My Week In The Life Design Plan & Product Suggestions


Next week for me is all about the documentation. I am getting so excited. I love this project.

Each day (starting on Monday night or Tuesday morning) I will be posting and sharing photos and words from my day and cheering you on as you go through the process. 

The following week I'll put my actual album together and show you more about my process: cropping photos, adding embellishments, a tutorial on working with the digital template album, bringing all the pieces together.

That said, I did spend time this past week coming up with a simple plan for the design of my album.

Here's a look at where I'll be headed once I have my content and the supplies I will be using:

Witl_layoutexplanation sample pages created using random photos : click to view larger

Just like in 2008 I'll be using an 8.5x11, 3-ring album and each day of the week will have four pages.Yes, four per day.

One of the questions people have been asking is the difference between this project and Project Life. The biggest difference is the amount of content for each day. In Project Life I do one photo and maybe one captured conversation or memory or bit of ephemera. In this album I'm collecting lots of images, lots of words, and potentially lots of stuff (receipts, papers, clippings, etc). 

Here's a look at what each page per day will include:

ONE : The first page I call my daily opener. It includes an enlarged photo (8.5 inches x 8 inches tall), a pattern paper strip, and a daily tab (more info below).

TWO & THREE : Pages two and three are a single baseball card page protector (using the front and the back). Inside these pockets I will be slipping photos, journal cards for the categories I am documenting, and other ephemera I collect throughout the week. 

FOUR : The last page of each day is a photo collage (photos can always be replaced with paper stuff collected over the course of the week or more journaling), another paper strip, and a sentiment tab.

As you can see from the image above I really am keeping it simple with a pretty strict focus on the words + photos. If you are interested in adding more creative twists, such as embellishing cards for the baseball card pages check out my 2008 album. This link shows a bunch of different ideas for creating fun mini-canvases that lend a nice consistency throughout the album.



• 15 sheets of white 8.5x11 cardstock with more for printing the journaling

• Seven sheets of pattern paper:

  1. American Crafts I Do Hyacinth (35051)

  2. SEI Noisette 8-1906 (using the grey pattern on the back)

  3. Basic Grey Cappella Bellini (cap-2393)

  4. Basic Grey Boxer Commando (box-1178)

  5. Hambly Little Circles (silver on kraft) (451)

  6. Crate Paper Brook Collection Ripple (#BK727)

  7. Bazzil Swiss Dot Cardstock

For my pattern paper selection I went through my stash and grabbed seven sheets that felt like they matched the look I'm going for as the basis for the album. I was looking for blues, greys, and kraft/beige that would be a nice complement to the gray of the accents I am using.

From these pattern papers I'm cutting strips that are 1.5 inches tall x 5.25 inches wide and 1.5 inches tall x 2 inches wide - this leaves just the right amount of room to add the sentiment, daily, or initial tabs (see below).


My journaling this year is going to go on these small cards I designed that fit inside the baseball card page protectors. I printed them out yesterday and plan to hand-write my documentation each day. My journal cards are printed on this cardstock from Bazzill.

Other years I have just jotted things down in a notebook or on a worksheet and then transferred the words to my album during the process of putting it all together. I'm going to try this card approach for a change of pace in 2010. If I'm out and about I'm planning to bring along the cards and document in the moment on the go. That's a lot different than trying to remember things at the end of the day. 

AEdwards_WeekInTheLifeJournalCards_PREV These cards will be available for purchase tomorrow at Designer Digitals. Journal cards are available here. The package includes a PDF for easy printing, as well as 17 individual PNG files and a blank customizable PSD file.

If you don't want to hand-write your journaling you can add your text directly onto these cards in Photoshop or in Word.

Remember that you don't have to necessarily do the same journaling categories each day. I am printed out a bunch of the cards and will choose the ones for each day that make the most sense for the stories I want to tell.


In addition to the journal cards I created Daily Tabs and Sentiment Tabs that are used throughout the album (there will also be a set of Initial Tabs available). I chose to print these on photo paper. Each digital package includes a PDF file for easy printing (they also include individual PNG files, outline files, and PSD files for customization). 



For those of you who want to do a completely digital album for a photobook (or want to create the pages digitally and print them out and slip them into an album at home) I have a new Week In The Life Layered Template album package. A 12x12 version (Shutterfly ready) and an 8.5x11 version are available.

Both these albums follow the same format that I'm creating with paper and hybrid elements.

Documenting everyday life and celebrating the small moments are a big part of my memory keeping passion. Because of that I've designed lots of products for Designer Digitals and for Technique Tuesday that support that theme.

My digital products at Designer Digitals are not just for completely digital scrapbooking. I often print them out and add them to my pages just like you see above.


OV871754X In 2008 I used my Story Of Today overlays for my Week In The Life album. You can read about how to work with these and print them at home here. They are great if you would like to do more stream of conscious writing or if you are planning to document your day in a list-format - pretty much all my journaling for each day went into that space.

If you are interested in adding elements on top of your photos I have quite a few photo overlays and word art that can be added in a photo-editing program (and even in Word). For more information on how to do this check out my video tutorial that will walk you through the process in Elements.

DS527238 OV369388
I have photo overlays (that also work great for journal blocks) for the month of April and a package that includes every day of the year. I also have photo overlays for the days of the week & months.

DS849515 DS143715
I have word art that celebrates the ordinary-ness of everyday life and hand-drawn sentiments that celebrate your life right now.

I hope you have a wonderful weekend. Charge up your camera batteries and make sure you have some way to jot down the things you want to capture in words. The process of taking photos of the basic, mundane, everyday pieces of your existence is really an awesome experience.

It's work, but it is so worth the effort. 


A complete list of posts related to WEEK IN THE LIFE
from both 2008 & 2010 can be found here.

88 thoughts

  1. [email protected]

    2010-04-17 16:40:16 -0400

    Hi, I am 100% digital, I do 12 x 12 are you going to do examples for 12", Also you have the Digi templates for the 12" That include some of the daily tabs?
    Should i purchase it all? for this project.
    I am so excited to get started. thanks

  2. dawn

    2010-04-18 01:32:36 -0400

    Hi Ali,
    I rememberd yesterday that my family was going to try and do a no tv week which also might include no computer, wii, cell phones. Do you think I should still pick this week to docutment since it won't be a normal week for us. It would be neat to record it though to and see how the week ends up. Any advise on this from you or anyone else would be helpful. I'm excited to be doing this project and can't wait either way.

  3. Johanna Hörrmann

    2010-04-18 03:11:30 -0400

    This is gorgeous. I was hesistant thinking of using someone else's design instead of designing my own from scratch for such a personal project, but I will SO follow along with your formula. I love the simplicity, focus and overall look & feel of it, it makes me excited to see how everything will turn out in the end!

  4. Marianne

    2010-04-18 09:05:45 -0400

    This is a really wonderful project :o) I just bought your Story of Today overlays and I'm trying to figure out how to round the corners of my pictures in PS so they will fit??? I can see that you do it in your pictures, would you mind telling me how you do it??? Thanks a lot :o)

  5. Keianna

    2010-04-18 09:29:15 -0400

    Hi Ali,
    With the Week In A Life 8.5x11 Template, do you get all the journaling card sayings? Or just the three you see on the template. Thanks :-)

  6. Ali Edwards

    2010-04-18 13:56:53 -0400

    You get six journaling card sayings (three on each 2 & 3 to be repeated each day).

  7. Lora Brinkman

    2010-04-18 14:36:47 -0400

    I am so excited, I'm not even sure I'll sleep tonight!! Although after the weekend of yardwork... I may not make up tomorrow in time for work! HA!

  8. Donna

    2010-04-19 02:57:34 -0400

    I cannot wait to start...this is such a great way to scrapbook your true life...not just those big moments we gravitate toward!!!

  9. Kelly Ramsey

    2010-04-19 08:27:34 -0400

    Thanks for this format to focus on a typical week. As a mom of a 3year old and 6 month old, both boys, my life is quite hectic most days, let alone weeks. Each year I make it a goal to focus on the simple things in life, as a working mom - this helps me to really see what a true week is like, from beginning to end. I will keep you updated.

  10. amy

    2010-04-19 09:20:42 -0400

    Ali, how did you get the journaling cards to print out in white instead of gray? I can't change the color of mine without distorting the wording at the top.

  11. Jan

    2010-04-19 10:07:41 -0400

    Boy, what an opportunity. Sue Cummings sent me this way and it certainly is an awesome give away.
    I think I am special because I scrap, even though I only do digital. I give each of my 4 Grandchildren a book for their birthday filled with memories. I hope that one day they will appreciate them.

  12. Neptune

    2010-04-20 01:26:09 -0400

    Where can you have the 8.5x11 pages printed out (if you do a digital album) ? Shutterfly is really organized with the 12 x 12 books, but my printer does not do a good enough job of printing for me to do it here. Since time will be lacking I need something that is quick and easy, thus making the page digitally, and then just printing them.

  13. Andrea S

    2010-04-20 14:14:29 -0400

    help! i am not a digi-scrapper.. but i bought the journaling cards and tabs.. and i cannot figure out how to get the journaling cards into microsoft word to let me edit/type on them????
    ali- i cannot open png files in word.. i can get them over there by inserting a pic, but i cannot type on them?

  14. Shelly Meyer

    2010-04-27 14:45:23 -0400

    Ali: I love the page protectors that you are using for your collage pages. Where did you find them? All I can find are ones that have 3 or 4 4x6 photos and there is not much room for variation.

  15. Ali Edwards

    2010-04-27 16:14:56 -0400

    Hi Amy - just seeing your comment now - they are actually gray (meant to go with the other gray elements).

  16. Ali Edwards

    2010-04-27 16:15:20 -0400

    Hi - prints 8.5x11.

  17. Ali Edwards

    2010-04-27 16:18:01 -0400

    Hi Andrea - just seeing your comment now. Inserting as a picture is the way I do it and then you need to create a new text box on top of that png. You will need to go under the section called "Wrapping" in the formatting palette to make it so you can add text to the top.

  18. Ali Edwards

    2010-04-27 16:18:43 -0400

    Hi Shelly - you can find these sort of baseball card page protectors at office supply stores. I found these ones at Toys R Us of all places :).

  19. Ali Edwards

    2010-04-27 16:19:34 -0400

    Actually, I apologize...the collage pages are not in divided page protectors. For those pages I cropped photos to create the grid.

  20. Chatty Scrapper - R'ville, MN

    2010-04-29 17:54:45 -0400

    Ali, Are you doing this every week? I like the idea just don't think I can pull off this much. Recently I had been thinking of starting with something simpler, like a basic photo a day, I got a few CZ templates and your days & months overlays to use with that idea. Then today I saw CZ's posts on Bits&Pieces about this project so I came to check it out. Looks great!

  21. Ali Edwards

    2010-04-30 02:38:31 -0400

    Hi - NO WAY! This is a once a year or once every couple years sort of project. One week is definitely enough to cover this much detail :).

  22. Chatty Scrapper

    2010-05-03 09:19:51 -0400

    Good, that makes me feel better. Since I only have one kid, around the age of your daughter, not 2 and a very PT job I was can she do that. Seems like a much better project now. Something I think I'll give a try. Gonna wait for a week I'm working though (or maybe I should do one of each since the 2 vary a lot).

  23. Ilse

    2010-05-06 09:30:56 -0400

    I just love this project.
    Are you goning to do a vacayion/travel album al well?
    I am desperate searching for idea's for such an album and I just love your work.

  24. Fabi

    2010-06-22 12:31:41 -0400

    This is an amazing project Ali...Im accepting the challenging to start doing it this Sunday :)
    Tks for inspiring us, always XX

  25. Kelly Cree

    2011-07-24 22:45:19 -0400

    Ali-in one of the above photographs, you have a set of stamps that are letters and numbers. I'd love to have this set. Can you tell me where you got them, name of manufacturer and any other details that may help me on the hunt? thanks

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