DIY Kids Storybook: Paper Wedding Anniversary Gift

When my husband and I were approaching our first wedding anniversary, I was pregnant with our first baby. I considered a few different gifts, but wanted to be really creative.

I had this idea to create a children’s book of “our story” to give to him to read to our new baby when she arrived.

It took a lot of work and a lot of time, but it was so worth it and really, really cool.

At the time, we were in the process of decorating our new baby’s nursery in a ‘giraffe’ theme. Since this gift was partially a gift to her as well, I made the main characters in the book giraffes.

I then wrote out “our story” of how we met, dated, fell in love, and married, and divided it into about 19 separate parts, since the book I wanted would be about 20 pages long.

The hardest part was illustrating the book. Let me tell you – I am no artist. I watched (many) video tutorials on YouTube on how to draw giraffes and other things and then went to work with pencil on plain sheets of paper.

First I decided what to draw to match the text on each “page” I wanted. Then, using a regular pencil, I drew the illustration. When I was happy with it, I used colored pencils to draw over the lines and color it in. I had many (many!) attempts for each page— this part took more than two months of drawing in my spare time!

When I finally finished the illustrations, I scanned them all onto the computer and saved them as image files. Then I went onto to create a photobook. I used one illustration per page and added my desired text on top of the photo of my illustration. Voila!

It took a little tweaking here and there because I hadn’t drawn the illustrations the correct size, even though I thought I had, but it ended up working out well.

I incorporated into the ‘story’ things about us and our relationship. For example, we met in Brazil – I spent a lot of time tediously coloring the infamous black and white patterned streets of Ipanema and Copacabana.

We went hang gliding together in Brazil, so I illustrated that. (P.S., it’s not easy to draw pictures of giraffes hang gliding.)

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