Jan 9, 2009

Scrapbooking: Top Ten Essentials

Have you been to the craft store lately? There are so many scrapbooking supplies, products and tools available. It's overwhelming sometimes, and you feel like you need (okay, want) it all. So I thought I'd post a Top Ten Essentials supply list. These are the supplies most scrapbookers can't live without.


What's a scrapbook without paper? Cardstock and plain papers are great to use as backgrounds. They are generally less expensive than patterned paper and cardstock is a good choice to make your pages sturdy.


Life would be boring without patterns. Pick papers that complement each other and can be used together to create unique layouts. I rarely use patterned paper for my backgrounds, but use it to embellish the page instead so it goes further.


You need something to stick all those photos and embellishments to the page. There are tons of adhesive choices: tape runner, glue dots, glue sticks, and more. Just shop around. Make sure the adhesive you choose is acid free since it will be touching your photos. Read more about adhesives here: Back-to-Basics: Adhesives.


A scrapbook isn't complete without journaling, so pick high quality pens that won't bleed, are fade-proof, waterproof, and keep your layout safe.


You need good cutting tools to create a professional layout. Buy a pair of precise, sturdy scissors with a small point good for getting in those tight spaces and cutting small letters and embellishments. You'll also want a high quality paper trimmer. I like to have a larger one for 12 inch papers and a small one for cropping photos. You can read more about trimmers here: Back-to-Basics: Paper Trimmers.


Everyone has digital cameras so make sure you have access to a photo developing service. I personally use my local Costco and Walmart. Both have online photo sites where you can upload your photos and order prints from home to pick up in the store an hour later. They also have fun options you can use to design photo collages, print on unique items, and more.


Embellishments make scrapbooks exciting. There are so many options available: chipboard, stickers, paper flowers, buttons, ribbon, brads, eyelets, and more. Look around your house, you'll be amazed at all the things you can use..


Buy a photo safe box to store all your photos. There are also many options for digital storage. You can use an online service such as Photobucket or Shutterfly. For more ideas on photo storage and how to sort your photos read my previous post-- A Shoebox is not the Solution.


Once you've completed all your layouts, you'll want something to keep them in. There are so many fun albums available in the market. They make you proud to leave them on the coffee table where everyone can see and enjoy your amazing creativity. I also posted about Album Sizes and Types, if you'd like to read more.


After spending all that effort on your pages, you'll want to share them and not just keep them hidden away to keep them safe. Page protectors keep your creations safe. When you use all the page protectors in your album you can add more. Make sure to buy the correct type for your album.

If you are just a beginner, don't worry about getting everything all at once. Start with some basic paper, adhesive, and embellishments. This allows you to get started on your pages and you can add the other items to your collection as you are able. Happy Scrapping!

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