Scrapbooking Tools

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

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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.

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