Introduction: Unique Tangible Memory Book
Here’s how to make your own tangible and customizable memory book! Looking back at memories has become such an impersonal experience as we only scroll through our phones or computers to do so. This project will teach you how to make your own memory book using tangible elements to include a tactile connection for looking through memories. Here’s what you’ll need to complete this project:
Six pieces of paper
- You can choose how large or small your paper will be, I recommend a paper that has much more length than height as you will be folding it in half. I’m using papers that are 50.5 cm x 27 cm, or around 19.9 in x 10.6 in. You are also free to choose how many pieces of paper you have as long as you keep it an even number. You can also choose the color but I’d recommend using white paper.
One piece of colored paper, the same size or slightly larger as the rest of the paper
Personal photos (you can also add small paper objects that you can stick onto paper, such as concert tickets, notes, etc)
Different textured paper: (I use the following but you can vary it as you wish)
- Velvet-like paper
- Fishnet ribbon
- Tissue paper
- Rough paper
Something to paste the photos with: you can choose any method you prefer but I’ll be using stick spray, it’s all about preference
Needle and thread
- Again, the thread size and color is customizable, I’m using a small white one for my demonstration.
A small sharp tool to poke holes in paper with (can be the needle or scissors)
Paper folding tool (optional)
Cutting mat (optional as well but I’d recommend using it to avoid any damage to your table)
Once you have all the materials, you can get started! Here’s a step by step on how to complete your own memory book!
Step 1: Measuring the Paper
Measure your paper horizontally using a ruler and mark the half of it with a pencil.
Step 2: Folding the Paper
Fold your paper in half, and repeat this will all of the pieces you have. I use the folding tool to ensure precision since I’m using a thicker paper, but you can easily do it using a ruler.
Step 3: Dividing Your Paper
With your ruler, divide one piece of paper into 6 equal parts vertically in the half of the paper, and mark these with a pencil.
Step 4: Poking Holes for Stitching
Using your small sharp tool, poke holes in the paper in the spots where you marked it in step 3.
Step 5: Poking Holes in All Papers
Now, put your papers directly on top of one another with the one that has the holes on top. Grab your sharp tool and start going through the spots that were just made on the first piece of paper, but now poking the holes in the rest of the paper.
You can do so either by laying the paper down or standing it up. In the video, I stood it up since the paper I am using is thicker than usual, and it was easier for me to poke the holes this way.
Step 6: Two Booklets
Next, separate your paper into two equal piles and make them booklets. Make sure that each booklet has the same amount of papers.
Step 7: Cutting a Thread
Measure a piece of thread around three times larger than the height of the paper, and cut it.
Step 8: Stitching the Spine
Put your thread through the needle and tie a knot at the end that was just passed.
Then, put the needle and thread through the bottom hole of the first booklet from the inside. Pass it around the outside and pass it through the second hole. Repeat this until you reach the last hole, and when you do so, do the same but now in a downwards direction. You can use the video attached for referencing how I did this. Important to note: as you are passing the needle, make sure that the thread remains tight and sturdy on the sides of the paper.
Once you have finished, without cutting the thread, tie a knot with the remainder of the thread that was just woven into the spine of the book with the remainder from the piece you originally tied. Tie it down tightly so that the thread does not budge.
Step 9: Repeat
Repeat steps 7-9 with the second booklet.
Step 10: Interweaving Booklets
Afterwards, place the booklets next to each other with the spines on the outer sides.
Open the booklets to the last page and begin to intercalate the pages from the opposing booklets to make one booklet. This way, your book will be much more interactive and interesting to go through than a normal booklet. Look at the video for reference as to how to intercalate the pages and how it should look like at the end.
Step 11: Adding Memorabilia!
Now that the structure of the book is complete, grab your photos, tickets, and any other small stickable memorabilia and begin to accommodate it to your liking. When you have filled all the pages, paste it to the pages using your preferred method. You can accommodate the pictures and objects however you like.
You can either paste the photos in this step or wait until you add the textures to the pages. I preferred to paste them until I added textures, but it’s up to you! Remember you can use tape, glue, or anything else you’d prefer! I’m using a scotch spray, the photos are shown in the next step.
Make sure you don't add anything to the very first or last pages, as you will be using these as cover pages!
Step 12: Adding Textures!
Following this, you are now ready to include the tangible elements that will enhance your memory book. Begin to look through the pages, and as you do so pick up the different textured paper and associate them with your pictures and memories. As you look at each picture, think, what would this moment feel like physically? Tough? Soft? Rough? Crinkly?
Once you have made an association, place a piece of textured paper onto the page or nearby the photo that you associated it with. This way, when you are looking at a picture you can feel it as well and make memories more tangible. You don’t have to add textures for every single page and photo, I’d recommend doing it with the ones you feel the strongest connection with!
Observe the attached images for getting an idea of how to do so. By this step, paste the pictures if you haven’t done so along with the textures.
Step 13: Adding a Cover
Next, grab your colored paper and paste it to the first and last pages of your booklet to have a cover for the book. See the video attached for reference, and decorate it to your liking!
Step 14: Enjoy!
Your customized tangible memory book is now ready to be enjoyed! To go through it, make sure you are interweaving the pages as you did so in the beginning as you set up the structure, and place it in the same order once done! Enjoy looking through your memories!
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