Friday, June 21, 2013

On Becoming a "New" Scrapbooker

Hello, friends.

I've been a scrapbooker for more than a dozen years, but recently I was given a simple tip that literally re-energized my scrapbooking. For years, I've used post-style albums, and one of the things I've always found frustrating is the need to de-construct my whole album if I leave something out of its proper spot in the book, or get something out of order. Well, no more.

My dear friend, Lisa, who is a marvelous scrapbook designer/creator, fellow blogger, and YouTube sensation, mentioned that she had made the switch some time ago to ring-binder scrapbook albums. One of the major reasons was to avoid the whole "de-construction" thing. Instead of spending time organizing, positioning, and doing all the pre-planning that post-bound albums demand, she could simply do her pages one at a time and place them in the album where she wanted them. Now, I'm sure something in me must have realized this all along, but her few words had bells going off in my head!  Of course - what a perfect solution!

So, now I've made the switch to ring-binder albums. No more "posts" for me!  I've settled on We R Memory Keepers albums for my collection (although there are many choices one might make). I've purchased an album, as well as photo sleeves in various configurations. The link given above is the least expensive price I've seen, particularly if you prefer to shop online, and there are several shipping options.  Or, if you like to shop the big box stores, such as Michael's, A.C. Moore, etc., there are often coupons for 40-50% off one regular priced item.  (For the record, I make no money from promoting these products.)

Keep in mind that photo sleeves are only one option for making scrapbook pages. I'll also combine this technique with true 12" x 12" scrapbook pages, designed and constructed, as my time allows. These can be inserted into the full-page photo sleeves easily and will give my albums a lot of variety. They'll also feed my desire for creativity.

I'm having a marvelous time just making my pages - rather than pre-planning exactly where they'll fall in my albums.  This is incredibly liberating - and no small feat for someone with decades of photos to put into albums.

For today, I prepared a recent layout from the last week of May. This was an especially memorable trip to me for two reasons: (1) we spent time and fell in love with my husband's first cousin and her husband from Michigan; and (2) I made my first-ever trip to North Carolina's Outer Banks. I can hardly believe that it took me, a native North Carolinian, more than 50 years to get there! It was beautiful and definitely worth the trip.

Today I want to share my Outer Banks page and talk about a few changes I'm adjusting to as a "new" scrapbooker. Let me name a few of the most obvious things:
  • Today we have tons more products, tools, and choices. Time-saving is a big deal, so album styles have exploded. I've made the switch from post-bound to ring-bound.
  • Moving to a ring-bound album means that the photo sleeve options will sometimes constrain my design choices. I'm okay with that if it saves me a lot of time. I can still make a fully-constructed 12" x 12" traditional layout if I choose.
  • Photo sleeves may limit the types of embellishments I can use for my pages. Again, if I want something particular, I can revert to 12" x 12" construction.
  • I've begun to use the computer to complete my journaling.  I have lots of album pages with my handwriting, and I may continue to handwrite some of them, but the time savings is immense.
  • Using the computer for journaling means that different types of embellishments may be needed; for example, the journaling box at top right (below) has a stamped-off image to add interest to the page. I have to plan embellishments more carefully, as journaling on the computer and leaving just the right space for stickers, brads, buttons, ribbons, or other items may be tricky.


For example, once I had the journaling box printed for this layout, I realized it was just too plain. I dressed it up with a stamped-off image from SU!'s Summer by the Sea (retired) rubber stamp set. My ink of choice is Hero Arts Shadow Ink in mid-tone Wet Cement. This required a bit of experimentation as a full-strength stamped image was just a bit busy. Stamping off once before applying to my journal block did the trick.

Full-strength stamp in Hero Arts Shadow Ink

Stamped-Off Image
The difference between the full-strength and the stamped-off image is fairly subtle, but it made all the difference on the journaling block. It added a nice finishing touch to the page. These types of challenges seem fairly minor, but they can mean a big adjustment for an "old-timer." It's worth the effort though.
That's it for today. Please join me again for scrapbooking and card making fun. Thanks for visiting and may God bless!

1 comment:

  1. So happy to see you back to scrapbooking! Yes, you will love the freedom of making pages in any order. I love the stamped off design behind your journaling. Will definitely have to try that. Thanks for the links.