For kids and teens just starting in scrapbooking, the aisles of paper and stickers and stencils can be a bit much. The tools and storage and different album types—it seems like you will go broke paying for another of your child’s hobbies.
As a creative outlet, scrapbooking is amazing for preserving memories. If you have never scrapbooked, maybe scrapbooking with your kids can be a fun, artistic way to spend time together. Kids benefit from creative outlets because it helps develop their problem- solving skills, critical thinking skills, and can be therapeutic. (see: https://childdevelopmentinfo.com/child-activities/why-puzzles-are-good-for-your-childs-development/)
You and your child will love having these scrapbooks to look back for years to come. So, you have a shoebox of old family photos, a plain album, and a variety pack of scrapbooking paper, what other tools does your child need to get started?
Seems a bit obvious, but dull scissors can mangle precious photos. One good, sharp pair of scissors can mean the difference between frustration and success. The scissors do not have to be expensive, just sharp, straight-edged and not too big for your child’s hands. Basic paper scissors from the craft store are a good starter pair. Look for pointed tips. Younger children should be supervised while using scissors.
Scrapbookers cut a lot of paper— it’s not just pictured, so the scissors need to last for a while. Have your child’s scrapbook scissors set aside just for them so that they do not end up being used for other household projects as this can dull them.
After they have graduated from basic scissors, your child might want to try shears with fancy edges for a fun touch. Paper slicers with built-in rulers are relatively inexpensive as well but only make straight cuts. These are great for cropping photos and slicing edges. Paper slicing should always be supervised.
Again, obvious, but working with plain school glue can make pages stick together, things fall out of the scrapbook and make a real mess. The acid-free adhesive in a bottle is great for larger items, like ribbon, or gluing down whole pages.
Glue dots and glue dot dispensers are fantastic for photos. Young scrapbookers may not have the dexterity to use bottle adhesive, and glue dots allow the user to precisely place adhesive. The glue does not make a mess and can be removed later if needed. Glue dots are strong enough to last for years, though, which is the goal with scrapbooks. The adhesive also comes in squares to use for larger or heavier items. Be sure always to use acid-free to avoid damage to photos.
A mistake that new scrapbookers make is not letting glue set or dry long enough. Again, this can lead to pages sticking together. If the pages in your child’s scrapbook come out, get them into the habit of setting pages aside overnight to set.
A 3D Printer or Pen
3D printing technology is making its way into the crafting world. Remember puffy stickers from the 80’s and 90’s—3D printing allows you to create similar decorations with ease. 3D printers can be used to add texture and dimension to scrapbooks.
Your child can even use a printer to create a three-dimensional scrapbook of sorts. It’s all about thinking outside of the box. 3D pens are great for doodlers and artists, but also work amazingly to create custom decorations for scrapbooks. Sometimes finding the exact sticker or paper is impossible, but with a 3D Pen, your child can draw exactly what they want for their album.
3D pens can also be used to create a base for the stamp. Draw the design and attach to something solid and you have a quick, customized stamp. Kids love being able to create their art pieces. 3D pens use plastic filaments instead of ink and should be used with adult supervision. A 3D pen is a great tool for kids scrapbooking, check out Kseniia’s website Pen and Plastic for more info. Scrapbooking does not have to be an expensive hobby. Using some things, you already have around the house, like pens, colored stationery, and wrapping paper is an easy way to save money on supplies.
Encourage your child to be creative with finding new decorations. Your child’s scrapbook will not look perfect or like an adult made it. That’s ok. Let your child be the boss of their scrapbook! Whatever they do, their scrapbooks will look fabulous as long as they have simple tools and their creativity.