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Monday, June 4, 2012

New to Scrapbooking

his tutorial contains valuable resources and information about the items found on the “Essentials” and the “Upgrades” shopping lists. The content comes from myself and well-seasoned veterans who have found this information indispensable for our scrapbooking. Once you understand the basics of what is needed to scrapbook, you’ll avoid wasteful purchases and acquire only items you will use, need, and enjoy. The “Essentials” and “Upgrades” shopping lists correlate with this Tutorial. Standard 8.5” x 11” and 12” x 12” albums work well to display photos and memorabilia as do smaller mini-albums. Popular album binding options are: · Three-ring – a notebook-style metal ring mechanism that holds page protectors in the album. Album contents can be adjusted easily. · Post-bound – two to three metal screw and bolt-type posts hold album contents into place. The album must be disassembled to add or removed pages. · Strap-hinge – Though not as prevalent as 3-ring and post-bound albums, these albums have two to three nylon straps than lace through sturdy staples on the pages designed specifically for strap-hinges. The background of these specialty pages is white and will have to have colored cardstock added for color. Your album decisions should be based on personal preference. More information about album options, decorating album covers and designing your albums can be found in the E-Book: A Scrapbooker’s Guide: Scrapbook Planning and Cover Designs by Jill DavisPage Protectors Why? Page protectors shield your layouts from everyday wear and tear while holding them securely in an album. What works: On average, either 8.5” x 11” or 12” x 12”albums will hold 35 full page protectors. If you design “lumpy layouts” (those with multiple thick layers or thick embellishments) you will use less. Only use non-vinyl, archival-safe protectors to avoid damage to your photos and memorabilia. You can choose either clear (shiny) or non-glare protectors. Both offer advantages: clear protectors bring out the true and vivid colors in your layouts while non-glare protectors are easier on the eye. Albums usually include 10-12 page protectors with the purchase. Because different albums use different page protectors you would be wise to stockpile the specific page protectors the fit albums you add to regularly. For detailed information on page protectors and the albums they fit into see the e-Book: A Scrapbooker’s Guide: Scrapbook Planning and Cover Designs by Jill Davis Click here to view all page protectors in the Superstore. Cardstock heavyweight textured or non-textured paper Why? Cardstock provides a sturdy layout foundation for your photographs, memorabilia, and embellishments. It is versatile and affordable. There are hundreds of colors available that make it possible to create beautiful color combinations in layouts. Solid-color cardstock has a colored core. This means if the paper is torn, the color is the same on the inside as it is on the outside. What works: Every scrapbooker will want a good supply of black, white, and neutral cardstock; they are used regularly in layouts. For all other colors, I suggest you begin scrapbooking with a moderate selection of hues (colors) until you get a feel for your own personal style and color preferences. Most paper companies offer cardstock multi-packs. These packs allow you to sample a variety of cardstock colors without paying a higher price for individual sheets. Interestingly, the colors many Scrapbookers eventually adopt are not the colors that first grab their attention. Once your supply of a particular multi-pack color is depleted, you can restock with individual sheets of cardstock or purchase packs. Tip: Bazzill Basics Paper has a textured finish that is excellent for layouts. The texture and weight can be a problem, though, if you are using the paper for printing purposes. The lighter-weight Color Mates cardstocks have a smooth surface and are ideal for running through your printer. Click here to view all cardstock in the Superstore. Patterned Paper lightweight paper with solid printed color or patterns and/or shapes Why? Patterned paper adds more color, movement and theme support to your layouts. What works: As long as the paper is acid-free, anything that suits your style will work. For layout stability, always use a piece of cardstock behind your patterned papers to create a strong foundation. If you are using a “strap hinged” album, you won’t need card stock for stability, but you may want to still use it for color. If using patterned paper as your entire background for photos and memorabilia, choose subtle colors and patterns so they don’t overpower your photos. An option for bright and bold patterns is to use them in lesser amounts in layer strips, photo mats or borders. Then your photos, and not the patterned paper, will be the focal point of your layout. Printed, solid colored cardstocks usually have a white core that was covered with ink at the time of printing. This cardstock, when torn, has the white core showing though at the tear line. This torn edge adds another layer of contrast and definition to a layout or card. Companies that specialize in patterned papers often make kits from their coordinating paper lines. These kits can include one of each patterned and solid paper, sticker alphabets, printed die-cut shapes and images. Coordinating ribbons, fibers, buttons, brads, etc. are sold separately. Jill’s Favorite - BasicGrey assortment patterned-paper packs for advanced beginners (these kits include easy-to-work-with grunge/distressed-style solids and equally-distressed patterns for unique layout and embellishing possibilities –coordinating embellishments sold separately) Other Top Picks (assortment paper packs ideal for anyone new to scrapbooking): SEI assortment paper packs Cosmo Cricket paper collections and kits Doodlebug themed kits K&Company kits Click here to view all individual sheets of patterned paper in the Superstore. Adhesives Why? When properly used, adhesives hold everything in place for a very long time. What works: Adhesives are available in double-sided tabs and tapes, liquids, and glue sticks. The type of adhesive you choose depends on what you are gluing and where you are gluing it. Look for those that are acid-free, nontoxic, and free of strong odors. Also, read product labels to ensure they’re photo safe. It isn’t generally necessary to coat the entire back side of anything you glue to a layout. Think less is more. Just because tape adhesive comes out in a running strip doesn’t mean you have to put it all along a paper edge. You can put a portion in each corner and some in the center, and it will stay in place just fine. If however, the piece you are gluing is bulky and/or heavy, you may need more adhesive. Also, never put adhesive on the back of an original heirloom photo or snapshot. These, will be difficult to remove without damaging, once glued to a layout. See Photo Corners below for more information on how to preserve heirloom and one-of-a–kind photographs. Because there are several types and styles of adhesives and dispensers I'll list my top picks of tapes, tabs, liquids, sticks, etc. so you can see the product sand learn more about them from the descriptions and product reviews. Note that some dispensers are disposable while others are refillable. Terrifically Tacky Tape, high-performance tape (ideal for book binding) Mono-multi, liquid adhesive UHU glue stick Glue Dots (tiny, strong adhesive dots for ribbon, buttons, paper, etc.) Zip Dry high-performance adhesive Bargain Adhesive Packs Vellum Adhesive – the best adhesive to use when attaching vellum to layouts Click here to view all adhesives in the Superstore. Adhesive Removers Why? When you put adhesives or rub-ons in the wrong place on your layout there are special glue erasers that can remove most of the unwanted substance from the paper surface. Liquid removers will eliminate adhesives and sticky residue from papers, scissors and punches. What works: Liquid removers work well on surfaces the eraser can’t so both varieties are ideal. Un-Du all-purpose, liquid adhesive remover Click here to view all adhesive removers in the Superstore. Paper Cutter/Trimmer Why? Almost as much as painters need paint, they need good paintbrushes for applications. And so it is with scrapbookers and paper trimmers. Scrapbookers use paper as their artistic medium making a paper cutter the most important tool in completing scrapbooking processes. What works: Precision and ease are two important factors when considering a good paper cutter. Not all paper cutters are created equal. Higher-end trimmers may be pricier but you’ll probably be happier with them because they are enduring, exact, and easy to use. Note: There are four types of paper trimmers available. 1. Rotary cutter – cutting is done with a circular disc located in a sliding mechanism. The disc makes it possible to cut forward or backward; some brands are self-sharpening. 2. Straight blade cutter – a single-sided blade encased in a sliding mechanism cuts in one direction. 3. Single-edge razor-blade trimmer - this cutting mechanism consists of an arm that holds your paper and houses the blade shuttle (the razor blade is latched safely inside). The arm doesn’t cover up your cutting edge so you can see exactly where the razor blade will cut. Blade cuts in one direction. 4. Dual straight-blade cutter - mechanism is similar to the single-edged straight-blade cutter but the blade is two-sided so it can move forward or backward. 5. Moveable-arm cutter or guillotine-style cutter (traditional paper cutter) - a long blade runs the length of the cutting arm or handle and gives a clean cut. Some brands are self-sharpening. Fiskars 12” Ultimate Craft Trimmer Fiskars 12 Inch Protable Paper Trimmer Fiskars 12 Inch Bypass Guillotine Trimmer Making Memories 12x12 Trimmer Click here to view all paper cutters and trimmers in the Superstore. Scissors Why? Scissors allow scrapbook artists to manipulate, transform, and incorporate papers, fibers, fabrics and ribbons into their layouts. What works: The following scissors cut nearly all materials: The Fiskars Microtip Soft Touch Scissors and the EK Success Cutter Bee Scissors. span>These are both fine-tipped, well-made, and make very precise cuts. The Fiskars Microtip scissors have a spring action in the blades so they open back up after each cut which is helpful for crafters’ with carpal tunnel syndrome. Note: For those times you’ll be cutting adhesives and adhesive-backed papers you may want to consider one of these two specialty scissors; the EK Success Honey Bee or the Tim Holtz Non-Stick Scissors. Both models are made to cut through sticky materials without adhesives attaching to the blades. Click here to view all scissors in the Superstore. Craft knife Why? A craft knife is an X-ACTO®-style cutting tool that is useful for intricate cutout work in die cuts, letters, punched pieces and paper piecing. What works: Any razor-sharp craft knife. Tim Holtz retractable cutting knife EZ Cutter swivel cutting knife; retractable Fiskars fingertip craft knife; ergonomic and retractable We R Memory Keepers Ultimate Crafter’s Cutting Tool Set with a very nice over-sized cutting mat. (See more Self-healing cutting mats below) Click here to view all craft knives in the Superstore. Self-healing cutting mat Why? A self-healing cutting mat protects your tabletop from any sharp object such as a craft knife blade, paper piercer or eyelet setter. What works: There are other high performance mats on the market as well. 4-piece EK Success CutterBee Cutting System (value pack contains a cutting knife, mat, 12“metal ruler and knife blades) BasicGrey Magnetic Cutting Mat (includes a 15” metal ruler, mat and magnets to hold layout pieces in place until you figure out where you want them permanently). Martha Stewart Crafts Cutting Mat folds for portability. Click here to view all craft mats in the Superstore. Ruler Why? Never underestimate this timesaving tool of precision. Rulers help you measure accurately and help you make clean, straight lines. What works: A nice metal, straightedge ruler is perfect for most scrapbooking tasks. Also consider a ruler that has a centering feature and holes for stitch placement. A centering ruler has the traditional 1”to 12” marks but also has a “0” mark at the 6” point of the ruler which provides fast and efficient centering of your projects. Rulers are usually included in cutting mat system or kits or can be sold seperately. Tim Holtz versatile and clear Designer Ruler Click here to view all rulers in the Superstore. White plastic eraser Why? A white plastic eraser’s non-abrasive material will remove lead pencil, some colored pencil, and chalk from your projects without affecting the rest of your artwork. What works: Both the block- and pen-style erasers work. The barrel of the pen-style version keeps the majority of the eraser clean. Click here to view all erasers in the Superstore. Fonts Why? For beginners and advanced scrapbookers, font CDs and downloadable fonts make it easy to add eye-catching titles and journaling text to your layouts. If you don’t particularly like your handwriting, you’ll love what these “essentials” can do for you. Using handwriting on some layouts is ideal for historical purposes (I love to see the handwriting of my family members who have departed—I can hear their voices once again in my memory). When you need to get a story onto a layout, handwriting or hand printing may not be the best way to utilize space. For me, it works to type the story in a readable font and format it to fit into the layout space. To find free fonts online, try,, and What works: Any font that you like that is easy to read. Click here get an idea of downloadable fonts available for scrapbookers. Black Ink Pens Why? Black pens are foundational tools that will transfer the artistic designs in your head to layout creations on the page. Use them to draw letters, journal, or add pen-work (doodling) to layout pieces. What works: Because black pens cover a wide range of artistic purposes, it is better to invest in various tip sizes for different (thin to thick) tasks. The EK Success ZIG Memory System Pens and American Crafts Precision Pens are quality pens. They contain pigments ink that is acid-free, archival-quality, lightfast, waterproof, non-bleeding, and quick-to-dry. If you are planning on buying just one pen to begin with, I recommend the black ZIG Twin Tip Writer. It has two tips in one pen, a fine tip (.5mm) and bullet tip (1.2mm)-- perfect for a variety of lettering styles. If you want more tip sizes, ZIG Memory System’s Millennium 5-tip pen set is a wonderful investment. The set of black ink pens includes 005 (.20mm), 01 (.25mm), 03 (.35mm), 05 (.45mm), and 08 (.65mm) and will cover your basic scrapbooking needs. For a variety of tip styles, try the ZIG Memory System Twin Tip four pen set which includes: scroll, brush, calligraphy, writer, fine, and chisel. American Crafts Precision Black Pens, five tips sizes. Specialty Pens Why? You’ll need pens for touch-up on photos that take the red out of human eyes and yellow out of pets’ eyes. You’ll also want a pen that tests the pH presence in your supplies (the ink turns a different color when a small mark is made on acidic materials). Also consider a pen with vanishing ink to make guidelines for writing on your layouts. Some kits also come with a photo marker for writing on the back or front of photos. What works: You could buy each pen separately or purchase a utility kit. Utility Pen Kit includes a Photo Marker, Red-eye, Pet-eye, pH Tester, and Vanishing Ink Marker Photo-safe Pen Why? A soft-tipped, photo-safe pen permits you to safely write information on the back (and front if you get creative in your lettering) of your photos. The ink in this pen shouldn’t smear once dry. What works: Most photo-safe pens will do the job well. Check the pen barrel to make sure the ink is photo-safe, permanent, fade-proof /resistant, water-resistant, quick-drying and will not smear when dry. Zig Photo Signature Pen White Ink Pen Why? You will sometimes need to write on dark, colored cardstock. What works: There have been many white pens on the market, but one gets perfect scores from me: Signo white ink pen Colored Pens or Pencils Why? Colored pens or pencils are an inexpensive way to alter the overall look and feel of your layout. Scrapbookers can quickly add energy and distinction to any background, letter, stamped image, or clip-art image with an application of color. What works: A basic set of colored pens or pencils that coordinate with your favorite cardstock colors is all you need, at first. Try chalk pencils or watercolor pencils for a new look. Colored pens: The more you get into scrapbooking the more you will want colored pens for titles, journaling and doodling. Before investing in a colored pen set of any particular tip style; first try a black pen in the style (calligraphy, brush, chisel, notched, etc.). If you don’t like how one the line looks on your layout or don’t think you’ll use the pen very often, you won’t have to deal with buyer’s remorse. Click here to see all pens and pencils in the . Photo corners Why? Photo corners hold your valuable photos for display without damaging, altering, or permanently affixing them to the layout. They allow easy removal and are ideal for photo preservation. You can find them in clear, black, gold, silver, white and colors. Decorative photo corners are available and when judiciously used can add more pizzazz to layouts. Note: Some scrapbookers may argue that photo corners are not an essential tool in scrapbooking, because you can simply apply adhesive to the back of a photo for display. My experience has been that using photo corners on non-digital photos saves time and avoids headaches and heartaches. Think about the long-term effects of adhering photos directly to your layout, especially if the photos are one-of-a-kind. If you ever need a scrapbooked photo separated from a layout, and it’s permanently affixed, you’ve got a problem. You will either spend time, money and effort (or all three) scanning the layout and cropping the photo on the computer or color copying the photo on the layout so you can cut it out. If you try to remove it, you risk damage to the photo and the layout. If you don’t mind your photos being permanently adhered to your layouts use adhesive but please keep some photo corners on hand for heirloom or irreplaceable photos. Tip: If the look of basic photo corners isn’t appealing to you; think creatively and hide them. An easy way to hide photo corners is to place a photo mat over them (slipping the photo into the corners from the backside). Or cover them with self-cut decorative photo corners or paper strips. People won’t know they’re there. What works: Any manufactured photo corner that’s acid-free on photo corners you make yourself. I prefer clear photo corner because the don't cover up the photo in any way. It's also easy to add a self-made photo corner over them if desired. 3L Scrapbook Adhesive Photo Corners Click here to view all photo corners in the Superstore. Stapler and Staples Why? Staples can be used to attach paper, ribbon, titles, strips, layers, etc. to you’re your backgrounds. What works: Any office-supply stapler and staples. You can find colored staples that are fun and interesting to see and use on layouts too. There are also larger staplers and decorative staple bars that are perfect for scrapbooks and cards. Making Memories Mini stapler and color staples Making Memories Mini stapler colored refill staples Tim Holtz Tiny Attacher stapler, refills available Paper Punch/Hole Punch Why? To punch holes in tags, borders, tabs, etc. for decoration and for tying them to your layouts. What works: A standard hole punch from an office-supply store works fine. Later, you may what to purchase a tool or tools that punch different sizes of holes. Following are some options for punching holes. Making Memories Tool Kit – includes a tool that you you tap with a hammer to make holes We R Memory Keepers Crop-A-Dile – quiet punch action for paper and even thin metals We R Memory Keepers Crop-A-Dile II, Big Bite – quiet punch action like the Crop-A-Dial but with a long-reach feature so you can punch or set and eyelet in the center of a 12” x 12” layout. Tote Why? You will need a convenient place to keep all of your essential supplies. If you attend crops, you will need a tote on wheels. Every seasoned scrapbooker that I polled said they wished they had started with a large tote because they grew out of several smaller ones before ending up with a large tote anyway. What works: Any style and color you like. See links below. Crop-In-Style XXL Tote, The affordable “Mother of All Totes” MiMi Totes, stylish and functional for all your portable really helps to put adsense in your blog

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