Hello. Here's a mini book I made and taught as a Distress workshop in 2009. It's another example of how I like to construct my books using the same layout throughout the entire book. Let's start with the cover.
The cover is the last thing I complete when making a mini book. Even when I have a vision of what I'd like to see on the cover, it doesn't come together until I've put created the inside pages. The cover is also where I switch it up, meaning I don't apply the same techniques as the inner layouts. I do something different. In this case, it's:
1. A belted closure with lace ribbon stapled along one side.
2. Two stars cut from a piece of Grunge Board stamped and inked with two colors (Firebrick Red & Worn Lipstick) of Distress Ink. The pink star has a coat of Distress Stickles to give it a little shimmer.
The inner layouts each contain the same three techniques (numbered in the photo above). That's how I keep things consistent. I love repetition. Having a few rules allows you to work without getting stuck in the creative process. Can you see what the three techniques are?
3. Distressed tag : A manila tag stamped and colored with different Distress inks using a variety of techniques. My favorite is to apply ink using a piece cut-n-dry foam working my way into the tag from the outer edges. I also used Tim Holtz masks to create some of the two-toned motifs on the tags.
4. Rub-ons : For mini books, using a whole pack of rub-ons is practical. It helps carry your theme throughout the project.
5. Heat embossed motif : I used dark gray embossing powder to add another texture to each layout.
Another technique to help keep things interesting is to add one element that is different from the rest to one of the layouts. It's like a little surprise. In this case it is the gray tag in the layout above. And oops! Guess what? On the above layout I forgot to add a rub-on. This wasn't intentional. Just a reminder that a human made this ;-).
I also like to repeat elements and embellishments throughout my projects. Again, repetition is your friend. It takes a lot of the guess work out of putting mini books together. Can you see which other elements are the same throughout this project?
6. Large photos vs small photos : I love the contrast of two photo sizes. Also, a photo that goes off the edge of the paper means one less page design to figure out.
7. Titles : Surprise! I like to use the same alphabet throughout a project too. Two reasons for this. First, you guessed it!, continuity. And second, stash control. By using the same alpha I increase my chances of using up the whole pack and I don't have to store a half-used pack that doesn't have any more E's or A's or N's !
How do you create mini book? Do you start by creating the cover? Do you love repetition or do you prefer starting from scratch on each layout? I'd love to hear your take.