The beginning of a new year offers a natural occasion for reflecting on the past and planning for the future. This year, preserve tokens of the symbolic day in a first-day book or a party album. The resulting collection of written messages, photographs, and other mementos will serve as a tangible record of your New Year's celebration and more; to create an unfolding narrative, leave your book unfinished, and continue to add to it throughout the coming year.
Celebrating 2000, Volume 2000 Special Issue 2000
Martha's own first-day book was inspired by Skylands, her home in Maine. Knowing that the house and its landscape already had a long and distinguished history before her arrival, she decided to continue chronicling everything of interest that might happen there. Martha designed a large volume that could preserve everything from vintage regional maps and architectural drawings to snapshots of pets and flowers pressed by visiting nieces and nephews. Since New Year's Day, 2000, the book has been open to any friend or family member who wishes to contribute.Martha had her book custom-made with a cover of hand-tooled, putty-colored leather. The name of her house in Maine, Skylands, and the date that she bought the property were embossed and then highlighted with silver leaf.
Whenever possible, photo corners, envelopes, and other inserts will meet archival standards to help preserve the book and the ephemera it contains for many years to come.
Every page of the album is a blank sheet of archival-quality, acid-free paper measuring a full three feet high and two and a half feet wide. The pages are interleaved with sheets of vellum to protect fragile attachments and guard against the transference of images and text.
Held together with screws, the robust binding can accommodate additional pages as the book is filled over time. Meanwhile, narrow cardboard spacers at the back of the book stand in for pages to come. The endpapers are handsome maps of Maine that include Skylands' coastal environs.
A celebration as momentous as a New Year's party deserves to be recorded for posterity. This simple project helps preserve the excitement of the moment and makes a perfect memento to mail to your guests once the festivities are over. A party invitation-cum-questionnaire takes a mini census of your guests' experiences over the past year and of their hopes and predictions for the future.Compose your questions on a computer, and print them out on a sheet of heavyweight letter stock. Put party information on the top half of the back of the sheet, including a request that each guest answer the questions and bring the completed questionnaire to the party. Fold the sheet in half horizontally, with the questions on the inside; then fold it in half vertically with the party information on the inside. Seal with a piece of decorative tape, and address and mail the invitations. After the party, compile a grown-up yearbook by photocopying the questionnaires on fine paper and sending a set to everyone who stopped by.
Capture the fun of your gathering by setting up a simple photo booth off to one side of the action. Put out an instant camera for guests to use, or take the photographs yourself, then display the shots on a nearby bulletin board.
Later, remind everyone of the festive event with photo packets: Make as many duplicate images as you need with a color photocopier. Then cut out each image, and stitch or glue it to a piece of textured paper. Finally, sew a simple paper sleeve large enough to hold all the pictures. Use padded envelopes to mail the packets.
Your guests will leave their mark on history when they write their thoughts on pale paper-backed silk that is bonded to a vibrant length of silk book cloth.1. To make the scroll, cover the "front" surface of the book cloth -- ours measures 8 feet by 17 inches -- with a heat-activated, double-sided sheet adhesive called Beva, which is ironed on.2. Center the writing surface (3 feet long) on the book cloth, and iron it to fix the adhesive. Fold up the book cloth from the bottom of the scroll so that it overlaps the writing surface.3. Slip a stained 1-inch dowel, cut longer than the width of the cloth to provide handles, into the crease of the fold, and then iron that end of the cloth to activate the adhesive.4. To finish the top, cut two slots near the center of a 2-foot-long strip of 1-by-1/2-inch balsa. Fold down the cloth from the top of the scroll so that it overlaps the writing surface, insert the balsa in the crease, and iron. Cut through the cloth at the slots in the balsa, and thread a ribbon through them. Tie the ribbon to hang the scroll or to secure it when it is rolled.
Photo album with acid-free paper (for first-day book)
Archival-quality photo corners, envelopes, and inserts (for first-day book)