What Is Scrapbooking All About

What Is Scrapbooking Actually?

If you are wondering or don’t know what is scrapbooking, scrapbooking is basically a method for preserving personal and family memorabilia so that it can be viewed by future generations in a more understandable and organized way. It is also known as cropping, and the secondary purpose often is to exercise your creativity as you display your memories in a scrapbook.

Scrapbooking is a wonderful hobby or craft. Preserving personal or family history may be done through using photographs and/or memorabilia that’s arranged and contained in scrapbooks or albums. The art of scrapbooking is known to have evolved shortly after the invention of printing.

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The History Of Scrapbooking

what is scrapbooking

With the availability, as well as the entry of affordable paper, scrapbooking became a popular method for collecting memorabilia and other items such as letters, poems, quotes, recipes, and even personal diaries.

Although the form of scrapbooking has changed over the years, the history of scrapbooking begins in the 15th century.

Commonplace books became popular for collecting various items of memorabilia in England during the15th Century.

Friendships albums were popular items for entering people’s names, titles, short texts, and illustrations in the 16th Century.

These items worked like the modern yearbook, and also made for wonderful souvenir items. These would generally contain memorabilia that included works of art and coats of arms.

An Englishman named James Granger published a history of England in 1775, and his book featured blank pages at the end. The blank pages were designed to allow book owners to personalize it with their own memorabilia or private items.

In the late 1800s, with the rising interest in scrapbooking, companies began selling blank scrapbook albums and glue. Mark Twain, more widely known as a writer than an inventor, created and patented a self-pasting scrapbook in 1872. The book contained adhesive in a grid pattern that was already on each page.

Commonplace books, friendship albums, and yearbooks allowed schoolgirls to have an outlet for sharing their literary works, and also gave them the opportunity to properly document their private history.

The invention of photography in the 1800’s also allowed more individuals to collect photographs, and incorporate these into their own specialized scrapbooks.  George Eastman’s invention of paper photographs, as well as the development of the Kodak camera, allowed for a simple and affordable way of getting photos. It also allowed school children to easily create their own scrapbooks, and incorporate photos into it as well.

Did you know that there is a scrapbook called The United States Presidents Scrapbook? It runs from 1907-1939 and consists of newspaper clippings related to various presidents, most notably Herbert Hoover, as well as Calvin Coolidge, Woodrow Wilson, and Franklin D. Roosevelt.

The scrapbooking industry hit its peak in 2004 at 2.5 billion dollars. It quickly dropped in popularity over the next few years. Many shops opened back then devoted solely to scrapbooking and teaching classes, but alas many of them have now closed down again.

Today, local scrapbooking stores are more difficult to find, and big box stores that once dedicated aisles to the hobby are now on to the next big thing. Scrapbooking retreats are almost non-existent unless you live in the city or are lucky enough to have a local scrapbooking store in your area.

There is still money to be made in this industry, as many people, like myself, love to scrapbook in their free time. It is just not as popular as it was a while back.

I still order my scrapbooking kits from https://artfromtheheart.co.za, but I think that they only ship in South Africa.

Modern Scrapbooking Trends

Modern scrapbooking methods usually make use of 12-inch, US Letter-size and A4 pages. However, the use of smaller albums has become a popular form too (mini scrapbooks).

Below is just one example of a mini scrapbooking kit that a child will enjoy making. Click on the picture to find out more about it.

The newer scrapbook materials come in 6, 7, or 8-inch square albums.

Scrapbook enthusiasts also protect each of their pages using clear page protectors. The most vital element of the scrapbook is the album itself.

The album can either be permanently bound and may also allow the easy insertion of pages. The album styles vary, from mini albums to accordion-type foldout variants like this one.

Most modern scrapbook albums also come with a container, CD case, and a smallholder as well.  The conventional materials for making scrapbooks include printed or cardstock paper, as well as background paper.

The materials for mounting photos include adhesive paper, photo-mounting tape, photo corner mount, and easy-stick glue.

Other materials for creating a scrapbook also include a paper trimmer, scissors, art pens, mounting glue, and archival pens. For creating more elaborate scrapbook designs, you may also use rubber stamps, die-cut templates, stencils, inking tools, craft punches, and even heat embossing tools.  You can read more about that here.

To decorate scrapbook pages, a number of accessories called embellishments are used. These may include using rub-ons, stickers, stamps, brads, eyelets, and chipboard elements. Lace, wire, fabric, alphabet letters, sequins, and even ribbons are also considered types of embellishments.

Electronic dye-cut machines are also great for resembling that of a plotter, which has a drag knife, to allow scrapbook enthusiasts to use their personal computers to create any shape or font, through using free or patented software.

what is scrapbooking

The other vital component of modern scrapbooking includes the archival quality of the supplies used. Most of the materials that are favored by serious scrapbook enthusiasts are those that have a higher quality than conventional commercially available photo albums.

Higher-quality albums allow for better preservation of photographs and journals.

Scrapbook enthusiasts also point out that you should use acid-free ink, paper, stamp ink,  and embossing powder, to fully protect photos and other types of paper and allow them to be preserved for years.

Die-hard scrapbook hobbyists are also even known to use gloves to protect their photos and journals from oil and sweat.

For those that can’t be bothered with all the cutting and pasting, but would still love to showcase their photos in an attractive and meaningful manner, try digital scrapbooking.

Well, I hope this article has answered your question of what is scrapbooking, and I dare you to give it a go.

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