here (welcome!), a Day by Day album is a personal project of mine where I document my everyday experiences in a pocket-page album.

Day by Day 2017: Cover Page | Crafted by Pam

I've created Day by Day albums since 2014 and I've always shared bits and pieces of it here in the blog and on Instagram. Every time, I get handful of questions about how I created my layouts, where I got the supplies I used and other questions about memory-keeping in general.

Don't worry, I got you.

This year, I will be sharing my memory-keeping process and my memory-keeping layouts with a lot more intention and consistency. I will walk you through the creation process of my Day by Day layouts; I will explain in detail how a story goes from being in-the-mind to inside-the-album; I will show you the tools that I frequently use and the resources that I utilize all the time.

I have so much valuable memory-keeping information that I want to share to you! And I've thought of the best way to do that ;)

Let's make this happen.

With crazy excitement, I am happy to announce that...

I'm starting a Youtube channel on memory-keeping!

Most of you will know that I've always filmed process / walkthrough videos and shared it with you guys BUT for 2017, I am consciously incorporating Youtube videos into my content calendar. With that being said, what better video to start off with than this?

Stendig-inspired Cover Page for Day by Day 2017

 

Here's what the layout looks like in full:

Day by Day 2017: Cover Page | Crafted by Pam

This video may come in late for some since it's already February and most of you might have already made your cover pages (yay you!) but in case you wanted to create something similar, I am making the Stendig Calendar-inspired pocket cards that I used in this layout available for you to download :)

Day by Day 2017: Cover Page | Crafted by Pam

A closer look at the layout:

Day by Day 2017: Cover Page | Crafted by Pam

If you enjoyed this video, it would *really* mean a lot to me if you give it a thumbs up, leave a comment (ask me anything!), and subscribe to my channel.


I am so excited for this new chapter of Crafted by Pam. I hope you are too! Don't forget to grab you free pocket cards ;)

Day by Day 2017: Cover Page | Crafted by Pam

What kind of memory-keeping videos would you like to see from my new channel? Give this girl some ideas in the comments below!

Finding Your Personal Memory-keeping Style

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When I started my first pocket-page album more than three years ago, I had no clear vision or style. I just wanted to do memory-keeping because I wanted all my fleeting memories documented in paper. So, I got all the materials and just started working on layouts. Printed some photos, picked up some paper and started putting things together. And it was magical.

But over the years (actually, over the first few months), I noticed that my memory-keeping style has been changing a lot.

I started out being completely excited (and hella overwhelmed) about having all the embellishments and trying all the techniques so I used as much as I can in a single layout. But somewhere along the line, it started to look a bit cleaner and I noticed that I wanted the photos or the journaling or the ephemera to take the spotlight.

Finding Your Personal Memory-keeping Style | Crafted by Pam

At that point, I knew that I was inching closer and closer to my own personal memory-keeping style. And you know what?

I want to help you find yours.

My first few layouts were filled to the brim with embellishments with teeny-tiny square photos. Now, my layouts have more white space and tend to be on the minimalist side.

Finding Your Personal Memory-keeping Style | Crafted by Pam

Like me, not everyone knows their own personal memory-keeping style when they’re starting out and that’s okay. It took me months, even years, to discover a style that I can consistently create and love looking back at.

Case in point: I started making my Japan 2014 travel album around December 2014 but somehow, I didn’t finish that album then and I picked it up again around the end of 2015 / beginning of 2016 and I literally couldn’t find it in me to create layouts similar to the way I did before so I re-did the entire album.

Finding Your Personal Memory-keeping Style | Crafted by Pam

To be honest, it was a pain to re-do the album. All the wasted photos, wasted materials, wasted effort and wasted time was enough for me to realize that while letting your memory-keeping style come naturally to you is okay, it’s much better to try and proactively identify it from the get go.

As I said, it took me over a year to discover my own style. I didn’t want you to spend over a year just looking for your own memory-keeping style so I created a fun Memory-keeping Style Audit Quiz just for you! Let me help you find your own style in 10 quick minutes ;)

Finding Your Personal Memory-keeping Style | Crafted by Pam

Why you need to discover your memory-keeping style

One of the biggest pros in knowing your memory-keeping style is being consistent throughout all your albums. Consistency in memory-keeping isn’t about doing things in the same way and same format year after year. Consistency means that throughout all your albums, there are key elements that tie things together that despite the uniqueness of each album (or each layout), you know that it all belongs into one group - yours.

Another immediate effect of knowing your own memory-keeping style is knowing what you need to achieve that style. When I started out, I bought so many different things - embellishment, tools, and all the things - and subscribed to many different kit clubs. Each month, I would spend money on memory-keeping tools and materials but guess what, I didn’t even get to use half of it. With a memory-keeping style, you start to know what will work and what wouldn’t so you don’t have to buy things that won’t fit. Less money spent, less hoarding, less waste.

Last but definitely not the least, having your own memory-keeping style enables you create layouts quickly and efficiently. I probably sound like a broken record here but knowing what styles you prefer enables you to create layouts quickly and efficiently. It ties back to the concept of having a memory-keeping process or routine. If you prefer having only full-pocket photos, you can go ahead and print your photos in bulk that way.


Quick commercial break // This has been in the works for about a year and a half already... I'm launching an e-course on analog travel memory-keeping! I am PASSIONATE about introducing a better way to relive your travel experiences (yes, I am throwin' some slight shade on social media...), a way where you can TANGIBLY  flip through the stories of your past adventures.

This course - Craft Your Travel Story - isn't launching until May 2017 BUT I want to help you get started with travel memory-keeping while you wait excitedly ;) This is why I created this FREE comprehensive five-day e-mail course, The Travel-keeper Bootcamp!

Craft Your Travel Story - coming soon!

In this bootcamp, I will be sharing very practical + actionable tips, intentional systems and methods to help you document the details your travel experiences, take photos that accurately tell your stories, and gather ephemera as your "hard evidence." This bootcamp will prepare you a lot when it comes to finally creating your analog travel album.

You can join this bootcamp - did I mention that it's completely free? - by clicking here and signing up on that page or just leaving your name + e-mail below:


Three methods that you can try now to discover your memory-keeping style

Identify your style by curating a mood board

You’ve probably heard about mood boards, seen one or even made one yourself. A mood board is, at it’s core, a compilation of curated images and words that altogether represent a certain theme, style or feel. You might be wondering: “but how do I create a mood board if I don’t know my +memory-keeping style?”

My answer to you is to let your habits, tendencies and subconscious take over.

The way I recommend that you do this is to create a Pinterest board and spend about five minutes every day for a week just pinning photos that you are drawn to. By curating photos for your moodboard, you’ll slowly be able to identify themes that you’re most drawn into or colors that stand out to your eyes.

Finding Your Personal Memory-keeping Style | Crafted by Pam

Once you have your mood board, use the elements that you see into your layouts. Experiment with the colors, the patterns, the fonts and the vibe that you see in your mood board.

I created the layout below from the mood board above. I was inspired by the typography in the mood board so I created the "Shirohige" card with the Laina stamp set from Studio Calico. The two strips that I stuck onto the 4x6" photo was also inspired by the upper left magazine layout in the mood board. The colors are also a variation from what I included in the moodboard.

Finding Your Personal Memory-keeping Style | Crafted by Pam

Action for you: Create a new board on Pinterest and pin at least 15-20 images of themes, colors, elements and layouts that draw you in. Then, create a layout that uses elements from the moodboard.

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Find your style by replicating memory-keepers’ layouts

Austin Kleon said this in his book Steal Like An Artist* (read it!)

“In the beginning, learn by pretending to be your heroes.”

I couldn’t agree more. We all need to start somewhere and there’s no better place to begin than in your heroes’ works. Who are the memory-keepers that you follow on Instagram? Whose blogs do you check out often? Whose layouts are you constantly pinning? Embrace their influence.

I started out by scraplifting (basically copying) the layouts from creative galleries such as Studio Calico. My earlier layouts were heavily inspired by other memory-keepers. I switched things up a bit here and there and eventually, my style started to evolve into what it is now. The point is that we all start from somewhere.

This is a layout from Ali Edwards that I found while browsing her blog. I really liked how it looked so I tried to do my version of it below. I replicated the key elements (strip of pattern paper + white number stickers) and added my own spin to it by using photos.

Finding Your Personal Memory-keeping Style | Crafted by Pam

Learn from their layouts and try replicating it for practice. Do this again and again and throughout the process, you’ll get a feel for what’s natural to you. After imitating, you can start to emulate and make it your own. Challenging yourself in new ways is a great way to discover your own style.

Action for you: Pick one layout from one of your favorite memory-keepers are replicate that layout.

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Use sketches to spark inspiration

One of my favorite ways to explore and improve my style is to use sketches as jumping off points. Similar to an artist’s draft, a sketch is the bare bones of a layout. A skeletal version of the layout that allows the memory-keeper to see how the elements are placed and positioned within the blank canvas.

When I was new to the memory-keeping scene, I actively sought out inspiration and guidelines on how to build my first few layouts. I was so scared of gluing my very precious patterned paper and embellishments because I wasn’t sure if it’ll turn out okay. I know that there’s merit to letting go and allowing myself to explore my own styles BUT I wanted to make the most out of the limited supplies that I had. I wanted a “formula” that will allow me to enjoy the output of this new hobby that I was trying out.

For example, the I created the sketch below and attempted to use it as a guideline for my layout:

Finding Your Personal Memory-keeping Style | Crafted by Pam

Finding Your Personal Memory-keeping Style | Crafted by Pam

Rather than seeing the finished product – other memory-keeper’s layout – sketches allow me to see the thought process behind the product. By following a sketch, I knew that the layouts I was making were fundamentally good and balanced. Like magic!

You can find sketches in memory-keeping blogs such as Studio Calico’s Sunday Sketch blogposts or you can use the sketch that I showed in this blogpost as a starting point.

Action for you: Find a sketch that you like and create a layout using that sketch as a guideline.


These three methods helped me discover my own style but I can’t stress this enough: you do NOT have to stress about this. Don’t use this as an excuse to stop creating.

After all, continuous creation is necessary for discovering your memory-keeping style.

Use your hands.

Get messy.

You might’ve noticed that all the action steps that I laid out for you involves creating a layout ;) The last thing that I want you be is paralyzed and overwhelmed so take baby steps and let your style evolve from within you. And that can only happen when you’re actually making things.

So, in a nutshell, here’s what you need to do: take the Memory-keeping Style Audit Quiz below and use the results as a jumping off point. Then, use any (or all) of the three methods to further improve and uncover your own memory-keeping flavor. Finding Your Personal Memory-keeping Style | Crafted by Pam

No one is born with great style or born with a distinct voice. As we create, we uncover pieces of our own style. The key is to keep creating, keep making, keep documenting your memories.

Do you have a memory-keeping style? Let me know in the comments!

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Memory-keeping Plans for 2017 (+ the Create Your Memory-keeping Master Plan workbook!)

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Let’s start this off with… happy new year! I’ve been thinking a lot about how I would approach memory-keeping in 2017, trying to look back at the last 366 days to identify what could be added, removed, and simplified.

I’ve tried a lot of methods and processes in the last three years and to be honest, I’m really excited for 2017. I feel like I’ve finally figured out a system that works really well for my lifestyle and my time.

Memory-keeping Plans for 2017 (+ the Create Your Memory-keeping Master Plan workbook!) | #craftedbypam

Before anything else, let me tell you about my own situation so that you’ll understand the context at which I’m approaching this. We all live different lives and have different priorities so what makes sense to me may not be the same for you. Take what you can and leave what you don’t need ;)

I have a 9-5 day job and a loooong commute for five days in a week. I’m also writing blogposts and creating content for Youtube and my e-course, Your Travel Story. Of course, on top of that, we all have to sleep, eat and have some fun, right? ;) So I don’t have huge chunks of time to spend sitting down and working on layouts. In this blogpost, I’ll show you how I work smartly with the time I have throughout the day so that I can keep up with all the memory-keeping that I love doing. As they say, if you love it, you should make time for it!

If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed or lost, I hope this blogpost will help you create your own memory-keeping plan.

Here’s what memory-keeping looks like for 2017:

Daily Memory-keeping

I’m still doing 9x12” pocket page memory-keeping for everyday memories. I swear by this memory-keeping method and I’m certain that I will continue doing it for the years to come. But after reflecting on my memory-keeping process, there are a couple of things that I want to change for 2017.

First, there will be no monthly or weekly dividers in my album. I will still create my layouts chronologically but I will no longer be dividing it in any way. Last year, I did monthly dividers and it stressed the heck out of me when some life events crossed over to the next month. Do I split the layouts between the months? Do I just put it in one month? My perfectionist self couldn’t handle it! So, to eliminate all of the complexity, my album will just flow continuously from January to December.

Second, I will be memory-keeping with myself in mind. For the past three years, I’ve always tried to make it into a family album - I prioritized family-related photos and events more than my own personal experiences (a.k.a. coffee flatlays, what I’m reading, etc.) and to be honest, it made me feel disconnected with my own album. Don’t get me wrong, I love documenting our family memories but I feel a much stronger connection to my personal and individual memories. It’s easier for me to spend time getting creative with my layouts when I’m fully invested in it. I think this is also the reason why other memory-keepers would create a separate “me” album.

Travel Memory-keeping

Nothing changes in this one! I’m still making a dedicated 6x8” pocket page album for each trip that I take. As you know, this is my favorite kind of memory-keeping. While I don’t have any immediate travel plans for 2017, my six-week long trip to United States will keep my hands full in terms of travel memory-keeping ;)

Family Photo Books

Something new that I’m adding to the memory-keeping mix this year are family photo books. Because the pocket page album will be centered on me, I want to create something that will focus on our family as a whole. I made a photo book as a Christmas gift for my mom and I really loved how it turned out. I can see creating more of these for each significant family gathering, holiday or trip.


Quick commercial break // This has been in the works for about a year and a half already... I'm launching an e-course on analog travel memory-keeping! I am PASSIONATE about introducing a better way to relive your travel experiences (yes, I am throwin' some slight shade on social media...), a way where you can TANGIBLY  flip through the stories of your past adventures.

This course - Craft Your Travel Story - isn't launching until May 2017 BUT I want to help you get started with travel memory-keeping while you wait excitedly ;) This is why I created this FREE comprehensive five-day e-mail course, The Travel-keeper Bootcamp!

Craft Your Travel Story - coming soon!

In this bootcamp, I will be sharing very practical + actionable tips, intentional systems and methods to help you document the details your travel experiences, take photos that accurately tell your stories, and gather ephemera as your "hard evidence." This bootcamp will prepare you a lot when it comes to finally creating your analog travel album.

You can join this bootcamp - did I mention that it's completely free? - by clicking here and signing up on that page or just leaving your name + e-mail below:


The memory-keeping system

I’ve always maintained that the only way to be consistent about memory-keeping is to dedicate time for not. Actually carve out the time into your calendars and commit to it. That’s not changing this year ;)

For 2017, I’m going to try and do a little bit of memory-keeping each day to slowly build out my layouts, pocket by pocket.

In the morning (before I get to work), I’m going to spend 30 minutes editing + printing photos and sorting ephemera. I will then store this into the IKEA Kvissle letter tray for later memory-keeping. During the day, I will spend about 15 minutes planning the layout for the photos and ephemera that I organized in the morning. When I get home, I will spend 45 minutes to 1 hour creating the layout that I planned during the day. If I don’t finish within the hour, I just put it back into the letter tray and continue the next day.

The tools of the trade

There are a couple of tools that I’m adding into my process to make memory-keeping simpler for me.

Canon Selphy CP1200

I am so freaking excited about this! I bought the Canon Selphy CP1200 which is a compact photo printer. I will be using it to print all the photos for my albums. For the past three years, I’ve been using the Canon Pixma IP2770 (a budget photo printer) and it did a really good job. But it does drink up printer ink like a dehydrated monster! Each month, I would have to replace the ink even if I didn’t really print that many photos. I did the math and I figured that buying the special ink + paper for the Canon Selphy was much more cost-effective for me (and I love that the ink + paper prints exactly as much as it says in the packaging - no more guesstimating when the B/W and CMYK ink cartridges will run out).

Memory-keeping Plans for 2017 (+ the Create Your Memory-keeping Master Plan workbook!) | #craftedbypam

I haven’t had the Selphy for long so I’ll reserve all of my thoughts on it for a later review but so far, so good! I’m loving how I don’t have to trim the paper to make it 4x6” (which is what I used to do with the Pixma) since all the Selphy paper are pre-cut to be 4x6”. I have high hopes for this printer and I do think that it will make the memory-keeping process go faster for me :)

IKEA Raskog Trolley

I have been wanting this trolley for a long, long time. We don’t have an IKEA in Manila so it can be pretty cumbersome to get this locally. I’ve tried to buy from resellers but the mark-up was just too high for me. So, now that I’m in California for vacation, I was finally able to buy it!

Memory-keeping Plans for 2017 (+ the Create Your Memory-keeping Master Plan workbook!) | #craftedbypam

I can’t show you the actual thing yet because if I take it out of the box, it will be hard for me to bring it back home to Manila. This trolley will hold ALL of my memory-keeping supplies such as pocket cards, clear stamps, ink pads, embellishments, tools, etc. To avoid hoarding supplies, I have to force myself to fit everything in this one trolley. In short, if I don’t have space for it in the trolley, I can’t buy more stuff ;) It forces me to use up my stash and also save some money in the process. Another thing that I love about this trolley is the portability of it! Since it has casters, I can drag it to a different part of the house to do my memory-keeping elsewhere. Heck, I can even drag it to the roof deck area of our building and craft with the Manila skyline as my view ;)

IKEA Kvissle Letter Tray

Memory-keeping Plans for 2017 (+ the Create Your Memory-keeping Master Plan workbook!) | #craftedbypam

Another IKEA purchase I made (okay, one of the many purchases…) was this letter tray. I think I got the idea from Ali Edwards but as I mentioned above, I will be putting my in-progress layouts in the trays. So each tray will house all the photos, ephemera and loose cards + embellishments for a single layout. Since there are only four trays, I should only have four in-progress layouts. Similar to the concept I have with the Raskog trolley, I shouldn’t start layouts until I’ve finished the in-progress ones.

Coming soon: my first ever actual desk!

For the first time in my 24 years of existence, I’m finally getting a proper desk! For the past three years, I’ve done most of my memory-keeping on the floor or on random flat surfaces. It was okay sometimes but most of the time, it was a pain in the butt. Now that I have the space for an actual desk, I bought a drawer and a pair of desk legs in IKEA so when I come back to Manila, I’m going to visit a woodworks shop to get a wood table top!


I’m excited to level up my memory-keeping game for this year! I literally have no excuses left (dang it!) ;) How about you? How are you approaching memory-keeping this 2017?

Don’t forget! If you want to get organized about how you’re doing memory-keeping this year, you can download the free (!!!) workbook that I designed for you!

Memory-keeping Plans for 2017 (+ the Create Your Memory-keeping Master Plan workbook!) | #craftedbypam

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Travel-keeping With Me #01: El Nido, Palawan 2016

For our 7th Anniversary, Nico and I went to the most beautiful island in the world, as rated by Conde Nast and Travel + Leisure magazine — Palawan!

For this trip, I opted to include it inside my yearly 9x12" album instead of creating a separate 6x8" album. The biggest reason was that this trip was a very chill + relaxed vacation. We did not have a strict itinerary since we just wanted to rest and bask in the beauty of the island. Aside from the island hopping tour that we did on the third day, we literally just lounged around our glamping tent, ate food at the beach and enjoyed each other's company.

In this Travel-keeping with Me episode, you'll see how I create a "cover page" for this summer beach vacay:

If you liked this walkthrough video or if you're finally ready to create your own travel album, check our my e-course Your Travel Story! This e-course is a complete guide on how to create your own travel albums from scratch. I will be closing down the course and relaunching it next year with a bigger + better content and a higher enrollment fee so if you've been wanting to sign up, NOW is the time to make the leap ;) The course will be open for enrollment until December 24th, 10PM Pacific.

motionmailapp.com

If you enroll now for $35, you will get ALL the updates for life. Yep, every single bonus and every new lesson. You can learn more about the course here.

Take the leap and make your own travel albums!

Four Reasons Why Pocket-Page Memory-keeping is PERFECT for Documenting Your Travel Experiences

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“It is my dream to document our family’s travels. But my struggle is having SO MUCH pictures that I don't even know where to start.”

“I've got a bag stuffed full with brochures, receipts, tickets, and coins that is slowly turning into clutter.”

“I should really start taking notes because I tend to forget some details of our trips!”

These are just some of the main struggles that most travelers have about documenting their experiences.

I’ve personally experienced all of this and I just feel like it’s such a waste to have all these assets - photos, stories, ephemera - just gathering dust, physically and digitally.

Four Reasons Why Pocket-Page Memory-keeping is PERFECT for Documenting Your Travel Experiences | Crafted by Pam

Is there a solution? Is there an alternative to just storing it all inside hard drives and memory boxes?

You want to be able to pull out all your travel photos when you feel that wanderlust creeping in.

You want to remember the specific stories of your experiences - what you are, what your conversations were like, where you got lost. You want a house for all your travel ephemera and souvenirs.

There is a perfect solution for you, my friends, and it’s called pocket-page travel memory-keeping.

If you’re not sure what pocket-page memory-keeping is, I wrote a three-part series introducing you to the basics + essentials on this amazing memory-keeping method. It’s essentially the Pocket-Page Memory-keeping 101 course ;) You can take a couple of minutes to read those blogposts here.

But the gist is this:

Pocket-page memory-keeping is a modern approach to traditional scrapbooking. This simplified memory-keeping system is based on the principle of modularity and grids.

This is another one of those things that are easier to show than tell so let me just show you what this “pocket-page memory-keeping method” looks like:

Four Reasons Why Pocket-Page Memory-keeping is PERFECT for Documenting Your Travel Experiences | Crafted by Pam

If you’re already loving how this method looks like and you’re just ready to make your own, you can grab my free checklist of the tools + materials that I frequently use to create my own travel albums:


The pocket-page method is absolutely PERFECT for travel memory-keeping and here are four reasons why:

01. It allows you to house your photos, your stories and your ephemera all in one travel album.

There are so many methods that you can use to document your travels but nothing combines together your photos, your stories and your ephemera in a single album as easily as using pocket page method.

Uploading your photos on sites like Facebook only allows you to keep your photos (and maybe some stories if you cared to write a caption for each photo). Not to mention the fear of losing it all when Facebook calls it quits or decides to make a huge change to their technology.

Filming travel videos allows you to keep your photos - in this case, videos -and stories but not the physical and tangible ephemera that you’ve collected.

Traditional scrapbooking or travel journaling actually allows you to keep all three BUT it can be a hassle to have to cut and paste things on a blank canvas. And one thing that I absolutely don’t like about this method is how unforgiving it is to mistakes (gluing something in the wrong place, writing the wrong date, etc.) because then, you’ll have to re-do the whole layout.

The pocket page method is the golden nugget. It’s practically that special center space where all the circles in a Venn diagram intersect.

The foundation of this method is the use of pockets of different sizes so you can simply just insert your photos, your stories (written on some thicker paper like index cards) and ephemera into individual pockets and you’re all set.

Here’s a layout that I did for my El Nido, Palawan anniversary trip this year:

Four Reasons Why Pocket-Page Memory-keeping is PERFECT for Documenting Your Travel Experiences | Crafted by Pam

You can clearly see that I have all three travel memory-keeping assets in this single layout and I love how all three assets just help me tell this one specific story in a very visual and detailed way. If I look back to this layout in 10 years, I can actually grasp the entire context of the photos and remember the specific conversations, thoughts and emotions that I had during this one moment of my life.

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02. It’s crazy simple and crazy easy to create a travel album.

If after seeing the couple of travel album layouts that I shared above you’re thinking that “This method is way too difficult for me with all of the embellishing and “artsy” things,” I want you to stop that thought right now.

Trust me on this: using the pocket page method to create your travel albums is easiest method of documenting your travel experiences.

As I mentioned above, the basic thing that you need to have are your printed photos, written journaling on some kind of paper and your ephemera. Everything else is just cherry on top.

I personally prefer adding a bit more to make the layouts reflect my personality and my love for crafts but if that’s not your cup of tea, then you don’t have to go for that route.

Here’s an example of a layout that I did that’s just photos + stories:

Four Reasons Why Pocket-Page Memory-keeping is PERFECT for Documenting Your Travel Experiences | Crafted by Pam

All I had to do was to print my photos in 3x4” sizes, write my story in an index card and insert all of it into the pockets. Easy peasy. The whole process probably took me about five minutes.

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Quick commercial break // This has been in the works for about a year and a half already... I'm launching an e-course on analog travel memory-keeping! I am PASSIONATE about introducing a better way to relive your travel experiences (yes, I am throwin' some slight shade on social media...), a way where you can TANGIBLY  flip through the stories of your past adventures.

This course - Craft Your Travel Story - isn't launching until May 2017 BUT I want to help you get started with travel memory-keeping while you wait excitedly ;) This is why I created this FREE comprehensive five-day e-mail course, The Travel-keeper Bootcamp!

Craft Your Travel Story - coming soon!

In this bootcamp, I will be sharing very practical + actionable tips, intentional systems and methods to help you document the details your travel experiences, take photos that accurately tell your stories, and gather ephemera as your "hard evidence." This bootcamp will prepare you a lot when it comes to finally creating your analog travel album.

You can join this bootcamp - did I mention that it's completely free? - by clicking here and signing up on that page or just leaving your name + e-mail below:


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03. It accommodates a wide range of memory-keeping preferences without having to have a special “talent” or skill for crafts.

Pocket page memory-keeping is extremely flexible. Like, yoga master flexible. 

The method can accommodate memory-keepers who love arts and crafts, memory-keepers whose primary focus are taking stunning photos, memory-keepers who prefer to write a lot, memory-keepers who are minimalists at heart, memory-keepers who are busy… EVERYONE.

You can make your travel albums as simple or as extravagant as you want without having a special talent or skill for crafts. If you have a certain aesthetic that you like, you can easily incorporate that into your travel albums with the pocket page method.

Exhibit A: I was soooo crazy about embellishments and all the fun decorations when I first started documenting my daily life.

Four Reasons Why Pocket-Page Memory-keeping is PERFECT for Documenting Your Travel Experiences | Crafted by Pam

Exhibit B: My style now is more simple and focuses a lot on applying design principles to my layouts (repetition, symmetry, color palettes, etc.) since I’m into that kind of thing at the moment.

Four Reasons Why Pocket-Page Memory-keeping is PERFECT for Documenting Your Travel Experiences | Crafted by Pam

So, I want you to stop thinking “I’m not crafty enough to make travel albums,” because that’s just plain BS ;)

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04. It’s basically an interactive souvenir from your travel adventures around the world.

Out of all the reasons that I’ve listed in this blogpost, this is my absolute favorite: a pocket page travel album is basically an interactive souvenir.

I am obsessed about how I can physically touch and hold all my travel experiences from my first Japan adventure in my hands. It’s like I’m flipping the pages of a travel storybook and I’m the lead character.

Four Reasons Why Pocket-Page Memory-keeping is PERFECT for Documenting Your Travel Experiences | Crafted by Pam

Guess what? That’s exactly what it is.

There’s something special about having your photos, your stories and your travel ephemera right at your fingertips. It makes my trips a lot more memorable and a lot more REAL because it feels like I have the evidence, y’know?


Using the pocket page method for documenting my travel experiences have positively changed my life. For real. I’m more intentional about how I document my travels as opposed to just stopping at a good Instagram post with a witty caption. I’ve become more grateful for my experiences since I’m able to regularly re-live those moments through my travel albums.

So, if there’s one thing that I want you to take action with, it’s this: try creating your own travel album using the pocket-page method. Let go of all the limiting thoughts and just give it a go!

If you’re still hesitating, let me know why in the comments. I want to help you get past your memory-keeping hurdles!

But if you’re ready to get started and you’re wondering what you need to have at your disposal, you can download my free checklist of my favorite tools + materials:

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A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: 4 quick and simple memory-keeping techniques to craft beautiful pocket-page layouts

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Oh, hey! Welcome back to the final post of the three-part #PocketPageBasics series! For the past two blogposts, I took you through the basics of pocket-page memory-keeping and the simple steps + process of creating your own pocket-page albums. Here's a recap of the last two blogposts in the series:

  1. The Tools and Materials That You Really Need to Get Started
  2. How to Create A Pocket-Page Layout from Start to Finish

In this blogpost - which is the final one *tears* - I'm teaching you four memory-keeping techniques that you can use to elevate your pocket-page layouts.

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: 4 quick and simple memory-keeping techniques to craft beautiful pocket-page layouts | Crafted by Pam

All the techniques that I'll teach in this blogpost are both QUICK and SIMPLE. Something that you can implement without special tools and within five minutes. So, no, you don't have an excuse to not try these out ;)

For each technique, I'm going to list down the exact materials that you'll need, the step-by-step instructions as well as some photographic evidence that all these can actually be done. Y'know what they say, pics or it didn't happen.

If you want to see how I made each layout and hear my instructions + tips for yourself, then make sure that you sign up to watch the four tutorial videos that I created:

pocketpagebasics-05

Now, let's get down to MAKING!

 

01. Digital journaling

We all know from the Tools and Materials blogpost in this series that you can do your journaling in either handwritten or typewritten format. This technique is all about adding journaling to your photos before printing it out. This is what it looks like in action:

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: 4 quick and simple memory-keeping techniques to craft beautiful pocket-page layouts | Crafted by Pam

What you'll need:

  • A photo with a good amount of white/negative space
  • A photo editing software like Photoshop, PicMonkey or Canva

Here's how to do it:

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: 4 quick and simple memory-keeping techniques to craft beautiful pocket-page layouts | Crafted by Pam

  1. Open up your photo in your photo editing software. (I'm using Photoshop but you can implement similar
  2. Crop the photo to the correct size for your pocket (I talked more about this in the Create a Pocket-page Layout blogpost!) making sure to leave ample white/negative space for your journaling.
  3. Use the Text Box Tool to create a text box on the white space.
  4. Pick your favorite font (I used Remington Noiseless) and start typing! You can adjust the font size, character spacing and line spacing to make sure that it fits well.
  5. When you're done, save the photo and print! You can add additional embellishments afterwards.

 

02. See-through confetti pockets

This technique is one of my absolute favorites! This is amazing because it can fulfill two purposes: fill up empty pockets in your layouts WHILE adding a lot of style and creativity to it. Contrary to popular belief, you don't need a fancy tool to make this happen.

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: 4 quick and simple memory-keeping techniques to craft beautiful pocket-page layouts | Crafted by Pam

What you'll need:

  • Page-protector - choose the which pocket you'll add the see-through element to
  • Confetti - this can be anything from sequins, stuff from your ephemera collection, wood veneer, etc.
  • Washi tape

Here's how to do it:

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: 4 quick and simple memory-keeping techniques to craft beautiful pocket-page layouts | Crafted by Pam

  1. Handpick the confetti pieces that will go into your pocket. The best ones for the job are the small embellishments such as sequins and wood veneer but anything can work as long as it's not too big that it fills the entire pocket.
  2. Put all of it into the pocket. Try to make sure that the confetti are shuffled nicely.
  3. Seal the top opening of the pocket with washi tape!

 


Quick commercial break // This has been in the works for about a year and a half already... I'm launching an e-course on analog travel memory-keeping! I am PASSIONATE about introducing a better way to relive your travel experiences (yes, I am throwin' some slight shade on social media...), a way where you can TANGIBLY  flip through the stories of your past adventures.

This course - Craft Your Travel Story - isn't launching until May 2017 BUT I want to help you get started with travel memory-keeping while you wait excitedly ;) This is why I created this FREE comprehensive five-day e-mail course, The Travel-keeper Bootcamp!

Craft Your Travel Story - coming soon!

In this bootcamp, I will be sharing very practical + actionable tips, intentional systems and methods to help you document the details your travel experiences, take photos that accurately tell your stories, and gather ephemera as your "hard evidence." This bootcamp will prepare you a lot when it comes to finally creating your analog travel album.

You can join this bootcamp - did I mention that it's completely free? - by clicking here and signing up on that page or just leaving your name + e-mail below:


03. Secret journaling cards

This technique is perfect for when you want to private or intimate details but not necessarily have it easily accessible to anyone reading your album or if your just want to add more to the story without having the journaling take up more space in your layout.

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: 4 quick and simple memory-keeping techniques to craft beautiful pocket-page layouts | Crafted by Pam

What you'll need:

  • Blank pocket card for your secret journaling
  • Paper tabs or just a piece of scrap patterned paper
  • Glue runner
  • Washi tape

Here's how to do it:

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: 4 quick and simple memory-keeping techniques to craft beautiful pocket-page layouts | Crafted by Pam

  1. Write down your journaling in the blank pocket card (I used one from the Midnight Edition Project Life core kit*) BUT make sure to leave some space at the top portion.
  2. Use the paper tab or a scrap piece of patterned paper as a pull-out tab by gluing it at the top of the secret pocket card. I like to write a sentiment here or stamp something relevant. I used the stamp "the facts & the feelings" from Ali Edwards with the Versafine Onyx Black pigment ink*.
  3. I used washi tape to reinforce the tab and make sure that it won't fall off and to add a bit of color to the card as well.
  4. Insert this secret pocket card behind a normal pocket card (in this case, behind a photo) and ta-da!

 

04. Hand-lettering

This technique is great for adding a personal + unique touch to your layouts. It works best with titles or for emphasizing certain sections of your journaling. There's also a lot of room for experimentation in this technique!

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: 4 quick and simple memory-keeping techniques to craft beautiful pocket-page layouts | Crafted by Pam

What you'll need:

  • Thick pen or brush pen (love using Sharpies for this!)
  • Scratch paper

Here's how to do it:

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: 4 quick and simple memory-keeping techniques to craft beautiful pocket-page layouts | Crafted by Pam

  1. Decide what word/s you're going to hand-letter.
  2. Use the scratch paper to do a mock hand-lettering of the word/s you picked and make sure to check how it fits with the rest of the journaling/elements in your layout. I used a Kuretake brush pen* for this but you can get the same effect with a Copic marker. Thick Sharpie pens would work as well but it wouldn't have the "brush" effect.
  3. Apply it into your layouts as an accent element! You can add embellishments to your liking.

YES! You made it to the end of this guide! I hope you learned a trick or two (or four) to help you create a more dynamic pocket-page layout. I made sure that each technique was super easy to follow and that you wouldn't need any fancy tool or set-up to make it happen. This is the #PocketPageBasics series anyway ;)

 

Your turn! What was your favorite technique from the five that I shared? Tell me, tell me! Or better yet, show me a photo of a layout you made!

 

Also! I just want to thank YOU and everyone else who joined me here and became a part of the #PocketPageBasics series. It was super fun for me to write these guides and I genuinely hope that you learned a lot throughout the past three weeks.

In case you're just hopping in, make sure to read the first two posts of the series:

  1. The Tools and Materials That You Really Need to Get Started
  2. How to Create A Pocket-Page Layout from Start to Finish

Lastly, I want you to REALLY implement what you've learned in this series. Go and take a look at all the photos buried in your Facebook albums or your memory cards and start documenting the stories that make up your everyday life. Go at it one simple + specific story at a time and you'll be good to go! If you do just that, make sure to use the #PocketPageBasics hashtag so I can virtually cheer on you and shower you with confetti emojis (my fave)!

[social_warfare]

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A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: How to create a pocket-page layout from start to finish

pocket-page-process-feat.jpg

Welcome back to The Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping Series, code name #PocketPageBasics! In this three-part series, I'm taking your hand and guiding you through the basics of pocket-page memory-keeping. Today, we're going to get our hands messy (in a beautiful and creative way) because I'm going to teach you, step-by-step, the process of actually creating a pocket-page layout. This is the part where you take your Memory-keeping Trifecta of photos, stories and ephemera and turn them into a beautiful and cohesive pocket-page layout that you can add into your albums. A lot of memory-keepers are overwhelmed by all the moving parts of taking their stories and creating a layout out of it because they're overcomplicating the entire process.

For the second part of the series, I will show you the simple + straightforward way of crafting a pocket-page layout that is both beautiful and intentional.

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: How to create a pocket-page layout from start to finish

If you're just tuning in, then you might've missed the first installment of this series. I definitely recommend reading that first: The Tools and Materials That You Really Need to Get Started.

Okay, let's get this party started!

The very first step to cut through the overwhelm is to pick a specific story OR short + recent time frame that you want to document right now.

I know you're excited to create an entire album on that Disney trip you took last week or you want to do the entire baby album for your little kiddo. But if you're just starting out, those projects are ENORMOUS and totally OVERWHELMING. You'll burn yourself out easily in Step 1.

So, I want you to work on something like:

  • what you got up to last week (as in a seven-day period),
  • eating at a new restaurant with your boyfriend
  • watching a play on Broadway
  • a girls' day out at the mall, shopping and eating
  • Day 1 of your home renovation project

Again: short + recent time frames or a super specific story. If you've got a bunch of ideas, just list those down and pick your favorite! And while you're at it, go ahead and download the free workbook that I designed to complement the steps on this guide. It has all the worksheets that you will need to make the process simple!

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: How to create a pocket-page layout from start to finish

Step 1: Gather the photos and ephemera that are relevant to the story that you're telling.

Estimated amount of time for this step: 5 minutes

A lot of first-time memory-keepers are overwhelmed by the first step because they're trying to gather photos and ephemera for their one-month vacation in Europe or the first year of their baby or catching up with three years worth of high school memories. But because I've already primed you to just pick a specific story or a short time frame, this step should not take you more than five minutes.

Gathering photos

Most of the photos that you include in your albums are taken from either your digital camera or your smartphone camera. Occasionally, you might grab screenshots from your computer or photos from Facebook that your friends uploaded. What you should do is to go through each location and copy the photos that fit the story/time frame that you are working on into a separate folder. Here's what that looks like:

  • Camera photos: It's best to update your camera settings so that you'll have the date from when the photo was taken included in file names. This way, you can just go through my memory card and copy the photos from the relevant dates into the special folder you created specifically for this layout.
  • Smartphone photos: The photos I take from my camera (along with any screenshots I made) are all synced into my Google Photos account so I can just go to the web application for Google Photos and type in the dates that I'm working on and Google will find those photos for me. If you don't want to sync to Google Photos, then go through your smartphone's camera folder and handpick the photos for this project. Copy those to the special folder you created.
  • Other (Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, etc.)Grab the photos that you need and copy those to the special folder that you created.

At the end of this short exercise, you should have all your photos collected into a single folder. You don't necessarily need to use every single photo but every photo that you could possibly use is already there.

Gathering ephemera

The best way to simplify this process is to have a dedicated box / drawer for any ephemera that you might collect day to day. Just keep it on your desk all the time and let the ephemera accumulate until you're ready to use 'em. If you already have that, then dive into it and pick out all the relevant ephemera. Don't start thinking of whether or not you'll use it in the layout. Just gather it for now.

If you don't have this kind of system yet, START ONE NOW. Just grab an empty shoebox and scour your wallet, bags and desk drawers for any ephemera that you might use.

 

Step 2: Choose a page protector and sketch a rough idea of the layout you'll be making.

Estimated amount of time for this step: 3 minutes

I mentioned in the previous blogpost on this series that there are several page protector configurations. So based on the images and ephemera that you've gathered in Step 1, choose the page protector configuration that you think would work best. For example, if you have lots of portrait photos, you might want to choose a configuration that has more 3x4" pockets than 4x6" pockets.

Now, grab a piece of paper (or use the sheet from the free workbook!) and sketch the outline of the page protector that you're using and start doing a game of mix and match. This process goes something like this:

  • Pick and choose the photos + ephemera you'll be using for the layout. Subconsciously, you would have done this step when you picked the page protector configuration that you'll be using so this step is easy-peasy.
  • Arrange those photos + ephemera into the pockets of your page protctor. So, write something like "photo #1," or "ticket from the movie" on your sketch.
  • If there are specific details that you want to include, write it down as well. Had a fun conversation with your bestie that you want to document in the same layout? Pick the place where you'll be writing that down.

Make this process QUICK. Don't dwell on this. The point of this step is to (1) find out the exact photo sizes that you're using and (2) create a balanced layout in terms of photo + ephemera placement. You don't need to plan out the small details like the stickers you're using or the colors.

Step 3: Crop the photos to the correct sizes and print it all.

Estimated amount of time for this step: 5 minutes

The reason why you did a rough sketch in Step 2 was to be able to identify the correct sizes that you're printing your photos in. You want to avoid printing seven photos in portrait when you only have space for five or something like that. Now that you have the exact sizes, use your favorite photo editing software to edit + crop your photos and then finally, print it out.

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: How to create a pocket-page layout from start to finish

In terms of editing, I mainly adjust the brightness and contrast + apply some Photoshop actions (kind of like VSCO filters) to change the overall tone of the photo. Then, I use Photoshop to crop my photos. If you don't have Photoshop (it's awesome, I use it all the time), you can use a free online software like PicMonkey to do the same thing.

Depending on your level of tech savviness, this process can take around 5-10 minutes.


Quick commercial break // This has been in the works for about a year and a half already... I'm launching an e-course on analog travel memory-keeping! I am PASSIONATE about introducing a better way to relive your travel experiences (yes, I am throwin' some slight shade on social media...), a way where you can TANGIBLY  flip through the stories of your past adventures.

This course - Craft Your Travel Story - isn't launching until May 2017 BUT I want to help you get started with travel memory-keeping while you wait excitedly ;) This is why I created this FREE comprehensive five-day e-mail course, The Travel-keeper Bootcamp!

Craft Your Travel Story - coming soon!

In this bootcamp, I will be sharing very practical + actionable tips, intentional systems and methods to help you document the details your travel experiences, take photos that accurately tell your stories, and gather ephemera as your "hard evidence." This bootcamp will prepare you a lot when it comes to finally creating your analog travel album.

You can join this bootcamp - did I mention that it's completely free? - by clicking here and signing up on that page or just leaving your name + e-mail below:


Step 4: Layout the photos + ephemera according to your sketch and fill in the blanks with pocket cards.

Estimated amount of time for this step: 5 minutes

On this step, you'll put together all your photos + ephemera into the actual page protector based on the sketch that you made in Step 2. You can adjust and re-arrange this to your liking, still. The sketch just helps you create an initial vision for what you want to create in order to avoid overwhelm. You practically have 70% of your layout done already. And it's only been ~18 minutes.

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: How to create a pocket-page layout from start to finish

After layouting your photos + ephemera, you might have some blank pockets left to fill. At this point, you can go through your stash of paper products (we talked about this in the first post) to fill the remaining pockets. It's a good practice to leave a pocket for a title card and a journaling card so that you can add more context to your layout. But that's totally up to you!

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: How to create a pocket-page layout from start to finish

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: How to create a pocket-page layout from start to finish

After Step 4, you have a complete pocket-page layout! Give yourself a pat on the back, you've worked hard ;) If you want to add a little somethin' something to your new layout and you have a bit more time, you can proceed to the next two steps. But if you want to keep it simple, you can definitely stop right now.

 

Step 5: Embellish what you want to embellish

Estimated amount of time for this step: 5 minutes

Sometimes, when you look at a layout, you get this teeny tiny feeling in your heart that something's missing. You want to add a bit of oomph! on that photo that you really love or you feel like you can emphasize a certain pocket more. That's what embellishments are for!

Common and simple forms of embellishing often include:

  • using alphabet stickers / thickers for titles,
  • use stamps and stickers to as accents and,
  • adding dimension to your layouts.

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: How to create a pocket-page layout from start to finish

But before we leave this topic, I need to give you a reminder: Embellishments are fun and all but it's NOT an essential. You CAN do pocket-page layouts without embellishments. This is completely optional. Don't feel like you have to do this in order to create beautiful layouts.

 

Step 6: Write down all your journaling

Estimated amount of time for this step: 5 minutes

The final step - that I actually think is necessary - is to write your journaling for your layout. Remember the memory-keeping trifecta? You already used photos and ephemera in the first five steps. Now, let's focus on writing down the STORIES. The common types of journaling that you can do in your layout are (1) captions, (2) listicles / bulleted points, and (3) longform stories.

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: How to create a pocket-page layout from start to finish

If you're confused on what format to use, here's quick guide:

  • Photo captions — a short snippet that describes a photo or an ephemera (name of the restaurant you went to, what this ticket was for, etc.)
  • Listicles / bulleted points — easy way to tell the story of an event chronologically, listing out things like stuff you received for your wedding, music you listened to during the road trip, etc.
  • Longform — this is great it really including emotion and lots of detail; perfect for a more in-depth documentation of important moments of your life

Eventually, it's all up to what you're comfortable with. You might not like writing long pieces of journaling or you might actually prefer just doing bullet points. You do you.

 

Putting all your hard work together!

Yes! After around 30 minutes, you have created your own pocket-page layout! Woo hoo! Cue the confetti ;) It wasn't too difficult, right?

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: How to create a pocket-page layout from start to finish

Now, if you do the exact same steps again and again for a different story / time frame (remember to keep it short + specific!), then you're well on your way to completing your first album. This means, in a few more thirty-minute memory-keeping sessions, you'll have in your hands a completed book on that road trip you took around your state, the fun get-together with your high school buds at a beach resort or the first year of your beautiful daughter.

The last part of this series is all about Four Quick and Simple Memory-Keeping Techniques to Craft Beautiful Pocket-Page Layouts. So stay tuned for that ;)

 

Which step was the easiest for you to follow? The hardest? Let me know what's holding you back in the comments below. I want to help you get past it!

 

Also! Make sure that you download the free workbook! It has lots of helpful prompts that complements each step that I discussed in this blogpost:

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: How to create a pocket-page layout from start to finish

[social_warfare]

[sc name="author"]

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: The tools and materials that you really need to get started

pocket-page-basics-tools-fb.jpg

Memory-keeping, as you can deduce from the word itself, is the art of documenting and preserving memories whether it's about your day to day stories, your daughter's first year of life, your Shih Tzu's doggy adventures or your own travel chronicles.

There are several ways to go about memory-keeping: scrapbooks, photo books, journals. And then there are Youtube vlogs, personal blogs, Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat (or Instagram Stories, whichever you prefer, ha!). These days, more and more people are turning to digital mediums for documenting what goes on in their lives because analog memory-keeping has somehow been branded with a reputation for being (1) old-fashioned, (2) time-consuming and (3) reserved for 'crafty' folks.

I guess the people who spread those rumors have never heard of pocket-page memory-keeping.

If you're one of those people, I am so glad you're here. I'm about to change your life. Potentially.

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: The tools and materials that you really need to get started

Pocket-page memory-keeping is a modern approach to traditional scrapbooking masterminded by one creative gal by the name of Becky Higgins. She has taken all of the bad rep of scrapbooking (recap: old-fashioned, time-consuming, reserved for 'crafty' folks) and used that information to create a simplified memory-keeping system based on the principle of modularity.

But because we're humans, we like to add layer upon layer of complexity and this has turned the once simple method of pocket-page memory-keeping into an overwhelming ordeal. A lot of new crafters are bombarded with fancy techniques, state-of-the-art tools, and shiny, new products from the get-go. There are a lot more options now compared to when the supposedly simplified method was introduced.

In this blogpost, I will break down for you the basics of pocket-page memory-keeping.

This is a three-part series - which I'm calling the #PocketPageBasics series - where I will go and deep dive into the terminologies, the basic materials that you need in your arsenal, the memory-keeping trifecta of photos + stories + ephemera, the simple and entry-level techniques that you can use to create beautiful layouts and the best advice for someone like you who's just getting into the system of pocket-page memory-keeping.

Here's what you can expect in this series:

  1. The Tools and Materials That You Really Need to Get Started
  2. How to Create A Pocket-Page Layout from Start to Finish
  3. Quick and Simple Memory-Keeping Techniques to Craft Beautiful Pocket-Page Layouts

Oh and by the way, if you don't feel like reading a 3,000-word guide (because that's what this blogpost is), I've compiled and condensed the information into a cheat sheet! You can always reference back into this blogpost when you want more details about a certain section.

pocket-page-memory-keeping-basics

What does a pocket-page layout look like anyway?

Here's an example of a pocket-page layout from my own day by day album:

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: The tools and materials that you really need to get started

The telltale sign of a pocket-page layout is - you guessed it - the pockets. Each layout from your album is divided into different pockets where you can slip in pretty much anything: photo, patterned paper, ephemera, journaling, etc. This is the key defining feature of pocket-page memory-keeping. The huge blank canvas that we are so used to in scrapbooking (usually, that's 12x12") is replaced by smaller, bite-sized canvasses that you can switch around and reconfigure. You now have the option of telling several stories or tell moments that lead up to a bigger story with just one layout whereas before, each layout is normally focused on a single moment. Another thing: because each pocket can contain an independent story, you can switch things up easily - no commitments. This is why I am obsessed with pocket-page memory-keeping.

You can use this type of memory-keeping for different kinds of albums:

  • everyday / day-by-day albums
  • travel albums
  • birthday albums
  • baby books
  • wedding albums (and other special occasions)

...just to name a few.

At this point, you must be thinking, "Okay, I like the idea but what if I want bigger photos or my ephemera wouldn't fit into the pockets?"

Well, my friend, you have nothing to worry about. The size and orientation of the pockets can differ and each variation is called a configuration. Most memory-keeping companies such as Project Life or We R Memory Keepers will have their own set of configurations such as the famous Design A from the Project Life brand. You can mix and match different configurations to build an album that reflects your own style. Some like to keep things consistent by using a single configuration for an entire album but others (like me!) love it play things up and challenge myself to try a different configuration.

If you're thinking, "I'm sold! Now, what do I actually need to get started?" Then, the next section will be your shopping list.

I won't make you buy a $200 tool, I promise.

The basic things you need to have to get started

(P.S. If you want to know where I buy all my memory-keeping supplies - both here in the Philippines and internationally - check out this blogpost that I wrote.)

01. A binder / album

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: The tools and materials that you really need to get started

A binder or a pocket-page album will house all of your pocket-page layouts. The first decision that you will have to make when starting any pocket-page layout is the album size.

When Becky Higgins created the pocket-page system, the only option available was a 12x12" album. Fortunately for you, there are waaaaay more options today: 12x12", 9x12", 6x12", 6x8", 4x4" and so on.

Each album size usually caters to a specific niche in pocket-page memory-keeping. Let me tell you about the three popular choices:

  • 12x12" -- best for documenting day to day life especially if you love the big canvas, document a lot of the memory-keeping trifecta (again: photos, stories, and ephemera) and, this is important, the real estate or shelf space to store this album
  • 9x12" -- also great for documenting day to day life if 12x12" is too big of a canvas for you and it's also good for travel albums that cover a lot of places (Europe trip, US cross-country road trip, South East Asia backpacking trip, etc.) P.S. This is the size that I use for my day to day albums.
  • 6x8" -- this size is perfect for documenting a specific theme such as travel albums, "Disney" album, Christmas albums, etc. Some people also use this for their day to day albums. P.S. This is the size that I use for my travel albums.

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: The tools and materials that you really need to get started

There are a lot of factors that goes into deciding which album size to go with. Consider the number of photos that you want to include in your album, the space that you have in your home (think three years into the future when you have more than one albums - will it still fit in your space?) and most importantly, if you can keep up with this size consistently. (How to consistently keep up with your pocket-page albums is a topic for another day. Let me know in the comments if you want me to write a blogpost on my system + planning sheets that I use to make this happen.)

Honestly, this is one of the bigger expenses that you'll have to make when you start pocket-page memory-keeping. Album prices can range from $20 - $40 depending on the size and material. My recommendation is to go with the faux leather ones or cloth albums as they are more durable over time. Chipboard albums are cheaper and have really cool designs BUT they wear and tear sooooo easily. My old chipboard album barely lasted 1.5 years before the spin gave up completely. I have since switched to faux leather and cloth albums.

Albums that I've used and highly recommend:

Here's a tip for you: don't buy multiple albums when you're just starting out. Why? Couple of reasons: (1) you might want to switch album sizes after trying it one for a while and (2) take advantage of sales! You can always just store your layouts in a single album (even though they're meant to be stored in separate albums) while you're waiting for a sweet buy-one-take-one deal.

That's it! That's all you need to know about albums for now. Let's move on to something more important...

02. Pocket-page Protectors

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: The tools and materials that you really need to get started

I told you, in a few paragraphs above, that the key defining feature of pocket-page memory-keeping is the pockets. I mean, that's why it's called 'pocket-page memory-keeping,' right?

Pocket-page protectors are plastic sleeves that are usually divided into pockets of different sizes. This is where all your memory-keeping trifecta goes in! The sleeves have binder holes on the left side that usually differs in number depending on the brand. There are also several different configurations for the size and orientation of the pockets.

Usually, the size and brand of the album will inform the pocket-page protector that you need to get. Some albums have six rings, some have four, and some have three. Of course, if you're using a 6x8" album, you're not going to want to purchase a 12x12" page protector.

 


Quick commercial break // This has been in the works for about a year and a half already... I'm launching an e-course on analog travel memory-keeping! I am PASSIONATE about introducing a better way to relive your travel experiences (yes, I am throwin' some slight shade on social media...), a way where you can TANGIBLY  flip through the stories of your past adventures.

This course - Craft Your Travel Story - isn't launching until May 2017 BUT I want to help you get started with travel memory-keeping while you wait excitedly ;) This is why I created this FREE comprehensive five-day e-mail course, The Travel-keeper Bootcamp!

Craft Your Travel Story - coming soon!

In this bootcamp, I will be sharing very practical + actionable tips, intentional systems and methods to help you document the details your travel experiences, take photos that accurately tell your stories, and gather ephemera as your "hard evidence." This bootcamp will prepare you a lot when it comes to finally creating your analog travel album.

You can join this bootcamp - did I mention that it's completely free? - by clicking here and signing up on that page or just leaving your name + e-mail below:


03. Paper

Paper is a verrrry huge category; I can probably write an entire blogpost about it. But for now, I'll introduce you to the common types of paper that you'll use in pocket-page memory-keeping.

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: The tools and materials that you really need to get started

Pocket Cards or journaling cards are pre-designed cards that are made to fit into the pockets of your albums. These are pre-cut into the usual sizes: 3x4", 4x6" and some of the common square sizes.

The next one might be familiar to you - patterned paper. These are just paper printed with different patterns and designs and these are thicker than regular paper. You can cut it up to slip into your pockets (similar to making your own pocket cards) or use it to decorate your photos.

If you already have a decent amount of pocket cards, you really won't need patterned paper that much. I personally don't use a lot of patterned paper since I find that the designs I have with pocket cards are sufficient.

Lastly, cardstock also comes in handy in pocket-page memory-keeping. Cardstock is a plain paper that is thicker than your regular copy paper. It can also come in a variety of colors. You can use cardstocks to print your own designs of pocket cards or any design that you've downloaded / purchased from the internet.

04. Writing Tools + Office Supplies

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: The tools and materials that you really need to get started

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: The tools and materials that you really need to get started

The last few basic things that you need are writing tools and a couple of office supplies. You can be as fancy or as simple as you want here but in general, the items that I reach for are (1) pens, (2) a sharp pair of scissors, (3) a glue runner and (4) a stapler.

For pens, I would suggest that you go for a pen that you're comfortable writing with. You can get pens with varying weights. I think pens are really personal so it's up to you to experiment which ones you like best. Here are a couple of ideas to get you started:

For scissors, it's best to have one that is small but has a really sharp blade. If you want to cut precise shapes and have smooth edges, you'll definitely need it. If you're not too picky, then a standard pair will do. To take things up a notch, you can get a trimmer to cut up photos or paper with precision (in terms of size) especially if you need to crop a photo to a specific size to fit the pockets. Here are some products that I've tried and loved:

This next item here is something that I can't do memory-keeping without. I love it so much. Glue runners have completely changed my life. In the past, using glue and paste made the whole process messy but with glue runners, you're only dispensing the exact amount of adhesive that you need. Genius. Here are my favorite glue runners:

Lastly, I always use staplers to keep bulkier elements in place such as thick business cards and wood veneer. You can definitely use the regular office supply stapler but what I love to use is this re-imagined stapler called the Tiny Attacher*. This stapler uses mini staple wires and because of the ergonomic design, it's easier to staple thicker paper with it.

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The Memory-keeping Trifecta

I've been mentioning the memory-keeping trifecta since the beginning of this post and finally, I'm going to talk about it in detail.

01. Stories

There are different ways to telling your stories in your albums. It's up to you to decide which one works best for a specific layout:

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: The tools and materials that you really need to get started

  • Photo captions -- just a short snippet that describes a photo or an ephemera (name of the restaurant you went to, what this ticket was for, etc.)
  • Listicles / bulleted points -- this format is useful for adding te
  • Longform / story --

Another thing to consider is whether or not you're using your own handwriting or if you're going to go the typewritten route. Handwritten stories are great for that personal and unique touch; it's also a good as an additional design element to your layouts. Typewritten stories are great for when you want to write something in longform because you are able to correct any spelling / grammar / flow errors.

02. Photos

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: The tools and materials that you really need to get started

Photos will probably make up more than 70% of your album so it's, y'know, kind of important. Before I go into detail here, I want you to remember this famous saying (with a slight change):

The best camera is the one that you have with you and the one that you actually know how to use.

It's useless to have a top-of-the-line dSLR when you have no clue how to use it. It's pointless when you stop documenting moments just because you don't have your "good camera" with you. Always take that shot. It may be grainy, the lighting may not be the best but you know what? Documenting the moment is what matters.

Now that we've agreed on that, I'll talk about the three things that we're normally concerned about when it comes to photos: (1) photo size, (2) matte or glossy photo finish, and (3) printing at home vs. printing outside.

Photo Size

You can do this in two ways:

  • pick the size of the photos first and let that dictate the page protector configuration or,
  • decide on the configuration first and that will inform you if the size that you'll need to print your photo in.

I don't stress out too much about this but normally, if I really wanted the photo to be of a certain size, then I prioritize that over the configuration of the page protector. If I can't be bothered, I usually print it to fit the configuration that I wanted to use.

Matte vs. Glossy Finish

Printing in matte is great for when you want less glare on your photos and if you want a subtle texture to your photo. Printing with glossy paper will produce a more vibrant photo but it will also invite a lot of glare and fingerprints. In terms of embellishing, there are inks (for stamps and for pens) that are suited for each finish so it really just boils down to preference.

Printing at Home vs. Printing in a Photo Center

Printing at home will give you more control over the sizes and will allow you to print in smaller batches (or even just one photo!). You also have more control over the color of the photo since you can adjust the color settings of your printer and the program that you use to print with. Choosing a good printer is important since this will affect the photo quality.

Printing in a photo center tends to be more cost-effective (take advantage of the deals!) and works best for when you're printing a big batch of images. A photo center will usually pre-cut your photos as well so that's one less thing for you to worry about.

I personally print at home because there aren't any good photo center / service near where I live but online, you can check out Persnickety Prints (most people love the quality but have had issues with their website app) or Shutterfly (apparently they have a 101 print promo where you can order 101 photos and just pay for shipping). I haven't personally tried any of those sites though since shipping to the Philippines is usually expensive.

03. Ephemera

A Complete Guide to Pocket-page Memory-keeping: The tools and materials that you really need to get started

Ephemera is any keepsake that you have from the story that you're trying to tell. It can be a sticker from an event, the packaging of a snack, a postage stamp, ticket stubs... ANYTHING. Out of the three, I'm more excited about incorporating ephemera into my albums. I view ephemera as the "evidence" of any story that I'm trying to tell and as an added design element.

I keep a small drawer in my desk to park any ephemera that I come across throughout the week. When I work on my layouts, I always check if I kept any ephemera that's relevant to the story. I don't always use all the ephemera that I keep and at that point, all leftovers go to the bin. (No need to hoard since I know that I was able to document the story in my album.)


And you made it to the end! I hope this guide helped clear some misconceptions that you have about pocket-page memory-keeping and inspired you to start documenting your day to day life in this format. If you're thinking, "Uhm Pam? You just told me what I needed to prepare. I actually want to know how to start my album..." Hold your horses, my friend! The second part of this series - How to Create A Pocket-Page Layout from Start to Finish - is coming up next ;)

Okay, I'm so done talking for now. It's YOUR turn: what pocket-page or memory-keeping, in general, myths have you heard in the past?

P.S. Don't forget to grab a copy of the free checklist:

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How to Make Time for Memory-keeping (and practically anything) Using Block Scheduling

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Your mind is racing. You want to get some memory-keeping done for your Disney album but you also have a million things that you need to do and seemingly no hours left in the day to actually get it all done. You conveniently pass the blame to your full-time job for taking up too much of your day or the fact that you're in the midst of exam week. "I'm way too busy for any of this," you say, completely giving up.

Sounds strikingly familiar? GUILTY. AS. CHARGED.

When people come across my Instagram or my blogposts, one of the first questions that pop into their head is: how do you make time for any of this [memory-keeping]?

Well, let me share with you one of my secrets: block scheduling.

Block Scheduling

This one technique allowed me to make time for memory-keeping - and practically anything and everything - despite having a regular 9-5 with a day-to-day commute of 4.5 hours (yikes!) and running this creative blog + biz.

 

What the heck is block scheduling?

Block scheduling is a combination of batching and prioritizing. The concept is to create scheduled appointments between yourself and a specific task/project throughout your week. Writing, studying a different language, learning graphic design, working on your travel albums - it doesn't matter what project as long as it's something specific.

For example:

  • Mondays 9am - 9:45am  brainstorm blogpost ideas during commute
  • Wednesdays 1:00pm - 2:00pm  edit photos for your memory-keeping album
  • Sunday 9:00am - 10:30am  work on 1-2 layouts for your Japan travelogue

The point is to be hyper-focused on ONE specific task for a set amount of time (~90 minutes or less) and do that same task at a recurring + scheduled time.

Why does this make sense?

Chase Jarvis said it best:

The theory boils down to the fact that we can’t increase the hours in the day, but we can increase the energy with which we make the most of those hours. Taking short, scheduled breaks throughout the day rejuvenates and restores us physically and mentally, helping us plow through those assignments and to-do lists in a third of the time.

We want to amp up the energy that we're giving to each task without necessarily increasing the effort and time that we spend on it. Rather than trudging along a project sluggishly and ineffectively, block scheduling will help you laser focus on what needs to be done because you know that once the clock strikes at a certain time, you'll have to work on something else. For every switch, you'll have the chance to reset your brain and this allows you to approach the new task refreshed and with a get-things-done attitude. We all have 24 hours in a day and this technique will help you make the most of it.

[clickToTweet tweet="What you do with your 24 hours defines the gap between where you are now and where you want to be. |" quote="What you do with your 24 hours defines the gap between where you are now and where you want to be."]

Genius, huh? I know you want to start implementing this, like, yesterday but if you're not quite sure how to get started, I hear you, friend. I'll break down for you the block scheduling process that I personally do so that you can get started on implementing this for your day-to-day life!

And as an extra layer of TLC, I designed this free worksheet that will help you map out your very own block schedule:

Block Scheduling

Step 1: List down all your non-negotiable tasks and obligations.

We all have tasks / obligations that we HAVE to do no matter what. This can be: your day job, university classes, driving your kid to school and picking her up afterward or an hour of Netflix (just kidding). It's important to be aware of these non-negotiables to prevent yourself from over-scheduling your days.

So grab the worksheet and your favorite highlighter to take note of those non-negotiable time blocks. Here's what it looks like for me:

Block Scheduling

Major takeaway from this step: you'll see how much time you really have on a day-to-day basis after this step. This is reality, friends, not just some made-up idea of how much of your day is booked by default.

 

Step 2: List down all the passion projects that you want to work on.

Okay, this is the part where you get to daydream about all the passion projects that you want to work on. But... I will give you some tough love right now: you may have to play favorites with your passion projects and choose to work on only a few of it for now.

We are all multi-passionate individuals and we love doing so.many.things. but the reality is that you can only give your 110% to a handful of projects at a time in order to see effective results.

Side note: my friend and mentor, Arriane, has an AMAZING free training series on how to focus your goals when you want too many things at once and I highly recommend that you check that out.

Getting back on track: list down the passion projects that you want to work on and identify super SPECIFIC tasks from each. Some examples of specific tasks:

  • Brainstorm 3-5 blogpost ideas
  • Curate photos for your travel album
  • Edit photos for your travel album (see how I separated that into two tasks?)
  • Practice hiragana and katakana
  • TV show time (yes, you can schedule in that Netflix time)

This curated list will be your Passion Project Roster. The key here is to be specific about it. Don't just write 'writing' when you're working on blogposts, a fiction novel, and guest posting. Instead, break the mammoth task of writing into three smaller passion projects - writing blogposts, writing your fiction novel and writing your guest posts. Give each of those projects their own block.

These days, my Passion Project Roster includes:

  • [BROAD] Memory-keeping
    • [SPECIFIC] Curate photos for my albums
    • [SPECIFIC] Edit + print photos
    • [SPECIFIC] Working on memory-keeping layouts
  • Blogging
    • Updating old content
    • Designing Pinterest images
    • Social media promos
  • Your Travel Story e-course
    • Monthly additional content / bonus content
    • Community engagement
    • Marketing and promotion
  • Personal / Entertainment
    • Nintendo 3DS time (I'm addicted to Fire Emblem, I can't even)
    • Youtube

As you can see, it seems like a lot but I have it organized under the three major segments (four, if you include the entertainment one) of my current life. This will change once my focus switches to something else and that is OKAY.

If you haven't downloaded the free workbook yet, get it below! There's a specific worksheet that complements this step:

Block Scheduling

Step 3: Identify how long each specific task will take and assign a time values to each task.

As I mentioned above, ideally, each task will be assigned to a time block that is AT MOST 90 minutes. Why 90 minutes? Because we're humans and our bodies and minds have a natural rhythm of rest and activity. I love how this article from Fast Company talked about this concept in detail.

I want you to go back to you Passion Project Roster and give each task a time value. In general, 90 minutes is a good baseline for any project. However, you'll find that some projects take significantly less than 90 minutes and that's okay. Evaluate and adjust, always. If you've got a mammoth task, break it apart into two 90-minute blocks and schedule something light in between such as reading a book or watching an episode of F.R.I.E.N.D.S.

Don't worry about getting things wrong here because this will evolve as you get better at scheduling things and at evaluating the actual amount of time it takes you to do tasks.

 

Step 4: Schedule each time block into your calendar.

In order for this to be effective, you'll have to work with your current lifestyle schedule. Maybe you have a full-time job which means your 90-minute blocks are mostly in the mornings before work and in the evenings after work (that's me!) or maybe you're a new mama which means your blocks should be scheduled around your newborn's sleep cycle. Whatever your circumstance, block scheduling is definitely possible.

Get the same calendar that you used in Step 1 and schedule your tasks to any unblocked time frame. The reason why I had you block off your non-negotiables in Step 1 is so that (1) you have an idea of how much "free" time you have and (2) you can schedule your passion projects to work around your current lifestyle and obligations.

After this exercise, you should have something like this:

Block Scheduling

Or if you add in entertainment / leisure activities:

Block Scheduling

Take a good look at your schedule and adjust if you need to. Make sure that the schedule makes sense to you and that you have ample breaks sprinkled strategically.

Once you've finalized your block schedule, print it out and stick it in places that are visible to you at all times - office desk, desk at home, etc. It's a good practice to also copy over the schedule to your digital calendar and create 10-minute reminders so that you're aware when it's time to switch to a different task or project.

 

Step 5: Test out your block schedule, evaluate, and adjust.

It's okay to not get it perfectly the first time. Actually, it's normal to over-schedule yourself initially and then you can work backward and remove some tasks or adjust the length of your time blocks. Always ask yourself:

  1. Did I schedule a lot of left-brain / right-brain work in one day?
  2. Am I more productive during the weekends than the weekdays?
  3. Am I getting enough rest with this schedule?
  4. Am I actually getting things done effectively?

Be brutally honest with yourself and pivot, if need be. Your schedule is based on you, a human, and it should grow and evolve as you change, day by day.


Yay, you've made your own block schedule! Now, go and implement it. Just one thing: block scheduling is not meant to be restrictive. If you are called to do something else completely and you're brimming with purpose, run with it. 

Remember, intention-filled planning allows you to make time for your passion projects. This is how I make time for memory-keeping among all the other things I have going on at any given time (day job, blogging, creative business, etc.). This is how YOU can finally do the things that you love doing without feeling like you're being pulled in 12312 different directions.

 

Let's keep each other accountable (and because I'm a nerd about these kinds of things) - share your block schedules! What are you making time for?

 

P.S. Make this process easier by downloading the FREE workbook that I designed specifically for this post. You're welcome 

Block Scheduling

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Travel Diary: Tokyo 2015 (Part 2)

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"Once you’ve met someone you never really forget them."

A line taken from the famous Studio Ghibli film, 'Spirited Away.' While I've yet to watch the film, this line resonated with me. I think of every destination similar to how you would see a person: full of unique personality, different appearances and having their own particular charm. Some places left me in awe while others left a lackluster impression.

Tokyo captivated me.

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For our last two days in Tokyo, we decided to let our inner tourists to take the stage, mostly visiting traditional, historical destinations. Seeing these magnificent structures with my own eyes - after years of seeing it in mangas and animes - left me speechless and filled with gratitude.

DAY 4: Asakusa, Ueno, Odaiba

December 16, 2015

Our busiest day in Tokyo, definitely! After a home-cooked breakfast, we made our way to Asakusa to visit Sensō-ji, a Buddhist temple and the oldest one in Japan. Once you step out of Asakusa Station, you'll immediately see the Kaminarimon (Thunder Gate). Going through Kaminarimon will lead you to a shopping alley of sorts, reminiscent of how markets used to be in Japan, called Nakamise. Eventually, you'll reach the inner gate, Hozomon (Treasure House Gate), and beyond that is Sensō-ji, among other structures.

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The temple grounds is beautiful, like a scene plucked out from a movie.

We spent a lot of time marveling at the details of each structure, the stories that came with it, and the culture that it helped foster.

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From the temple grounds, you can see the imposing structure of the Tokyo Skytree! After spending what it seemed like the entire day at Sensō-ji, we made our way to Ueno-koen.

When I think about the few hours we spent at Ueno-koen, the word 'serene' comes to mind. The park area was massive but very open and spacious. Yoyogi-koen was filled with tall trees so it made me feel enclosed and enveloped by nature but Ueno-koen made me feel free and expansive.

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To end our day, we went to Odaiba for the life-size Gundam statue because #childhooddreams  From Ueno-koen, we had to transfer to Rinkai Line to get to Diver City (the names sounded so Pokemon-esque!). The moment we stepped onto the Rinkai Line train, I felt like the vibe shifted from modern professional to nerdy gamer real quick!

There were Mario-inspired signage inside the train and the station we alighted at was called the Tokyo Teleport Station. Love it.

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The Gundam statue was... huge. For reference, just look at the photo below where Nico stands a couple of feet away from the statue. And the amount of detail that went into it? Insane. Down to the 'Caution' signs for each part - as if pilots were actually assembling and using the Gundam suit.

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This day was tiring and we definitely hit our 'tourist' quota. I think my health app registered around 18,500 steps! We also had to start packing since we're moving to Osaka the next day.


Quick commercial break // This has been in the works for about a year and a half already... I'm launching an e-course on analog travel memory-keeping! I am PASSIONATE about introducing a better way to relive your travel experiences (yes, I am throwin' some slight shade on social media...), a way where you can TANGIBLY  flip through the stories of your past adventures.

This course - Craft Your Travel Story - isn't launching until May 2017 BUT I want to help you get started with travel memory-keeping while you wait excitedly ;) This is why I created this FREE comprehensive five-day e-mail course, The Travel-keeper Bootcamp!

Craft Your Travel Story - coming soon!

In this bootcamp, I will be sharing very practical + actionable tips, intentional systems and methods to help you document the details your travel experiences, take photos that accurately tell your stories, and gather ephemera as your "hard evidence." This bootcamp will prepare you a lot when it comes to finally creating your analog travel album.

You can join this bootcamp - did I mention that it's completely free? - by clicking here and signing up on that page or just leaving your name + e-mail below:


DAY 5: Tochō, Nakano Broadway, Tokyo Midtown Illuminations, Traveling to Osaka

December 17, 2015

Our final day in Tokyo! I honestly loved the city - the mix of nature, history and modernity just gets me excited and pumped. Every corner is always a new discovery. If it weren't for the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, I would've preferred to stay in Tokyo for the rest of the trip. But alas, all good things must come to an end... for now. This just means I need to make my way back to Tokyo soon, right?

We went back to Tochō because we wanted to check out the view from the other observatory that was closed then. The view here is even more stunning because you get to see how, literally, Yoyogi-koen is in the middle of the sprawling city. The cloud of trees juxtaposed with the thousands of Tokyo buildings was an interesting sight.

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After failing at finding anything we liked at Akihabara (the place was just too in-your-face for us), I took Nico to Nakano Broadway. I went here last 2014 at the recommendation of my professor and I really prefer this over Akihabara. They have the older mangas and animes (my faves are the classic ones - Rurouni Kenshin, Hunter x Hunter, etc.) so we had more luck finding Zero (Nico's favorite character, ever) here than in Akihabara. (Spoiler alert: no luck, apparently )

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After checking out from our Airbnb, we had time to kill before our overnight bus ride to Osaka. Tina recommended that we see an illuminations show at the Tokyo Midtown Plaza.

We went there and you guys, the Christmas / holiday spirit is strong with this one! There were beautiful light installations everywhere and the Plaza had this romantic vibe with it. We bought coffee and my favorite Starbucks dessert in Japan (why can't we have this in Manila??) and spent the night just perusing through the installations and taking lots of bokeh shots.

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The actual illuminations show was short but it puts you on a trance-like state. I uploaded a video on Instagram:

https://www.instagram.com/p/_s3feejRsa/?taken-by=pam.llaguno

After the Illuminations, we hurried back to our Airbnb to grab our luggage and then went off to Tokyo Station to catch our overnight bus (there's a fail-moment here as well, continue reading...) but guess what, we missed our bus! It turns out that instead of taking the train that goes directly to Tokyo Station, we rode the one that goes around the Yamanote Line. The mere five-minute difference meant that we arrived two minutes late at the station.

Japan is REALLY serious about their time, a stark contrast to the infamous 'Filipino Time.' After a panicked few minutes, we booked another overnight bus via JR Express and cozied up on our uber comfortable seats.

 

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****

And this ends the Tokyo leg of our trip! Five days in Tokyo is NOT enough especially if you're like us who prefer slow traveling. Quite a chaotic night but it does live up to the 'Tokyo' rep. Here's a visual of most of the places we visited:

[aesop_map sticky="off"]

Oyasuminasai, Tokyo!

If you haven't seen the first post in the series - where we visited Meiji Shrine, Yoyogi Park, Shibuya, Shinjuku, Imperial Palace and more - you can read that right here.

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Project Life 2016: January Layout #1 (+ a start-to-finish video!)

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I'm on a roll with Project Life these days so I worked on the January layouts last weekend. I'm doing a monthly format for Project Life this year - which just means that I'm not confining myself to a certain number of layouts per week - and it's been life-changing especially with the smaller 9x12" format. Project Life 2016: January (+ a start-to-finish video!) | Crafted by Pam

I'm also switching this up a bit and filmed a process video on a couple of the layouts that I made for January. So if you would rather watch me make the layouts, just scroll over to the end of this post ✌️

Here you go, one of my first January life layouts:

Project Life 2016: January (+ a start-to-finish video!) | Crafted by Pam

JOHN & YOKO. I've always passed by this restaurant and tried it finally with my mom and sisters. They recently renovated and changed their aesthetic from a bistro vibe to a industrial / scandinavian vibe. Loving it. I had to take a photo of their pendant lighting and white brick walls!

Project Life 2016: January (+ a start-to-finish video!) | Crafted by Pam

INSTAX SHARE. You guys know how in love I am with this little white device. My layouts + workspace have been upgraded ever since I started printing out Instax photos. Instant mood-lifter, y'all. I've used this soooo much already. Exhibit A. Exhibit B.

Project Life 2016: January (+ a start-to-finish video!) | Crafted by Pam

Project Life 2016: January (+ a start-to-finish video!) | Crafted by Pam


WALKTHROUGH: January 2016 Layout #1

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pY5KVwe8TAo

That's a wrap! I went for a more simple vibe for this layout since I was technically catching up. I also filmed other layouts from January but that's for a separate blogpost ;)

If you're also into the pocket-page memory-keeping thing, share your layouts in the comments below! I'd love to follow and explore more memory-keepers.

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