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Five Essential Tools for Scrapbooking

27. February 2015

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Although scrapbooking has a variety of tools you can purchase, here are five tools that will help you begin and expand your creativity:

Glue & Adhesive
There seems to be a wide variety of glue and adhesives to purchase for scrapbooking. The best thing to do is experiment with a few to find which type works for you and the project you are working on.

Scissors & Paper Edgers
Of course you will need straight edge scissors, but along with these, you can find craft scissors that give your paper a variety of edges. In stores you can also purchase a paper edger. These will cut your paper in a straighter line than the craft scissors, but they basically do the same thing.

Templates & Stencils
Whenever you need a fun picture or perfect letter and you don’t want to purchase stickers, a template or stencil will do the job. These come in a variety of shapes, styles, fonts, and pictures. You can also find templates and stencils for specific holidays and events.

Pens & Markers
Using gel pens and metallic markers will give your scrapbook some color, creativity and originality. Try different brands and types until you find what you prefer. Metallic markers often work on black or dark color paper compared to gel pens.

Distressing Tool
A distressing tool will give paper and other material the appearance of an antique. Practice with paper that you don’t care about first because it may take a few tries to understand and manipulate how this works.

Laminating for Scrapbooking

25. February 2015

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Scrapbooking is all about trying to keep memories as long as possible, so it’s important to protect the items in your scrapbook however possible. Things like newspaper, though important for your scrapbook, can get damaged with time – so one solution is to use a laminator to protect both the item, and those surrounding it, from damage.

You don’t need to rush out and pay a shop to do the laminating for you. There are many affordable laminating machines and pouches for use at home, giving you complete flexibility over your projects. You can even laminate complete scrapbook pages if you need to – the process is the same, you’ll just need a bigger laminating pouch and a way to attach the page into your scrapbook.

Some of the most popular laminators include:
•    The Scotch Thermal Laminator
•    The Fellowes Saturn SL 125
•    And Royal Machines PL2112

How to Laminate Items for Your Scrapbook

First, you’ll need to turn on the laminator to give it time to warm up.

Next, take the items you’re going to laminate and slide it into a laminating pouch. You might need to cut this pouch down to get it to the right size you need.

Now it’s time to put the pouch into the machine – but make sure it’s fully warmed up first. Be very careful to place the pouch in the center of the machine to avoid any risk to your documents. If you’ve never laminated before, now might be a good time to practice with something that’s not important, until you get the hang of it. Don’t push it – let the laminator do the work for you.

You’ll then need to wait for the laminate to cool before touching it. Only trim the laminate, or use it in your scrapbook, once it’s fully cooled.  You may need a stronger adhesive to stick laminates in your scrapbook.

Laminating your own documents and items isn’t as difficult as it may seem, it just takes a little practice. Just be careful to follow the particular instructions of your laminating model carefully.

Choosing A Printer (and Ink) That’s Safe For Scrapbooking

23. February 2015

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The main worry scrapbookers have when choosing their printer is that it may eventually damage photographs and artwork over time. Some materials contain acid that will eventually cause photographs to fade and change color, so it’s important to choose your printer wisely if you’ll be printing pages or photographs to place in your scrapbook.

The good news is that most printer ink is acid free, though it’s important to look at each kind of ink individually. Some inks are specifically labeled for archival use, including a new brand by Epson.

The real thing you’ll need to think about is how permanent the ink itself will be in your scrapbook. Laser printers are generally more permanent and safe for scrapbooking, whereas inkjet inks are water based: this means they’ll fade over time and will run if they get wet.

Archival Printers

Although most printouts will last for a long time (if in doubt, contact the manufacturer directly), you could spend a little more money and buy a printer that’s been specifically designed for the best quality. Here are a few models you might consider:

Epson R2880 Large Format Photo Printer: This has the ability to create large, extremely high-quality prints that will last for years when combined with the high-quality Epson cartridges.

HP Photosmart Pro B8850: HP have stated on their website that prints should last for decades. Buying a high quality printer gives you an even greater guarantee that your prints will last.

Canon PIXMA Pro9500MkII:  Canon are one of the biggest names in photography, and this model can produce prints quickly without compromising on quality.

How to Make Your Printouts Last Longer:

Even once you’ve chosen a printer with suitable ink, it still helps to take a few measures that’ll help your photographs last longer:
•    Keep images and pages out of direct sunlight,
•    Use page protectors (safe for archiving) in your scrapbook,
•    Keep images away from any liquid or excess moisture.

It’s up to you which printer you choose. Most inks are acid free and safe for scrapbooking, but if you want to go the extra mile then it never hurts to use high-quality printers with archival inks.

How to Create Folded Photo Corners

21. February 2015

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Photo corners are a fantastic way to add some subtle decoration to the photo pages of your scrapbook. Although corners are available to buy in craft stores, it’s simple enough to make your own once you know how. Here’s a quick guide on how to fold them for the greatest effect.

1) Choose Your Materials: Many scrapbookers choose to use leftover card or paper for their photo corners, and vellum is also popular. You can use whatever you feel would look best for the project.

2) Cut A Square: Use a square cutter or paper trimmer to cut a square out of your card (2 inches is a good size).

3) Fold the Square: Now you’ll need to fold that square in half (so it becomes a rectangle). Then fold this again into a smaller square.

4) Fold Again: Now look for the part of the square that features all of the outside corners. Fold one of them up and over the other half of the square (so the inside layer of the card is now facing out, creating two triangles that form the square).

5) Continue Folding the Layers: Continue folding each layer of the square in the same way as in step 4, leaving a small margin between the folded layers each time for decorative effect. Make sure you leave the last layer in tact – this will be the back of your corner, allowing you to slip the corner of the photograph in to keep it in place.

scrapbook photo cornersThese create a nice alternating effect on the folded corners, though there are also other folded corner techniques out there depending on the kind of look you want to create. Some choose to fold more plain corners but use scalloped scissors to dress up the outer edges.

Photo corners are fantastic on more old fashioned layouts and can make your photographs look more elegant. Try practicing with a few different techniques and coloured materials to find one that suits you.

Wedding Scrapbook Ideas

19. February 2015

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Weddings are a perfect occasion to create a wedding scrapbook. With a number of events leading up to the celebration, finding occasions and materials to document the event is a relatively simple task. By analyzing available materials, picking a template and spending time assembling the end product, creating a wedding scrapbook should be an enjoyable post-nuptial experience.

What should I include in my wedding scrapbook?

One of the best parts of wedding scrapbooking is the availability of unique materials. After a wedding, couples often find they have amassed a sizable collection of magazines, remnant materials from assorted projects along with mementos from pre-wedding celebrations. All of these trinkets should be incorporated in a wedding scrapbook.

Oftentimes, the biggest challenge of creating a wedding scrapbook is picking a format. This step is where creativity is of the utmost importance. Couples should take heart that there is no right or wrong answer. Scrapbooking by virtue is designed to be a fun, freeform and creative experience. Numerous books have been authored on the subject, in addition to a wealth of information online. Couples suffering from “scrapbook-block” should consider these resources to assist in selecting their desired format.

What’s the next step in creating a wedding scrapbook?

Following the aforementioned steps, couples are ready to begin the layout of their wedding scrapbook. Consider a format embracing each event as a page or spread unto itself highlighting the special moments of that day. Adding special trinkets, including an invitation, menu or favorite photograph will add flair to the pages. Couples should remember to use acid-free materials to protect their project for years to come.

Returning from their honeymoon, couples often find themselves in wedding withdrawal. Scrapbooking is a fun way for couples to relive their celebration and transition into married life, and a wedding scrapbook will give them a keepsake to share with family and friends in the years to come.

Making a Family Heritage Scrapbook

17. February 2015

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Preserving your family memories and heritage is an important part of your life’s story. A crafty and fun way in which you can display your family heritage and preserve precious memories is by creating a family heritage scrapbook album.

When you include pictures to your scrapbook, include a short biography about who is in the picture. Picture captions are also nice to use in scrapbooks such as this and are a great way to display who is in the picture and how they are related to you. You can also include significant documents which relate to certain aspects of a personals life. Memorabilia items such as a lock of hair, medals and award ribbons, graduation tassels or even grandma’s old hair pin or broach can be displayed in pockets in your scrapbook album.

Since you are telling a story about your family, it is important to include both happy events as well as the not so happy events. The day someone passes away is just as significant as the day they were born or the day they were married, simply because it completes that person’s story. To help you do this, you can add items such as baby footprints, birth announcements, wedding announcements, obituaries, or death certificates.

Adding your own words or journaling on an album page is a great way to express you thoughts about a person. Your heritage scrapbook will become a cherished heirloom to family members for generations to come, especially when you add a personal touch of writing your own words and thoughts.

Have fun and enjoy putting together your family heritage scrapbook. Your only limit is your imagination.

Scrapbooking clubs

15. February 2015

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When you want to keep track of things and memories scrapbooking is a good way to do it they first came into the picture in 1826 in Germany and since then it has been a good way to bring families closer for those who don’t know scrap booking is putting every good memory in a picture and putting it in your scrap book and decorating however you want it’s a very good hobby for anyone to take up.

If you want to have even more fun you could join a scrap booking club with members whom have the same interests and hobby as you and in most scrapbooking clubs you share what is in your scrap book and when you get a new entry in your book. So being in a club is a good way to share your stories with others and not just family. When you have a scrap book you’re not just looking at a picture you’re looking at a memory and when joining a club you get to tell others the memory behind the picture and you share your family’s special moments. In some scrap booking clubs they have activities where you all go out and take pictures and then about an hour later you come back and show them your picture and tell them about why you took it and why it will be a good memory for you.

So when you want to share your scrap book with your community you should join a scrap booking club it can make the hobby even more fun and create more friends to put in your scrapbook.

Which Materials Are Safe For Scrapbooking?

13. February 2015

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Scrapbooking means creating something that you hope is going to last for as long as possible. As well as thinking about any photograph protection, you also need to consider the types of material you include in the scrapbook: they can all have an impact on how long your scrapbook will last.

Newspaper Clippings: Newspaper clippings are extremely common for inclusion in scrapbooks, as they often mark important events and times. However, newspapers generally don’t last for a long time as the paper contains an ingredient called lignin. This will make it turn yellow and brittle, so you need to be careful and take steps to preserve it.

Wrapping Paper, Wallpaper and Greetings Cards: Including things like wrapping paper or greetings cards can be a good way to remember special events, though they generally contain acid which means the paper will turn yellow and brittle and could also damage other items in the scrapbook (like photos).

Printer Paper: Many people like to print out certain items on standard printer paper, which is fine for inclusion in scrapbooks. Just opt for the paper that’s acid free and lignin free, or labeled as “archival paper”. This means it won’t fade and won’t cause other items to fade. Most inks are safe for scrapbooking.

Vellum: You can often buy vellum marketed specifically for scrapbooking, which is safe to try as long as it’s acid and lignin free.

What To Do If A Material Isn’t Suitable

Many types of paper aren’t good for your scrapbooks and they’ll eventually deteriorate over time. In the case of items that you don’t want to include for fear of damage, you could take a photograph or scan of the item to copy it on acid-free paper, or you could laminate it (but make sure the laminate material is suitable for scrapbooking).

Lastly, you could try an archival mist – but make sure any items you’ve sprayed still stay protected inside the scrapbook.

Finding the Best Scrapbooking Scanner for Old Photographs and Scrapbook Pages

11. February 2015

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Most of the photographs that tend to get used in scrapbooking are older prints. Although digital photographs are more popular nowadays, we all have older photos that we still need to keep safe. The perfect way to incorporate these into your scrapbook is to scan them in. But what’s the best scanner to choose?

Type of Scanner

First you might want to consider the type of scanner you’ll need. If you don’t already have a printer and/ or a photocopier, then there are a number of three-in-one scanners available. These are usually bigger than your average flatbed scanner, but good value if you need all three functions.

The type of scanner you choose also depends on what you want to scan. A few things you might scan in include:
•    Old photographs,
•    Your scrapbook pages,
•    Birth certificates,
•    Any other documents that can’t be used in the scrapbook,
•    Small items you’d like to remember.

Larger Scanners

Many scrapbookers not only use their scanners for photographs, but to keep a digital copy of their scrapbook pages in case anything should happen to the originals. Large format flatbed scanners are the perfect choice for this.

Larger than standard scanners, these models allow scrapbookers to easily fit in and scan the pages of their scrapbooks without having to split up files and scan sheets in many different stages.

What to Look For

No matter whether you’re going for a standard sized scanner (suitable for scanning A4 pages) or a large flatbed scanner, you’ll need to look at the specifications.

The resolution of the scanner is an indication of the image quality, measured in dots per inch or dpi. Try to find a scanner that has at least 2400 dpi and also note that the higher the color depth, the more realistically the scanner will replicate the colors of the item.

Finding the Best Digital Camera for Scrapbooking

9. February 2015

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scrapbooking-cameraWhen it comes to choosing your first digital camera for scrapbooking, it’s important to figure out what features you need from the camera, and how much you’re willing to spend.

Megapixels: In short, the more megapixels a camera has, the better the resolution of the photographs will be. Think honestly about the sizes you’ll need to print.

Memory: Most digital cameras come with a small amount of internal memory, but you’ll also want the ability to add external memory (most cameras today offer this feature). This means you can buy several memory cards and switch them if one becomes full.

Zoom: Most digital cameras come with some kind of zoom, described using a multiplier of the standard view, such as 5x, 10x and so on. There is a difference between “optical zoom” and “digital zoom” – the latter is a poor quality zoom, whereas the former is very useful for maintaining quality.

Macro Lens: This describes the ability of the camera to take very close-up images of items. This is a useful feature for your digital camera to have if you want to take large photographs of items to include in your scrapbooks.

SLR Vs. Point and Shoot: Digital SLR cameras come with more manual settings and interchangeable lenses, suitable for those who know more about photography or are very willing to learn. If you want something that’s easy to use, then opting for a standard compact point and shoot camera could be your best option.

There really is no best camera for taking photos for scrapbooking. It really depends on your budget and what you want to take photographs of. You can expect to pay at least a couple of hundred dollars upwards for a decent camera.

What you can be sure of that choosing a good digital camera is a great investment. Digital cameras more than match traditional film cameras these days, and the digital format can give you the flexibility to store and use your photos however is best for you!