Planning Layouts for Faster and More Efficient Scrapbooking Part 2
  1. Home
  • Share

Your suggestion is on its way!

An email with a link to:

was emailed to:

Thanks for sharing with others!

Most Emailed Articles

Free Online Spell Check

Planning Layouts for Faster and More Efficient Scrapbooking

Simple Steps to Quicker Scrapbooking Regardless of Your Style: Journaling and Layout Planning
Article by Alison Perra


Although journaling can be completed at any stage, it is often at this point that I will start mine. Tips for journaling more efficiently include:

  • Jot down notes. Try to jot down notes as soon as possible after an event that you’re sure you will be scrapbooking, even if it will be some time before you get around to creating the layout. These notes will be invaluable when you are journaling later.
  • Do any research and gather any materials that will help with your journaling. As it applies to your situation, look up information online (for example, about a vacation site you visited), locate brochures or other memorabilia you have collected, ask friends or family members to help you identify people in older photos and jog your memory about events, find quotes you may want to use, and so on.
  • Try journaling for several pages at once, instead of one at a time. Often, it’s more difficult to get started with journaling for a single layout than it is to just continue writing for several layouts, once you’re in “journaling mode”. You will probably find that your journaling goes more quickly when you do large blocks of it all at once.
  • Get the words down on paper or on your computer. When working on your first draft, don’t worry about whether your journaling is perfect, or long enough/too long, or which font or special formatting you will eventually use. Just get your basic journaling down at this point.
  • Edit and format your journaling. Final tweeks to your journaling are best to save for when you have completed basic page planning (see the next section), for by that point you will have a better sense of the look and feel you want your layout to portray. It is at this point that you can refine your wording, change the fonts and font size, complete any special formatting desired, type out titles you will be printing for the layout, and make labels, quotes, or other printed materials for the layout. I have found that it is easier for me to edit and format separately from basic journaling, as I seem to use different parts of my brain for the two tasks!


For the next step, gather ideas and come up with a general plan for your layouts:

  • Plan several layouts at once. Doing so saves you from the hassle of having to pull out all the papers, idea books, photos, and so forth several times. It also saves you precious time.
  • Pick your papers. Choose a set of photos and go through your papers to find a background paper or cardstock for the layout.
  • Play with placement. Lay your photos out on the paper and try to picture possible placement, moving the photos around as needed. You may also want to crop your photos at this time. Shakira states, “I generally plan and mat my pictures first. Then I can decide how much room I have for the title, journaling, and embellishments.”
  • Consider ideas for the page, jotting down any that you would like to use. Remember to write down ideas for colors, embellishments, the title, what to journal about, which photo to use as a focal point, placement of items on the page, and so forth.
  • Look for new ideas. If you’re stuck for ideas, flip through magazines or idea books for something that might work on your layout.
  • Sketch it out. If you have enough of the layout planned out at this time, make a quick sketch of it so that you won’t forget your ideas later. Neith writes, “I grab a notebook and do a general sketch of the layout, sometimes running over to my stash to get a better idea of the color or size of something I want to use, and I will rearrange the photos in front of me for general placement.” Darla adds, “I use index cards to make a drawing of how I want the layout to look, and what embellishments, journaling, etc. [to use].”
  • Put it all away if needed. Don’t feel as though you must have the entire layout planned at this stage. Sometimes a full layout will come together at this point, while other times all you will end up with are a few pieces. Shakira has the right idea when she says, “If I get stuck, I just stow everything away in the keeper until the light bulb goes off!”
  • Store until later. When you are satisfied with the ideas that you have, put the piece of paper/index card containing your thoughts with your photos and any papers that you have chosen. I use a 13-pocket 12” X 12” paper organizer for this purpose, so that I can plan several layouts and store them together. A large craft keeper envelope would also work well for storing an individual layout.
  • Need inspiration? Start with a favorite embellishment. To inspire yourself in a new way, try starting with embellishments that spark your creativity and choose photos to go with them, instead of the other way around. Melissa writes, “…I sometimes get great swap items and start with the tags or whatever I want to use and work my [pictures] around that.” This can be especially useful in finding a home for those embellishments that you wish to use up (after hording them for some length of time, as some of us are inclined to do). It can also force you to “think outside the box” and consider great ideas that you might not have thought of under other circumstances.

Next Page > Page Kits and How Layout Planning Can Help You > Page 1, 2, 3

Subscribe to the Newsletter

Explore Scrapbooking
By Category
    scrapbookingScrapbookinghomegardenHomebc504643b7002daf7680e267bc504643b7002eaf7680614bhttp://scrapbooking.about.comod526F6F747896liveRebecca LudensscrapbookingguideBvc0001vzNIP11970-01-0110/od/index.htm0526F6F741approved/od
  2. Home
  3. Scrapbooking