One of the hottest hobbies today is that of scrapbooking. Scrapbookers may work alone in their basement or craft room or they make create their masterpieces during raucous parties, accompanied by wine, excited talking and creativity. But there is one element that all good scrapbooks have in common: they tell a story.
“Embodied in every scrapbook page is a celebration of life, a moment or moments captured that are especially unique to a person or family. Scrapbookers today are preserving yesterday for tomorrow.” [https://www.scrapbook.com]
Scrapbooking techniques and tools have matured substantially. And there are tons of inexpensive design resources available to today’s scrapbooker. An example is the awesome printable alphabet on the image above. It’s printable and it comes in a large size so that you can reduce the size to suit your page. Print it, glue it and voila! You have a gorgeous header for your page.
Due to these new techniques, design resources and tools and tools, the uses of scrapbooking have expanded drastically. Scrapbooking is still used to hold personal keepsakes and for gift giving. However, now scrapbooking techniques can be used to make baby announcements, grandparent books, gift cards, artwork for kid’s rooms, recipe books, and even educational tools.
Obviously, when it comes to your scrapbook, your album is first and foremost, the foundation of all your creative work. And happily, there are so many choices in beautiful albums that can be decorated in all kinds of creative ways. To the right is an example of an intriguing album with room for 40 black pages of beautiful personalized goodies. It can be turned 360 degrees which is useful.
To increase the preservation of your scrapbook and your treasures, look for scrapbooking paper that includes acid free, lignin free pages. Both acid and lignin accelerate photo fading and general deterioration. Lignin is a chemical found naturally in the cell walls of plants. If the lignin is not removed in the scrapbooking paper manufacturing process, the chemical will cause the paper product to gradually yellow and crumble. Lignin and acid free products come in virtually any color and texture.
#2. Paste: A Habit From The Past
Specialized glue dots and two-sided tape makes mounting your treasures simple and mess free. Many of these products are so strong that you can now decorate your scrapbook pages with ribbons, feathers, flowers, or even metal charms.
Speaking of gluey pieces, various glues and affixing options are available. These quick and less messy options include glue dots, two-sided tape, Xyron, acid free photo tabs, and polypropylene corners.
#3. Cutting & Trimming Your Scrapbooking Pages
As you get more acquainted with scrapbooking, you will find products that save you time and frustration. Many of these products are well worth the extra cost. At the top of this list is an exacto knife. This strong and versatile blade allows you to cut almost anything into any shape. When the blade is dull, the end is simply broken off to reveal another sharp tip. Just be sure to place the object you plan to cut onto a mat or wad or newspaper before using the exacto knife. Otherwise, the knife will cut right through your picture and into your scrapbook page or dining room table.
#4. Not High Tech, But …
The next best tool is a pair of tweezers. Trying to pick up and place small gluey pieces is a hassle. Tweezers, though not very high tech, allow you to move pieces without touching them.
Laying Out Your Scrapbooking Pages
#5. The Theme of Your Scrapbook
The theme of your scrapbook can be simple or complex. Your theme could be a special event such as a birthday, a baby shower, a wedding, Christmas, or Halloween. Themes can also be personalized to the scrapbook recipient’s special interests. Special interests themes include favorite colors, sports, favorite television programs, music, the outdoors, or cultural influences.
❁ What is the overall purpose for your scrapbook?
❁ Who is the scrapbook for?
❁ Who is the scrapbook about?
The answers to these three questions are all factors in selecting an appropriate theme. For instance, the scrapbook you are giving your nephew as he graduates from medical school is probably completely different than the grandparent book you send your mother. Your nephew will probably appreciate a scrapbook with photographs, poems, journals, and more masculine embellishments. Perhaps, the theme of the scrapbook could be medicine. You could create embellishments that looked like scalpels and tweezers around various pictures of your nephew during his college years.
Your mother, on the other hand, will love a multitude of baby pictures fancifully embellished with flowers, ribbon, and baby fingerprints. The theme of this book will probably be your baby. Photographs could include baby and grandma with the baby. A nice journal about your baby’s day could also add a nice touch
#6. The Title of Your Scrapbook
Don’t forget to create a title for your scrapbook page. Though adding a title might seem to be obvious or unimportant, a title defines the whole basis of your scrapbook. The title instantly tells the viewer what your page is all about. In one word or one short phrase, the title tells the reader the theme and purpose of your scrapbook.
Titles can be as basic as the date of an event, the name of an individual, or a specific event.
Titles can also be more interesting and exciting. These can include quotes, sayings, fillers, or simple phrases. The best places to look for title inspiration are in greeting cards, advertisements, and commercials.
#7. The Color of Your Scrapbook
Color coordination and contrast will highlight and accent your scrapbook. A well thought out color scheme can help define the theme of a page, attract attention to specific items, or detract away from mistakes. Poorly chosen color schemes, on the other hand, can cause your scrapbook page to look gaudy or mismatched.
Background colors can either be matched, coordinated, or contrasted with the colors in your photographs, mementos, or embellishments. Matching colors add to the continuity of the color scheme. Coordinated colors add depth to scrapbook pages. Contrasted colors focus the eye. In this way, color can be used to create the effect you desire.
A great way to see how colors look together is to collect and compare color wheels from your local paint or hardware store. Paint wheels are usually available free for the taking in nearly any paint department.
#8. Photographs in Your Scrapbook
Most scrapbooks will contain photographs. Even the most disinterested reader of your scrapbook will glance at the photographs. Pictures really are worth a thousand words. Therefore, it is important to choose photographs that are of good quality and clearly illustrate your scrapbook theme.
Any photograph can be used in a scrapbook. Even instant photographs can be used in scrapbooking. Just be careful that the chemicals within the photograph do not spill out on the rest of your scrapbook. Digital pictures can easily be printed right onto lignin-free and acid -free paper.
Always keep in mind that scrapbooking is permanent. Therefore, it is probably preferable to use copies of your only picture of Great Grandma rather than risk ruining the photograph forever. Simply scan the picture on your computer scanner and print the image on lignin free and acid free paper.
#9. Cutting and Cropping
Often photographs aren’t quite the right shape and size or the photographic image is improperly centered. Having oversized or off centered photographs creates an air of unprofessionalism. Carefully cropped and sized photographs, on the other hand, enhances the overall look and feel of your scrapbook.
There are two ways to solve these problems. The low tech way to solve these problems are to manually crop and shape the photograph using a pair of scissors or an exacto knife. If you are manually cropping and cutting pictures, make sure that you mark the outline you want with chalk (or eye shadow if you don’t have chalk) before you cut. Remember the old saying, measure twice and cut once.
To manually change a distracting or cluttered background simply cut out the background and replace it with a with a new paper background. This allows the eye to focus on the people instead of the clutter behind them.
The high tech solution to your photograph woes is to use modern computer programs such as Photo Editor. Using these programs, photographs can be magically darkened, brightened, sharpened, enlarged, and cropped without ruining your original photograph. Some programs even allow you to change the background of the photograph.