Pocket Scrapbooking with Project Life

Cultivate a good life and record it.

Mar

1st

how to set up a baby album

There are a few ways to to look at this post:

1. I have a friend who would love this as a gift.

2. I have a baby and want to document their life along the way.

3. I’m going to have a baby soon and this would be perfect for me.

4. I have a baby (or babies) … that are now much, much older (not a baby at all) but I’d still love to go back and get those photos + memories into an album.

5. I am interested in getting my own baby pictures into an album.

That said, I want to share with you my own personal experience of putting together a baby Project Life album as a GIFT. I did this whole thing in less than 2 hours and it’s completely ready to slip those pictures into the album, start to finish, without having to do anything other than jot down the notes and memories and stories about Baby’s First Year.

Before I dive in, I want to emphasize that the Baby Edition – just like every other edition of Project Life – is designed with flexibility. This means that once the product is in your hands, it’s yours to do whatever you want. Leave it simple or get creative. Do what motivates you to actually do it. That’s the key.

When I designed the organization + content + functionality of the Baby Edition there was a great deal of thought and several revisions that went into that process before I even had our wonderful designer Lili Niclass work on the graphic designs and color palettes. I’ll spare you the details of that process, but I think you’ll LOVE that there are so many details in the Baby Edition of Project Life that will HELP you recall those baby memories you want to record. Particularly the journaling prompts sprinkled throughout the cards.

step by step process of how I recommend setting up the album

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As with any other Project Life album, there are 3 components you need – and nothing else (unless you WANT to add more): Album + Project Life Core Kit + Big Pack of Photo Pocket Pages (which comes with 60 pages, a perfect fit for 1 album). I do personally think the Month Dividers for a baby album are just so fun and so perfect so while you don’t “need” them … you’d love them.

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Step 1: Place all the Photo Pocket Pages in the album and open your Core Kit.

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In every Project Life Core Kit you’ll find a list of contents so that you’ll have an overview of what’s there.

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Step 2: Place all the First Page cards + Last Page cards in the respective pockets. There are (8) 4×6 cards and (8) 3×4 cards on the top of the stacks that are designed for the First Page and Last Page of the album. You’ll  know because they’re indicated as such on the back of each of those cards and therefore look different than all the other cards in the box.

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Step 3: If you have a place to spread out (remember – it’s temporary if you want to knock this out in one sitting) … spread out all the cards that are specific Prompt Cards. These are different than typical Journaling Cards because instead of just having lines and designs, they actually include a prompt on the card.

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Step 4: As for the rest of those cards that are “just” Journaling Cards (no prompts) … go ahead and get those out too. Because there are several of each of those designs, I like putting them out in little stacks so I can have an overview of all that is available to me at any given time, while I’m slipping cards into pockets. You may notice that I even flipped over most of those to see a glimpse of what the back of the card is, since I always have the option with each and every card.

Step 5: Place the rest of the cards in pockets. The following layouts show you what I had in mind for the entire album, layout by layout. Like I said, you don’t have do follow this, but for those of you who appreciate some guidance … this is for you.  ; )  NOTE: Every space that is WHITE represents where a photo goes.

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Title Page

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Your Heritage. This layout gives an overview of those who came before Baby, so Baby has a little background on his or her ancestors. Obviously the Baby Edition is just as popular for adopted children as well. This can be applicable as you see fit. Include pictures of grandparents and beyond, if you want.

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Story of Us. This layout is dedicated to Baby’s parents and gives you the chance to add pictures and anecdotes about Mom and Dad. They’re a pretty important part of Baby’s story too, after all.

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Our Family. Whoever Baby’s family is … that’s what this layout is for. Think cousins and other extended family … of course siblings and immediate family.

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Expecting You. Those months leading up to Baby’s arrival, including of course the pregnancy.

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Being Showered. If there was a baby shower or celebration in honor of mom-to-be, great. Even if there wasn’t, this is a great place to include any service that was rendered to the family during those weeks and months leading up to Baby’s arrival.

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Gifts. You know … like the stuff people gave to Baby and the parents-to-be – before or after the arrival.

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Birth Day. Speaking of arrival … this layout is for the big day. I think it’s a great place to “set the scene” of that day before getting to the pictures of Baby actually showing up.

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Your Arrival. NOW Baby actually appears in his or her Baby Album! You see, everything to this point tells the story of the people and circumstances that led to this beautiful little person coming into the world. Now we’re focusing the majority of our attention in the album on Baby.

The Day You Were Born. A little more on the details about that very special occasion.

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Your Very First Days of Life. Bringing Baby home from the hospital, or in some cases for some babies – perhaps an extended period of time at the hospital.

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First Home. About Baby’s first home, first town, first surroundings.

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Your Bedroom. Maybe Baby had a decked-out nursery or maybe they slept in Mom & Dad’s closet for several months. Plus, we are now getting to the Time Capsule. All the little details of when Baby was born and what the world was like at that time. If you’re going back to past years … no problem. Just google that year and there are lots of sites that are literally time capsules of main events, headline news, popular people, books, movies, and fashion, cost of living, etc.

babyalbum22

 

 

Your Bedroom. Maybe Baby had a decked-out nursery or maybe they slept in Mom & Dad’s closet for several months. Whatever. Plus, we are now getting to the Time Capsule (right side). All the little details of when Baby was born and what the world was like at that time. If you’re going back to past years … no problem. Just google that year and there are lots of sites that are literally time capsules of main events, headline news, popular people, books, movies, and fashion, cost of living, etc. – from ANY year.

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Blessing/Christening. If this is a religious practice in your family and part of Baby’s life, we have a card for each occasion. Take your pick, or just don’t use these 2 cards.

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Miscellaneous. The Baby Core Kit comes with plenty of Title Cards that are generic – not specific. Same with some of the prompts, that are not necessarily “time specific” or pertinent to any sort of “chronology” of the story. Use those however you want to fill in details of Baby’s story.

babyalbum25

 

Month 1. Now we head into the month-by-month layouts for Baby’s First Year. If you’re going back to your own babyhood, chances are you don’t have pictures for every month of your first year … or at least they’re not likely labeled accordingly. No problem. Just don’t use the month cards. But if you’re setting this up for your baby (or a friend’s), You can plan to just have a single layout per month which would be an overview of the highlights, memories, milestones, etc. from that month. Or – of course you can add additional layouts. NOTE: “Month 1” can mean the first month or at the month one mark or whatever makes the most sense to you. I like to use these cards as “this is the first month in your life, this is the 2nd month in your life…”

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This is an example of extending beyond just one layout. You’d simply have pictures and journaling cards as needed.

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Month 2. I’m just repeating the same idea here. Title Card in the upper left, the “Highlights & Milestones” card in the bottom right (there’s one for each month), and all the pictures and journaling cards in the other pockets.

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Again – this is just “another” layout that doesn’t need a title because it’s part of “Month 2”.

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Month 3. Same thing. Repeat, repeat, repeat until you get through Month 12. Then any other “filler” layouts you want. There will be special occasions that might warrant a full layout, for example. Whatever you want to do.

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Last Page. This is it. The end to the album – but not the story, of course.

You truly can summarize Baby’s First Year in one album. I know some of you have hundreds of darling pictures of your baby that are just so cute … and how can you possibly narrow down!? You can. Begin with the end in mind. It’s just the first year. Baby will undoubtedly be so grateful that he or she has an album FULL of their pictures and stories. You can totally narrow down. And if you just can’t … well then, spill into a second album and that’s okay too! It’s YOUR Project Life.

If you’re interested to see how I personally used Baby Project Life with actual pictures (for our son Crew), you can catch that on our YouTube channel.

…..

Where do you find the Project Life Baby products?

Same place you find ALL of our products – on the Products page! Under THE EDITIONS you’ll see BABY EDITIONS and there you’ll find one For Him, one For Her, and one that’s neutral enough to use for either. Everything links to where the products are sold on Amazon.

 

COMMENTS

58 Responses

  1. Colleen says:

    Becky. This is EXACTLY what I need. You are a peach! I am having a huge DUH! moment (smacking heel of hand into forehead).

    I get so up in my head with how creative to be that I never start. I am not only going to use this to make a baby album for a non-SBing friend, I am going to lay out my weekly PL too! Thank you so much for the inspiration, as always. Have a great weekend!

  2. I love the step by step, great guidance on what we might need! How many protector sheets did you need? Thanks!

    • You will want to purchase one of our Big Packs of Photo pocket pages – 60 pages in each box. Of course, if you add “extra layouts” throughout the book, you might need a few more. :)

  3. Elizabeth D. says:

    How this is just what I have been searching for. I watched your video to get started but keep getting stuck because I wasn’t sure which card to use. I am trying to make the album in advance so I can enjoy more time with my new little guy coming soon and my two daughters.

    I love this kit and all the journaling prompts and filler cards. I greatly appreciate the work your husband and you (plus your staff and designers) put into project life and I love seeing it grow and expand. Keep doing an excellent job and I love hearing your story of how you gave birth to project life and how far you’ve come. Gives others inspiration that anything is possible with hard work, support (thanks David and your kids), and loyal believers (thanks Lisa Bearnson).

    Thanks again for a great inspirational post for those just getting started with their baby kit and need some direction.

  4. Lindsay N says:

    Very nice, Becky! This is how I will set up my now 3 year old daughter’s baby book. Looking at the Boy Edition makes me want to have another baby! LOL!

  5. Kristin says:

    Thanks for the example and photos! I prefer smaller albums, would I be able to fit this into your mini album? Or would I need to purchase two mini albums for a baby’s first year?

    Love that you included the family history as part of the story?

    • brandi@beckyhiggins.com says:

      Our mini albums would not work very well with our full Baby kit, because there are sooooo many cards. Of course, you could just choose your favorite cards to use and then fit those into 1 or 2 mini albums. We do also have a Baby Mini Kit debuting in May that will work perfectly with our mini albums too!

  6. Marygail says:

    You make it look so easy! If I haven’t already bought your BH Sweet Baby kit off of someone on twopeas then I’d be doing this instead:)

  7. Kaycee says:

    I noticed that none of the pages you showed were the layout D. I’m sorta stumped on what to do with those pages! any suggestions?

    • Kaycee, I worked with the Big Pack of Design A so that’s why you see that consistency throughout – just to keep things simple. If you have vertical pictures to add (and certainly lots of people do!), that’s exactly why we have Design D and others that accommodate those. No reason to be stumped. All of the Prompt Cards and Title Cards are designed with double-sided art. So Side A is the vertical version of the art and Side B is the horizontal version of the art. Hope this makes sense.

      Bottom line: No matter of your photos are vertical or horizontal or both – the cards are completely flexible to work with YOUR photos. : )

  8. Emily S says:

    Thank you! I was one of the folks asking for this! I love the blue print for putting together a baby album for my baby girl arriving in June!

  9. Kim Douglas says:

    I have a ‘generic’ PL question…do you sell or do you know of any place that does…sells blank, colored cards that could fit in your page pockets? I love a lot of your preprinted cards, don’t get me wrong, I just would ‘benefit’ from some plain colored cards to do with as I want also.

    HELP! :)

    Thank you so much~
    Kim

  10. Jessica says:

    Have you or will you be posting album colors – either Project Life brand or American Crafts – that coordinate well with each edition?

    I’m doing a digital album with the baby boy kit and haven’t been able to decide what color album to use.

  11. Carmen Smith says:

    Great information, especially for non-scrappers. I have already given two of these as baby gifts. Will have to link them to this information.

  12. Melinda Higgins says:

    YES!

  13. Carrie Leavitt says:

    Thank you SOOO much Becky! I have had the supplies for months and just had never started…today, I did! No pictures yet but cards in pockets up til the months! So excited. Son’s book in progress and daughter’s book waiting patiently. AND ordered my niece that is expecting the gender neutral as a gift! WOW! So exciting. Thanks you for designing these AWESOME products.

    • Carrie says:

      OMG! Daughter’s book moving right along now! Very productive weekend. A few pictures in place for both books! Super excited. Even DREAMED of PL and getting those pictures in place! This is such a great feeling! Thank you, Thank you, Thank you.

  14. Jewel says:

    Thanks Becky, this is so awesome! I have only done two pages in my now 10 year old baby’s album because I was so overwhelmed and would often just stare at the supplies not accomplishing anything. This is such a doable system, can’t wait to finally get my son’s baby album done!

  15. Paula Oamen says:

    so wonderful!!! I am waiting for my baby for her kit..and this is just what I needed!! Going back to the first year when my DD is 3 will be a snap!!

    Thanks again Becky for so much inspiration, simplicity and dedication! God bless

  16. Carlita says:

    Hi Becky,

    Thank you this helped me set up my baby albums but I have really been wanting to get the childhood kits for my two older children. My question is are people starting them with the school year or birthday year? I am kind of stumped on where to start and that has kept me from ordering the kits. If you have any suggestions I would love to hear them.

    thanks,
    Carlita

  17. Mindy says:

    Thanks for this post! I just started my 3-mo-old’s album since we’re finally getting into a groove (her Daddy just graduated from Air Force boot camp, too! Lots of memories going into this album!). This post is so helpful for giving my a visual idea now that I’ve actually started.

    :)

  18. […] to be the same day I had my once a month scrapbooking date night with a friend, oh how I wished Becky’s post on setting it all up had existed then! I managed to do a bit of what she suggested on my own that night, and even […]

  19. Kelly says:

    This is incredible and so timely. I just ordered the baby kit for a good friend’s daughter (due today) and I can’t wait to put the main part together and present it to her as an incredible gift. My daughters are 25 and 23 and I would have loved to have this back then. Now I have to see if I think I can go back and “remember” in order to do one for each of them. Thanks once again Becky for always thinking of your customers and helping us with the best uses for your product, but still letting our creativity shine through.

  20. Deiga says:

    Thank you so much! I set my pages up yesterday in a couple of hours. I may have to move things around as I get to the different months (I’m doing my kids books, and they are ages 41 and 38 so the pictures are not 4 x 6), but I have the foundation set and that is what I needed.

  21. Davean says:

    I got the boy kit for Christmas but haven’t started using it yet. I had actually started Project Life for my son with one of your other kits, since the baby wasn’t available yet when he was born (last Feb). But I can’t wait to add some the the new kit into it! I am also saving TONS of stuff for his album… tags off of baby clothes, ribbons from clothes/presents, hospital stuff/doctor’s visit info, baby food labels, etc. Those little pockets are GREAT for all that extra stuff that you don’t really want or have time to scrapbook. I can’t wait to get it all done!! (Now if my son would just cooperate while I work on it! HA!)
    Thanks so much for all your hard work on these products.

  22. Tina McNamara says:

    GREAT tutorial on baby PL. I’m going to save this to my computer for future reference. Thanks, Becky.

  23. Saam Thorne says:

    Great minds! This is very close to the setup I have for Son2’s baby book. Son 1’s is coming very soon, as soon as I get an orange album for him :)

    Thanks for such a well designed kit.

  24. Pam says:

    I can’t thank you enough for this detailed tutorial! I am working on my daughters first year and this is incredibly helpful. Thank you!!!

  25. […] Making: My 30 days of lists album insert. I’m also thinking about putting together some pages to get ahead of my Project Life when Baby Bilas arrives, as per this post over at Becky Higgins’ blog. […]

  26. […] to do this before I started. It has helped me soooo much, and I know that when you couple this with Becky’s ideas on how to get the baby album set up, you will seriously have a lot of fun putting it all together. Oh…and don’t forget […]

  27. Nicole B says:

    Thank you so much for posting this! I was going to buy the kit for a shower present and had never thought of putting it all together for her! I’m so excited!

    Question on the one you did above, did you insert white cards for where photos go or is that just for the blog pictures?

    I started putting mine together tonight and since the cards are two sided, I feel like it is confusing. I’m giving this to a friend who does not know about project life.

    Thanks!

  28. […] Project Life Core Kit – Seafoam Edition – Day1USA – Survival Tips and Gear – Day1USA – Survival Tips and GearFor Sale Project Life Core Kit – Cobalt EditionLook Project Life Core Kit – Baby EditionUsing Project Life in My Family Albumsebonknight.comwelcome to Project LifePhoto Pocket Pages – Design BFrom Becky Higgins save nowProject Life StickersProject Life 2013how to set up a baby album […]

  29. […] most of the “basic” cards/pages for both boys. Becky has a walk thru on her blog here. I didn’t follow her pages exactly – but they definitely helped me get categories […]

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  31. cutebabyorganics says:

    Thanks to nice blog sharing for making baby album for restore nice memory of cute love ones.

  32. Melinda Strange says:

    I’m so glad someone on facebook pointed me to this post. I was given a baby pl kit and I want to start it for my newest granddaughter and, I’m going to get another as we have another granddaughter due Feb 2014. Whew!

    • Alison says:

      I was just wondering if the video sample would be coming back? I don’t see any anywhere on the site anymore.

  33. Dawn B says:

    I’m working on setting up a baby album for our daughter (due in April) and this post is SUPER helpful. Just wondering if there was a way to see the pictures full size. I think when you migrated to the new blog format the links to the full size pictures were broken. It’s hard to read some of the prompt cards now in the small photos. Thanks!!

  34. Honey Silvas says:

    Thanks for the detailed step-by-step instruction! This is very helpful!

  35. […] it: Here. Tips to make a Project Life Baby Book: Here How to set up a baby album, by Becky Higgins: Here A view of the first 11 pages of someone’s baby book: […]

  36. gecuarua says:

    Ola.. gostaria de saber como faço para adquirir um almbum para menina e esse kuit?

  37. […] is Nagini’s baby album. I basically followed this format of setting up my Project Life Baby album. I used the Baby Core Kit – For […]

  38. Melissa says:

    I just ordered my Project Life Baby and will be getting it this week! Eeek! So excited. I wanted to go through this post again to see how this was put together. BUT any idea why I don’t see any of the pictures?

  39. historical says:

    I just got my first project life kit which is the baby girl core kit. I find this article extremely helpful. However I can’t see any of the pictures, just broken links … Is there another place this article may be found with the pictures intact? Thank you

  40. Jami S. says:

    I bought everything needed to put this album together for my niece who is expecting her first baby in 2 weeks. We are getting together Saturday, so I sat down today to follow the pictorial instructions but the photos are gone/broken. I’m having a slight panic attack as I hadn’t left myself enough time to figure out these layouts on my own. I see from the two comments above mine that the photos have been gone for at least a couple of weeks. :(

    We so appreciate your hard work in putting this tutorial together! Now I’m hoping the pictures come back super soon!

  41. Kim says:

    Hi, I’m working on a project life baby album for my daughter who is expecting in February, 2015. I used this website link for my daughter-in-laws album and it was really helpful, however I’m finding that it is now broken? The pictures are missing and the link seems to be broken. It seems I’m not the only one having a panic attack.

    I too appreciate all the handwork you put in to this tutorial for all of us to use. Do you have any idea when this might be fixed?

  42. Jess says:

    I am trying to look at this blog post and can’t see the pictures. Is the link broken? Please help as I am trying to set up my baby book this week while my Mom’s in town!!! Thanks!

  43. Katie says:

    Hi – I’m also trying to access this great looking tutorial as I’m starting to create my baby’s album. Any way this will be fixed?? Is there a different link? Hopefully it’s just me!

    Thanks so much!

  44. Ashley says:

    Hi!
    Bumping this up in hopes that the admin will finally acknowledge the broken link :( First baby due soon and this sounds like an amazing tutorial if I could visually see what she’s talking about :)

    Thank you!

  45. […] Max’s First Year. I tried to find example albums and even read through Becky’s post on How to Set Up a Baby Album, but nothing seemed to fit what I was going for. So, as mentioned in my previous post, I completely […]

  46. Jenn says:

    I would also love to see the pictures that go along with this post. I’m just beginning a baby book and it would be awesome to see the baby album pages. Thanks! ! :)

  47. Great post. I am facing a couple of these problems.

  48. Kristal says:

    Please fix the photo links on this article! I’d love to be able to see what Becky is talking about so I can decide whether or not I want to use this kit for my own son’s baby book.

  49. Hannah says:

    I also can’t see any of the pictures in this post. I just got my baby kit and am wanting to get it set up while I’m still on spring break from teaching. I’ve tried it in both Mozilla and Explorer browsers and neither works. Please help!

  50. Really great post! Keep up the great work. I’ll be back to
    read more! :)

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