Art with Alyssa: Paper Bag Memory Books

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Create a unique memory book to save special keepsakes and photos—and to reminisce about all the fun you had this summer!

Discussion Points for Parents/Teachers

  • Talk about your favorite summer memories.
  • What types of things can you keep in the pages/pockets of your book?
  • Discuss turning found and recycled objects into art.

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Supplies

  • Mat to cover work area
  • 4-6 paper lunch bags
  • Paint (your favorite colors) & paintbrush
  • Hole punch or stapler
  • Scissors
  • Ribbon or string
  • Collage items from summer trips/activities
  • Ticket stubs
  • Maps
  • Bookmarks
  • Receipts
  • Photos
  • Postcards
  • Colorful paper scraps
  • White glue
  • Washi tape/colored tape

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Directions

  • If desired, paint both sides of the bags and allow to dry. Or, leave the bags plain.  
  • Fold each bag in half to create a crease.
  • Stack the bags on top of each other. Make sure the open ends are on opposite sides to prevent one side of the book being more bulky than the other.
  • Punch two holes on the center crease of each bag, making sure the bags line up evenly. (Or, staple the bags together in the crease.)
  • Run a piece of ribbon or string through the holes and tie together on the outside “binding.”
  • Decorate pages with collage items, photos and Washi tape.
  • The open bag ends make great pockets to hold items (secure closed with a paper clip).

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Note:
Some pages will have the bottom bag fold on them. Either secure the fold down and place items over it, or use the fold to tuck keepsakes inside.

Other ideas:

  • Make a book for poems or stories. Include poems/stories you like (or write your own) and create cardstock characters to tuck inside the bag openings for creative play.
  • Make a book for nature collections. Collect items from a nature walk (nothing picked off a plant—only things found on the ground such as leaves, sticks or flower petals).
  • Make a family book. Dedicated a page to each family member; include a photo and tuck their favorite recipe, story or memories inside the bag openings.

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Alyssa Navapanich is an art enthusiast who teaches art to elementary school kids in North County.

 

 

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