Yes, I do scrapbook. I try to keep my scrapbooking simple. Honestly? I've been horrible about photos until I started the blog, but that has increased my photo-taking, so I should be keeping an album too.
And honestly, I enjoy doing it. I don't purchase a lot of bells and whistles; I want the focus to be on photos.
The goal? To get completely caught up so I have an album starting when B and I got married. So far, September-March is either done or partially completed. That leaves June-August and March-October. Eeek. But now it's rain-time here, so much more indoor opportunity.
However, I initially started out with an 8.5"x11" book from Michaels. Everything in that size was cheaper than the 12"x12". Not knowing what I was doing, I took my time initially, and everything took forever. Then I panicked to catch up, and I did not do that great of work. My small 8.5"x11" scrapbook QUICKLY filled up, since, well, it is 8.5"x11".
I was frustrated. Each of my scrapbooks only held 10 pages. And you insert the pages into plastic sleeves which rippled (maybe due to rubber cement fumes?). You go through 10 pages fast, and even with my 40-50% off Michael's coupon every week, that's still a lot of scrapbooks. I really did NOT want 3 scrapbooks a year. I'd prefer more in one scrapbook.
Luckily, my friend, Nat, started her blog, http://almostneverclever.wordpress.com/ . Go and visit. She's a scrapbook genius. This is substantially supported by the fact that she's been doing this for YEARS and her scrapbooks are gorgeous.
SHE turned me on to a different type of scrapbook: the Pioneer SJ-100 Jumbo Scrapbook. At $8.50 each, it was about the cost I was paying for a small book (even at 50% off!!), and the amount of pages totally warranted the $7ish shipping charge. The book has 50 pages, and it can be expanded! Plus, the pages are 11 3/4" x14". There is significantly more space.
The new book prompted me to change back to a style I wanted: Keeping my photographs square-cornered. It's much cleaner and allows for a better layout, I think. I will make some exceptions, but for now, this is my goal.
Last night, I tried the new book for the first time. Because you glue/tape right onto the page, it can be a bit nerve-wracking. No screwing up! So, I cut my photos out (using a careful template to keep the edges square), put the backing on, laid them out.... etc etc. And the end product? This page (one of 3-4 pages for March):
I decided to keep with the hand-writing because to wait and type would take me much longer. Maybe I will eventually switch, but this is what I'm going for at this time.
I think it looks amazing, particularly when compared to my old pages where the main problem was that I HAD NO ROOM.
HEre are my two books, compared in size. The old one is almost half the size of the new one.
The pages are ripply, and I really didn't like the end look of writing the month name. I don't think I have bad handwriting, but I wanted something a little nicer.
It's not a BAD layout, it just does not look as clean, I think, as the March page does, above. March has made me so happy that I am seriously considering redoing the months I did for the small scrapbook. I know... you may think I'm crazy. But it just looks SO much better.
And while the old scrapbook took time, I generally go over to a friend's house to scrapbook, so I have a fun time out and about anyway. It won't be like it 100% time lost. I still had fun.
I will make sure on the next page (the backside of the page, above) to put some extra cardstock in the corner/bottom edge. I want to make sure I'm creating a strong page that turns well.
I am now seriously excited about catching up on my scrapbook this winter. Crazy!