Teen Librarian Toolbox
Inside Teen Librarian Toolbox

TPiB: Instagram crafts

Every Friday in March we’re sharing crafts with our favorite website, The Library as Incubator Project.  Check their site out for awesome ways to incorporate art into your library and programming.  This week, I am sharing with you some of my favorite things to do with Instagram pictures.
Instagram is perhaps one of the hottest tech (social media) tools being used right now.  If you aren’t familiar with it (are there people who aren’t?), it is a photo app for a smart phone that let’s you take and manipulate pictures quickly and beautifully and then easily share them online.  I love Instagram pictures hard core, take dozens or more a day, and use them a lot right here on this blog.  I am always trying to find new ways to use them and have found a variety of enchanting crafts that you can incorporate them into.
For example, you can Mod Podge them onto anything, including a canvas to create stunning artwork for your walls.  Coasters, book covers, votive candles – I am not kidding, you can use them to decorate literally anything.  There is an entire blog dedicated to Mod Podge, so check it out.

If you get really ambitious, you can try and do this photo transfer craft that I found at A Beautiful Mess. I was possibly less successful at it then they were.

Quick Tip: Instagram is not the only awesome app out there.  You can use TypoInsta to add text, WordFoto to make your picture into a word photo, and FilterMania 2 has a ton of easy overlays (frames) that you can use.  You can run your picture through several different apps to maximize creativity.  Here is a look at some of my personal favorites. 

You can also create a variety of unique mini-scrapbooks that capitalize on the tiny size of Instagram photos.  (If you have ever tried to print them you know that a standard photo printing lab can not in fact print them because they are smaller than 4×6 and they don’t format correctly).

Today, I am sharing with you my favorite mini-scrapbook which presents itself as the perfect gift to share with others.  You can make a mother’s day present, father’s day, or a graduation gift for your best friend filled with photos of your life together.  And if you size it right, they are fun and easy to fill with your favorite Instagram pictures.  You can import your Instagram pictures into a program like Microsoft Publisher, size them and then print them on regular copy paper for this project.

This project is a modified verions of THIS craft.  If any of the instructions get confusing, you check out the inspirational post at Scrap ‘N Frames.com. 

Supplies Needed:
Empty cereal box (for your top and bottom cover)
Plain card stock paper, 12 x 12 (I prefer black)
Duct Tape
Stickers and other embellishments
Several – like 10 or more – Instagram prints size 4×4 

This is what we are making, a mini scrapbook that folds up like an accordion to fill with your favorite Instagram pics.

Step 1: Creating Your Cover

Cut your empty box into two equal size squares, 4 1/2 by 4 1/2.

Other instructions tell you to cut and cover your squares with wrapping or scrapbook paper, but I am here to tell you how to make it easier on yourself: Duct Tape! That’s right, cover both sides of each square with duct tape. Simple, fast, easy – and totally cool. And they have so many cool designs and colors now that you can’t go wrong.

To create a closure for your book, Duct tape one piece of ribbon onto the underside of 1 of your covers.  You will use this at the end to wrap around your book and tie it shut.  It makes it look like a mini gift.

Note: You can also cover your scrapbook cover with scrapbook or wrapping paper if you don’t want to use Duct tape.

Quick Tip: Duct Tape totally does horrible things to your scissors, so have Goo Gone nearby to keep them sharp and clean. Clean scissors make happy cuts, gooey scissors make angry cuts.

Step 2: Folding Your Pages

First, you need to turn your 12 by 12 paper into 8 by 8 sized paper.
You want to make sure your paper is cut down to 8 by 8 size, there will be a little bit of trimming involved.  To make straight lines, a paper cutter can be your best friend. But you can also just use the edge of a metal ruler if you are careful.

Now comes the tricky bit, folding your paper.  Basically, if you make these 3 simple folds you create the lines necessary to fold your paper. 

Next, you need to fold your sheet into the accordion format.  There are really great instructions for that here.  Basically, you fold your paper like this:

Fold your first sheet of paper in half.

  Open your paper, rotate 90 degrees and fold in half again.

  Open your paper and flip it over.

Fold your paper from corner to corner to make a triangle.

Repeat folds with the second sheet of paper.

The two papers should now fold into a smaller square.

One square can be inserted into the other square and glue to create an accordion folding  square.

Glue two sheets together by placing them as pictured above.  You can make your mini scrapbook as big as you would like by adding additional pages.

When you are done, they will all fold together accordion style into one neat square like this:

Step 3: Attaching the Covers

Because your covers have Duct tape, you’ll want to use a stapler and staple a cover to to each side of your folded sheets, making sure you only use the top sheet of each end so your book will open properly.  Simply use a piece of Duct tape to cover the staples on the outside of your cover.  In traditional accordion scrapbooks you glues the cover onto the sheets, but Duct tape will prevent this from working properly.

Step 4: Filling the Pages

You can import your Instagram pictures into a program like Microsoft Publisher and size them correctly for your scrapbook.  You’ll want them to be 4×4 in size to fit inside.  After correctly sizing the pics, simply print on regular paper in color and you are ready to complete your album.

Get creative with it! Add stickers, captions, lettering and more to make it unique and pop.

Doing this as a library program:
To make it an easy library program, set up stations and precut some of the pieces.
Station 1: Make your cover.  Have a table with precut squares, scissors and duct tape.
Station 2: Fold the insides. Have a variety of card stock available.
Station 3: Give it guts. Stickers, etc.
Station 4: Printing station. You will need to help teens import and print their photos. Have a laptop ready to go. 

Some other things you can do with Instagram pictures
Girl on a Board ideas
A variety of other types of mini scrapbooks
TPiB: Turn your Instagram photos into photobooth bookmarks 
More iPhone Apps to make awesome pics 


  1. Thanks so much, finally a decent website with good information in it.

  2. Nice one! like it! Thanks! instagram likes

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