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Mini Album: Reading Journal

Join @heyelsie on the @PinkPaislee blog today, as she creates an adorable and whimsical reading journal, from just one piece of paper. No machines required! #PinkPaislee #ppOhMyHeart #MiniAlbum #DIY #ReadingJournal

Hi everyone, it’s Elsie again and I’m kicking of Mini Album week with an easy-to-make mini album.

I was so inspired by this mini album Paige made. I unfortunately don’t own a die-cutting machine, so after a quick search and a couple of trial runs I found a way I could create a one page mini album without a machine – phew!

14This album can totally be made into whatever you want it to be and it’s super versatile to your needs because it’s so quick and simple to make.

I created a bright and whimsical reading journal, but first, let’s get into how I constructed the album…

pp1_edited-1Take whatever sized paper you have in the colour/pattern you would prefer. I chose to use a 12×12 piece of white cardstock because I wasn’t limited to a particular colour scheme so I could be more flexible with my pages’ designs.


  • Firstly, fold your piece of paper in half.
  • Then fold one of the halves back to that centre fold, and repeat on the other side to get a ‘M’ or ‘W’ looking fold.
  • Unfold your paper out, turn it and fold it in half the other way, you will end up with a piece of paper with 8 sections.
  • Next, cut across three sections along the centre fold.
  • The easiest way I’ve found to get the book assembled quickly is to know that the two sections of paper that haven’t been cut through will be the centre of your notebook, so if you accordion fold each half of the paper to those centre pages, you’ll have your book in no time!

(Keep scrolling to the end to see a video tutorial of this!)

13I chose to adhere the pages together so I would have a more traditional style album, but you could definitely experiment with the pages and create pockets or an accordion style mini album!

15And now onto the fun part: decorating!

I was totally inspired by the book paper (Paper 15) from the Oh My Heart collection; it’s definitely one of my all-time favourite papers (I think I’ll need an infinite supply of it!)

I decided to create a reading journal so I could fussy-cut and use as many of these adorable little books as possible!

21The front and back covers were so simple to decorate as I used another all-time favourite: Paper 21. It’s such a unique paper, and I totally thought it could work as a bookshelf! I didn’t do anything more to the cover, as the paper was pretty enough.

pp2_edited-1The album ended up being a little chunky, so I adhered a button from my stash to the front and some thread on the back cover so I could tie the book up and keep it a little more condensed.

I’m still having a bit of a love affair with the charms from Oh My Heart so I adhered one to the end of the thread for some more prettiness.

3I knew I wanted to decorate each page individually and play with as many papers/embellishments and ideas as I could. With mini albums like this it’s great if you have one cohesive element that you can feature on each page. Paper 15 was perfect for doing this. By popping a few of those fussy-cut books onto each page, it made the album feel cohesive and add some whimsical charm!

4To make this album into a reading log I printed the word ‘title’ on some vellum and glued at least one of those onto each page to a place where I will be able to write the title of the book and journal underneath.

5I also used the heart stamp from the Oh My Heart stamp set to create a rating system. I used some yellow ink to stamp the heart five times near each title prompt so I can quickly rate each title alongside any notes I have about the books.

89To create some more space for journaling I made some pockets to slip some spare sheets of the note paper included with the stamp set, I used washi tape with a journaling card to create a flip-up pocket and side folding pages. They’re super easy to make and I really love mini albums to have some interactive elements so these ideas are perfect for that.

111067And as a little bonus project, I created this bookmark. I used a cut-apart from the specialty paper, created a tassel with some embroidery thread, and also attached one of the gorgeous charms. This would make a really cute gift for any booklovers out there, but I’m selfishly keeping this one for myself!

12I’ve got a process/tutorial video for you below, as well as a separate flip-through video.

Don’t forget to pop back to the blog this week, for some more mini album inspiration!

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9 Responses to "Mini Album: Reading Journal"

  • Angela Styles
    March 27, 2017 - 10:07 am

    This is such a lovely idea-love all the decorations.
    What happened to the Process video link as that would have be so useful!

    • Elsie Robinson
      March 27, 2017 - 10:47 am

      Thanks, Angela :) I’ve just uploaded it. Sorry it’s a little late, but it’s taken 8 hours to upload ahhhh!!

      • Angela Styles
        March 27, 2017 - 11:06 am

        Thanks so much Elsie-thanks for going to so much trouble. I shall look forward to watching it!

  • S. Molinari
    March 27, 2017 - 1:26 pm

    I didn’t think I needed this paper collection, but you have definitely sold me on it. Adorable!

    • Elsie Robinson
      March 29, 2017 - 8:11 am

      Yay! Sorry (not sorry) for being an enabler – haha! 😉

  • Marie-Pierre
    March 27, 2017 - 1:47 pm

    This mini book is so so cute Elsie! I absolutely love your unique way of embellishing.
    I’m thinking of using your idea to make a cute reading log for my daughter. She will have to learn to write small though. :)

    • Elsie Robinson
      March 29, 2017 - 8:24 am

      Thank you, Marie-Pierre :) And writing small is a sacrifice she’ll have to make for a cute reading log haha! 😉

  • Angela Styles
    March 27, 2017 - 4:06 pm

    Enjoyed watching the process video-fun to watch you go through all the choices & several new ideas for embellishments. Thank you!

    • Elsie Robinson
      March 29, 2017 - 8:12 am

      Thank you Angela, I’m so glad you liked it! :)