A few weeks ago, a lovely reader sent me a few scrapbook-related questions, and reading through her note - I felt like these are things I haven't shared here in a while (or even ever?), and that it would make a great post!
So here goes, a Scrapbook Question & Answer:
I've been getting this one a lot lately and will try to delve further and show you my albums in a more in-depth post, eventually, but for now:
Once you finish a scrapbook page, where do you put it?
Where does it go & how do the thick pages fit into albums?
Ooh - this may be the one part of the whole scrapbook thing that I'm not very good at keeping up with! lol. I stopped being able to afford albums a while back (lol) when I was first a student (they're expensive, yo!), and then while paying off loans after film school for the last 4 years - and my scrapbook pages were building up faster than I could afford albums for them, frankly.
Years and years ago (when I worked at a scrapbook store & got a discount), I loved post-bound albums (albums with 3 metal posts on one side: to get pages in and out you have to unscrew them from the back and undo the whole back cover). But - because my pages are pretty thick/dimensional - I had to really space the spines of these out with cardboard strips to balance the book out (so it lays flat). So as my pages got thicker, the albums didn't hold as many, and it took a while to rig up an album. lol. I do still love the look of them, though.
As for visible displays, in my old apartment, I had an Ikea curtain line hung on the wall above my crafty supplies/in my living room (the kind you hitch to the ceiling and hang a line to put a curtain wherever you want), and I'd clip new pages up on it as they were finished, so they hung there for a while in a row until new pages came along - I really loved being able to have some of them on display, but unfortunatly my workspace in our newer apartment now has no wallspace (just windows!).
So, to answer your question: the older years of my scrapbooks (from before 2007 - there are at least 20 of these albums) are mostly in post bound albums. Now, my newer pages from the last few years are literally sitting in piles - piles of them in a box in our storage room, a pile under my desk, a pile on my husbands' shelves - lol - really really. It's horrible! In a perfect world one day, I'll buy 12 x 12 page protectors (which are magical, and I use them all the time) and slip them all into a handy dandy economical D-Ring binder!
Do you have a system for arranging a page?
I have a process that I tend to follow without thinking about, when I'm scrapbooking now - I usually start with a photo or story I have in mind. For design work, sometimes it starts with an item I need to use - but I find a story and photo that I'm feeling that day that will work perfectly with it (I threw out scrapbooking chronologially a long while ago and go on my whims, alone).
I get my photo(s) and start gathering goodies I think will work well with them on a page - cardstock, patterned paper, and embellishments. At this point, seeing everything piled together on my desk, I start to get an idea of the page design in my head - I start laying things down without adhering anything yet on the base sheet, and when it looks about right I start: usually I put a layer of paint or ink on this bottom layer of paper. I let that dry, and start piling everything back on following the rough idea I had to begin with - I stop along the way to add layers of stitching, painting, etc. Once everything is glued down, and done I tidy up my desk (which is usually a tumble jumble of paper scraps, by now), and then I do the finishing touches: journalling, the title, the last few paint splashes, and some hand-stitching.
Do you start with a color palette and then build from there?
The color palettes I usually work with are taken right from the pictures I'm using - sometimes from a product that I want/need to use, too - I don't choose them before that. I pull a few colors of embellishments or paint from my stash from the starting point (that coordinate with it), and when I start to make a pile of things-I-could-use-on-this-page, sometimes new combinations arise. I really like to always have a neutral in there for the colors to pop against, too.
When I'm stuck, I always mentally visualize the color wheel: just memorize the simple contrasting colors: blue & orange, red & green, yellow & purple, and you're set! If you're stuck but you want to use yellow, for example, try pairing it with a purple and see where it goes. :)
How do you know when enough is enough?
When there's too much going on on the page?
This is also something I do intuitively - and, let's face it, not every page works out and once in a while too much is too much and they turn into a hot mess. It's a fine balance. lol. I really just keep putting things on until it looks right to me. If I'm not sure if I've gone over board, I'll leave things unattached on it and look at it with fresh eyes the next day - that always helps. (I learned this from many ruined photos/paper pulling adhered stuff up to start again - doh!). Usually, I 'finish' and just keep adding and adding until it feels balanced to me.
Let me know if you have a question that's not covered here!
I'm still thinking of putting together a scrabooking's-not-scary-or-lame beginner's type class, of sorts, too - is there anything you're wondering about?