Easy Scrapbooking Ideas for Beginners
By: Laurie Leahey, Cook Scrap Craft
I love scrapbooking! It is such a hands-on, creative way to document memories. Many people tell me that they would love to start scrapbooking, but they do not know how to make scrapbook pages that would look good. My first piece of advice is to not let your inner critic hold you back. Every scrapbooker has a different style. You do not have to make scrapbook pages that look like mine or someone else’s. Just do what you feel comfortable doing and what looks good to you. Even professional scrapbookers make layouts that they are not 100-percent in love with. My second piece of advice is to follow one of these five scrapbooking ideas as a jumping-off point when making a scrapbook.
Use Only One Color
A really fun way to get creative with your scrapbook pages is to use only one color on your page. That means your patterned papers, letter stickers, and embellishments will all be varying shades of purple, blue, or whatever color you have chosen. For this layout, I used white as my neutral base and kept everything else orange.
Start With a Sketch
One of my favorite scrapbook page ideas is to use a sketch. A sketch is a great starting point when you are not sure what to do. You can follow it exactly or you can change it up a bit and make it your own. I find a lot of scrapbook sketches on Pinterest or scrapbook manufacturers’ websites, blogs, and social media channels.
Another way to get started is to use someone else’s completed scrapbook layout as your guide. Copying the design of another person’s scrapbook layout is called “scraplifting”, and, as long as you give credit to the original designer you scraplifted when sharing on social media, scrapbookers are usually just fine with people scraplifting them.
I would love to see what you can do with this exclusive sketch I created just for Zulily readers, or maybe you would rather scraplift one of the completed layouts I am sharing today in this post!
Cut Out a Big Shape
There are so many cute scrapbook ideas, and another fun one is to cut out a big shape. I first learned this technique in a scrapbook class (yes, those exist!), and it is so easy, you will want to do it all the time. On this layout, I traced and cut out a giant heart from white cardstock, then backed it with foam adhesive so it would pop off of the background paper. Then I tucked patterned paper circles and other embellishments under, on top of, and around the big heart. The heart itself served as a base for my photo.
Use White Space
Your scrapbook page does not have to be super busy with stuff. Use a technique known as “white space” to really bring the focus to your photo or photos. The focus of this page is on the right-hand side with the photo, patterned paper strips, and a few embellishments. You will notice I only have a very small embellishment cluster and some journaling in the upper left-hand corner. The rest of the layout is all white space.
Tell a Story
Piggy-backing off the idea of white space, you can also fill your scrapbook page with journaling, either handwritten (which is what I always do) or typed out. The purpose of scrapbooking is to document memories and stories. What better way to do that than by telling the whole story on your scrapbook page?
I still included embellishments and patterned paper on this layout, but I also reserved a huge section for handwritten journaling to tell the story of how my husband and I chose our daughter’s name.
Go with a Grid
Another easy scrapbook design is to create a grid, either with photos or squares of patterned paper. For this layout, I created a grid of four large four-inch by four-inch photos and matted that grid with patterned paper. You could do something similar with standard 4×6-size photos, make a big grid with smaller photos, or mix and match photos and paper in your grid. It is all up to you!
Purchase a Page Kit
To really make things easy, purchase a page kit. These generally come with everything you need to create one or two scrapbook pages, and you can find them in specific themes (such as sports, vacation, or new baby) or with general product that fits any photos you might have.
I really enjoy monthly scrapbook kits that are larger than a page kit. Many online scrapbook stores sell these types of kits individually or as a subscription. Shopping for scrapbook supplies can be daunting because there are so many cool things to choose from! But with a kit, the store picks out all the scrapbook supplies for you, and it is always a fun surprise to see the kit contents and explore new brands and products.
If you feel like your creativity is blocked, then fall back on one of these scrapbook ideas to get you started. Any of these ideas would work for a 12×12 scrapbook page, which is the size I predominantly scrapbook, as well as 8.5×11, 6×8, or whatever size you feel comfortable scrapbooking.
I hope you will let these scrapbook examples inspire you as you take up the creative hobby of scrapbooking. It really is a wonderful feeling to look back on your family’s memories, both as you create your scrapbook layout and when you flip back through your scrapbook albums.