Preserving Children’s Art Work with Project Life – a Photo Tutorial

Hi, it’s Harkee from AS they grow here with this month’s PPS Design Team Project for you.  So far I’ve have taken you through my basic process for setting up a Project Life layout and shared some ideas on how to DIY your own Project Life themed cards. For this month’s project I want to do something a little different and instead of focussing on photos I’m going to show you how you can incorporate your children’s art work into your Project Life layout and even involve them in some of the journalling.

This month’s PPS challenge theme is “Hope” and I’ve been inspired by my children’s hopes and dreams for their future. We’ve known for years that my son (now almost 6) hopes to be a professional golfer when he grows up, he has been obsessed with golf literally since he could stand and hold a golf club! However, recently we were surprised to learn that our 3.5 year old daughter has also been thinking about what she wants to be when she grows up and out of no where came up with the idea that she wants to be a pilot so she can see the world! I love that she came up with this all by herself and knows exactly why she wants to do it.  She’s mentioned it a few times to my husband and I separately so it seems like she’s pretty set on it for now at least. Unsurprisingly, kids can change their minds though as their interests change and they discover new things and learn more about the world around them. So it is lovely to preserve their hopes and dreams at each stage to look back on and see how their hopes and dreams developed. Incorporating these into your Project Life albums is a great way to include them in your family’s story.


For this project I used:

  • Project Life 4″X6″ White Cards 100/Pkg
  • Project Life Pocket Pages – Design A
  • Martha Stewart Punch All Over The Page Punch – Flourish Square, 1.5”
  • Pinkfresh Studio Boys Fort Cardstock Stickers 4″X5″ 2/Pkg Mini Alpha
  • Dear Lizzy Star Gazer Double-Sided Cardstock 12″X12″ Just Peachy
  • Bazzill Dotted Swiss Cardstock 12″X12″ Poolside/Dotted Swiss
  • Bazzill Dotted Swiss Cardstock 12″X12″ Celtic Green/Dotted Swiss
  • Project Life Corner Rounder Punch
  • Fiskers Paper Trimmer
  • Tombow Mono Adhesive Dispenser Permanent
  • Adhesive Foam pads

The first thing I did was chat with my children about what they hope to be when they grow up and gave them blank 4″x6″ Project Life Cards to draw their dream job on. My son loves drawing so was quite happy and confident in drawing his but my daughter is still mastering pen control so she coloured in a sky and grass with felt tip pens and then stuck on airplanes from a pack of stickers we had in our craft supplies. An alternative to drawing directly onto the blank Project Life Cards, or where you want to preserve existing art work made at school for example, would be to take a photo or scan the art work and then use a home printer to print it directly onto the blank Project Life Card.

I also got them involved in the journalling aspect as I wanted to preserve their hopes and dreams in their own words. My son is now writing (although clearly still working on his spelling but I wanted to preserve the misspellings just as much as anything else!) so he wrote out his own cards. My daughter is not close to writing yet so I wrote down what she told me – I could have lettered it or typed it and printed it for a sleeker finisher but I wanted to keep this layout very relaxed and natural so felt tip pen in my usual daily handwriting it was!


These  hand drawn and hand written cards are the star pieces of this layout and I wanted to complement them with title cards which I made using scrapbooking card in green and blue colours to match. As well as looking at the colours I picked patterns to match, I love the green reverse to the Just Peachy scrapbook card in particular as it really works for the golf theme of my son’s page. To make these title cards I first used a paper trimmer to cut the 12″x12″ cards into 4″x6″ cards and 3″x4″ cards.

Then I cut the 3″x4″ green dotted card into strips of 1″x4″ and on two of these use the alpha stickers to spell out “Hopes” and “Dreams”.  I then used the adhesive roller to stick those strips onto a strip of white card slightly bigger to create a background before using adhesive foam pads to stick the title onto the 4″x6″ cards. The foam pads add a 3-dimensional element to the cards making him more interesting in the overall layout.

I followed a similar process with the 3″x4″ age cards except here I used the Martha Stewart All-Over punch to cut out a shape to form the background for the stickers spelling out each of the childrens’ ages.  It is definitely a good idea to record the childrens’ ages when preserving art work and/or handwriting to put them into context and help you compare their development at a later time. Finally I used the Project Life corner rounder punch to round off the corners of each card for a more professional finish and to tie in with the style of the rest of my album.

In the remaining spaces I inserted recent pictures of the children relevant to their hopes and dreams; so for my son that is of course him playing golf and for my daughter that is her on a plane during our last family holiday. Again I used the Project Life corner rounder punch to round off the corners of the photos for a consistent look.

I’m really happy with how the layout turned out and the children love looking at it, both because they are excited at the subject matter and because their own hard work is preserved on those pages. I’m thinking I might do this page every year and see how their hopes and dreams for the future change as they get older as well as the development of their artistic skills and handwriting.


Have you thought about preserving your children’s art work or their hopes and dreams for the future? What are their hopes, what are your hopes for them? Please leave your comments below, I would love to hear what you thought of this month’s project.


Do join the Pretty Paper Studio Monthly Challenge through the following easy steps:

1. Create a project with the theme “Hope”

2. Upload your project photo to “January 2018 Challenge: Hope Photo Album in the Pretty Paper Studio Facebook Group.

3. All entries are due by January 31, 2018.

4. Challenge winner will receive a prize pack worth AED50.

A winner will be announced only if we have THREE new submissions.
All projects submitted for the challenge must be NEW and created AFTER the challenge went live.