Monday, May 25, 2009

How To Find Scrapbook Supplies at a Yard Sale

Scrapbooking is a huge and quickly growing cottage industry craft. I have been involved with scrapbooking for 10 years. It is amazing how it has changed. From simple to ornate, from flat to bulky. "Anything goes" in scrapbooking it seems. Acid free is a concern, but even with that issue, the embellishments and supplies currently on market are addressing that so you don't have to! New supplies come out every month, if not every week. I go to craft stores in my area and just browse the scrapbook isles and every time I go, there are new features, new items, new embellishments. Seems it is never ending. And that is great.

Scrapbooking is a fantastic craft, and in my opinion, the best way to preserve memories for generations. As usual though, expense is always an issue. Although I do admit scrapbook supplies have gotten a lot more reasonable in price today than they were 5-10 years ago, sometimes they are still to expensive and if you don't have the income to accomodate, well, the scrapper you are makes you look elsewhere so that you can still preserve your memories for generations to come and satisfy your craft bug!
So where can you find affordable scrapbooking supplies? Well, you can always shop store sales and use coupons. I have found that to be a great way to get the more expensive stuff. Coupons can also work for the less expensive items too, but sometimes they just don't have what you want. So since scrapbooking is a craft, use your crafty mind and think about how else you can conquer expense to save your memories.
Where can you find really good things at a really low price? Yard sales! Yes, that's right, yard sales...or garage sale, estate sales or rummage sales. These ales are a treasure trove for craft supplies! "One man's junk is another man's teasure" - really speaks loudly for the crafter.
What to Look for To Find Scrapbook Supplies
Clothing: One of the most popular items at any yard sale is out-grown clothing. Especially baby clothes. Those little tikes out grow the clothes faster than they wear them out which means the clothing is still in great condition. Look at the buttons. Cute little, whimsical, pastel buttons. Buttons are a great scrapbook
embellishment. Cut them off the clothing item and glue them on with glue or pop-dots - great for the "bulky" look. Also look at the pattern in the fabric and cut that pattern out - if there are little trains or ducks in the fabric pattern, cut them out and run them through a Xyron machine to put adhesive on the back and they secure neatly to the background paper! Makes the perfect fabric die cut! You can do this with any fabric pattern.
Older childrens clothing also has some finds. Jeans have those copper, western looking buttons - great for a masculine, outdoor-zy or western theme layout. Or even cut the pocket off a pair of denim jeans and use the pocket as a pocket on your layout! Look at clothes that have name brands displayed on the front - great if you have a favorite brand you want to remember. Just cut the brand name off the article of clothing and use it as a die cut. Sometimes it is a saying like "I Love Roxy". Although a clothes brand, my grand daughters dog is named Roxy so I can cut that out of the shirt, run it through my Xyron and have a fantastic title for a layout about her and her dog! Look at collars - cute fringes or lacey collars- would make a great "border" to a photo. Appliques are also a fantastic addition to a scrapbook layout.

Other craft supplies: When I started scrapbooking 10 years ago, I had no help from anyone. My spending money was literally next to nothing. I started with photo square adhesives, a circle template and a scrapbook spiral album. But since I have been a crafter all my life, I had others supplies. Ribbons, threads, embroidery floss, fibers, buttons, appliques, yarns, beads, gems stones, rhinestones, jewelery pieces and charms were just some of the items I had. Granted, as I was just starting, I didn't realize I could use all these kinds of things, but now - boy, did I have a treasure trove in my craft closet! Look at any craft supply at a yard sale through the eyes of a scrapbooker - you'll be amazed at what you will find!

Books and magazines: Books are also a standard at most yard sales. I don't approve of destroying books, but at the same time, if the book holds a wonderful memory, I see no problem in preserving it for generations to come. Plus, you don't know that it won't get thrown away if it doesn't sell. Look at the books and see the pictures. Anything remind you of a favorite memory from your life? How about your child's life right now? For 10¢ you buy the book and cut out the item related to the memory. Instant die cut! Cut several images and organize them on the layout page to create a "scene" relating to the memory. Magazines are also great for this but you have to watch for acid in the pages. You can buy an acid-free spray and spray the magazine page. What I did was just insert the magazine page into a page protector and the page protector onto the scrapbook layout page.

Post cards and stationery: Not often as common, but out there just the same. Whether you use the post card as is or cut images from it, you have instant stickers! Cut theimage out, run it through a Xyron machine use acid free glue sticks or photo adhesive squares and you have a sticker!Add pop-dots for a 3-D effect! You can do the journaling on the stationery as it is or cut the designs from the stationery to use as you need.
Board Games: Scrabble has those wonderful small wooden tiles of letters. Each letter can spell out the title or a person's name! Monopoly money is a great embellishment for layouts themed for shopping, travel and other money related scrapbook themes. Even the board could be a great addition - if it is to thick to cut, just scan parts of it to make your back ground paper or to cut parts out for die cuts!
Holiday decorations: Tinsel, christmas cards, wrapping paper, gift tags, paper wall decorations, candy wrappers, window clings, glitter, silk flowers - just take look with a scrapbookers frame of mind and the possibilities will jump out at you!
Other things you might look for: Labels from jars - just soak them off. I'd love to have a label from Knott's Berry Farm jelly jar as Knott's was my families favorite place to spend Sunday afternoons as a kid - way back before it was an amuzement park and cost admission! Nick-naks that can be disassembled to get to the brand name or the image you want. Hand made things like embroidered towels, doillies or lace pieces. Use as is or cut off the part you need. And those School work books- a great "back to school" background paper is a page of math problems from a work book; you just add the photos and journaling!
So next time you see a sign that says "Yard Sale", put your scrapbookers thinking cap on and stop and go shopping!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

How to Use Vellum In Your Scrapbook Layouts

One of my favorite materials to use is vellum. It is a thin, semi-see-through paper. And there are so many uses for this! I always liked using it for the elegance and dimension it offers a scrapbook page. You can cut it, journal on it, tear it, fold it, punch it, gel pen it... and the list goes on. It is a fun material to use on your scrapbook pages and the ideas are endless! It isn't very expensive if you shop around. I'd shop for this on sale too. You can get vellum in clear white and many colors. I prefered to use the clear mostly, so I found a place that sold in bulk about got it for about 10¢ a sheet. Here are 3 different ways I have used it.

Scrapbook Layout Description

"Best Friends"

In this layout of my daughter and her best friend, I used wallet photos and camera photos. The background paper is a pale lavender floral print. I used purple cardstock for matting the photos. The title letters are also purple cardstock. I made the purple and vellum daisys using a extra large daisy punch with a button for the flower center. Some of the photos are matted, some are not.

Use Vellum to focus in on specific images.

In this layout, I didn't want all that background in the photos, but didn't want to cut the photos so that they were really small. They would have looked kind of lost amongst the large photos. So I used a circle Coluzzle template and cut the photo out with the face in the center. I then cut a circle matte 1/4" larger that the photo from purple cardstock. I cut a circle of vellum the SAME SIZE as the photo and using a circle punch, and precise measuring, I punched a large circle out of the vellum exactly where her face was on the photo and laid it on top of the photo.

NOTE: With vellum, you can't use glue on it or the glue shows through (I believe they now have a speciality glue to use just for vellum, but its just another expense that you can do without if you choose) So to secure the vellum circle to the layout so it doesn't slip off, I took 2 small rhinestones, and glued them on the top of the vellum. I then put glue BEHIND the rhinestones on the back side of the vellum and glued it to the photo. Now, I know that you aren't suppose to use glue on photos, but this small, tiny amount, it is my decision that it won't harm anything. It is only just a tiny bit to gently hold the vellum in place. I did this on both the vellum circles.

"Flower Girl
This was my son's wedding. I did the journaling on the computer and it is in the words of his little neice as she was his flower girl, but was quite thrown by the whole thing! So I typed the journaling in her words on vellum. I attached it to the background paper simple by adding a piece of mulberry paper, crumbled it for effect and a button to bring it all together. I glued the mulberry paper to the vellum and then used photo adhesive squares on the back of the vellum UNDER the mulberry paper embellishment. You can read the journaling very nicely and the print background shows through just enough to bring it all together. A scrapbook layout to remember!
Use vellum for journaling
You can use vellum to computer journal on. I love this feature. It just gives that bit of elegance, yet not over doing it. The journaling is on the vellum and then placed on pattern background paper so that the pattern shows through the vellum for a "muted" background design, but not over-taking the journaling. The journaling blends in more with the layout instead of being the most prominent on the page.

"The Kiss"

For my son's wedding, I wanted simple elegance. I used a love song by Garth Brooks (I think it was!) that they played at the wedding and just typed it on white cardstock. I secured it to the layout with silver stickers.

Use Vellum for elegance and to highlight the theme of the layout.

I cut vellum the exact same size as the photos and then with precise measuring, I used a Coluzzle oval template to cut out the part to just focus on the kiss. One oval is horizontal the other is vertical. I secured the vellum with metallic silver heart stickers. The vellum creates 2 views of the same photo - one is focus on the kiss, what the layout is about, and then allows you to still see their attire through the sheer vellum. Now when you look at this layout, you focus on the kiss and feel its meaning. Simple elegance.

And you can use this technique on adult or children theme photos/layouts. Another good idea is to use this technique for school pictures - cut the circle out of the vellum for your child's face, but yet you can still see the rest of the class through the vellum. Or a family gathering or birthday- circle out the birthday person's face for focus, yet you can still see the rest of the family!
All these layouts are quick, easy and inexpensive.