Scrapbooking Tools

Share your memories in an intricate scrapbook with the right tools.
Creating a Frame

Creating a Frame

Once the inside of your card is finished, place a colored piece of paper inside and trace the shape of the window again. Use this guideline to create a frame for your window. Cut the window shape out of the paper, leaving a frame the size of your choice intact around it.

Today's scrapbooks aren't your grandmother's memory albums. Elaborate pages spring to life with wonderful art, three-dimensional paper mechanics and themes galore. With so much detailed attention going into each memory, it's no wonder the modern scrapbook is a treasured family heirloom.

Here's a look at the products you'll need in order to make your own:

The Album

Search the scrapbooking aisles of your local craft store and you'll find albums with spiral, three-ring, strap-hinge and post bindings. Spiral types are usually the least expensive, but you can't add pages to this type of book. However, they're great for beginners and children and for commemorating special occasions that require only a limited number of pages. Three-ring, strap-hinge and post bindings allow you to add pages to the album, increasing the capacity in ongoing scrapbook projects.

Acid-Free Products

Over time, papers, glues, tapes and inks containing acid can render yellowish stains and eventually cause disintegration, ruining the very photographs and mementos you're working so hard to preserve. So, though usually a bit more expensive than their acidic counterparts, acid-free products are the scrapbooker's friend and highly recommended.

Cutting Tools

Oh, the selection. Circle cutters, jumbo and miniature paper punches, valley-edge scissors, wavy-edge scissors, utility/craft knives, straightedge paper trimmers-it's enough to make your head spin, but you'll love the diverse results. Cut perfect circles using a circle cutter without so much as lifting a pencil or a pair of scissors. Cut or score perfectly straight lines just as easily with a straightedge paper trimmer that features a built-in ruler and grid for getting it just right. Make paper waves, valleys or mountains with specialty edging scissors that work just like pinking shears. And if there's an occasion, there's a punch out there with a shape designed especially for it. Or go freehand with scissors and a utility/craft blade to cut out design details.


Available in every color of the rainbow and then some, paper comes plain, patterned and embellished with photographic images in a variety of sizes and weights. I found paper in plaids, stripes, marbleized, holiday themes and even sheets that looked like grass, clouds and fields of flowers. You can buy it in single sheets or packages or bound in books. And most local craft stores have entire aisles dedicated to acid-free paper.

Stickers and Die Cutouts

Those with less time to punch or cut embellishments will love the assortment of acid-free die cutouts and stickers that are perfect for dressing up scrapbook pages. You can also print your own onto acid-free sticker paper that works with computer printers. Note: Be careful not to adhere stickers directly to photographs. Though the products are acid-free, the sticky adhesive that holds them down could damage pictures.

Rulers and Templates

Rulers and templates are terrific for scrapbooking, particularly if you're timid about placing the images or journaling on the pages. Use rulers to make erasable pencil marks and lines on the scrapbook page. Place the images and embellishments, write on the page and then erase the pencil lines. Or try templates designed to help not only with embellishments but also with page layout and journaling. Visit your local craft store or check out Internet sites for the latest selections.


Scrapbooks and sticky stuff go hand in hand. Select from among acid-free glue, glue sticks and tape in a variety of shapes, lengths and sizes. My preference is for double-sided tape. Look for brands that are gradually permanent. That way you can move an element of the page from its original position if it's not exactly where you want it.

Page Protectors

Page protectors are a great idea for safeguarding all the hard work that goes into making scrapbook pages. These clear plastic sleeves are designed to slide over pages to protect the images and art underneath. Some albums have built-in page protectors. Experiment to find which is right for your projects.

Next Up

Scrapbooking with Sea Glass and Netting

Create a nautical theme by embellishing scrapbook pages with sea glass and coastal netting.

How to Create a 3-D Scrapbooking Effect

Give your pages a realistic look with color copies of 3-D items.

How to Use Scrapbooking Rub-On Cream

Add dimension to scrapbook die cuts using rub-on cream.

How to Make an Accordion-Style Book

Try your hand at a hand-bound accordion book, embellished with metal and ribbon.

How to Make a Gingko Leaf Journal Cover

Make a journal cover inspired by ginkgo leaves in this botanical craft project.

How to Make Scrapbook Borders

Add a touch of elegance to your scrapbook pages with stamps and pen designs.

Polymer Clay Bookmark

Attach a pre-made clay tile to handmade paper to create a polymer clay bookmark.

Hand-Sewn Handmade Journal

Learn how to make your own journal to use for scrapbooking or other activities in this project.

No-Bake Paste Paper Scrapbook Page

Julia Andrus demonstrates this interesting technique to creating textured paste accents for your scrapbook pages.

Collage Sketchbook

Create a mini book for any album or scrapbook with these step-by-step instructions.


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