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Keep up with the scrapbooking world through our news and articles. We will help you out of that scrapbooking rut or just teach you something fun and new! Don't forget to subscribe to our fabulous newsletter. Each week we will be giving you an update on fun new products and great deals. We will also be keeping you in the loop through articles and blogs on the latest and greatest ideas for scrapbooking.
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How do you distress & age when it comes to digital photography?

December 19th, 2006

Question:   Robin, I just read your newsletter about distressing and aging scrapbook pages. What about digital scrappers.  Is there a method to distress elements to antique and age them, such as crinkling them, staining them, etc. 
thanks for any help you can offer?

Answer:  That is a great question with some complicated answers, but I will try to keep it simple.  All of this will depend on the program you use for digital scrapbooking.  Since most digital scrappers are familiar with Photoshop, I will address distressing using that program (most other digital scrapbooking programs have the same tools).

To antique or distress the edges: Just select the brush tool.  I usually pick a color like brown or black.  I use many different types of brushes, but my favorite one leaves a look like that of an actually paint brush brushed lightly on the egdes.  I just run the brush all on the outside of the page, photo, or embellishment.  It looks the best when you aren’t trying to be perfect.  Changing the opacity of the brush can help make the distressing look lighter or darker depending on the look you are trying to recreate.

Wrinkle and Crinkle:  The easiest way to do this is to buy a filter that you can use as a layer over your paper/photo/etc.  You can get some templates as well. When searching for one, use the word “crumple” - it seems be be the same effect that “wrinkle and crinkle” have.  I found a one at: and Just download it and insert it as a layer in Photoshop (most places give more detailed instructions to help you step by step.).

Staining:  Tea staining or coffee staining work the same way as distressing the edges (there is a great tutorial on tea stained edges at: ).  You can also purchase filters or overlays that do this same thing at any of your online digital scrapbooking stores (I have seen them at &  Don’t be affraid of trying out some of the filters already a part of you digital scrapbooking program.  Photoshop has some great ones already built in to the program too.

Good luck with the digital scrapbooking.  I am learning more everyday.  When trying to decide whether to do something yourself or buy a filter or overlay that has already been made for you, keep in mind the time it might take to recreate one yourself.  The great thing about digital scrapbooking supplies you might buy is that you can reuse them over and over again.  Happy scrapping!


Scrapbookin: Complimenting Paper with Digital

September 4th, 2006

Scrap Books are becoming more and more popular and are much more in depth than the old family picture albums. One thing people worry about in a fire, flood or natural disaster is saving all this handed down entrusted collection books. Perhaps folks should be complimenting their paper albums with digital scrapbook type files and backing them up in multiple places. Recently in an online think tank discussion this was considered and one person stated; Why not back them up on a CD ROM.

Good idea and yet, consider that one other person in the group had backed up all their old day on Word Perfect 1.0, AmiPro 2.0 and some other old programs and had them all on floppy disks; the old kind? Indeed in a few years will we all be using CD ROMS or will these be replaced with yet another better suited storage device of the future period? And how will your grandchild read it or view it if there are no CD ROM or DVD Players in 50 years? Ah ha, good question; yet it makes sense to back up all this data, images and paper material in your scrapbooks just in case. And doing it digitally makes a lot of sense.

Ones and Zeroes will be around in the future, but most likely thinking way ahead into the future it is doubtful that CD ROMS will. Please consider all this in 2006 and your grandchildren will thank you, even if their kids never get a chance to meet you.

“Lance Winslow” - Online Think Tank forum board. If you have innovative thoughts and unique perspectives, come think with Lance;

Have You Tried Scrapbooking Software Yet?

August 28th, 2006

Have you considered using scrapbooking software but are hesitant to try? I know I was. I put off my purchase for quite a while but was pleasantly surprised when I recently bought Scrapbook Factory Deluxe. This program has greatly exceeded my expectations and really comes with many more features than just the ability to create scrapbook layouts. Of course, I was concerned with the quality of the pages and was curious if something would be “lost” from the scrapbook in creating pages with digital images rather than the traditional paper crafting.

Scrapbooking software is relatively new on the scrapbooking scene. It allows you to do some great digital stuff with your scrapbook projects. But another benefit is that you don’t have to purchase all those other scrapbook supplies, you know, like tons of embellishments, stickers, die cuts, fonts, alphabets and the like. The software comes with these in digital form so you can try things out to your heart’s desire, without spending additional money. If you don’t like the outcome, you simply “remove” it from the layout. This software makes putting together your own pages a breeze. It comes with a large assortment of pre-done layouts. You simply need to upload your photos and with a click they are inserted into the desired scrapbook page. You do have the ability to make your own layouts too so the program is suitable for even the advanced scrapbook enthusiast.

The program was very easy to install, I just had to follow the directions on the screen. As soon as the program was loaded, I was ready to start creating scrapbook pages. It is really that easy.

The program comes with 5000 templates, 40,000 graphics, and more than 1000 fonts. You can choose from a variety of projects too like journals, mini-albums, calendars, cards, envelopes, and labels. A really fun aspect of the program is that it gives you the ability to create web albums, so you can share your scrapbook layouts with family and friends.

A special section of the program allows you to create a large variety of paper craft projects including origami, scrapbook pockets, mobiles, book covers, gift boxes, paper dolls, and table tents. Honestly, this program will keep you busy for hours with all the pre-made crafts.

Another benefit to the scrapbooking software? My kids love to use this. It has so many features from pre-made layouts, which make it easy for the younger kids, to the ability to add journaling and do some graphics work which keeps my older child happy. The only drawback to this software I have found is that I have to set the kitchen timer so that everyone gets their turn to use it!

Dee Marie is a freelance writer and enjoys scrapbooking. You can read more about scrapbooking software and get other scrapbooking tips and ideas at

More to Digital Scrapbooking

August 28th, 2006

With digital technology taking over our lives more and more these days it comes as no surprise that most traditional hobbies, arts and interests are turning digital. And scrapbooking is no different. With most families having access to personal computers and the internet there are a lot of scrapbookers that are breaking away from the traditional forms of scrapping and entering a new wave of digital scrapbooking.

Some of the reasons for this can be varied but with the availability of printers scanners and software packages, and the low prices associated with these items it makes more sense financially to turn to this style of scrapbooking. The internet is another revolution that people are using to harness the power of getting their scrapbooks seen all over the world. No longer do you have to waste money on trying different colors and styles with traditional methods when you can do the same with a click of a mouse. The use of image editing is a great advantage to the modern scrapbooker, with the ability of repairing damaged and marked photos being a huge help to creating the scrapbook you dreamed of.

But there are also a lot of scrapbookers out their who like to have a scrapbook they can touch and feel and keep close to them so the good old scrapbook will still be on home coffee tables for a few years yet.

Have you seen check out the site for all your free scrapbooking needs including news, tips and articles.

This article maybe reused so long as the link and content I not modified what so ever.

Using A Word Processor For Scrapbook Journaling

August 28th, 2006

When it comes to journaling in our scrapbooks, many of us look for alternatives to old fashioned pen and paper. I know I’ve used stickers and diecuts to help write my message. I find just pen and paper sometimes are not quite what I want.

Next time you want to journal, but don’t wish to handwrite, consider using your computer and a word processor.

There are so many ways to use a word processor to manipulate text. The very basics are to open a word document, type your text and then alter the font and sizing to your liking. You can also shade and underline words in a simple text document.

Both Microsoft Word and Word Perfect have a feature called “word art”. In Microsoft Word, go to the “insert” column in the top menu. Click on “picture” and then “word art”. In Word Perfect, again go to the “insert” column in the top menu, then click on “graphics” and “text art”.

Both programs allow you take words and make them into an arc, a circle etc. Have fun and play around with the many features of both programs and look at all of the various ways your text can appear.

In Microsoft Word, once you type the text, you can click on it and you’ll get another menu box along side the text. If you click on the “abc”, which is “word art shape” you can choose to have your text any shape you’d like. In Word Perfect, the shape is available on the first text screen.

There are just so many options to choose from. You can create page titles for your pages. You can journal about a particular photo. You can make a cover page for the entire album.

With these text features, you truly can match text size, shape and color to the rest of your layout, the overall theme of a page, or an entire album.

After you’ve created your text, print it out first on a white sheet of paper to see exactly how it will look and if it needs to be moved or changed. Once you are happy with the layout of the text, insert a sheet of acid free paper into your printer and print your text. Then cut out the text according to how you want the text on your scrapbook page. You can also print the text directly on your background sheet, eliminating the need to cut the text.

You can also create outline text, make it large and then color it in, according to the color theme of your page. Truly the ideas are limitless as to what you can do with computer generated text.

Audrey Okaneko has been scrapbooking for several years. You can reach her at or visit her at

Digital Scrap Booking: The Frugal Scrappers Dream

August 28th, 2006

As a frugal mother, Sharon had to admit that she never got into scrap booking over the years because one visit to a scrap book supply shop sent her into sticker shock. With three kids and a limited budget, she knew she couldn’t afford all of the supplies and tools that she would want to use. So her children’s photos remained in shoeboxes.

In 2005 she discovered a digital scrapbooking kit, the practice of creating scrap book layouts on a computer using digital images. Sharon pulled out her shoeboxes and spent weeks at the computer scanning in every memory. The kids started to think Mom was going a bit mad though when she started to scan everything else she could get her hands on.

She scanned all kinds of fabric, curtains, blankets and scarves. She scanned greeting cards, calendars, wall paper and macaroni and cheese boxes. If it fit onto her scanner, she added it to her digital scrapbooking kit.

Then, with a simple image program, she went to work.

Without scissors or glue or double sided tape, she created page after digital page. With every new layout she thought up she felt like she was getting away with something sneaky. Surely she should have to pay someone something for all of the fun that she was having?

Digital scrap booking has matured to the point where you don’t have to find out own digital crafting elements, you can find some online for free and other image sets you can pay for.

As to be expected, digital image sets are far less costly when compared to purchasing paper and fabric and accessories. It really is an attractive alternative to someone scrap booking on a budget.

Sharon keeps her digital projects strictly on her computer, using the layouts as a screen saver slide show. Many others choose to share their creations online or even to print out their layouts and bind them together in a book.

If you would like to try your hand at digital scrapping you’ll want to check and see what kind of image manipulation software you have on your computer. If you don’t find something appropriate you can download a copy of the free public license graphic software named Gimp.

Learning to work with digital scrapbooking kits will take some practice, but you’ll have fun in the process and soon be creating fun layouts for your memories.

Vera Raposo has been scrapbooking since her oldest child was 5. With tons of scrapbooking tips and ideas, Vera is now sharing some of her best scrapbooking ideas on her radio show at

Basics of Digital Scrapbooking

August 28th, 2006

A digital scrapbook is a digital layout of photos, embellishments and journaling that is created by manipulating and layering computer graphics. Digital scrapbooking elements can be in the form of .jpg, .png or .tiff files to use freely among digital image editing programs.

Organization is a very important part of digi-scrapping. Keeping your files organized will allow you to create layouts quickly. You can start by scanning or uploading your digital pictures onto your computer. When you scan a picture in, be sure to give it a relevant name and date such as Year_Month_Day_EventorPerson. This will help you find the pictures you need and also eliminates the need to open up numerous files to find an exact event/person you are looking for. Save the original copy of the photo as a .tiff file. You will also want to scan your files in at 200-300 dpi. This is the resolution of the picture and the higher you have the dpi set the better quality the picture will be. If you are planning to print your pictures, 300 dpi is the correct resolution. It will ensure superb quality when printed. If you are only making layouts to share online then you can lower the resolution to 72 dpi. This lower resolution is fine for web graphics that you post to a website or forum to share.

Different file types will allow you to manipulate the elements or photographs in certain ways. A .png file has a transparent background so you can layer it on top of other files. A .tiff file is the easiest way to save original photographs without compromising quality of the photograph. A .jpg is the final format that layouts are typically saved in. A .jpg file cannot be resized without losing quality of the image though. Use the .jpg format when you are done creating your layout.

One of the great benefits of digital scrapbooks is that they can be saved onto your computer. You then have a few choices as to what you would like to do with the layouts you have created. You can burn them to cd and either save them to view on your computer or have them printed out and inserted into traditional albums. Burning them to cd will save you the space on your computer since the finished layouts tend to have large file sizes.

Assembling and laying out your pages will require an image editing program. These programs allow you to copy and paste layers onto a background and manipulate where and how you would like your page to look. There are endless possibilities.

Some of the programs are designed specifically for scrapbooking. You can find these programs in any place where software is sold. The scrapbook programs have custom elements built in to the software so your backgrounds, frames, embellishments, journaling, etc are already made for you and can be layered in the program itself. They also tend to require a lot of memory on your computer. Double check that you have the space needed on your pc before you purchase or try to use one of these programs.

Digital image editing software also requires a lot of memory. Before investing in any software, always be sure that your computer can handle the program and shut down any other programs that may be running (such as Internet Explorer, Quicken, etc). These software programs will allow you to do just about anything you wish and most of them will require some kind of learning process.

Corel® Paint Shop Pro is a great program that allows you to manipulate and fix photos, elements, create and save layouts. It has many functions and runs about $99. You can download a free trial of the software here. It is very user friendly but will still require some learning on your part. If you search online for Paint Shop Pro tutorials you will find they are very abundant and most users will testify that the program is very user friendly.

Adobe® Photoshop and Photoshop Elements are also wonderful programs for the digital scrapbooker. Photoshop is very expensive and requires a bit more experience than Photoshop Elements. Learning these programs may be more difficult for the beginner but are definitely worth it if you have a passion for graphics.

There are many other programs that you can use such as Ulead Photo Impact, Microsoft Picture It, Printshop, and Printmaster to name a few. All of these programs will require memory. Take the time to delete your temporary internet files, cookies and cache daily as well as empty your recycle bin to keep your computer in ideal condition to run these programs.

Digital scrapbooking is a wonderful and easy hobby that allows you to assemble layouts quickly and with no mess. You do not need crop totes or paper organizers or die cut tools (so it is a great money-saver) but you will need some organized files to save all of the elements that are available to download on the internet. Check out the freebies section at

for some basic elements.

Article courtesy of Lisa Miller, Owner & Digital Designer,

© 2006

Lisa Miller, a graphic designer, has been creating digital scrapbook layouts for 5 years and is the owner of which offers digital scrapbook elements, freebies, tutorials, web graphics and contests. Join the mailing list for her monthly newsletter with tips and articles to help organize, create and inspire!

Digital Scrapbooking

July 13th, 2006

So you might be wondering what the craze is when it comes to digital scrapbooking?  Doesn’t the actual word ’scrapbook’ connote something to do with photos, glue, paper and cute little metal embellishments?  The answer is, of course, yes!  But how does that all tie into digital scrapbooking?  Well, digital scrapbooking is another way to put it all together, but using your computer to create layouts.
So why would anyone want to do this?  Now that cameras are all going digital it just makes sense to use those digital photos right on your computer.  So what are some other benefits:
1.) You can branch out from only using 4×6’s.  If you create the layout on your computer you can shrink or enlarge any photo to the size of your choice with just a click.
2.) It’s cheaper!  Yes, you do have to buy some embellishments and papers when you want your layout to look “real”, but they are much cheaper and you can reuse them again and again! The main cost involved is printing the pages.
3.) No bulky embellishments.  Don’t you just hate that you sometimes go a little crazy with the embellishing that you can barely fit a page in the page protector.  With digital scrapbooking you have a flat page that you can make look like you have all those fun embellishments.
4.) They layouts are easy to share.  You can burn them all on CD and give copies to family and friends. You can easily send them in an email without having to scan.  You can print off mini albums of your layouts as presents.
5.) No glue or clean up.  You can save a layout page and come back at anytime without having to pull out or put away your stuff.  Everything is all there on the computer.
6.) You don’t waste your time as stores - unless you want to :) .  There are so many online stores that you can shop for embellishments, papers, designs, fonts, etc. and you get them immediately - no gas money involved!
 Well, I could go on and on.  Now does that mean you can’t scrapbook with friends anymore?  Of course not.  Even an avid scrapbooker like me will probably never go completely digital.  But if I ever did switch completely over, my next big scrapbooking purchase wouldn’t be that cut pink tote or a Sizzix machine – it would be a laptop!