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Creativity Prompt #25 – How To Complete A Scrapbook In One Weekend

November 14th, 2008 by Avital

Title Page - Belgium Scrapbook
On this week’s creativity prompt I want to share some quick and easy scrapbooking tips. Using those techniques has enabled me to complete visual appealing scrapbooks in the course of one weekend (sometimes in a single day!!!).

I always get overwhelmed with awe while browsing through some scrapbookers’ blogs and public galleries. Their layouts are intricate and artistic and convey hours of meticulous work. However, these scrapbook layouts are not realistic to most people.

In today’s hectic world there is not enough time to achieve these artistic results on a regular basis. Therefore most people just give up along the way and feel guilty or “left behind” in recording their treasured memories.

I want to share some tips & techniques that will help you create visually appealing layouts quickly and adjust your scrapbooking routine to your fast-paced life.

  1. Focus on the essentials. letting your artistic talent shine through your layouts is great but the main purpose of the scrapbook is to capture your life stories, so concentrate on them. Let the pictures and journaling take center stage.
  2. Use standard size 4″ by 6″ photos. Cropping your photos using a photo-editing software is easy, but it takes time. It is an extra step that sets you back and makes you invest more time in the “planning” process and less in the “creating” process. Just print all the photos you’ve chosen at 4″ by 6″, using one of the many printing vendors available online and offline. After receiving the pile of pictures, you can crop them as you go.
  3. Think outside the boxy. Playing around with your photos’ shape can add an interesting design element which is quick and easy to achieve. Try to cut a picture in a circle (I am using Coluzzle) or to accentuate an element by cutting around it and attaching it with foam dots.
    Square and Circular pictures
    Adding a photo with foam-dots
  4. Spotlight an element with a frame. Draw the viewer’s eye to a specific element in a photo by framing it. It adds a visual appeal and makes the photo speak for itself. You can use stamps, rub-ons, bling, chipboard or softies or anything else within your arm’s reach…
    Chipboard frame
    Rub-ons frame
  5. Use extra photos to create a collage. There are some places or events that evoke special memories or deep emotions. I always pick too many pictures than I actually need to convey these memories and emotions (and sometimes I pick too many photos for printing for no reason at all). No problem, crop all the photos and piece them together into a collage.
  6. Turn to the pictures for design advice. Many times I take a picture because of the interesting composition I see in it. When the time comes to put this picture in a scrapbook, I repeat the same composition in my layout, either in the design or by the patterns of the paper I use.
    composition in patterned paper
    Composition in design
  7. Utilize the color scheme in your photos. Design your layouts around the colors in your photos. If your photos are monochromatic, you can have a go with a colorful and busy background; and vice versa, if your photos are colorful, you can do without any background.
    Colorful photos
    Monochromatic photos

    Use the color-wheel for inspiration and position complementary colored photos together.
    color-wheel inspiration

  8. Most importantly – make sure to keep the process fun and easy. Don’t dwell on the design too much, just stick to some principle design elements and work around your mistakes without getting overwhelmed and frustrated. Scrapbooking “booboos” happen, so what? Remember the main reason you are scrapbooking for, I bet it isn’t self-bashing and over-criticizing…

    Out of letter-sticker
    [In this layout I ran out of letter-stickers, so I used different types of stickers.]

    Free-hand framing turned bad
    [In this layout I had an issue of a free-hand framing gone wrong, so I just covered it with cardstock. It does not look very appealing but I decided to just go on to the next page.]

I hope I have inspired you to start working on your life stories… the quick and easy way!!!


If you have any question, suggestion or remark – don’t hesitate to contact me – either leave a comment, use the contact form or start a new thread on the Creativity Prompt Flickr Group!!!

I would also be very happy to see your own creations, so don’t be shy and share 🙂

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6 Comments to “Creativity Prompt #25 – How To Complete A Scrapbook In One Weekend”

  1. I’m glad to see that someone else believes that the scrapbooking ideas you see in the magazines, etc. are too tedious for the everyday person. If we ever want to REALLY scrap our photos, the process has to be easier and quicker…here you’ve show us how.

    Thank you!

    Peace & Love,

  2. Guzzisue says:

    I found your blog last week and I am intriged to see the subject of your scrapbook today as we stayed in Kutna Hora on one of our motorcycle trips 3 years ago and yes, I do have a holiday scrapbook which I piece together every evening whilst away. It has since developed into a fabric postcard book.

  3. Beverly Boyles says:

    Thank You! Thank You! for the eye opening fast and easy way to scraop book…I am a card maker that has been wanting to do several scrapbooks but am always put off by the lovely but ever so time consuming layouts I see on blogs or in magazines…hooray! I am now inspired and motivated…you have given me the wonderful gift of permission to not have to be so creative that I end up not being creative at all!!! Thanks again and PS love your blog…have a folder just for the creativity prompts and I copy off the journal prompts to send to my daughters each week…

    • Avital says:

      Wow, thank you for all your lovely feedback. I’m always happy to inspire people and make them think and I am very glad that my content is helpful. It seems that my message of quick and easy and doable is better than elaborate and overwhelming has been spread…

  4. Jannie says:

    I sure can see how the choices are over-whelming.

    I’d like to do that one day, maybe I will slow down at some point and immerse myself in all the beauty of scrap-booking.

    Appreciate all the obvious effort that went into this lovely post. Thanks!

  5. Roxie says:

    Great post. Now if I can ever get down to my craft room and open my scrapbooks…