Layout Idea: When Your Photos are Both Vertical AND Horizontal


Do you struggle with page design when you have multiple photos that are both vertical and horizontal?

Is it hard to make both photo orientations work together?

One of my favorite scrapbook pages is this double-page layout with a total of five photos: two horizontal and three vertical. You can use it as a template for your own page. If you read on I’ll tell you how you can adjust this if you have even more photos than me.

Continue reading Layout Idea: When Your Photos are Both Vertical AND Horizontal

The Glimpse Concept – Paperclipping 282


Maybe you have pictures like this description below and you’re just not sure whether to scrapbook them or walk away…

Your kiddo, your husband — just hanging around the house doing…not much really. They’re just there doing their usual thing like they always are, and always do.

It’s not a favorite photo, but it’s not a bad one. In fact you like seeing it on your computer, but what would you say about it?

“Here we are, hanging out. At home. As usual.”

Photos like this have always given me a bit of cognitive dissonance.

  • Is it worth a spot in my scrapbooks?
  • Is it worth a spot in my limited time to play with paper?

The logical answer usually seems like, no.

But then why can’t I walk away from this photo?

Have you experienced this, too?

Well, I’ve learned to trust my gut in situations like this when there is something nagging at me. We feel this way because there IS something more to these photos and it’s just not obvious. But it’s there.

It’s the compilation of things that make up your everyday life that are so all-encompassing for you that you don’t even notice them. But other people who don’t live your life — including your future you — WILL notice them.

So the answer is yes.

If a mundane, nothing-special photo stands out to you, gives you a bit of pleasure, and you have an emotional sense that you’d enjoy scrapbooking, even if you can’t find any logical reason why, then go for it!

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But what would you say about it on the page?

I’ve come up with a scrapbooking concept that reveals the value of your photo without you having to say straight out, “This is a special photo because it shows our everyday regular life, which is pretty much the same every day right now.”

I love this concept and I intend to use it a lot in the future, in addition to the three times that I used it already this week.

I shared it in the video that we just released today for the Paperclipping Members. I assembled all three layouts on camera, sharing three different design ideas for this concept.

Want to know what it is and how you can use it?

CLICK HERE for info about a membership!

Flipped-Mirror Design Idea – Paperclipping 281


Sometimes getting started is the hardest part.

Quite often I start with a design concept already in mind. I have an arsenal of design concepts that I pull from when I sit down to scrapbook, and they’re the same concepts I demonstrate in my videos when I share a specific design idea or a Flexible Template.

For me, these design concepts just sit in my head as imagery and they seem to take turns pushing themselves to the forefront of my mind so that when I sit down to scrapbook, there’s usually an idea that wants to try its hand on my new page.

I name these ideas when I share them with you so that you can easily add them to your own arsenal.

You can…

  1. Store them in your head and trust that they’ll periodically surface, like I do.
  2. Write them down in a notebook (with words or drawings).
  3. Login to your Paperclipping Membership and jog your memory by looking at the names of the videos (because I always name the videos by the name I’ve given to a design concept).

However you store them, I do recommend having set design concepts to draw from. You can save yourself many hours and much frustration if you’re drawing from a store of ideas, rather than having to start from scratch or get lost looking through Pinterest every time you want to scrapbook.

Are you ready for a new idea to play with?

Today’s design concept — the Flipped-Mirror — can be used to enhance your photo or your title, can be the starting point for the rest of your design.

You must be a Paperclipping Member to access the video.

CLICK HERE for info about a membership.

Shine On,

Richer Stories from Yearly Events


Considering how many of us love Christmas so much, it’s really incredible how many scrapbookers say they hate scrapbooking Christmas!

The reason I hear the most often is because it feels redundant to scrapbook this repeating event every single year.

But what if you can capture in your scrapbooking some of the magic that makes you love Christmas so much?

Something that occupies a great percentage of our attention for an entire season deserves its space in the documentation of our lives. I hope today’s Paperclipping video will help with this. I want to help you develop and share richer stories from yearly events, such as Christmas.

The video is ready to watch in the Member’s Area and on iTunes.

CLICK HERE to learn about a membership to kick of the new year! :)

Cutting the Chaos – Paperclipping 279


Do you ever have pages that look too busy?

Chaos is particularly hard to avoid when scrapbooking Christmas pages because both the patterns and the photos are busier than usual. It’s the number one problem I have with some of my own less-than-pleasing Christmas pages.

So I pulled out my bag of tricks for avoiding chaos and focused on those while scrapbooking all of my Christmas pages this year.

I’m happy to say that of the 15 or so Christmas layouts I made, I think I reached non-chaos success!

So that is the topic of this video episode of Paperclipping: how to avoid pages that look too busy.

These concepts apply to all scrapbooking, not just Christmas, so feel free to use these concepts all year long.

You must be a Paperclipping Member to view the video. If your membership is active, it’s waiting for you now!

Not a member?

CLICK HERE for info about a membership!


Arrange Your Space for Optimal Christmas Scrapbooking


Do you rearrange your table or space in any special way for scrapbooking during the Christmas season?

Is your setup working optimally for you?

This is a hectic season, so now more than ever I want my supplies easy to find and access. I only pull out my Christmas supplies once a year. They come out between late October to early November and then go home to sleep some time in January.

I typically only scrapbook Christmas and Nutcracker Ballet stories between that period of time, and once I put it away in January, I never touch the Christmas stuff again until October, (though, the Nutcracker stuff might come out to dance a time or two).

Here is how I’ve got my space set up this year and what’s making it work for me.

A Planning and Staging Area


I don’t know about you, but I often need to spread photos out and look through the album I’m working in as I figure out how to best tell my stories.

Remember that five-page layout I made last month with old photos and Santa letters and a secret lucky penny?


You can’t easily develop a story over several pages like that without some space to spread out that is separate from the actual scrapbook crafting spot. Sometimes I use the floor for this, and that is A-Okay. For optimum use of your time and to avoid the crazy confusion and lost items that inevitably happen if we’re not ultra-organized, it’s best to actually DESIGNATE that space, whether it’s the floor or not.

These days I am fortunate to have a table specifically for this.

What if you don’t make five-page layouts? Well, normally I don’t either. For single and double-page layouts, a Planning + Staging Area still does a lot to keep it all organized, especially if you want story-centered albums.

I use the above table this way all year long no matter how simple or large my story is.

The Scrapbooking Area


Of course, I have a separate table for the actual crafting of scrapbook pages (though I’ve scrapbooked many, many pages on the floor, too!).

The main supplies for the season are set up strategically around the table. They’ve stayed in these spots through all of my November scrapbooking and will continue through January until I decide I am ready to put Christmas to bed until next fall.

Since we all scrapbook a little differently and with an emphasis on different types of supplies, your optimum table should be a little (or a lot) different than mine. But the principles that guide the most helpful setups are the same, so I hope you get a few ideas to improve your own space, based on the underlying principles behind my own choices.

I’ll do my best to explain those principles as I describe how and why I’ve arranged my supplies the way I did…

Separate Any Paper Types You Most Often Look For


Over the years I’ve learned that while I like a variety of colors on my Christmas pages, there are two types of staple papers I especially look for while Christmas scrapbooking. They’re the stable, consistent threads among the variety in my pages.

And so it makes sense to separate them.

Anything you find yourself looking for again and again should have its own special spot.

So I divided my patterned papers into three piles:

  1. Textured white, sheer, or screen-printed transparencies.
  2. Red, red, red.
  3. All other Christmas patterned papers of any other color.

I like to have some red on pretty much every Christmas page, so giving the reds their own special space saves me SO MUCH hunting time.

What characteristics of paper do you consistently look for to use on most of your pages?

Separate them and give them their own spot!

Embellishment and Detailing Supplies


Directly across from me on the table is where I like to put all my supplies for adding detailing to my pages.

This includes favorite embellishments, other embellishments, punches for decorative edges, etc.

Favorite Embellishments

Our newest embellishments tend to be our very favorite, so they’re in their own pile, (on the right) separate from the rest (on the left in the white box).

Now that I’m looking at these pictures I have an idea for making this even happier. We tend to like our stuff more when it’s contained nicely so I have a pretty dish I sometimes use temporarily for items like this and I plan to grab it for the embellishment pile on the right next time I scrapbook. :)



I use decorative edge punches and my scalloped circle punches more than usual for my Christmas pages, so out they come on my table for easy instant access.

Red Detail Additions

I pulled out some red glitter, washi, and jewel stickers and set them right in front of me because they are especially useful for adding pops of vibrant Christmas red to any (and almost every) page.

Remember, anything you do or look for regularly should have its own special spot for easy access!

Less-Used Items and Miscellany


As we move farther left on the table we get to items I use less often.

Did you notice I have things set up right-to left, instead of left-to-right?

Why would I set it up opposite of the way we do most things?

Right to Left

I’m right-handed and this right-to-left orientation prevents me from having to cross my right arm over myself and my page to grab things. It’s easier to lean right with my dominant right hand.

If you’re left-handed it would be easier for you to put your most commonly used items on the left and your least-used items on the right.

a) In the box I have my other embellishments, some more likely to get used this year than others.

b) The weird-looking items to the left of the box are for video shoots: a video monitor, some pressed powder, and post-it notes. These are not related to Christmas scrapbooking. ;)

c) The tray on the left is a combination of two needs:

  1. Project Life cards.
  2. Glittered items.

The Project Life cards are glittered, so while they’re not designed for Christmas, they are a great addition to my Christmas supplies, since glitter is another must-have on all my Christmas pages. But once I put Christmas away, these will go back to their regular spot with my Project Life supplies for year-long scrapbooking.

I also have some wooden pieces there from Crate Paper that have glitter, but were not designed for Christmas. These will go back into my store of everyday supplies, as well.

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What’s Not on the Table?

First — Purposely missing from my table this year are my die cuts and inky, mixed-media, technique-driven supplies.

I have so many great new Christmas products I’m inspired to use this year that I am highly doubtful I’ll feel the urge to pull them out this time around (other than Christmas Red Stickles).

In past years I have pulled out dies, stamps, inks, embossing powders, etc. that are Christmas-themed and put them in their own space. My die cutting, stamping, and mixed media supplies are so easy for me to get to anyway, that I won’t be in any way inconvenienced if I do end up want to use some of them.

Second — Also missing from my table are Christmas products from the past that are not currently inspiring me at all. I might get rid of these. For now they are sitting in a container and out of my way!

Third — My Nutcracker supplies are in their own separate container. I am scrapbooking fewer of these pages right now, and plan to scrapbook more of the Nutcracker stories AFTER the holiday is over when I’m winding down on my Christmas album scrapbooking.


Did you know we spent an entire season last year on organization tips for setting up your scrapbook space, in general? CLICK HERE for lots and lots on organizing for scrapbooking.

And finally…

Do you want to see some Christmas scrapbooking in action? The four November and December video tutorials are all Christmas-related!

CLICK HERE for info about a Paperclipping Membership. :)



For videos on Christmas scrapbooking, everyday scrapbooking, organization in scrapbooking, and much more, CLICK HERE.

You made it all the way to the end! Good job! ;)

Happy holidays and shine on…


PRT268 – Ironic Snowflakes

We discuss choosing Christmas products…

UPDATE: The first version of this episode contained artifacts from hardware glitches. We think this new version has fixed it. If you already downloaded the previous version of the file, please download this new one. It has the same name. Sorry about the trouble…

The Panelists

Click here to see more…

Tie It Together – Paperclipping 278

The challenge in any art is to tie it all together.

Tie what together?

Basically everything. All the parts.

In any artistic endeavor the entire whole needs to feel unified, and to do that, all the elements of your piece need to make sense with each other. There needs to be a relationship.

Usually that means there just needs to be one or two common traits.

Let’s make this concrete and specific to scrapbooking.

I made a video that demonstrates how you can tie together a whole number of things:

  1. How you can make an entire scrapbook feel more unified, even when you want or already have a wide variety of colors.
  2. Ways to get that unifying shade of color you need when you don’t have much or any of that color in your current supply.
  3. How you can scrapbook a recurring, yearly event non-chronologically and in a way that is interesting, and compelling, and tells a unifying story. In other words, how you can tie the various years together in a cool and meaningful way.


In this video you’ll see a little more of how I’m organizing both my Christmas album and Trinity’s Nutcracker album, both of which are not chronological, even though they’re about events that repeat every year.

Why aren’t they chronological?

Because I have something specific I want to communicate in my Christmas album, and a big story I want to tell through the Nutcracker album, and I’ve come to realize that I can better accomplish both of those goals by organizing the album differently.

I’ve been developing this in the November videos and will continue to through the month of December in the next two episodes after this one.

I hope you’ll join me in tying it all together!

Members can now watch this newest video in the Member’s Area and on iTunes.

Want information about a Paperclipping Membership?

CLICK HERE to learn more!