BONUS | Putting It All Together

Introduction by Jen.

It’s hard to believe that summer is coming to a close, and that with it, so is the #littlesummerJOY project. We hope that over the last six weeks you’ve gathered images that truly represent your summer joys from enjoying the golden hour, to finding your own sparks of serendipity.

If you haven’t yet compiled these photos into a project or album, now is the time – we find that documenting stories when they are fresh in our minds helps us to solidify those memories while providing the most details to look back on in the future.

We are thrilled to have Annette sharing one final bonus lesson with all of us — a lesson about putting it all together, a lesson full of new techniques to try.

Truly, we can’t wait to see your albums, and for you – and your families! – to look back on them in the summers to come.



Hello again! I wanted to share some of the techniques I’m using in the album. Keep in mind that you can adapt these ideas to work for your particular album. I know there are a variety of types of albums you guys are using, so I tried to give some examples of other options as well.

My Album

My album: I am using a 4×4 mini album and am having a blast with it.  I decided my goal with this album was to just play. So that’s what I’m doing! Playing with photos, product and techniques in this album. I’m challenging myself to have adventures with new tools and techniques. I’m including memorabilia / found treasures. In addition, I’m loving finding ways to create curiosity and serendipity in my album with peek through and hidden elements. Variations: If you are using a journal or even a photobook, there are still ways you can include these elements. Basically ask yourself, how can I make these pages (or this book) feel like an adventure? How can I create serendipity for someone looking through it? Have fun with it. If you are stuck, please share on the message board!

The Techniques

I have a few ideas for techniques for you. You can choose to use one or more of these ideas if you wish.

Include Your Found Treasures and Memorabilia

I think this is the easiest one to start with. And the simplest way is to just include it! Try using paperclips, washi tape, or a stapler to include it onto your page. Or try scanning it in / photographing it and include a photo or your treasures.



These are a few pages from one of my early travel journals. I simply added the pressed flower and the sketch (remember about sketches! Those can be really fun and can show things a photo may not!) I think the flower adds a really lovely touch. And has held up well considering this was from 2008!


Remember a simple way to include memorabilia is using an envelope. Here we collected pressed pennies and I added them to my 2011 summer mini album. It was so much fun for my daughter to find the hidden treasures in here later.


Here I added part of a postcard onto an envelope in the album (I added receipts and other small things into the envelope.)


And here I simply stapled some business cards onto patterned paper to add them to my album. Simple and fun to look at and it instantly brings me back to this trip.


For my current album I simply added the sticker from “Hey Cupcake!” onto a transparency page. This gave me both a way to include the found treasure and begin creating more curiosity with the peek through space around the circle.

Encourage Curiosity

Using peek through elements- overlays, vellum, confetti pockets. all are fun and invite you to open up and see what’s inside.

Here are a few examples of this. Using it for title pages is probably my favorite thing to do, but I’ll use it though out my albums as well. The first example is in my #30Lists Moleskine album. I used a vellum envelope to add my title. I used adhesive on the backside of the flap and it worked great.


The second example is a confetti title page for my Summer Happiness mini I created a few years ago. I embossed the title on vellum, added the fun stars and sequins, then stitched it closed. My example in this year’s album is to layer the peek though elements thoughout my album. For my pages with this prompt, it starts with the title of the prompt. I used a transparency with a number on it and added my title using letter stickers. I have kept the title pages consistent in this album to create cohesion and continue this feel.



I also used the Fuse tool to create some confetti pockets in the 2×2 spaces which are so fun and invite you to keep looking to see what’s next. I have a short video to show this if you are interested.

Incorporate Serendipity Within Your Album

I like to include surprise elements as many people do. This can include hidden journaling, extra pages and photos, etc. Maybe include a “treasure map” to show where you went and where / when you found your treasures / serendipity! how cool would that be! Envelopes are great to use too.

Be sure to check out Mandy’s Tradition Prompt in Lesson 5 as she also used this technique! For my example I incorporated a few of these ideas.


First, on the back of the transparency with the Hey Cupcake sticker, I created a “surprise” circle accordion album. It got a little thick so I am holding that page protector together with a star paperclip. I love how this turned out and is such a fun way to include more photos and journaling.


Second, I used the Fuse tool again. This time to create an additional photo / journaling flip out pocket page for hidden journaling. It worked great! I also have a video to show this technique. If you are using a journal, consider adding in an envelope to house your additional photos / journaling. I can’t wait to see what you come up with!

Have an Adventure with New Techniques and Tools

I love this idea because it’s including curiosity, open-mindedness and a willingness to try new things in not only your adventure you are documenting, but with the techniques you are using to create your project!! Mind blowing, I know! 🙂

But seriously, have fun with some new techniques!! I’m seeing such fun projects and people trying new variations of techniques pop up in the #LittleSummerJoy hashtag, so I know you guys are doing this. And isn’t it fun? I think that’s part of what Julie and Jen are encouraging us to try with Little Paper Projects. It’s part of learning, growth and just plain having fun. And I’m excited to share I’ve finally used not only the Fuse tool, but also my die-cutting machine I bought over a year ago! I also played with some watercolor and I was reminded that I want to use it more. I just love it.


And I stamped directly on my photos. Not something new for me, but something I want to do more of. I tend to use a lot of digital stamps prior to printing. The beauty of using regular stamps is that you have inherent imperfection built into your project. Less perfectionism in this album is a good thing for me.


My main focus of this album is just to play. Play with products. Play with new techniques. Play with photos and story. To lighten up, have fun and not compare my project with what other people are doing. The main idea is to try something new in the creation of your project somewhere. If you have questions or tips I know we would love to hear about it on the message board!


Putting It All Together

I know I shared a lot. Please don’t feel like you have to do everything! For this lesson I want to challenge you to do one or more of the following: (yes, just one is totally okay!)

  1. Review your summer manifesto list / adventure list. See if there is an adventure you want to make happen before the end of the summer.
  2. Say yes! Pick an adventure and go for it. Make a plan. Make it happen. Just go!
  3. Follow your adventure: be open to serendipity and finding the little joys along the way with your adventure.
  4. Capture your adventure with photos, journaling, a sketch and/or found treasures.
  5. Reflect on the little joys you found. Make a list or journal about it further if you wish.
  6. Create a page or layout in your Little Summer Joy album, journal or planner to document your adventure and any magical moments that came along the way. Try to include some new technique in your creation of your page.


Adventure is more than going on a voyage somewhere. Make your own adventures and follow serendipity.  Your adventure can be simple or grand. At home or far away. It doesn’t matter. What matters is our openness, our spirit of adventure and the joy in our hearts.

Make some magic, capture it, collect a treasure to take with you, reflect on it, then make a page in your Little Summer Joy album, notebook or planner to document it. Try to incorporate a bit of curiosity and serendipity in your album. Try including your found treasures as well.

Most of all have fun and enjoy your journey! Thank you for being here with me for these lessons! I hope you enjoyed it!

Happy adventuring!