My sweet husband came to me a week before Mother’s Day wanting my help. He had this idea to take the boys to a photo booth (you know that prints four pictures vertically) and turn it into a bookmark for me. He had driven to the mall, the movie theater and a mini golf place with no luck of finding a photo booth!
I thought we could make our own photo strip from cute pictures we already had of the boys. I kinda took over the project and made my own Mother’s Day gift, and some for my mother and mother-in-law. Now I’m making more in time for Father’s Day!
First, I went through lots of pictures of my kids, cropped them to be close up on their faces. Then I changed them to black and white. (I used iPhoto, clicked edit, crop, then under effect used black and white and then boost 2 times). I saved them to the desktop and made sure I labeled each picture to make it easier for the next step.
After I had lots of pictures edited, I used Picasa which is a free photo editor through Google. On the bottom bar there is a button for collages. I used this feature to create a six picture collage. I used the grid setting so all the photos would be 2″ x 2″ (if you develop a 4″ x 6″ picture). I noticed the two photos in the middle were slightly larger than the ones on the ends, but I was able to trim them down and it wasn’t too big of a problem. I made two collages (12 pictures) of each boy and I developed two pictures of each. You only need six pictures (one collage) for one bookmark but developing more gave me plenty of options. I developed my pictures in glossy because I was in a hurry and wanted to pick them up the same day, but I would choose matte finish so you don’t smudge finger prints on the pictures.
Once I had my collage pictures developed, I pulled out my paper trimmer, white card stock (you could use any color, really), and photo adhesives. You’ll also need a cute ribbon for later.I choose what three photos I wanted for the bookmark and three more for the back of it. I am not a perfectionist so I trimmed the photos down, kind of eyeballing it (I know some of you may need to pull out your ruler for exactness). I just made sure they were all pretty much the same size. Then I used the photo adhesives to put the pictures on the card stock. I made sure to leave enough space at the top so I could hole punch and tie a ribbon.
Once I had all my bookmarks assembled, front and back, I headed to a FedEx Office for lamination. I used a hard lamination and I’m not sure if that was the best option or not. I had to send it through the laminator several times since the card stock is so thick. I used their heavy duty trimmer to cut all the bookmarks and then I sent them through the laminator a few more times to make sure they were sealed. While I was there I also used their hole punch to make a hole for ribbon in the top of each bookmark.The final step is to cut ribbon (about 6″) and tie through the hole. As you can see, my ribbon had a definite front and back, which I don’t love so I would choose maybe a solid ribbon.I think they turned out super cute! I ended up with 10 bookmarks and the total cost was under $10! Not bad for gifts for 5 people. I made some with cute, sweet faces, and then since I have so many of these pictures, I made some silly, funny ones!I hope you decide to try these and please email me if you need any clarification on the directions!