Friday, November 18, 2005

Scrapbook Gifts for the Hard to Buy For

By Christina VanGinkel

A couple that is very good friends recently invited us to their small but elegant wedding. Money in an envelope did not seem like an acceptable way to show how happy we were that they were getting married. At the same time, a gift of a household item was also not appropriate, as they were combining two complete households as it was. Then it hit me...They had sent us a family picture turned Christmas card last year, that had been taken just before the holidays. With a bit of altering, and a few scrapbook materials, we could create the perfect gift that would show just how much we valued our friendship with this couple.

Material Required

- Scrapbook with windowed cover
- Photo of the couple
- Assorted scrapbook embellishments
- Computer with photo software, photo printer and scanner

I took the Christmas card photo and scanned it into the computer. Once scanned, I opened it in the photo software program, where I cropped it down to just the photo of the couple, eliminating the surrounding Christmas theme border, and their respective children of his, hers, and theirs. I then used a built in software effect to turn the photo into a black and white print, and printed the photo on quality photo paper in the size of the album’s cover window. The scrapbook I had purchased had a 4” x 4” window.

Alternately, if I had not had access to a photo of the couple, I could have used the same photo editing software and opened a blank canvas in the needed size. By inserting personalized text into the canvas, (A personal note, poem, or even the Bride and Groom’s names in an elegant font) and printing on photo paper, this would have worked just as well.

Wanting to carry this project one-step further, I then created the opening page for the couple; complete with background paper, photo frames, and sticker words pertaining to a newly wedded couple. By adding a few assorted scrapbook supplies, such as a tube of photo safe adhesive and mounting corners for photographs, I had created a personalized, but inexpensive gift.

I also included a few snapshots of them and their children that I had in my own personal photos, along with the original photo I used on the cover, still minus the Christmas border, but with all of their children. I converted it to black and white and sepia tone, and created a border for another page in the scrapbook.

I later learned that the bride use to scrapbook a long time ago, but had lost touch with it when time was short and life was hectic. She said she loved the gift because it reminded her how much she use to enjoy it, and with the renewed interest, has now been scrapbooking with her oldest daughter. A gift of photos and scrapbook supplies is truly a gift that will keep on giving years to come. Give a similar gift to someone special on your holiday list this year!

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