Sunday, February 16, 2014

Pocket Scrapping 101...


Wecome! You should be arriving here from Krista's Blog.

I am a scrapbooker, a crafter, a document-er.  I am the one who keeps track of our who, our what and our where.  There are events like graduations, and birthdays which are always the "easy" ones to remember.  But what about the fun school trips and the cavity free dentist appointments?  They seem a little harder to look back and remember.  I found an amazing solution to this, a process to help remember and celebrate our everyday.  In 2009 I heard about a product called Project Life by Becky Higgins.  It's a simple process of placing pre-printed cards and photos into pocket pages.  I was sold from the beginning! 

I had several boxes of photos that were just sitting there, I had unfinished baby books, and too many scrap booking supplies.  I was overwhelmed to say the least. I felt so guilty for not having these amazing books for my girls. Was this really too good to be true or could I finally start getting caught up?  I ordered a kit as soon as they were available, it arrived in a pretty white box and there I was.... Intimidated.  This was supposed to be easy but I just couldn't get started.  *totally embarrassing*  I had been crafting my whole life and I couldn't put pictures together in a album?  That's right.  So on my shelf it sat.

I had a rough couple of events that followed... and it all put it into perspective for me how important it was to document our everyday.  Not just the good, not just the big events... the everything! Fast forward to late 2012- I pulled out my kit again and I was determined to get it put together this time; And I did!!!

I love what I accomplished for 2013!  I am slowly going to go backwards and document previous years as time allows as well as my kiddos' albums.  But I want to share how you can all document these everyday events and make it special to you and your family.  These are my own suggestions, I am not getting paid to endorse these products.  I just love that I can create something so meaningful for all of us to share!

There are a lot of companies out there that now make items for this style of documenting your memories, they are all called a little something different.  For a simple reference they are all products that fit into smaller pockets (usually 3x4 or 4x6) in a 12x12 sheet protector.

Here's a few things that I have found helpful along my journey, I am hoping that they help any stress or anxiety that you might have.  I promise the finished albums are worth the work.  There are a few must haves to get started.  Album,Photos,Pens for journaling, Page Protectors, Cards, Embellishments, and Tools.

Although there are several sizes available I prefer a 12x12" sized album (shown here in black chevron). The red one pictured is a Becky Higgins Mini Album.

 I use the 12x12 for ease of choosing other products to coordinate.  Most scrapbook companies out there make products in the traditional 12x12 format.  It makes shopping for page protectors, papers, and embellishments easy.  

Photos are available to be printed all over.  From your neighborhood drug store to fancy professional mail order companies.  I choose to print my own at home using my Canon Selphy CP900.  It allows me to control the sizes and the styles of the prints.  Although it may not be the cheapest route, it means that I do not have to pre-plan my pages.  I can print as I go.  It's a small printer and is portable so that I can even travel with it.

This little miracle will print any sized photo up to a 4x6.  I take most of my pictures on my iPhone, with the click of a button I can even print wirelessly.  I also like to add text or fun sayings to my pictures, and this prints them flawlessly.  I love the ease of being able to use my phone pictures for my pocket pages.  Here are some of my favorite apps that I use regularly to add some fun to my pictures: 

Instagram: Gives photos an Insta-camera look
Phonto:  Adds text to photos.  Allows you to upload fonts from your computer.
Fuzel:  Collage photos together.  Put two 3x4 onto one 4x6 print
Rhonna Designs: Add stickers, quotes and fun fonts onto your photos
Collect: Save a photo a day with notes 
Dropbox: backup photos from your phone to your computer

If I am working with photos that are already on my computer, the easiest collage and editing program I found has been Picasa.  The best part... It's FREE!!!  If you're new to the program and downloading for the first time, it's almost magical how it locates all pictures on your computer and lets you organize them from there.  

I am a self proclaimed pen junkie...and I am super particular when it comes to my writing utensils.  There is a huge selection out there to choose from, and this one I believe is a personal choice.  These are some of my go-to pens for my journaling.

(From the top)
 Fine tip pen from the Target One Spot
American Crafts Slick Writer to write on vellum or photos
Becky Higgins White pen for dark papers
Winks of Stella brush pen for glitter highlights

With pocket scrapping you can write as little or as much as you like.  It's your story, tell it the way you'd like!  If you don't like to write you can always type out your journaling.  My grandpa gave me his antique typewriter that I even use.  The possibilities are endless.  I also use a paper planner to jot down events, just in case I get too busy to get it in the book right away.

Page Protectors
There are a lot of options available for these.  I stick with what I consider to be the standard design, two 4x6 photos across the top and bottom with four 3x4 through the middle.  


I mostly stick with this design throughout the year.  I know which orientation to take my photos, and I can always add in a new page if I need it in another direction. 

Cards and Kits
I receive a monthly kit for Project Life from Studio Calico.  It includes cards, embellishments, washi tape, and a stamp.  I love that I can get this sampling of new products each month without breaking the bank.  

The majority of cards that I use are from the Becky Higgins kits.  There are almost 30 available!!! They come in large kits called Core Kits, smaller kits called Mini Kits, and a sampling sized pack called Themed sets.  You can use what you need for each project.  My favorites are Just Add Color, Kiwi, and Coral.

There are also 1,000s of cards available online that can be used for your pocket pages.  I have a Pinterest board that I keep track of the freebie cards and Project Life ideas.  

I use an Iris case to keep track off all of my cards.  It fits both the 3x4 and the 4x6 perfectly.

Decorate your cards and pages as much or as little as you'd like.  There are a million options out there to use.  I like to add small details to my pages, but I like to keep it quick and easy. These are a few of the embellishments that I use:

Wooden pieces, clear stickers, small buttons or flair, and labels.


Washi tapes.

There are a few general tools that you can use to help you out.  After a lot of trial and error here are my most used:

1.  Fiskars scissors
2. Tim Holtz Tiny Attacher
3. EK Success Adhesive
4. Sakura Quickie Glue Pen
5. ATG adhesive gun
6. Fiskars corner rounder
7. Fiskars Rotary paper cutter (not one that slides, blades dull too fast)

These items can be found in most craft stores, or even Walmart.  Remember, it's not about the price.  It's about documenting the memories and getting them down.  There is not a right or wrong.  It's not supposed to feel complicated or overwhelming.  

'Whew... that was longer than planned....thanks for sticking with me!  

If you haven't noticed already, I sort everything by color.  I find that I can find my things easier.  This is not something that works for everyone but I find it helpful, I hope you do too.  I also have a small area set up just to work on my album.  It makes it easier to keep up to date. 

You can see me here or find out more on pocket scrapping here:
The Pocket Source- Jen Macknick
Flickr- Jen Macknick

My favorite places to purchase supplies:

Please share how you document your family's memories.  If you Pocket Scrap or Project Life, please share your blog or gallery.  

Your next stop on the hop is:  Samantha