Front Cover Paper Bag Album
Although I've worked in several different mediums, I have spent the past 15 years as a painter.
Last year I fell passionately in love with the world of  mixed media, collage, and altered art.
I love and collect vintage items (pre-1950) and so most of my work is very vintage inspired. 
I truly feel that, as an artist,  I've finally come home and made my soul happy.

It was also last year that I really got into doing these paper bag albums.  I
Found some beautiful scrapbook paper, and although I don't scrapbook, I wanted
To use these papers in some fashion.  SO I bought some papers without really knowing
How I would use them.  Then I accidently stumbled across these albums
While surfing Ebay one day and a love affair was conceived.

The concept is simple. Use as many bags as you chose.  I find three bags
Work for me.  Alternate them and stack atop one another.  Iron them flat and sew a
Straight seam down the middle, fold in half and Voila! You have a book with flaps and
3 large open pockets.  At this time I add the holes on the left side for the ring binding.
I add 3 holes, you can do more.   This is when the fun begins. 

I usually start with a vintage photo I like and have a tendency to mentally build a
Story around that picture.  Then I go looking for paper to follow the theme of my story.
I cover all the brown paper first.  Then I begin to make pockets.  I've used decorative
Papers, card stock, fabric and lace.  I've attached pockets by sewing, gluing, attaching with brads, Safety pins, double sided tape. I've left pages "pocket-less" and added slide mailers or different kind of small envelopes that I've decorated in some manner.   Anything that captures my creative fancy and forms some kind of pocket.
Back Cover Paper Bag Album
Although I've worked in several different mediums, I have spent the past 15 years as a painter.
Last year I fell passionately in love with the world of  mixed media, collage, and altered art.
I love and collect vintage items (pre-1950) and so most of my work is very vintage inspired. 
I truly feel that, as an artist,  I've finally come home and made my soul happy. (continued below).
Now I can have fun digging through all my "stuff" looking for ways to "flesh" out and embellish my Story.  I love to add vintage papers and quotes relevant to my "story" and more vintage photos.  I usually add these to the front of my pockets,  or I may stamp the front of a pocket.  It's really all about what strikes my fancy at the moment.  I also try to add real Ephemera when possible.  For example, my latest book, for Valentines Day, has a vintage love letter, vintage Valentine Postcards, and some Victorian calling cards. 

I also add tags.  I love to do tags, see them as small pieces of art to complement the album.  I usually Age the tags, collage one side and leave the other side for the recipient to add their own photos or Journaling notes.  I do tags in different sizes because my pockets come in different depths.  My latest album I put in a dozen torso tags that I stamped decoratively.  I also add card stock to each of the three  large Openings the top of the bags have created.  I usually attach some kind of pull  so they are easily removed from the pocket and of course I feel compelled to decorate the card stock as well.

When the cover, inside pages, back cover, are all decorated, I add a ring to each hole.  This helps alleviate any stress on the holes, and allows me to attach fibers, ribbon, lace, beads, and charms to the rings.  Again, whatever I think adds to the "story" and what I  find when I hunt though my boxes and bins of treasures.
When all that has been attached,  then I call my creation done.
Gail Schmidt 01 07.
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