Photo Album Facelift

Before I became a scrapbooker, I had my photos in standard photo albums.  I know . . . boring!  But let’s admit it . . . a lot of had, or still have, some basic photo albums on the shelf.

Some of these album covers are less attractive than others.  Some of them look VERY dated due to the book styles that were popular or available at the time I filled them.  When we moved into our new house one of the features of the house that I loved were the built in shelves in the family room, but I knew that I had to do something to make these books look prettier.

Here is how they looked before . . .


Not all of the books were terrible.  I still like the look of the green fabric covered ones.


And finally, my scrapbooks.  At least I was consistent in using blue book covers for these . . . until the company I purchased covers from quit making blue, and then I moved to brown.


Okay, let’s get back to some of those ugly books on the upper shelves.  I went online and found some contact paper in a fun weathered wood pattern.  Looking online helped to give me a LOT more choices for colors and patterns than I would have had if I would have limited myself to the contact paper sold in retail stores.

I started with some of the larger books since I did not want to have to piece the paper together to have to cover the book.  I wanted to be able to use one continuous piece of contact paper.


I wrapped the contact paper around the book, much like I was wrapping a present, in order to measure how much contact paper I would need.  Make sure to cut some extra to fold over to the inside of the book cover.


After I cut the size of contact paper that I needed from the roll, I laid  the piece out on the floor and peeled away just a portion of the backing.  This helped to keep the contact paper under control . . . sometimes if you peel off the entire backing the contact paper will stick to itself, or stick where you do not want it to stick.


I placed the book down on the portion of the contact paper that I removed the backing from, smoothed the contact paper down to the book and then peeled away a few more inches of the backing of the contact paper and smoothed it as I went along.  I continued to do this until all sides of the book were covered.


Now to take care of the edges.  I trimmed the contact paper down and folded in the sides


More trimming, and I folded in the top and the bottom.  I was able to do a nice tuck in the corner to make it look a little more finished.  This was so easy to do since the contact paper is sticky on the back . . . just tuck, fold and stick.


I was also able to make a few cuts around the binding and folds of the book so that the contact paper really formed to the book.  Below is a photo of some of these cuts.




Here is another book I covered with the same contact paper.  Since I purchased a long roll of the paper I was able to cover several books.  No two books looked exactly the same, yet they all have the same colors and pattern on them.


After I placed them back on the shelves, here is how they looked . . .


I also purchased contact paper in a cream, beige and coral stripe.  I did not want to have too much of one pattern on the shelves and I felt like this was a good way to break it up.


Before the older books stood out like a sore thumb on the shelves.  Now these books blend in with the colors in the room and allow some of the framed photos and decorative accents on the shelves to stand out.



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