How do you want to remember your life? From an amazing vacation to a wedding and beyond, there are plenty of moments worth writing down. For the creatively inclined, a scrapbook is an even better way to commemorate the past.
The special book is completely customizable and can be specific to a person, event, year, and more. All you need is the right supplies and your imagination. It’s also a great opportunity to put all of those photos—both new and old—to good use so that you’ll always have a way to remember them and reflect on those experiences. In addition to photos, the versatile nature of a scrapbook lends itself to writing as well as decorative designs. The choice is up to you.
If you’ve ever ventured down the scrapbooking aisle of your local craft store, you might feel overwhelmed with possibilities. There are so many supplies and tools at your disposal; so, where do you begin? Scroll down to get a list of essential supplies and some creative scrapbook ideas that you can use in your next page designs.
Essential Scrapbooking Supplies
It’s common to design a scrapbook page by page. Every page could be different depending on the subject and might require you to create a special look for it. This is why having a cache of scrapbooking supplies is handy. When inspiration strikes, you’ll be able to execute your creative vision.
This list is not exhaustive, but it is a great place to start and will complement your photos and other ephemera. Overall, experiment with tools and materials and find what you like—the journey to finding out will be fun!
You can always create your own book and fill it with your memories. But if bookbinding is not your forte, have no fear; there are plenty of blank photo albums just waiting for you to customize. You can select them based on size, number of pages, and cover. If you’re looking to create something that feels truly one of a kind, look for a book that is meant to be personalized from literal cover to cover.
Paper is vital to scrapbooking. Without paper, you likely don’t have a scrapbook. You can use all sorts of paper; it could be bright cardstock that comes in giant reams (making it cost-effective) or specialty papers that are only for individual sale. Depending on how many pages you create, you’ll likely want a combination of cheaper papers and artisan papers that can be mixed and matched.
A good pair of scissors is a staple of any craft stash. For scrapbooking, you’ll want to break out your favorite pair. But don’t look past the funkier set of scissors also on the market. Shears with unusual blade shapes—such as waves or zigzags—can be used in creating unique decorative elements on the page.
You might think of a hole punch as a boring part of your office supplies, but this is not the case when it comes to scrapbooks. In this world, hole punches come in all shapes and sizes. Look for sets of punches that are shaped like circles, clouds, stars, and much more. You could punch out a whole bunch of them to create engaging motifs on the page.
A good glue stick will come in handy for scrapbooking. Look for a glue stick that is acid-free and won’t bleed through your photos or paper.
X-Acto / Craft Knife
There are some designs that are so small or intricate that you can’t cut with scissors. This is where an X-Acto knife (aka a craft knife) will come in handy.
Markers / Pens
You’ll likely want to write in your scrapbook. Whether that is decorative lettering or writing your memories about an event, having a variety of markers and pens will help you chase your creative whims. Look for sets of pens that come in multiple tip sizes and colorful markers that will let you add accent colors to your work.
Sure, you can glue down your pictures or other paper, but another option is washi tape. This special paper tape comes in a variety of colors and patterns. Try using it as a fun way to tack down a photo or to create decorative designs on the page.
The creative possibilities of scrapbooking are seemingly limitless. While this is exciting, it can also be daunting. To get you started, here are some scrapbook ideas that you can make your own.
Pair your photo with thematically similar collages.
Celebrate a birthday with a page as pretty as a present.
Have a lot of photos? Arrange them in a grid on your page.
Make sure life’s smaller moments get their own pages.
Make decorating a page easy with sticker sets.
Embellish little envelopes for something extra special in your scrapbook.
Creatively frame your photo on the page by layering other elements around (and beneath) it.
Treat your scrapbook like a diary.
Use vintage illustrations as a retro-inspired way to decorate.
Try painting in your scrapbook.
Imagine the page as an illustration in a picture book.
Try embroidering the page…
…or using twine, beads, and other small accents to incorporate visually exciting textures into your page.
Try stamping as an easy and fast way to decorate multiple pages.