Scrapbooking 101

Timeless Treasures.

The wrinkled hands softly turned the pages in the over-sized book and a small smile came across the woman’s face as she reminisced over the old treasures. The scrapbook included dates and names and ticket stubs from shows she had been to with her husband, photos of her children and their weddings and photos of the woman and her parents. All were neatly arranged in a scrapbook made for her by her oldest daughter. The scrapbook became the woman’s most prized possession.


Scrapbooking has become quite the attraction lately among women of all ages and backgrounds. While the idea of scrapbooking is not new, the market on trinkets and gadgets and stickers to embellish one’s scrapbook is just now taking off. There are whole sections in stores like Hobby Lobby, Michael’s and A.C. Moore that are completely dedicated to hosting scrapbooking paraphernalia. Additionally, whole stores are being dedicated to just scrapbooking. And Creative Memories, a home-business similar to Pampered Chef, is booming.

What is the Attraction to Scrapbooking?

Some of that attraction must be attributed to science. The development of acid-free pages, glue and tapes have enabled scrapbookers to preserve their treasures better than these treasures would be preserved in a simple photo album. The availability of some scrapbook enhancements, such as buttons, grommets and stickers has inspired the less artistic population to create their own personal masterpieces.

The ease with which some looks can be achieved also holds great appeal. There are scissors that cut various borders, paper cutters that cut perfectly straight lines, cutting systems that allow a person to trim a photo into a perfect circle, star or square, and punches that can trim your photo or paper to just about any shape you can imagine.

We all still love to color and cut and paste, though few of us would admit that, and that also entices many to scrapbook.
Each of these things adds to the appeal of scrapbooking. Combine that with the fact that most items needed for scrapbooking are relatively inexpensive and th and you have a recipe for success.

Where to Begin?

Organization is key. That means going through those boxes of old photos that are lying around and pitching the photos that are too blurry to see, the photos of you with your eyes closed and any other such worthless photo. That also means sorting photos by people in the photo, or by event or by whatever sorting system you happen to want to use.

Once you are organized, the next step would be purchasing your supplies. This can get tricky as there are the “must-haves,” the “should-haves” and the “would-like-to-haves.” The list of must-haves includes a scrapbook, plain acid-free paper, a sharp pair of straight (as opposed to scalloped) scissors, markers and some sort of adhesive. Make sure that your products are acid-free because those products that are not can aid is the eventual deterioration of your photos.

The “should-haves” list entails a variety of solid, colored papers, a lettering stencil, and a cutting system that will enable you to cut a variety of shapes fairly easily.

The list of “would-like-to-haves” is about as long as your imagination. You can use leaves, flowers, stickers, stamps, special scissors, vellum papers, die-cuts, patterned papers and even buttons and grommets.

Now that you have your supplies, it is time to begin. Decide on which event you would like to scrapbook and then sketch out rough layout of your page. Never adhere anything to the page until you are absolutely sure of where you want the photo. Then, as the Nike commercial would say, “Just do it.”

It really is that simple. Perhaps the most difficult part is deciding how you want your pages to layout. And even that is not all that difficult, thanks to all the magazines and websites that are available to assist with “scrapper’s block.” Each of the following websites have online idea galleries for you to peruse.

Additionally, many of the local craft stores offer craft classes and among the classes offered is usually a scrapbooking class or two.

It is never too late to begin preserving your precious memories, so get scrappin’!

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