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Jackie and Michelle


Saturday, August 25, 2012

File Folder Album Tutorial

I made this file folder album for the Surprise the Pride Blog Hop, you can find the whole post here.
 It was super fun to make, using simple office supplies.  I love how it came together!  I was asked to do a tutorial for this project...so here it is.  I hope that it makes sense, please let me know if you have any questions!
 I used a single tab file folder, you could use any file folder you want.  They all have 1/4" scores, I scored mine so that the spine would be 3/4" wide.
 After I scored it, I covered the outside front and the outside back with my patterned paper.  I used a separate strip of patterned paper for covering the spine.
 I used a paper fastener for the attachment mechanism for the inner pages.  At this time, I centered it on the spine, marked it, cut slits in the spine so I could set the fastener, and added the ribbons, looped through the fastener and tied with simple knots.  I finished the inside later.  At this point the front and back outside covers are covered with patterned paper and the spine piece is in and covered with ribbons tied to it.
 This is the inside of my album.  I first covered the inside front cover with patterned paper.
 I used a large 6 1/2"x9 1/2" envelope.  I didn't show it in the picture, but I sealed it, sliced off a sliver of the top of it, and then covered the front of it in patterned paper.  Don't adhere it to the front inside cover yet!  I also punched a half circle finger pull.  In this pocket later I added a large tag.  The smaller envelopes create the accordion album. First, seal them all, and slice a sliver off of the left side of all of the envelopes.  I adhered 7 of the envelopes together. Don't put the front cover on the accordion piece yet.
 Then, I attached the accordion piece to the front of the large 6 1/2"x9 1/2" envelope.  Then I used a ribbon closure, wrapping it completely around the assembled accordion/6x9" envelope piece.
 That is the closure you see on the left side in the finished picture, tied with a bow.  Then cover the front of the accordion with patterned paper. Now, finally, attach the whole piece to the inside front cover.
 Here is the inner page construction in my finished piece.
 It is constructed with two of the 6 1/2"x9 1/2" envelopes and patterned paper.  First, I used a strip of patterned paper to cover the inside spine of my file folder.  Then I sealed the envelopes, and sliced off a sliver of the tops, and used these as pockets for large tags that I made later.
 After the envelopes were covered front and back with patterned paper, I cut another piece of paper that is 1" taller than the envelopes, and 7" wide.  This is the pocket piece you see in the middle of the page construction.  I scored the top and bottom at 1/2", then scored a 1/2" spine in the middle, leaving 3 1/4" on either side.  I used the 1/2" top and bottom for tabs to attach to the envelopes, and the 1/2" spine is what attaches the piece to the spine of the album.
 Make sure that the edges of the envelopes don't go past the edges of the scores on the pocket piece.  Adhere the tabs down, and put a small line of glue along the edge of the spine to close the pockets.  Then, if you look at the spine of the pocket piece, there are two red lines.  These represent the slits that you make to attach this page construction to the middle of the file folder spine, using the paper fastener that you already have attached.
 This is the finished inside back page of my file folder album.  I made a cascading envelope/pocket section.
 I did it with tabs placed through slits in the inner back page paper, BEFORE I adhered it to the album.
 Take your envelopes (I used 5) and seal, then slice a sliver off of one end of every envelope.  I made tags for these later.  I used strips of paper, the width of the envelope, and 1 1/2" wide, scoring at 3/4".  I adhered the tabs to the top of the envelopes.
 I cut the paper that is going to cover the inner back page of my album.  I measured 1/2" from the top, drawing a line, and 1/2" from the bottom.  Then I placed an envelope on the page, lining it up with the bottom 1/2" line, and drew a line at the top of the envelope.  I then measured out three more lines, centering them between the top 1/2" line, and the line we drew at the top of the envelope.  These top five lines are going to be slit, to put the tabs through, attaching the envelope/pockets to the page.
 This is what the tabs look like attached to the top of the envelopes. Now, I covered the envelopes front and back...but be aware of how you attach the paper if it has a pattern.  The back of the envelope will be flipping up, so if you are using paper with a direction make sure that you adhere it in the correct way!
 Tabs inserting through the slit from the front of the paper...
 ...pulled through to the back, and adhered down.  Done.

Just add the rest of the envelopes.  After I adhered all of the rest of the envelopes, I turned the piece over and added score tape everywhere, so that when I adhered the piece to the back inner cover of the file folder, it was well secured, especially on the slit sections of the paper.  Once adhered, it was virtually invisible where I cut the paper.

Well, that's it...I hope it made sense, and I hope that you make one.  If you do please let me know, I would love to see it!!!

Stay Crafty, My Friends!!!!!!!!


  1. This file folder album is gorgeous!!! I love this!

  2. Michelle....wooooo hoooo......awesome tutorial and I am scouring my office now for a file folder!! This is fantastic....quick n easy mini...Thanks so much for sharing your unique scrappiness with us all....ROOOOAAAAAARRR my den sister!! {{hugs}} Kimi xx

  3. Woohoo! Thanks so much for the tutorial Michelle! Fantastic! ROAR!!!