Scrapbooking Your Memories

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After beads, scrapbooking is the most popular section in the bidorbuy Crafts category. The popularity of beads is easy to understand.  Humans always liked to adorn themselves with pretty, shiny objects. Besides, in South Africa beading is the national craft.
But to what does scrapbooking owe its popularity?

Scrapbooking is about preserving memories, and doing it a smart, pretty and (that is the whole point) time-consuming way. In other words, in a way that makes you as the author want to browse through them over and over, to show them to friends, to leave them for posterity.

Scrapbooking is a great way to showcase all the pictures you possess. Instead of pulling out a shoebox of photos or some impersonal, mass-produced photo album, you pull out a lovingly made scrap book with photos, names of people, dates, place names, etc.

While people have been trying to preserve little scraps of paper for posterity since paper was invented, scrapbooks in modern form probably draw their roots from Friendship albums which were all the rage in the 16th century. All accomplished young ladies would carry with them a Friendship album and present it to friends or acquaintances - to write a line or two in them, or a poem, or even draw an illustration. With the advent of photography, Friendship albums really took off.

Modern scrapbooking has evolved into creating an attractive display of photos, text, journal entries and memorabilia. As a matter of fact, the choices are so wide that aspiring scrapbookers may feel a bit intimidated. If you belong to this category, we shall lay out the basic steps of creating a scrapbook for your benefit.

First, a word or two about the materials you need for a scrapbook. The basic equipment is likely to be found in any home - a stack of photographs, sharp scissors, adhesive, permanent pens, bits and pieces of things you like. To start off, you will probably only need to buy the scrapbooking album itself, which can be either permanently bound or allow for insertion of pages. Of course, serious scrapbookers insist on high quality acid-free and lignin-free materials and on buffered paper.

You also need various accessories, called “embellishments", to decorate your scrapbook pages. Embellishments include stickers, rub-ons, stamps, eyelets, brads, chipboard elements in various shapes, alphabet letters, lace, wire, fabric, and ribbon, all of them, and more, available on bidorbuy, in the Scrapbooking embellishments and stickers section. More elaborate designs require specialized tools to be found in the Scrapbooking tools and accessories section. You may also consider investing in gloves to protect photos from those unsightly marks fingers leave on the glossy surface of photographs.

Now that you have all the ingredients, let’s see how to go about organizing them into a scrapbook.

We shall assume that your family has annual gatherings and that you want to preserve and display mementos from these gatherings. First, decide whether you want to go the chronological way (placing all memories for one year into their own scrapbook album) or thematically (keeping each occasion – birthdays, holiday trips, Christmas or New Year celebrations - in a separate album and adding the current year’s photos and mementos). Start with your earliest photos and work forward, or start with recent years and work backwards. That is up to you; there is no such thing as the one right way to make a scrapbook.

Take all your photos out of their shoeboxes and pick out the best ones. And remember: photos are only one – albeit probably the most important – component of a scrapbook. Also include the best-loved family recipes for the dishes served for the occasion depicted on the photographs; drawings made by children during their stay; holiday or birthday cards. Anything related to your family's traditions will be a wonderful addition to your scrapbook.

The next step is to choose your background and embellishments. For background, use coloured paper, holiday cards, scraps of wrapping paper, pieces of fabric for unique backgrounds – the only limit is your imagination. For example, if you’d like a Christmas theme, cut a piece of green-coloured paper in the shape of Christmas tree and paint on the ornaments. For embellishments, use anything flat - make your own embellishments or choose from the wealth of ready-made decorations to be found on bidorbuy.

You can make your scrapbooks as simple or as complex as you want. You can simply glue photos on a page and label names and places. Or you can decorate each page with dozens of dainty decorations. The most important thing is for you to have fun making the scrapbooks – and for your family and friends to enjoy leafing through them.

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