Here’s How To Organize Scrapbooking Embellishments in 2020
More than four million American adults practice scrapbooking today. The hobby actually started in England during the 15th and 16th centuries. However, cameras hadn’t been invented yet so early scrapbooks contained quotes, poems, calling cards, religious cards, and other small pieces of decorative paper.
No scrapbook albums existed yet either, so Important documents and ephemera that had sentimental value were kept inside regular books. These collections could include just about anything the collector had on hand – recipes, greeting cards, snippets of paper memorabilia, tickets, or playbills.
Embellishments of the day included small pieces of paper cut from ornately designed paper and glued to the pages.
Of course, photography came along, and scrapbooking changed again to become the practice of preserving black and white photos and newspaper clippings. By the mid-1800s, bulky, leather-bound albums were made and were often themed.
Early scrapbooks contained greeting cards, paper clippings, and ornate pieces of paper.
It wasn’t until the 1980s that scrapbooking, as we know it today, really took off. And we have a Mormon woman to thank for it. Marielen Christensen put together 50 volumes of her family history and shared them with the public. They were such a hit that she opened the first scrapbooking store, and authored a book called “Keeping Memories Alive.”
Within a decade, scrapbooking became one of the fastest-growing hobbies in America. It’s remained popular because people love to document their lives – and share it with others, too.
Scrapbooking is art
Although modern scrapbooking still includes photos, love letters, newspaper clippings, and other paper ephemera, how we display them sure has changed. Today’s scrapbookers have access to albums of all shapes and sizes. With the click of a mouse, we can purchase patterned and colored papers of any shape or size and thousands of other interesting embellishments.
We may spend hours or days laying out the perfect scrapbook page. Our layouts have become works of art.
Organizing scrapbooking materials – what’s your preference?
Scrapbookers love to collect all the colorful pieces and parts of the craft. It’s not unusual for anyone who’s been doing it for a while to collect so much that you simply forget what you have. This is where good organization becomes essential.
Organization is personal and each of us has our own preferences. I’ve used plenty of bags, shoe boxes, plastic containers, and old paper envelopes as scrapbook accessory storage for my goodies over the years. I’ve even used old toolboxes and the trays that go inside.
But when my scrapbook supply storage boxes are put away and neatly stacked in a closet, I get lazy and don’t want to get them out again (is this you too?) If you can’t see what you have, you forget about it. So you buy more. Before you realize it, you have piles of scrapbooking supplies that need more organization.
There’s a better way. When I sit down at my craft table to do some scrapbooking, I like to have my supplies, stickers, and embellishments visible and at my fingertips. After all, isn’t looking at all the bright colors, textures, and types of embellishments a huge part of the fun?
I don’t want to search through a box or a bin — I like to see what I have at a glance. UniKeep pocketed page protectors are perfect for organizing and storing all my scrapbook embellishments. These protectors are made with unique pocket configurations, which makes it fun to put your scrapbooking goodies inside.
These protectors fit inside any standard-sized binder, but I prefer using them inside a UniKeep case style binder. This three-ring binder snaps closed, so all your scrapbooking supplies are safe and secure inside. Nothing falls out or gets lost.
What are embellishments?
If you’re new to scrapbooking and aren’t sure what the word “embellishments” means, it refers to all the small “extras” – the colorful bits and pieces – you can use to decorate a scrapbooking page.
Embellishments can be anything you choose to decorate a scrapbooking page.
- buttons, beads
- small pieces of metal and wire
- brads — mini fasteners
- paper – with colors, patterns, texture, large and small sheets
- twine, ribbon
- sequins and odd bits of jewelry
- foam shapes
- glitter glue, colored glue, fabric glue
- word bands — small words or phrases mounted on metal, heavy adhesive paper
- raised stickers
- rhinestones, gems, other jewelry making bits
Embellishments add interest to a scrapbooking page by adding color, texture, and dimension.
Customizing a scrapbook page with these lovely bits will make your special style come alive.
How to start organizing embellishments
- Give yourself time to organize. Getting organized is a time-consuming process. Try to devote at least 10 minutes a day to get your crafting supplies organized. Completing one page a day is making progress!
- Get all of your supplies in one place. It doesn’t matter if you have an entire craft room or a just table in the kitchen or basement. Get all of your supplies into one area or place. This will make it easier to sort and organize your supplies as well as give you a place to store all of those goodies.
- Sort your products and supplies by type. Sort your supplies into groups of similar items. Getting like products together. You can use piles, boxes or bags to keep like products together for sorting into categories later.
- Keep only what you plan to use. If you have items you don’t use, it’s ok to get rid of them. If you can’t throw them away, have a yard sale or donate your old items to a church, school, or community, or senior center.
Once you have your collection sorted, it’s really up to you to decide how you want it organized. Ultimately the goal is to have a system that’s easy to use and lets you change things around easily.
Organize scrapbook materials together in like sets: stickers, matching paper
and/or embellishments can all be stored in their own sections.
Try grouping items with a similar theme together. For example, if your family is planning a beach vacation, organize your beach-themed paper, stickers, and embellishments altogether. This saves time in the long run, too, because you’re not spending extra time searching for just the right birthday sticker or themed paper for your layout.
Use the same method for holidays, birthdays, and other family events.
Here are a few more categories to consider for organizing your scrapbooking supplies:
- Types of paper – plain, colored paper/floral/stripes/other
- Colors — group all pink items together, all blue, etc.
- Seasons and holidays – Christmas, Easter, 4th of July
- Animals, nature
- Letters and numbers
- Children & Family
- Snips of ribbon, cut-outs from idea books, gift wrap, and other decorative papers
- Dimensional items like buttons, beads, raised stickers
Assemble your scrapbooking organizing supplies
Now that you have your scrapbooking supplies sorted into the categories you plan to use, it’s time to start organizing them. We’d like to show you a system that works for scrapbooking embellishments as well as for other bits and pieces you use for other paper crafts such as card making, stamping, and origami.
Purchase a UniKeep Binder
The UniKeep three-ring binder is different because it functions like a case that snaps open and closed. Think about this for a second. If you use regular three-ring binders and page protectors, you know that when it gets overstuffed, items start to fall and get lost. This can’t happen with a UniKeep binder.
You can make the binder you want with UniKeep. The clear overlay extends over the front and back covers so you can insert your own artwork or a scrapbook-style page layout. Or, try the Unikeep templates.
More options for customizing your UniKeep binder include selecting:
- Binder Size – standard 11.5” x 10.5” or mini 9.5” x 7”
- Page protectors and divider pages sized just right for either size
- Binder Widths: .5”, 1” and 1.5” inch spines
- Color – black, white, or clear
- Ring style – clear or metal
A UniKeep mini-binder shown with crafting supplies stored securely inside.
Purchase UniKeep page protectors
UniKeep organizing pages and divider tabs help categorize and store your large and small collectible items. All sheet protectors, divider pages, and binder pockets made with acid-free, 100% recyclable polypropylene. You won’t have to worry about your layouts turning yellow or fading over time because They protect your valuables from dirt and dust that’s harmful to most collections.
Color-coded sheet protectors take your organization up to another notch with easy-to-see colored edges.
Tabbed dividers are great for easy categorization of your collectibles. Use them to separate the different categories of embellishments you’re organizing.
Trading card pages: Although they’re made to store and protect trading cards, they’re also just right for scrapbooking brads, buttons, and stickers. Small paper and foam cut-outs fit in these pockets, too.
Photo sheet protectors: Sure, they’re made to hold 4” x 6” photos. But you can also use them for magazine clippings, pieces of decorative ribbon and paper and stickers of all shapes and sizes. They’re also great for storing scrapbooking supplies such as small stencils, rubber stamps, and stamp ink pads.
Business card protectors: A business card pocket is great for storing and organizing beads, brads, buttons, and small jewelry pieces. They also work well for small metal and wood items.
Beer Coaster Sleeve – This pocketed sleeve is perfect for separating stickers by type because each square pocket has a corresponding label pocket underneath.
An organizing system for your embellishments should be easy to use and put away. Choosing a method that’s right for you can help you have more fun (not stress) because you can easily find what you need because you can see what you have.
Keep in mind that your embellishment organization system should also be flexible so it can expand over time. Using UniKeep case binders and multi-pocketed page protectors can be just the thing you’re looking for.