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Start Scrapbooking

Photo journaling, scrapbooking, and saving your memories to any media are really all the same thing. For this post, I'm going to call it all scrapbooking. The importance of this is YOUR story! It's not the bling or how fancy it is.

The secret is to document your life, your fun, your story. That's it! I still love albums. I haven't gone digital, they just aren't the same for me. You need to pick which way works best for you and then go for it.

Select the photos for the event you want to start with

  • If you have a lot of photos (say for a family reunion or a very long vacation) you might want to fill up one album for that event. 
  • If you have 10 or so photos then you would just want to do a two page layout 

Pick your album or digital software.
Pick your paper to match your photos/event

  • For example, if you are going to save your Easter photos and stories you might want to pick Easter related paper. There are some really beautiful papers out there with crosses, lilies, Christian sayings, Easter bunnies, eggs or just pastel colors. Pick what you like, but make sure you get a couple of pieces of each. 

Look through all of your photos and determine which ones you are going to use. You DO NOT have to use them all. Remember, a picture is worth 1,000 words! If you can't see grandma's face, how will anyone else ever know who it is? If that picture of little Sally finding the egg in the grass is almost just like the other pic of her finding an egg, pick the best one and use that.

I love to use what is called color blocking. I cut a piece of cardstock or pattern paper 1/4" larger than my photo and adhere (stick) the photo to the paper. To do this be sure to use a double sided adhesive. I do not recommend glue or a glue stick. Glue tends to warp or wrinkle the photo and paper and glue sticks don't seem to hold.

Now I place the framed photos on my background paper until I like the arrangement. I add a border and title, The next piece is the most important.

I write out the story behind the photos. Be sure to include who, what, when, where and why. You will remember possibly for years, the answers to these questions, but others won't know them. Pretend you are writing to the future. Tell them about the event and the people.

A few hints:

  • Don't cut your photos into odd shapes when you are beginning. I've been teaching scrapbooking for 20 years and I ask over and over people's greatest regret. It's always that they cut their photos too small or into odd shapes
  • The second regret is that they used too many stickers or embellishments (decorations) on the pages.
  • The third one - and actually it's probably even with #1 - is that they wish they would have written more with the photos. More story, more information and more of their own handwriting! 
How much would you love to have your grandmother or even great-great grandmothers diary? That's how much future generations would love to see yours. 

There you go. Stick the photos and title to your page. Add the journaling (what you write about the photos) and you are done! If you want you can add an embellishment or two to jazz it up a little. 


If you have any questions or suggestions, please feel free to reach out to me. I've included a very simple sketch below as inspiration. The squares and rectangles are where you might put a photo or you could use one of the spaces to journal (or write about) your photos. If you don't have smaller photos you could use the smaller spaces for embellishments or for notes.The darkened bar down the left and right side is simply a 2" wide piece of decorative paper as decoration.

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