Sunday, August 06, 2006

Getting Started with Scrapbooking

Scrapbooking has become a popular pastime for many who wish to preserve their memories in a creative way. For those who are just beginning the hobby, there are so many scrapbooking supplies, classes and instructional books available that getting started may seem overwhelming.

It doesn't need to be overwhelming, however. By following a few simple guidelines, it is easy to purchase the right supplies, create memorable pages and finish a scrapbook that preserves memories for generations.

Choosing Scrapbooking Supplies

The choices in scrapbooking supplies seem endless, but just a few basic supplies are needed to begin an album. Most of the following items will be needed to begin a scrapbook:

The photos and memorabilia to be put in the scrapbook;

An album - preferably one that is archival quality (archival quality means that it is acid free so that the items in the album do not become damaged over time;

Page protectors for the album pages;

Acid free decorative papers that will complement your photos and memorabilia;

Photo safe pens - at least one black one and any other colors that may be used; A paper cutter - there are several good small table-top paper cutters that are available just for scrapbooking;


These are the basic items that are needed to begin an album. There are entire stores and online sites dedicated to only selling scrapbooking supplies, and all of these supplies (except for the photos and memorabilia) can be found at any one of them.

Creating Memorable Scrapbook Pages

The purpose of a scrapbook is to preserve memories and tell a story. The most memorable pages do this by presenting the photos and memorabilia in an attractive way while adding a lot of writing, know as journalling, to tell the story.

Some scrapbookers choose to create elaborate scrapbook pages that are works of art. They take hours to create one page and the pages certainly are memorable. However, this method does not work well for many scrapbookers because it is very time consuming.

The best way to create memorable pages is to keep it simple:

Choose a theme for the scrapbook and continue it through the entire album. It could be a chronological album of yearly events, a baby album, a wedding album, an album of all Christmas pictures, etc...;

Choose a few colors of papers and pens that complement each other, and stick with them throughout the album;

Use decorative stickers and other embellishments lightly;

Journal liberally. This is probably the best way to make a scrapbook memorable. Tell the stories behind the photos. In years to come, those who look at the album will be much more impressed with the stories that they read than the elaborateness of the designs of the pages.

Preserve the Scrapbooks Correctly

Even creating a simple scrapbook takes a lot of time, and it is important to preserve the memories and the work properly. It's easy to do this:

All materials used for the scrapbook should be of archival quality and photo safe. This includes the album, its pages and page protectors, papers and stickers used for decorative touches and the ink used to journal;

Use page protectors. They will protect pages from unwanted damage;

When the albums are finished store them upright in a temperature controlled room. Do not store them in basements or attics where heat, humidity or extreme cold could damage them.

By following these guidelines, it is easy to start creating scrapbooks that will be enjoyed by generations to come.


Getting Started with Scrapbooking

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