Preserving Memories: Ribbon-bound Albums, Vintage Decorations, Blended Family Trees and Time Capsules

By Patti Swoboda Premium


The ideal album for displaying ancestral memorabilia is both safe and sophisticated — with colors and motifs that match the mood of your ancestral memorabilia. These ribbon-bound albums’ classic look complements old pictures and keepsakes perfectly:

Rag & Bone Bindery uses satin ribbon to hand-sew its albums (far left), books and journals, binding soft white acid-free pages between decorative covers. Filler strips in all of its albums prevent “yawning” once pages are filled with keepsakes and photos. Look for them at stationery stores, craft galleries and gift shops. (888) 338-8128, <>

• Slip a favorite photo into the front window pocket of a Kolo album, and that picture instantly becomes the star of your album cover. Accent ribbons and cloth covers are reminiscent of old-style scrapbooks, and you can choose from different colors, styles and sizes, from the 5×7-inch Vineyard Mini Photo Album ($6) to the larger 12×13-inch Newport Luxury Photo Album ($44, shown at left). (860) 547-0367, <>


Need help preserving the elegance and romance of those special-occasion and heritage photos? The Sandy Clough Heritage Collection from Colorbök embraces the grace and soft style of the good old days. The nostalgic stickers, die cuts, frames and albums are perfect for embellishing life’s sentimental journeys on a scrapbook page. (800) 366-4660, <>


Hard times fell on many families in the 1930s, but your ancestors also witnessed milestones such as the New Deal, the end of Prohibition, nuclear fission and the birth of trans-Atlantic passenger flights. Capture the character of the 1930s with these scrapbooking products:


K & Co. ‘s floral punch-out frames and borders <> and Gina Bear’s laser-cut frame <> will help your pages fit with the times.

STENCILS Patterns from StenSource International <> capture designs similar to those of the 1930s. Streamlined, curvy motifs were popular, showing up in the look of many home appliances, cars, boats and trains.


Dry embossing is a quick and easy way to add elegance to your heritage album. All you need is a light source, a template, paper and a stylus — a pen-sized tool that has a ball point on both ends, one smaller than the other. Use tape to anchor the template on top of the light source. (The light will help you see the template design through the paper.) Press the design into your paper by tracing the pattern with the stylus. When finished, turn the paper over to see the raised, embossed design. Try dry embossing as a subtle enhancement for mats and journaling, as in the pages above.


Traditional pedigree charts don’t fit every clan, so Life Preserves designed special trees to reflect blended families’ extra branches. These 8/2×11-inch fill-in-the-blank forms simplify the job of documenting all your loved ones, with selections such as Adoptive and Step-Family Tree, Single Adoptive and Birth Family Tree, Single Parent Family Tree and Step-Family Tree, as well as a traditional pedigree format. Each chart retails for 99 cents. (423) 477-5700, <>


Add a blast from the past to your heritage pages with historical facts from online time capsules. It’s fun to discover who was president when Grandma was born, or what the top songs were the year Dad graduated from high school. These free historical databases make your fact-finding mission easy:

The Time Capsule <> displays important historical events that happened in past years on the very day you visit this site. You also may go back one day or sneak a peek at tomorrow.

• You can find “What Happened On This Date” at <>. Enter the month, day and your e-mail address, and a report will be immediately sent to your inbox. You’ll receive an in-depth list of newsworthy events, births and deaths that have taken place in years past.

dMarie’s time capsule <> lets you search specific dates as far back as 1800. You supply a year, month and day; it lists Academy Award winners, famous birthdays, popular toys and books — all kinds of trivia to pepper your heritage albums with fun facts.

COLOR While Depression-era colors included many dark, soil-hiding tones, 1930s high fashion featured surprisingly vivid colors, such as fashion designer Elsa Schiaparelli’s signature shade, “shocking pink.”.

PAPER You’ll find an assortment of ’30s shades and designs from Anna Griffin <> and K & Co. <>.

EXTRAS Create ’30s layouts with the help of stamps from Hampton Art Stamps <> and River City Rubber Works <>. Accompany Frances Meyer’s 1930s stickers <> with whimsical laser die-cut shapes from Gina Bear <>.

From the October 2002 issue of Family Tree Magazine