It’s never too late in the year to start your album!
Confession: While I have finished my albums every year since 2009, I am never up-to-date on the current year and do some major catch-up scrapping the week after Christmas every single year.
In this tutorial, I’ll give you some tips on how to set yourself up for success in creating your album and show a few ways you can switch up templates to keep your pages fresh along the way.
1. Organize your photos.
I have photo folders for each week of the year because that is the way I scrap my pages. (I used to organize them differently, but adapted my folders to make it easier to get my layouts done.) You’ll want to organize your photos the way that works best for you. When I upload photos from my camera and phone, or when I grab my kids’ photos from Facebook, I drop the photos into the folder for whatever week it was taken. When I go to work on the page for that week, all the photos are in one place!
2. Keep up with the journaling, even if you don’t have time to scrap.
Writing my journaling while it’s still fresh is a must for me. I keep a Word document open on my computer and try to update the journaling at least once a month. If I go longer than that (and I sometimes do), I tend to forget things! I always open the photo folder for the week (see Step 1) to get myself started. Using my appointment calendar is another great way to jog my memory if I’ve forgotten to journal.
3. Use the same font for journaling throughout the entire album.
Choose a font that is easy to read and make sure the font has any special characters you regularly use. You will also want to keep the font size consistent from page to page. This year, I used Lettering Delights Scrap Casual Font for my journaling.
4. Keep the embellishments simple.
This is especially important when using a lot of photos on your page. It not only keeps the focus of your page on the photos, it also takes less time! For my pages, I like to anchor the journaling paper with simple embellishments or a small cluster.
5. Use templates and don’t be afraid to alter them to fit your photos.
There are a lot of templates in the Boutique that are designed for weekly or monthly pages. Choose the ones that work best for you. To get extra mileage out of your templates, you can rotate or flip the entire template, or you can remove a horizontal photo and replace it with two verticals. You can replace vertical photos with multiple horizontals as well. This simple method keeps your pages looking fresh. The examples below use templates from ScrapSimple Digital Layout Album Templates: Album Series 5 by Angie Briggs.
6. Format your pages for the printing method you plan to use.
Most printing sites have a template you can use to see the trim lines and make sure nothing important is cut off your pages. The first year I created an album of weekly pages, I chose the printing site at the end of the year when I was ready to print. Unfortunately, I hadn’t factored in the trim lines and had to open and edit each page before I could upload it for printing. You might have noticed that my layouts have wider margins than their corresponding templates in the screenshots. That is because, when I create my pages, I use a template showing the trim lines from the site I plan to use for printing so I won’t have to fix each page later.
7. Have fun and ask for help if you need it!
Enjoy the process of creating your pages. If you have questions or need help with anything scrapping-related, just ask on the Scrap Girls Forum. We love to answer your questions and we’d love to see your completed pages in the Scrap Girls Project Life 2016 Gallery.
We have a special Project Life Blinkie that you can put in your Signature on the SG message board.
Grab it here:
While this may look like it would be a complicated technique to learn, our designers have made it super simple with some Styles and Actions that they have for sale in the Scrap Girls store.
I love working with styles so I was excited to give this one a try! The set comes with several different styles, each giving a different depth to the cut-out. The other thing that’s great about this set is that the punched-out item will take the look of the background paper, as seen in my layout below.
What does that mean? If you add a patterned paper or photo to a custom shape or font and then apply the style, the style will not change the look of the item it’s applied to. This allows you to get creative and do things like having each letter of a title be in a different pattern as shown below.
I print all of my digital scrapbooking layouts in photo books. My friends and family are impressed with the hardcover books filled with colorful pages created from different Scrap Girls collections and value packs. One of my favorite features of Mixbook is that I can share the digital version of my Mixbooks online with family and friends at no cost.
Let’s get started on your Mixbook now! First, log into www.mixbook.com and click Photo Books > Start Your Book> Start a Blank Book.
Next, select the size and cover type of the photobook. I like to order 8.5×8.5-inch hardcover books because they fit nicely on my bookshelf. Even though I design my layouts sized at 12×12 inches, they scale correctly in the smaller book.
After the ordering selections are made, click the Minimize button on the the Upload Photos screen.
Next, click Backgrounds > Browse Backgrounds > Upload Backgrounds. Select the layouts you want to add and begin the upload process. When the backgrounds are uploaded, they will be stored in the Project Backgrounds tab.
If you haven’t already, be sure to sign up to receive emails of special offers so that you can take advantage of huge Mixbook discounts. Don’t let your hard work hide on your hard drive! Create a Mixbook and display your digital scrapbooking and share your memories with family and friends today!
1. Select two or more papers you want to combine.
I often select several papers that I think might work well together and turn some layers off and on while I am working.
2. Place the papers into a new 12×12-inch page.
I placed my floral paper over my solid paper. Stacking them the other way (solid over floral) will give a different look.
3. Select the top paper layer and choose a Blending mode.
I played with various paper combinations and came up with three different looks.
With all that to love, I have to admit that this style of scrapping is slightly outside my comfort zone. But I decided to jump right in and see what happened! Score! If you see elements like these and think, “I love it, but I don’t know how to use it,” then this article is for you! Here are some hints I can share with you from what I learned:
1. Faux-blending pictures into the background
The papers in this club have lots of color, but a number of them also have big patches of white. These spots are the perfect places to experiment with blending pictures into the background. I started by cropping and resizing my picture to cover the white portion. Add a mask to the photo and cover any portions that cover parts of the paper that you want visible. This masking step doesn’t need to be too exact – it looks cool if the edges are a little irregular.
Personally, one of my complaints about blending photos into a background is that you tend to lose detail. To get around this, make a copy of the photo layer and apply the Blending style to the copy layer. Then adjust the opacity of that layer – enough to get the blended look without losing the detail. The picture on the left is set on “Linear Light” Blending mode. The picture on the left has an unblended picture layer underneath with the blended layer set at 30% opacity.
2. Journaling cards with patterns
I love all of the journaling cards in this club. They would be awesome for Project Life-style layouts. But for those of us not doing Project Life, they are still super useful. I love using them to anchor my journaling to my page because it helps to set it apart and make it stand out. Most of the journaling cards have a lot of pattern or distressing on them, which can make the writing difficult to read. But not to worry — a little brush work can make all the difference! Place your journaling card on your layout, then type your journaling. Next, make a new layer and place it between the journaling card layer and the text layer. Use the Eyedropper tool to select the main color from the journaling card. Using a soft-edged brush, apply the color behind the text anywhere it’s difficult to read. You can reduce the opacity to make it even more subtle.
3. Don’t hesitate to make changes!
Resize and recolor things! The Big Quotes word art in this club are so cool, and they have so many fun possibilities for your layouts. I resized one of the Big Quotes and colored it hot pink. I also re-colored the alpha to bring more green to the page. The beauty of digital scrapbooking is that things can always be adjusted or tweaked to make them work perfectly.