Dear Scrapbooking Gang,
Sometimes when I am scrapbooking I wonder if I am going a little too far. Are my embellishments taking over my photos or are they just enhancing them? With the new year starting I decided to take inventory of what I use and what I have found to be the most important when it comes to scrapbooking embellishments. We all want to make our photos the most important part of our page. Whether you are a seasoned scrapbooker or just starting out, I have found that these basic embellishments help make a page just right.
1. Eyelets - These embellishments now come in many different materials, sizes, and colors. And they are a super cheap way to add a little punch to a page without taking away from the other important parts of the page. With just a paper punch and an eyelet tool, you can apply these cute little additions to your page (I actually have a kit from Making Memories.)
2. Brads - I am so glad that brads have become even more popular than eyelets! They require no special tools (unless you want to get a special hole punch), and are so easy to apply. I use them to attach other embellishments, like book plates or flowers. They are also the perfect solution for attaching transparency or vellum. Don’t forget that they also help hold down ribbon and can become a perfect accent on their own.
3. Ribbon, fibers, string, embroidery floss - I find that I use ribbon on so many pages now. I use it for bows or knots. I use it to mat photos or hold on tags or other embellishments. I sew it on, staple it on, tie it on, and glue it on. I use embroidery floss to sew a word or sew an edge on photos. These embellishments are so versatile and cheap!
4. Flowers - These non-fragrant embellishments are not just for the frilly page anymore! These flowers can be as large as a page or as small as a dime (or even smaller). These look great in clusters or perfect all alone. Since they come in any color nowadays and can be attached easily with brads, these flowers are perfect little decorations for any scrapbooker’s page. I like to buy them in bulk in either a tin or bottle. As a note, you can save money buying these in a strand or bouquet from the craft area of any store and then take the flowers off of the stem. I usually remove any middle part of the flower because they tend to be too bulky. I have been able to get 50-100 flowers by only spending $2-3.
5. Buttons - I used to think these were kind of corny to use. But now buttons come in any shape, size or color. They have some that look like antiques and others that are hip and stylish.
6. Letters - I am talking about the alphabet in any shape or form. Just keep to your budget. These ABC’s come in anything from chipboard to metal to rhinestones. Just be careful not to go too far on a layout. I like to use one letter that has dimension and then finish it off with writing or leave it as a monogram. If you can’t afford to buy a whole alphabet set, which can cost you $7-10 or more, consider going to a scrapbooking store that sells a letter alone. This is especially cost effective idea if you don’t plan on using the other letters in the set anytime soon.
7. Stamps - For a while there stamps were being replaced with stickers and diecuts. But now stamps are going full strong with the new acrylic stamps. These are great because they take up way less space and are cheaper than their counterparts. I am not saying the wood ones are not useful - I actually bought one last month - but they aren’t as versatile. I would invest in at least one good set of letter stamps so that you can spell out anything you want.
8. Chipboard - Ok, I know what you are thinking — is chipboard really an embellishment? Well, of course it is! It comes in many shapes and sizes that are ready to apply to a page. It is also great to add your own paint or stamp effects. I love to use chipboard letters (you can buy already cut ones or just get chipboard squares to cut your own). I also make a lot of tags out of chipboard. You can use this material to bring out your very imaginative self.
9. Metal - Once again, this is more of a material than an embellishment, but I am obsessed with it! I love the little phrases spelled out in metal. The hinges and paper clips can make a page go from blah to WOW! It is such a great material to use as a finishing touch to your pages.
10. Paper - I bet some of you were wondering if I would mention paper here. I left this one for last because if you used nothing else on your pages but paper, your page could still be perfect. You can mat pictures, make tags, cut out letters, make designs, etc. And that is just with solid or patterned paper. You can buy paper now that already has the whole page layout done for you - you just stick on your pictures and you are done. So if you are just starting out or want to cut back on the spending, I would suggest getting back to this basic embellishment. You would be surprised with what you could come up with!
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I hope you all enjoy getting back to the basics this year. I know that using basic embellishments will help you become more creative and imaginative. Happy Scrapping!
Your Scrapbooking Expert,
P.S. Don’t forget - if you have questions about products or scrapbooking ideas, email me or check us out at www.scrapbookfinds.com.