By Christina VanGinkel
Scrapbooking is considered by many to be a hobby that is female oriented. That could not be further from the truth! There are men that not only scrapbook, but also that are essential to the industry of scrapbooking itself. Getting your guy to scrapbook though might not be easy. Prejudice towards a seemingly female hobby is hard for some men to look past.
Ask yourself why you want him to scrapbook. Is it a hobby you wish you could share with him? Do you have projects in mind that you know would be better approached by him or at least with a heavy influence from him? Consider where you scrap. Could you make it a more enjoyable space for him to come into, possibly adding a comfortable chair just for him, or providing him with his own set of basic tools? Is he shying away from scrapbooking itself, or does he more avoid the shopping factor so heavily associated with scrapbooking? Have you ever asked him to scrap with you, or asked him to create a layout? Maybe he considers it your space, you hobby, and even if he had an interest, just avoided it as you have so obviously claimed it as something you do.
This might sound obvious, but have you ever asked him if he would want to scrap with you? Choose a project that you know he would love to work on, the big fish he landed, the trophy buck he bagged, or the computer he is in the process of building from the ground up. Maybe he loves to cook, or volunteers at Habitat for Humanity or some other needy organization. Capture a moment that is important to him, something that you can also relate too, and show him how just a few pages in a scrapbook can make such a lasting memory of these events that make up his life, of who he is. Once he sees that scrapping about events that are important to him is ok, he might more readily jump in.
Approaching scrapbooking with the substance of almost every scrapbook layout ever created, the photographs themselves, or organizing the photographs, might be just the opening that he needs to delve into scrapping. Most men love to organize stuff, and many are the family photographer. If either description fits your guy, approach them on the level of the photos. Ask for their help getting a certain shot, or get them involved in sorting photos and organizing either the hardcopies or the digital files on the computer. If you are the main photographer, show them a photo or two that you have taken that you wished had turned out differently. Ask them if they could alter them in Photoshop or some other program to achieve a desired look, or if they have any suggestions on how the photo might be used as is. Sometimes just asking for input is enough to get your guy involved, essentially getting his foot in the door. Once that occurs, some people just seem to jump in and discover how much fun scrapbooking can be.
Maybe when he thinks about scrapbooking, he recalls crops and sales that you considered major to the hobby, and he has no desire to invoke such tasks onto his self. Make sure that he knows you are asking him to spend some time scrapbooking with you or even just to have him scrap a few layouts on his own. You are not asking him to take on every task that you consider part of the hobby of scrapbooking. If a guy is so inclined to go to crops and such, you most likely will not have to work so hard to get him to scrapbook in the first place, he might already claim the hobby as one of his own.
DO NOT CRITIZE
If he decides to try it, no matter how different his attempts might turn out from your ideals, do not criticize his work. Nothing is a bigger turn off when it comes to such a personal hobby as having the person who introduced you to it in the first place tell you that you are doing it wrong.
Scrapbooking is not for everyone, but hardly a person who tries it does not continue participating in it. If you truly want to introduce your man to the joys of scrapbooking, then give it a go, and if it is meant to be something that you can pursue together as a couple, it will happen. If not, be thankful that you never have to share your favorite scrapping tools with him!