Circle:  Tygerberg

Branch:  De la Haye

Portfolio: Arts and Crafts

Reporter:  Elizabeth Joseph

Date:  09 March 2023

Handcraft – Shabby Chic Memory Book

Our 2nd meeting for 2023 was well attended by members and visitors alike.

Marna de Kock showed us how to plan and make a memory book.  She brought of her books she has previously made, and ones she is currently busy with.

She explained how to make use of the different techniques we have leant over the last few years i.e. dot painting, embroidery, batik and many more. She had everybody intrigued with new ideas and how to make use of what we have in our homes. ·

Marna de Kock explaining how to make a memory book.

Gather and curate

First things first: gather the materials you would like to include in your memory book. Don’t be afraid to get creative and think outside the box. You shouldn’t just gather stacks of photos: if you do, you’ll just end up with a regular photo album.

Try to collect photos, postcards, and holiday and birthday greeting cards. If your family member was featured in a local newspaper, that is something that’s worth including in your memory book. Other memorabilia include ticket stubs. Or perhaps they’re from a play or movie you watched with the person you are dedicating the memory book to.

A plane ticket could add a dimension to your vacation photos, as could foreign currency from places you’ve visited. You can even press dried flowers that signify a special event from the past or symbolize someone’s love.

Think like a museum curator. What “artifacts” from your life would you like to display in your family museum? By viewing your memory book like a tangible version of your family history — because that’s essentially what it is — you’ll be able to come up with some really creative ways to tell stories. ·

Memory book.


Get creative with layouts.

As we said earlier, the memory book is not just any old-fashioned scrapbook. You have the freedom to get creative. You can make complex collages to tell unique stories about family members or special events from the past. You can even draw or write on the pages themselves.


The important thing to keep in mind is that each piece of content, whether a photograph or other material, should shine as if it’s a superstar. This means you should probably avoid overlapping materials too much if you’re trying to make a multi-piece collage.

In order to tell a coherent story, any sentences must be clear. So, visualize the story you want to tell before arranging the material on to the pages. ·

Create a narrative.

Once you’ve figured out your layout, think about how you want to present the beautiful lives of your family members. Each person in your family is unique, and each one has a great story to tell. While you can tell an overall narrative of your family through shared memories (e.g. vacations, family reunions, and celebrations), you should also try to give each member their own “chapter”.

If you want to tell the story of a family member who has already passed away, you can arrange photos like a timeline, showing their childhood pictures first. Include depictions of their major accomplishments like a graduation photo, as well as interesting milestones in their life, such as military photos or wedding anniversaries.

Our lucky draw winner for the meeting was Celeste Visser.

Celeste Visser, receiving her prize from Martie Coetsee.


We had so many entries for our competitions that our judge, Ita van der Merwe, was still busy judging by the time we come to the end of the formalities. Refreshment was served, and then our judge gave feedback on the articles.


Judge Ita van der Merwe and all competition articles.


Nellie Costerus opening meeting.






Martie Coetsee taking minutes.






Members enjoying the demo.  ↑  ↓








Celeste Visser giving feedback from Tygerberg Conference 2023.    ↑  ↓




Members enjoying the feedback about Tygerberg Conference 2023.