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Start Scrapbooking Checklist

Updated on April 28, 2013

Scrapbooking provides a rewarding way to share favorite memories from holiday celebrations and family vacations, as well as all of the little everyday moments that make life special. If you don’t consider yourself a “crafty” person, you may find the idea of starting scrapbooking to be a bit intimidating. This checklist outlines how to begin scrapbooking by covering the supplies you’ll need to purchase and the steps for making your first scrapbook page.


Basic Scrapbook Supplies

When you’re getting ready to start scrapbooking, there’s no need to waste your money on piles of unnecessary supplies. A quick trip to your local craft store will reveal several aisles of scrapbooking goodies, but you can easily create beautiful layouts using only a few basic items.

Essential supplies for starting scrapbooking include:

  • 12x12 cardstock
  • 12x12 patterned paper
  • Scissors
  • Paper trimmer
  • Acid-free glue stick
  • Black ink pen marked as suitable for scrapbooking
  • 12x12 album for your finished layouts, with a refill package of plastic page protectors if the album you’ve selected does not include enough for your project

These items can be purchased individually, but there are also kits available that contain all of your basic supplies plus a few extra decorations you can use for your pages. Purchasing a kit can help you save time by eliminating the need to decide if products coordinate well with each other. Sometimes, scrapbook kits can also be cheaper than purchasing items individually.

Additional Scrapbook Supplies

If you have extra money in your budget, you can purchase decorative embellishments to enhance your layout. These items often have a specific theme, such as Christmas or baby’s first year.

Some additional supplies you may be interested in to start scrapbooking include:

  • Stickers
  • Rub-ons
  • Metal charms
  • Acrylic charms
  • Ribbons
  • Chipboard shapes
  • Brads
  • Eyelets and an eyelet setting tool
  • Rubber stamps and ink
  • Paper punches in various shapes

How to Make a Scrapbook Page

Don’t let yourself get intimidated by the process of making your first scrapbook layout! Learning how to make a scrapbook page is not difficult. Scrapbooking is all about expressing your unique perspective on the events in your life. There is a general framework you should follow, but plenty of room for you to be creative while completing your project.

  1. Select the photos you want to use for your layout. Choose pictures that best represent the story you wish to tell. Don’t feel like you need to include every picture you took.
  2. Gather memorabilia, such as greeting cards or travel maps, if applicable. These items can either be directly glued onto the page or placed inside an envelope you’ve attached to your layout.
  3. Write journaling to provide key information about the story behind the photos. At a bare minimum, you should include the names of the people in the photos, when the pictures were taken, and a brief description of what is happening. Scrapbook journaling can be either handwritten or typed, depending upon your personal preferences.
  4. Determine placement for the various elements on your page. You can use the example layouts in scrapbooking websites or idea books as a guide; it’s fine to take a scrapbook page you like and adapt it to fit your particular project.
  5. Glue elements to the page. Apply glue lightly to each item you wish to include on your scrapbook layout. While you want to use enough glue to make sure your items stick to the page, using too much will make it hard to remove things at a later date if you decide to make changes to your album.
  6. Insert layout into album when finished. Once you’re satisfied with your scrapbook layout, carefully insert your finished layout into the plastic page protectors that came with your album. If you’ve used brads, eyelets, or metal charms on your page, make sure these items don’t accidentally get caught on the edges of the plastic page protector.


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    • Jeanne Grunert profile image

      Jeanne Grunert 6 years ago from Virginia

      I've wanted to start scrapbooking for the longest time. I think I will try it this Sunday. I have the pictures from our summer staycation all ready. Thank you for the excellent tips and the article!