Sunday, February 12, 2006

Finding Inspiration for your next Scrapbook Layout

By Christina VanGinkel

I keep hearing the same question over and over again. Where do you find inspiration for your scrapbook layouts? With so many people turning to creating scrapbooks as a way to relax, and to have fun, finding your own unique niche can sometimes be difficult. To some people it might not matter if their pages look like a dozen others, and for some, they strive continually to create only pages that look like nothing else around. No matter which category you fall into to, if you find yourself in a rut per se or just looking for some new ways to be inspired, consider some of these places to look for a boost of inspiration.


You see them everywhere, each time you take a drive to work, or to the store. They have been created most likely by graphic artists who have taken a lot of time and put a lot of thought into things like font choice, layout, and graphic elements. Take a cue from them and if one of these billboards catches your eye, go for it and copy it in your next layout.

Magazine Ads

Much the same as the billboards, if there is something about an ad that you really like, go for it. Remember that the reason the ad most likely made it into the magazine was that many people liked the way the words and text were put together. You can take all that hard-earned work and incorporate it right into your next layout.

Online Galleries

With scrapbooking being all the rage these days, it is no wonder that online galleries are abundant. Everyone loves to share their favorites and post them in these galleries just for that purpose. If you fall in love with a layout you have come across, go ahead and scrap lift it! in the world of scrapbooking, that is not only allowed, it is encouraged. The only time that is frowned upon is if you are entering the layout into a contest. Then, do your own thing, and look for your inspiration elsewhere. Copying a layout for your own personal album though is fine.

Scrapbook Magazines and Catalogs

These are great places to find inspiration and ideas. There are so many talented folks that are making waves in the world of scrapbook supplies, that pouring over magazines for ideas is just what they were created for in the first place,. They can show you how to incorporate embellishments in ways that we would never have the time to think up on our own tight schedules, and even how to make scrapbooks from page on right through the end. Catalogs can be just as insightful as magazines, with many of them showing full-page layouts themselves, to show you how the products they are trying to sell you were used. The best part of browsing these types of publications is that they often show you more than one way that an item was used. Instead of narrowing your idea field, this practice oftentimes gets our brains going in a way that e then come up with our own unique ways to use the same products. They fill us with inspiration as we could only hope they would.


If you are truly in a rut, take a break. Put away your scrapbook supplies, turn off the computer, and close the door on your craft room. Out of sight, out of mind, as the saying goes. Once out of mind, do something with the time that you would have spent scrapping. Take a walk, bring your camera and take a few snapshots if the time seems right, but not with the thoughts of turning each photo into a new layout, or have a cup of tea (my personal favorite!). Read a book, call up a friend on the phone for a chat, or even take a nap. Sometimes we just do not feel creative, and the more we push it, the worse the creative block can be. Instead of trying to make it happen, just tell yourself that not being creative is just fine. Do not try to make up the time. Just let life happen. The next time you would normally spend scrapping, chances are the break from routine will have opened the doorway to some new and inspirational ideas.

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