Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Loner's Appalachian Trail Mini Album Book 1

As some may know from my Carolina Appalachian Trail Mom blog, my son hiked the Appalachian Trail this year, from Georgia to Maine, starting April 7th.
All the time he's been gone I have been making a mini photo album for him keep photos, mementos and epherema important to his almost six month journey.  As he walked 5 million steps, 2,180 miles through 14 states, I made page after page, and ended up with 10 different ring bound albums, based on the states, some I combined.
  I'll  start with the first album. I used chipboard for the covers and cereal boxes for the pages on which I used a variety of  cardstock papers or open stock papers from Michael's, A.C. Moore and Hobby Lobby and commercial scrapbooking papers, including pieces from the  American Traditional Great Outdoors 12x12 Scrapbooking Bundle Kit, individual papers from Basic Grey, Karen Foster, K and Company, and Bo Bunny,  I haven't finished the cover yet, since he's still in Maine and I actually may ask him what he wants the cover to look like but here's the first page. I used embellishments from Jolee's,
I used  lots of embellishments from my stash, made pockets, pages and cutouts with diecuts, embossing folders (mostly Tim Holtz and Sizzix) and added 3D and metal trinkets from many different companies so I'll try and mention those as I go along. I created the album in sort of a grungy rugged and ragged outdoor to fit with a hike of six months.
Page 1 and 2 depict the day we took off from Amicalola Falls and shows his Trail name, Loner, the year, and the number 801, since he was the 801st person to register to do a thru-hike from Amicalola Falls or Springer Mtn. this is called the southern terminus of the trail. Along with maps showing the trail,  there are photos of him registering and weighing his backpack.  I used the parking ticket as a background with the day punched out.
The second page is a about my granddaughter, Kendall and I walking with him the first part of the trail.  in the pouch is a map of the Amicalola Falls State Park.  I try to use a lot of vintage and current postage stamps through out this journal and there is a copper penny he stamped of the map on this page in the Ranger's gift shop.  He made more as he went along the trail in other states.   As a kid Loner collected postage stamps and first day covers so I tried to include as many vintage postage stamps as possible. I grunged up every page at the edges with Ranger inks. 
In addition, I learned techniques from all sorts of talented and creative scrappin' gals, especially Steffogal1, Charlie Jones2686 and a lot of the folks on the Graphic 45 ring.  I found it hard to a book for a man because most of the materials are tuned towards women or children, but I'll clue you in in some of the companies who provide more masculine motifs.
 Page five and six I call the last wave as it was the last time we saw him and still wait for him to come home.
I think the paper is open stock from Michael's and I added a various number of stickers from various sticker packs.  I found most of my hiking stickers and embellishments at ScrappinStuff because they have entire sections devote to just hiking or camping or mountain climbing or even kayaking. They ship really fast too.
  Page 6 has a flip out page with two photo mats made with a cardstock, the Tim Holtz lined student paper embossing folders and I painted a sun with  with Ranger Inks and accented it with Perfect Pearls.
For an ultralight backpacker and gram weanie - a gear list was important.  His pack weight 13.5 lbs without water. so the 7th and 8th pages are about his equipment, his camp set up with his hammock, since he's a hammock hanger. so I put pockets which are also photo mats and plenty of tags and cards for him to journal or list everything he used along the trail and to perhaps rate it once he's re-adapted to everyday life. some of the tags are from 7 Gypsies (love their tags) and these pages and the next are  the Julianne paperpad from K and Company.
The 9th and 10th pages are about the nature of what he's doing, going off road for six months mostly and having to find his way and follow his dream.  I used the Tim Holtz banners edge cutter die both for a pocket and to edge the page and then I created the hiker logos on cardstock and used stickers form various companies.

To offer more room for photos,  I made  a fold out photo album and left a few empty for him to add photos he wants.
The 11th and 12th pages are more ethereal grand and symbolic evoking the history of explores over the ages and in challenging locations. I loved this compass paper from one of the Pirate stacks or open stock from Michaels.   And added some journaling spots, arrows, a quite and a handmade library envelope out of metallic copper cardstock to add additional photo mats and journaling spots.

 The back page has a copper pocket made with on of Tim Holtz On the Edge dies and a sticker that says, we are not Lost , we are hiking, as well as the logo of the Appalachian Trail community, who were his support and family while he was hiking.  The pocket contains a journaling card and print outs of the first emails we exchanged.  I still haven't decided what color I'm going to make all the back covers of each book so they're not finished yet either.  And of course I added the April, because as the miles and days go on, we'll need to keep track.

As Jeff traveled along on his journey he'd send me packages including flyers from places he'd visited, any kind of permits he had to purchase ads for menus and hostels, trail towns, historical info and all kinds of pertinent info that applied to his hike.  The trail, restaurants and hostels and outfitters change as the years go by, so hopefully this will be a sort of historical keepsake for the year 2012 and our family can enjoy it years on down the road in the years to come.
This is what the entire set of albums looks like in an old Coca cola crate.  I couldn't find anything else big enough to hold them all .  At first I used a chest but then there were too many and the tags standing out of the top would have been crushed.  I made the covers of each section alike - simple the name of the state or states, and a large chipboard animal relevent to the hike with I found all in one packet on Scrappin Stuff.  I'm still going to check the flea markets and thrift stores for a more appropriate wooden box from one of the states the hiked through. Maine would be ideal.  That's all for this blogpost and most of the first mini photo album for Loner.  I may add a few more touches and will finish the cover and add the last page later. 

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