We know the famous phrase all kids say, “You take too many pictures!” It’s true, but we all know it’s worth it because time flies by way too fast! But what do we do with all these pictures? We scrapbook them of course!
I can hear it now, “Oh, I’m not a crafty person.” But it doesn’t have to be so hard that you never try! It is so worth it when you have family members sitting down to look through the scrapbooks and reliving those memories. Try breaking it down into a few steps. Also, remember this is a process, not a one time occurrence. Do as little or as much as you have time for.
1. Choose a time frame or event.
I do my scrapbooks by year, January – December. We have pictures and events that coordinate with each season and lots more in between. You could also choose to follow the school year, August – May. Another option is to choose an event, like a vacation, or a season, such as football season or gymnastics competitions.
2. Choose and print pictures.
I use FreePrints which is an app/website where you get 85 free prints (sixe 4×6) each month and you only pay shipping. I feel that’s a good amount to stay busy but not too many that it’s overwhelming to start. I order my pictures by a section or category. For example, I may order the month of February in one order, which includes my birthday and Valentines Day.
Many other apps and companies will print and ship your pictures also, or you could even send them to a local place like CVS or Walgreens. My advice is to find one you like and stick with them since they may send you coupons and sales.
Pro tips: (not really pro, just some things I learned over time) I try to stick with 2 pages for each major event since I do scrapbooks by year. If you have a LOT of pics for one section or event, you can use the picture holder pages. I like to make pages of the best pictures and then include the rest in a picture holder page. These look just like the page protectors but hold 12 pictures instead of a page and also go in the 3 ring binder scrapbook. Another option I like to do is make a collage of several pictures, order it like a 4×6, and then cut apart the collage. I get more pictures for the page because they are smaller. Not necessary, but it can be helpful to do it this way.
3. Buy a scrapbook and scrapbook paper.
My favorite thing to get for a one year scrapbook is a D-ring 12×12 scrapbook. This way it works like a binder and you can add to it and move pages around as you need to. They are supposed to hold about 100 pages. If your scrapbook will be just for an event, a smaller book would make more sense.
As for the scrapbook paper, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with the millions of choices. But if you’re just starting out, I suggest to get one pack of seasonal paper if that’s the kind of book you are making (or one book of paper that coordinates with your theme). Make sure it is the right size paper, 12×12 or 8.5×11, etc. Don’t get bogged down in the choices of paper, just start small.
4. Decide on a layout and a title.
Pinterest is a great place to find both of these. Your layout doesn’t have to be complicated at all. You can have one picture on the page or several. You can have one piece of scrapbook paper or have several pieces arranged on that page.
If you just search for “summer scrapbook titles” or “1st day of school layouts” you will find plenty of options. Just pick the ones you like.
The great thing about scrapbooks is they are made however you want them. There is no right or wrong way to do them!
5. Just do it!
Don’t spend too much time overthinking or trying to make up your mind. You can meticulously cut out each letter and fun embellishments with scissors or a Cricut. Or you can use letter stickers and pre-made stickers if that suits you better (or no stickers at all).
Mat your pictures to make them stand out (give them a small border). Cut out your papers. Put the papers and pictures in place with double sided tape, glue dots, glue sticks, or whatever way you prefer. Then put the whole page in a page protector (12×12 or the size of your page) and add it to your scrapbook!
The choices you make in designing are not as important as just doing it. Creating a book of memories that you and your family can look back on is the end goal. Even better, get the kids involved to help make it, with guidance of course. They will enjoy the craft part as well as looking at the pictures.
Kids grow so quickly and things change without us even noticing it. So go do the scrapbook and keep taking “too many pictures.”