You Want to Try Scrapbooking but Don't Know Where to Begin?

Scrapbook FYI :

Know that typical scrapbooking albums come in two sizes: 8″x10″ and 12″x12″ Once you decide on an album style (D-ring, postbound or strapbound) be sure that it is an archival-quality album. This means that it will not yellow or fade over time. It will cost you extra (especially if you do not take advantage of a 50-off sale) but it is worth it. After you have invested the amount of time you will undoubtedly spend on your scrapbook(s) you do not want it to have a shorter lifespan than you do. (Please note: I use the 12″x12″ postbound albums because I find those are the easiest to increase in size, hold my pages the flattest and I can show more pictures with the larger size. My favorite albums are the linen ones by WeRMemory Keepers.)

There is no right or wrong in scrapbooking your memories. You can decide what kind of album to do just as you decide what size of album to use. Scrapbooks can be broken down into vacations, family, individuals, school years, holidays, animals, etc… Your album is an expression of you so its topic is completely up to you! (Note: I, to date, have primarily scrapped my child’s life so it is natural that I chose a chronological method. Each new year gets a new album.)

When it comes to scrapping, you can easily get carried away by all the “pretty shiny” things you see and it is just as easy to spend a lot of money buying all of these things that look so fabulous in the stores but never quite make it to your scrapbook pages! With the exception of a few items which will be discussed below, you should buy sparingly and go into a scrapbook aisle armed with a list of things you need. Then, you are less likely to end up with a stack of Christmas embellishments but not one single Halloween one which is really what you need most of all. Believe it. It happens more than you’d like to know and it’s a sure-fire way to kill whatever scrappin’ mojo you’ve got going.

There is no right or wrong way to scrapbook. Just do what you like and what you think looks good based on your own personal style. When it comes to journaling — the act of explaining the what, why, where of the moment you’re scrapping — know that you do not have to have the writing abilities of Shakespeare or Dickens to write what you want. Keep it personal and true to your objective. If it’s a page about your vacation, then be sure to note all of the places you went and fun experiences along the way. If it’s a page about your child, you can personalize your journal by including how you felt the day the event occurred or how you feel as you’re looking at the pictures when you’re writing. Be sure to include the bare minimum information (the who, what, why, where of the event) and the date. If you’re unsure of the exact date, an approximation will do.

Here is a checklist of items you have to have when it comes to finishing your first scrapbooking album:

  1. Acid-free paper (a mixture of solid and patterns are perfect) — size of paper will depend on album size
  2. Acid-free adhesive tape-runner for adhering your photos and things to your background page — this is one items that you cannot do without. It’s best to buy in bulk, if possible; use coupons to purchase and stock up on regularly. (As a person who has tried numerous brands — cheap ones and expensive ones — the only one I use now is 3L Scrapbook Adhesive. It’s so easy to use and you never have to worry about replacing the adhesive runner which can turn into a big mess. Simply recycle when you’re done.)
  3. Paper trimmer — the bigger the better as you will use this a lot over time. Make sure to purchase one that has replaceable cutting blades. Overtime the blades dull and won’t cut paper or photos as it should.
  4. Acid-free ink pens/markers — for those who choose to write their journaling by hand rather than typing it and printing from the computer.
  5. Photographs and other mementos you want to preserve
  6. Fun embellishments (to use sparingly until you get the idea behind scrapping and decide if it is something you really want to commit yourself to) — these include: stickers, 3D embellishments, buttons, ribbon, yarn fibers, paper flowers, staples, etc…

Feeling overwhelmed?

Don’t hesitate to contact a local scrapbooking store near you. Oftentimes, they will have a class for beginners that will teach you how-to make a scrapbook page. While places like Hobby Lobby and Michael’s typically don’t offer classes to help you, they do stock a wide variety of books and magazines on the subject to help you along the way. Also, check your local library for their book offerings.

Know that scrapbooking has come a long way in its use of techniques, embellishments, colors and methods so a book that might have been in written in the 90s or early 2000s will not likely produce the same results as a technique that was introduced in recent years. As with anything to do with art and fashion, trends come and go. It’s no different with scrapbooking. Exploring older versions of a scrap magazine will make this point very clear very quickly.

Where to find a scrapbooking store?

In New Braunfels, Texas you’re likely to have a good time passing time at the Scrapbook Haus. Located at 651 N. Business IH-35.

In San Antonio, choose from this list or make it a point to visit each one of them. They would love to have you.