Handmade Scrapbook

By: Sandee Lembke

You went to a special event or party and took a lot of photos but what are you going to do with them now? If you are like most people, you'll view the photos on your computer or from the envelope that they came in and that will be the end of it. They will be filed away never to be seen again.

That is a shame. I know, because I have boxes and boxes of pictures that are rarely seen because it's too difficult to get at them. Conversely, I also have several scrapbooks that are just a joy to look at. To me, they are heirlooms that I can't even put a price on.

The idea of putting my photos into a handmade scrapbook came to me after I attended a certain event and several people asked me for copies of my pictures. I didn't want to just hand these people a packet a random pictures because this event deserved special treatment. It was special and so I wanted to showcase the pictures in a special way. It wasn't enough to just give them pictures. I wanted to have words with the pictures.

Although handmade scrapbooks take a lot of time to make, they can not be beaten for quality and uniqueness. I started with that first special event and have made several books since then including the two shown below. Follow the steps below to make your own:

To Make a Handmade Scrapbook:

Mount prints on 8-1/2 x 11 white card stock. In addition to the prints and card stock, I recommend getting a paper cutter and a corner rounder. The paper cutter allows you to precisely cut your photos and card stock to size, and the corner rounder is really nice for shaping the corners of your photographs.

I usually put my prints in chronological order first, crop them to size, round the corners (personal preference) and then mount them with glue sticks.

In addition to the photo pages, adding a one page family tree or an itinerary page can really help tell the story. My scrapbooks usually end up being 20-40 pages with 3 to 5 pictures on each page.

Put words to the pictures. After all the pictures are mounted onto the card stock scrapbook pages, I bring them to my computer and simply go through each page and type into a blank Word document the captions for each picture.

When I began making these books, I purchased a disk of really cool fonts called "The Best of Creative Lettering" from my favorite scrapbook magazine, "Creating Keepsakes Magazine." If you want a great scrapbooking resource, this magazine is it!

After the captions are in the Word document, I print them, and mount each one by the appropriate picture using glue sticks.

Embellish the pages. Now that the pictures and captions are mounted, I dress up the pages with memorabilia, such as, golf score cards and ticket stubs, and I add stickers to limit the amount of white space. Don't use metallic stickers as they do not copy well.

Copy, laminate and coil. The cheapest way to make copies of your original pages is to go to a copy place, like Kinkos or Reprographics, and make the color copies yourself (bring your own cardstock). It's more expensive, but they will do it for you if you prefer.

This is one of the main reasons that I make these books. You can make as many copies as you like of the original and everybody gets a copy of their own to take home. You can't do that with scrapbooks made in those big, fancy albums.

To make the scrapbooks more durable, I laminate the front and back covers. The books will hold up longer and look nicer. Lastly, the books need to be bound. I like to use the black coil type because they hold up well and look really nice.

I spend a lot of time and energy creating these handmade scrapbooks. When I give someone one of these special gifts and see their expression, it truly warms my heart and makes it all worthwhile.

Scrapbooking
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