Saturday, October 22, 2011

Basic Tools for Scrapbooking

You need a few basic items to Scrapbook.  A good pair of sharp scissors, a ruler, a craft knife with a fine tip blade, repositionable tape, a cutting mat (preferably with 1/8" lines) an archival safe pen, archival safe paper, archival safe page protectors, binder to put pages in (I like three ring notebooks as opposed to post binders), a good textured eraser, a micro fiber cloth (to wipe off fingerprints), stickers, and what you are scrapbooking.

It is important that all materials are archival safe (acid-free) or marked photo safe.  Why repositionable tape?  When you are starting out, this gives you the freedom to move things around without damaging the background page.  Here are some pictures of the basics:

Textured eraser which is good for removing adhesive when needed.
Micro fiber Cloth

eighth inch cutting mat (Mosaic Moments brand), 12" metal ruler with cork back, Repositionable tape (I like Dotto Brand)

My favorite scissors to use are an all metal pair of straight embroidery scissors.  This allows for nice clean cuts.  However, any sharp pair of fine tip scissors will do just fine.

Optional tools: Paper cutter (slide is better than chop), punches, decorative edge scissors, templates, die-cuts, rubber ink stamps (use with archival safe ink), glitter pens.

The reason you want a cork backed metal ruler is so it does not move on you when you are cutting along the edge.  You can use a rotary cutter (used in quilting) if you don't have a steady hand for the straight cuts.

Your paper should either be solid or a background that compliments the theme of what you are scrapbooking.  For example:  Pictures of a trip to the beach would look good on background papers of the ocean, sand, shells, etc, or solid colors like tans, blues, blue-greens.

Your pens should be picked the same way.  Just be sure they are archival safe.  Does no good to make all those wonderful comments to only have them fade away in a couple of years.

(An easy way to make your own glittery paper is to use decorative background paper and then highlight the edges with a glitter pen - but more about that later.)

Once you have the basic supplies, you need to organize your photos and other items you are going to scrapbook.  This is probably the hardest thing to do and the most time consuming.  But once it is done, you are ready to go.  Next up - how to organize your cool stuff.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Scrapbook Basics - Why & What

The why of Scrapbook is simple – preservation. Preserve photos, documents, etc that are important to you and yours. Photos left in boxes will stick to each other over time. Photos put in magnetic albums will glue to pages over time and yellow horribly. Same with documents. Not to mention that you will most likely forget the who, what, where and why the pictures were taken after several years. If you are like me, you have something you like to take pictures of – for me it is clouds and flowers. Now I don’t need someone going through my photos after I am gone trying to figure out why I have all the pictures of clouds or flowers. I can hear it now: “What was she thinking” “Why in the world do we have these?” With the scrapbook pages I can at least explain the method behind the “perceived” madness and so can you. Not to mention helping everyone remember who was at what event. Plus – once you get over the “need to be perfect”, this is actually a really fun activity for all ages.

Now that we know why to Scrapbook, what do we scrapbook? Anything and everything. Don’t limit yourself to pictures. Do you or your child have a lot of medals? Those can be scrapbooked. Have a lot of cute cards? Those can be scrapbooked. Not to mention all those firsts: “first haircut, first tooth, first pacifier, first comb, etc” In other words, if it can fit on a 12″ x 12″ piece of paper it can go on a scrapbook page.

Next – How to do it & What to get in the way of basic supplies.

Have fun! Enjoy the time you have because it is always less than we need.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


I have decided to teach people how to scrapbook. I especially like the Photo Mosaic Methods developed by Tami Potter. It looks really complicated but is very easy and great if you love things in straight lines. Check out some of the pages I have done below. They really are quite fun to do. If you are interested in learning and are in the Mesa, AZ area, post a comment here and I will see about getting a class going.