Whether you're completing a photo album to store favourite photos or to present as a gift for a friend or family member, add a deluxe touch by decorating the plain album cover. Use basic craft supplies or dimensional items to lend a nostalgic, practical or decorative touch to the front of the album. Choose embellishments that suit the tone and theme of the photos contained within the book.
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Add meaning to the decorative album cover with a nostalgic photo collage. Cut a piece of card stock so it measures 1 inch shorter and narrower than the photo album cover and use it as the background for the collage. If you're decorating the cover of a vacation photo album, for example, trim and arrange copies of favourite snapshots, postcards, business cards and snippets from travel brochures to the card stock, overlapping the items slightly. Attach the collage to the cover with double-sided tape.
Paper or Fabric
Take a cue from the Good Housekeeping magazine website and cover a plain photo album with a material such as card stock, patterned paper or fabric. If you're using a plastic photo album that features a clear pocket as the cover, simply cut a piece of decorative paper or fabric to the size of the plastic "window" and slip it in to transform the album's cover. If you're embellishing a hard-covered spiral-bound or three-ring album, for instance, cut a piece of paper, card stock or fabric to fit the front cover and affix it with double-sided tape.
If your photo album has a laminated cover, alter its look with a coat of acrylic paint. Apply two thin coats to ensure the cover won't bubble or warp. Once the base coat dries, add text or doodles with paint pens or embellish with paper flowers, chipboard letters or buttons attached with adhesive dots.
Design a functional embellishment for your photo album that you can use to hold memorabilia that accompanies the photos in the book. Buy an envelope with a string-style closure that coordinates with the album cover. Decorate the back of the envelope---so the flap will sit face up---with letter stickers to create a "label" for the photo album. Add themed scrapbook-style accents, such as stickers, rubber-stamped images or die cuts to complete the look. Use the envelope to hold memorabilia such as ticket stubs, brochures or postcards.
Give the photo album a whimsical touch with a cluster of custom-made accents affixed to the centre or bottom-right corner of the cover. Follow a suggestion from the Holiday Crafts and Creations website and create embellished felt flowers, for example. Simply cut the accents out of felt, patterned paper, craft foam or card stock or trace stencil shapes onto the material before cutting. Adorn the shapes with self-adhesive gems, designs stitched with embroidery floss or glitter glue and attach the pieces to the cover with adhesive dots or white glue.
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