School photos. Packaged school photos. The annual event where you pick out your kids outfit (IF you are lucky enough to have any say), and send your little cuties off to school, crossing your fingers that they pay attention to the whacky things their hair might be doing, keep their shirts tucked in and their collars down (unless you prefer to live like 1985 and want to flip, I won’t judge), don’t have crumbs on their face, and smile their best smile at a complete stranger with their hands folded and a purple sunburst in the backdrop.
I can tell you I’m not a fan of picture day, especially being part of an artistic community,where photos are the focal point of our everyday. But I get suckered into package A with pose C3, etc., every time. How else am I going to get the class photo? And watch this be the time I don’t purchase her individual photo but she has an adorable smile. Ack! It’s a dilemma.
And what do you do with that great big 5x7, maybe 2 of them, after your picture package returns, she wasn’t crossing her eyes, shirt was tucked, hair in place and you aren’t after retakes? Do you keep it in the windowed envelope forever? Frame it, hoping the purple sunburst backdrop matches your décor…. Somewhere?
I’ve passed out the wallets to family in the past, but I admit to having one or two contact sheets still in the Lifetouch envelope. Is that bad?
To break away from that habit, and because of the super cute School Spirit line, I decided to put a 5x7 photo to good use on a layout that doubles as a pocket for school paraphernalia you get throughout the school year.
I started with a kraft cardstock base, and then trimmed the school house “Study Hall” print at 11.5 inches wide by about 6 inches tall, and adhered it to my base, at the top.
This will be the back of my pocket, so I stitched all the way around it to help prevent any memorabilia from getting lost or hung up on the patterned paper. I didn’t use a whole sheet of this paper as most of it is hidden and I want to be able to use it for other projects.
After this step, I took the “Ruler” print and trimmed it to 11.5 inches wide by 8 inches.I used a postage edge border punch to trim the top of this piece. This decorative edge is the top of my pocket, and I want to make it tough, as it is paper after all. To do that I trimmed an 11.5 by 2 inch strip of the same paper, only the reverse side, and adhered that. I then added a border sticker to the top.
After doing this, I stitched the pocket.
Two things to note:
1. I stitched through the border sticker. Stitching through adhesive can be really hard on your needle, so keep that in mind should you run into trouble later. I am lucky in that it has never been an issue for me, but it can be. You might need to change yours.
2. I did not stitch all the way around the perimeter. I only stitched around the top of the pocket, and down about two inches on each side.
Now that you have completed this portion, it is time to do your stamping and adhere the stickers.
Using stamps I made a place for Morgan’s name, her school name, and her teacher’s name. I was able to use Phrase stickers to finish the look. As soon as I can catch her, I’m going to have Morgan sign her own name. I think in addition to saving the accolades and performance records in this pocket with her photo, it’s also important to document things like her own handwriting.
Now we are ready to attach our pocket.
I didn’t use any adhesive to hold down the top of my pocket before stitching. I just held it in place and went slow. I started stitching on top of my previous stitching, about an inch and a half down the side of the pocket. I then stitched around the bottom and back up the other side, stopping about ½ inch into my previous stitching. There is a reason we left a flap open:
This is a pocket, which means the pieces will be separated and eventually it will be bulky with memorabilia. Because of that, I thought it might be helpful if there was a little gap between the base of the pocket and the outer portion of the pocket. With that in mind, at the top 2 inches on each side of my pocket, I arranged 3d foam squares on each side. I used small squares (about ¼ x ¼ inch squares).
This gives a wee bit of a gap and I’m hoping the paper is able to flex better than if it was stitch, and that the flexibility of the squares will help prevent the paper from tearing.
After I finished this step, I adhered the photo, tucked in the fall review and a bit of praise,and voila, Morgan’s First Grade Pocket is complete.
I hope this gives you some ideas with those 5x7 photos you purchased in your picture package that have been gathering dust! ~ Davinie Fiero
P.S. In the end, the gamble was a wash. Her photo was …. Okay, fine really, but I had high hopes. High, I say. She had *just* had four front teeth pulled, her first baby teeth lost. Mama was hoping for a great big toothless grin. I’m still happy with a somewhat happy looking face though! Lifetouch has done it again! :)