Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Scrapbooking 201: Scrapper's Block

Stop Scrapper’s Block

I think we’ve all had it at one time or another, the Scrapper’s Block. What is Scrapper’s block? It is the phrase generally used when you are stuck, you can’t think of what to scrap, or perhaps your desire to scrap has disappeared. Well there are a few of ways to get beyond that frustrating Scrapper’s Block, and I am here to show you a few different ways I tackle it….

1. Re-organize your scrapbook supplies

This is what works for me 99% of the time. Once I start re-organizing, cleaning, and thinning out my supplies, I get the bug to scrap again. When I start going through my supplies, I run into a lot of items I had forgotten I had ever bought. I start remembering projects I had envisioned when I had first bought the supplies. I find things I had put away and lost track of once again. I also enjoy the feel of a nice clean tidy work area, so I think finding all these goodies again and having a spiffy clean area to work in, just re-energizes me and makes me want to scrap again.

2. Join a message board or yahoogroup.

There are tons of online message boards and yahoogroups all dedicated specifically to scrapbooking. Just visiting online with other scrapbookers can re-energize you to start scrapping again. Beyond the general socializing, most of these groups run weekly, monthly and sometimes yearly scrapbooking challenges. Many of the online stores, like Croppin’ Paradise for example, have online message boards with contests you can enter and not only would you have a specific challenge to scrapbook, you would also have the opportunity win some great prizes. I have also heard of online crops, I haven’t had a chance to participate in one yet, but it sounds like they run a bunch of contest, challenges, etc that could really get you a scrappin’ away.

3. Create a Scrapper’s Block Jar.

Find a small jar (or a box), cut out these ideas below, and whenever you hit a scrappers block, pull out one of these ideas at a time and try to incorporate it into your scrapping. Take these ideas on as your own personal challenge, have fun with them. These can also be great ideas for new scrappers looking for ideas on things that can be scrapped.


-Use a paper doll or the sizzix doll diecut, don’t have either of those, improvise. Cut a circle for head, triangle/rectangle for body and add legs/arms, use a pen to detail
-Use only cardstock on a layout, if it is too bland, use rubber or foam stamps to create a background, tear and chalk or ink edges, weave the CS to mix & match colors, etc
-Journal in your own handwriting, if you don’t like your writing, find a creative way to hide it, in a tag behind a photo, a journal box that flips open, under a photo that flips up, etc
-Use glitter/glitter pen or stickles on a layout, use it to accent diecuts, stickers, punchies, etc.
-Use a black background (can be black printed paper) accent with red, white or dark purple
-Mix template letters for a title, try using the negative of the cut out letter.
-Use alphabet rubber or foam stamps, instead of ink try acrylic paints
-Use only scrap pieces of paper from your stash except for the background paper
-Pick key words in your journaling to highlight in a larger font
-Use a specialty paper on your layout (cork, metallic, diamond dust, Mulberry, etc)
-Use bright & bold colors for a layout, great for summer photos or birthday party photos
-Embellish various letters in your title with brads, eyelets, or doodles
-Use letter stickers, diecut letters, or rub-ons
-Mix patterned papers; Use at least 3 different patterned papers in the same layout
-Create a handwritten title
-Use flowers somewhere on your layout (diecuts, fabric flowers, silk flowers, punches, etc)
-Make a pocket page. Great for holding celebration cards, kids artwork, momentos, or brochures
-Turn on the TV, use the first words uttered on the TVin your layout
-Use decorative scissors
-Use crumpled or creased paper on a layout. Try crumpling, inking “mountains” and flattening back out.
-Journal on vellum over a photo
-Use stickers creatively; try sanding, inking or painting them; or make a scene w/stickers
-Make a monochromatic layout ; meaning use at least 3 shades of the same color, can be cardstock or pattern paper
-Hand cut out the letters for a title using an xacto knife/tiny scissors; use mirror print on PC
-Cut images from patterned paper to use as an embellishment
-Try your hand at sanding your pattern paper
-Journal 2 different points of view for each photo
-Use a game piece (puzzle pieces, scrabble, cards, etc) in a layout
-Print a photo on watercolor paper, tear and chalk edges
-Use single word adjectives to describe the person in a photo
-Use a decorative punch; do punch art
-Do a vellum overlay over a photo; or try printing our photo onto a piece of vellum.
-Use colored pencils or markers on your title
-Use beads (you can glue directly onto paper, or string them, get creative)
-Incorporate the use rubber stamps on a layout
-Use die-cut letters for a title
-Use fabric for background, or mats, try cutting out flowers or other diecut images out of it.
-Do paper weaving or folding, try your hand at origami, or iris folding on a layout
-Use a quote on a layout
-Use magic mesh, try embossing it with gold or silver even.
-Use multiple circles or ovals in various sizes on a layout
-Cut a title from cursive font
-Use ready-made frame, border, title on a layout. If it is too *whatever* - sand and ink it up.
-Use a lot of photos, try creating a layout using 10 photos, think creatively to accomplish this.
-Incorporate the name of a television show into the title
-Use a paper crimper, try inking the humps for a fun distressed look. Stamp an image onto a piece of paper, then crimp, then ink edges, gives it a sort of an oriental look.
-Write a letter to the person in the layout
-Use the name of a book for a title
-Use something you received in a swap, never done a swap – join a online group and give it a try.
-Use colored pens or markers somewhere on your layout
-Place the page title vertically
-Use a diecut creatively; try sanding, painting, inking, chalking, add glossy accents, glitter, beads, etc
-Make a quilt page
-Print title on vellum and attach to layout using brads, eyelets, or sew it on
-Use photo corners, can be punched, metal, etc. If they are a boring color – change the color, ink or paint em’
-Create a black and white layout
-Dangle something from a letter in the title using (wire, raffia, string)
-Use a keepsake pocket or vellum envelope. If you don’t own an already made on – make one there are lots of templates free for download online.
-Use stencils as part of your title or journaling.
-Use the title only to explain your pictures - no journaling
-Use something stringy…fibers, ribbon, lace, wire, twine, or raffia. Make a frame, weave behind the title, border, or hang something from them.
-Do a color-blocking layout
-Do hidden journaling, Journal under a lift up photo or on a tag behind a photo
-Use something from nature, doesn’t have to be real, a stamped image, a diecut or punch
-Crop a picture in a circle or oval
-Use the name of a song for a title
-Use all pastel colored paper in a layout.
-Use only patterned paper
-Use a poem on a layout
-Use eyelets, brads or buttons
-Dangle tags from photo mat
-Journal using a list
-Use dried, pressed flowers/leaves, pick up some silk flowers from the craft store
-Make and use a shaker box
-Use a computer-generated title
-Use pop dots to create a 3D effect on an embellishment
-Make and use a paper piecing
-Use the word love in the title
-Use the last thing you bought
-Use only red, white, and blue
-Use a prayer or bible verse
-Use a photo mat, if you normally single mat, try a double or triple mat on a photo or two in your LO
-Do quilling on a page
-Machine sew or hand stitch a title
-Use a charm
-Use only scrap papers from stash
-Put title letters on individual tags
-Use a template of any kind, could be an envelope, a tag, a shape, or alphabets for a title, etc
-Machine sew on a layout
-Journal on a photo mat
-Incorporate the use of plaid paper into your layout.
-Embellish the four corners of a layout
-Use a photo for a template letters
-Use clay
-Wet or Dry emboss on a layout
-Create a Shaker box title
-Use a new to you tool; check out what your LSS carries or perhaps your friends at a crop
-Make a shadow box layout with foam core
-Use foam stamps and paint to create title
-Use bugs (dragonfly, butterfly, lady bugs, etc) on a layout, can be diecuts, punches, stickers, etc
-Hand stitch or cross-stitch on a layout
-Use rubberstamps to create title
-Find a fun item in your hubby’s toolbox to use as an embellishment
-Do a paper-tearing layout; tear the photo edges; tear a paper piecing and use it
-Use a pre-made title, if you don’t like it – try sanding and ink to change the look of it somewhat
-Use glossy accents, try creating page pebbles, fill a bottle cap and add beads and such, add to diecuts, etc.
-Use a brayer and create a unique one of a kind background
-Use various different letter stickers to create your title


Print a photo on vellum
Use a panoramic photo on LO
Create a fall layout
Use a 5x7 or larger picture on a layout
Create a vacation or dream vacation layout
Scrap a holiday in non-traditional colors
Take a layout you've created that you love, and recreate it with different colors and theme
Create a layout using photo edited photos, like color tinting, black and white, etc
Create a layout based on a single word (like love, art, passion, inspiration, determination, etc)
Create a school related layout
Create a winter or snow layout
Create a house and home layout
Scrap a family tradition
Create a spring or garden layout
Create a church activity layout
Create an animal layout (zoo, pets, and could be people)
Scrap a food related event (cooking, picnic, restaurant)
Scrap a toy related layout (big boys, kids, dogs)
Create a “In Remembrance” of layout
Create a layout w/out pictures (must have journaling)
Create a holiday or other celebration layout
Create a heritage layout
Scrap a patriotic page
Scrap a sports event or game
Create a career layout
Scrap a current event
Create a summer layout
Create a before & after layout (remodel, make over, diet, pregnancy)
CASE a layout-meaning copy and steal everything - use the same colors and techniques
Use photos from different time periods (to show change or similarity over time)
Scrap an accomplishment - yours or family
Create a like father like son or like mother like daughter layout.
Convert an 8 ½ x 11 page to a 12x12 layout
Create a “back in time” layout
Create a nautical layout; something water related (beach, pool, pond, lake, bathtub, rainstorm, or squirt gun)
Create a “All me” layout using your pictures of you doing what you do whether housework, hobbies, etc

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