Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Do's & Don'ts: Etiquette for Beginner Scrapbookers

1. Don't feel bad about cropping unwanted people out of photos. This is YOUR book. YOU are spending your time to make it beautiful and YOU should feel fabulous every time you open it. (Here is a purrrrfect example: Miss Bunny did not want Cleveland the Cat in the photo.)

2. Do feel okay about going back and changing a page if it doesn't bring a smile to your face when you look at it. I try to only scrapbook when the portion of my mood that's good is 51% or
greater than the percentage of my mood that's bad. (Isn't it fascinating being an emotional woman... this percentage, my friends, can change on a dime.... super fun, huh!) Anywhoooo, I try to scrapbook when I'm happy so my pages reflect that.

3. Don't misinterpret #2 to mean that all your pages have to be "happy" pages. Pages should reflect the many aspects of your life. And you may have been going through a difficult time when the photos were taken or the page was created, so that "smile" I refer to in #2 can be a smile of relief, a smile of joy, a smile to realize how far you've come... or even how far you have yet to go. (For two fabbbbbulous posts on scrapping about your "real" reality, rather than painting a picture of perfection, visit Just me My Soldier and our 2 little chicks and It's Me, KP.)

4. Do remember to bring yourself out from behind the camera. As scrappers, we are always taking pictures, trying to capture those "scrappable" moments. But I encourage you to do a few pages that are based solely on fabulous you. One of my favorite pages is "Keep Your Green Eyes on the Road". I got this page inspiration from Elizabeth Kartchner's book 52 More Scrapbooking Challenges. I wanted to remember allllllll the time I spend in rush hour traffic (see the clock hands are at 5:00?). Okay, yes folks, I did take these pictures.... while I was driving.... so unsafe, I know. But hey, they turned out pretty cool, huh?

5. Do ask for people's opinions if you hit a creativity road block. Sometimes people have better ideas than we do. Period. (Ok, maybe their ideas are better at that particular moment!)

6. Do look at other scrappers' layouts for the nuts, bolts, and inspiration. I'm not saying be a copycat. (I'm pretty sure that's frowned upon by the lawmakers in the great state of California.) However, you can learn a TON by first picking out a few photos you want to work with, finding a page or layout that you love, and using your own coordinated paper and embellishments to make it your own. No matter how much you read on this blog and other blogs for beginner scrapbookers, at the end of the day, you gotta hit the proverbial pavement and start scrapping.

7. Do NOT let scrapbooking give you headaches or anxiety. My borderline severe Type A personality sometimes spends way too much time trying to get it perfect or just right. There are no rules. There are no boundaries. And this should make you feel empowered. (Oh God, that sounded like a Celine Dion song... maybe I should wrap it up for the day.)

....Thanks to shimelle.com for the idea to do a blog post that's a list.

Beginner scrapbooking tip: For the borders on the two photos of my loooovely green eyes, I took some basic black paper and distressed it using a flathead screwdriver. Just be careful not to tear the paper, and don't use the screwdriver to stab your boyfriend for watching too much car racing.

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