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How do I start a Scrapbook?

  • March 8, 2019 9:28 am

I have been asked.  “How do I start a Scrapbook?”  I am lost and don’t know where to start.  I also get, “I don’t have time to scrap.” how do you create your layouts?  Today I am going to go over how I scrapbook in short periods.

How do I start a Scrapbook?

The first thing I do is pick the photos I want to work with for a one or two-page project.  What do I want to scrap and preserve?  What memory do I want to put together?  If I have photos printed out, I start with those and sort through them until I get the ‘spark’ of the memory I want to work with.  If I do not have photos already printed out, I will look through the pictures on my phone, tablet, or computer.

How do I start a Scrapbook?

Don’t make this challenging or overthink the process.  You are just looking for two or more photos of a special occasion that you want to start scrapbooking on a layout.  (two pages side by side) When I have spare time, I will group photos for future projects to save time later.  You can do this while watching T.V. or listening to an audiobook or the radio.  You can choose to get the photos ready for your next project or group similar photos together for many future projects.

Photo Cropping

If my photos are not printed out, I pick the ones I want to print and upload them to the website.  I will often take a photo and crop it to a different size so I can have specialty photos for a layout.  Here is an example of ones that I just recently did.  The two larger pictures on each page are 5 x 7 inches.  The smaller ones are 4 x 4 inches, and the smallest one is 2 x 3 inches.   I choose to have the 4 x 4 photos printed that way instead of cropping a 4 x 6 photo down.  The 2 x 3 photo was a set of wallet photos, and it was four photos of the same image, and I cut one off the 4 x 6 print.  By having the pictures printed already cropped, the image is centered in the photo better.

Photo Cropping

Pick Your Papers

The next step to creating your layout is to pick your papers.  If you have papers at home, place your photos on different papers and start looking into what compliments your photos the best.  If you have to go to the store, then take your pictures so you can pick up your papers.  It is ok if you can’t choose exactly what you want.  You can buy some extra papers, which will be used at some point on a project.  When I started this project, I was doing this exact step.  The photos for this section will not be as bright as I was inside, with not the best lighting.  I apologize for the quality.  It will help you understand my process.

I knew that I wanted brown papers.  So I started putting my papers up against brown papers and narrowed it down to the following two sets.

I liked the look of both of these backgrounds.  So now it is time to get accent papers to compliment the photos and background.  After trying different colors, I narrowed it down to green and maroon.

At this point, I liked the background on the left better than the darker background on the right.  So I put both sets of photos and extra paper onto the light background.  I also started picking out accessories, and I chose some flowers and red accent dots.  None of the pictures or papers have been taped down, and they are all still available to be moved around and changed to different colors at this time.

I decided I liked this placement, measured the strips to the lengths I wanted, and started gluing down the papers.  The top photo on this post is the finished product.


The following is the amount of time it took to create this layout.

Day 1:  I chose the photos I wanted to use for my project.  I started with three images that I printed out as 5 x 7 inches, and I printed out four pictures in the size of 4 x 6 inches.  Three photos I had printed in the 4 x 4-inch size and the one wallet print page of 4 of the same images that are 2 x 3 inches each.  It may sound like many pictures, but I printed one photo as a 5 x 7, 4 x 6, and 4 x 4 print.  So three of the pictures are the same and just different sizes.   It took about 30 minutes to pick the images, send them to and select the photos’ dimensions, pay, and process the order.

Day 2:  I picked up my photos from Walgreens down the street.  I then spent about 15 to 20 minutes picking out papers and playing with the color choices.

Day 3:  Today, I took the time to pick out accessories to go on the layout.  I cut the papers to the sizes I wanted and glued it all down.  It took about 15 to 20 minutes to get everything how I wanted it.


The total time it took to do this layout was about an hour over three different days.  By just making a little time here and there, you, too, can create a design in short spurts of time.  I hope these tips help you with the question: How do I start a Scrapbook?


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