Home » Creative Process

Category: Creative Process

5 Ways I Kickstart my Scrapbooking

Confession time: I haven’t scrapbooked in far too long. I’ve tried a few times, started pages, but got stuck, got pulled away by life, lost momentum, and didn’t finish them. It’s frustrating. I need to kickstart my scrapbooking routine. One of my goals for this year is to build a consistent creative process that works for my life now. The thing is, my life has changed a lot since I started scrapbooking, but my approach hasn’t changed nearly as much. But before I tackle my creative process, I need to start creating pages again. Where do I start?

(Un)luckily, I’ve been down this road a few times before. The Christmas holidays are typically a dry spell for me so I’m used to needing a bit of a jumpstart in January. Here’s what’s worked for me.

Clean up

Kickstart my scrapbooking by cleaning my messy desk

The (not so) simple act of cleaning up my work area can work wonders to get my creative ideas flowing. I find hidden treasures that I MUST use right away, or see a cool paper combination that reminds you of a photo I want to scrap, or unearth an old photo that reminds me of a story I want to tell.

Where was I?

Kickstart my scrapbooking by finishing this pile of unfinished pages

I have a few unfinished pages or projects lying around from the last time I scrapped (or a large pile from the last year or so). One simple way to get started is to add the finishing touches they’ve been waiting for. Many of my pages simply need a date or a small embellishment to be complete. Do it. And put it away. Unfinished projects can really weigh down our creativity. Often just an hour or less will lift that weight and allow your creativity to get inspired again.

Order new photos

I’m bad for this lately. I order most of my photos online these days. It seems like such a chore to upload and order photos, so I put it off and scrap some of the photos I already have. Then the number of photos to be printed gets overwhelming so I put it off even longer. Then my old photos aren’t looking so inspiring anymore. I really want to tell some stories from our summer vacation, but I haven’t ordered the photos yet. So I simply don’t scrap. Better to blast through the tedious uploading process and click submit order. Done.

Find Inspiration

Sometimes it’s a little simpler that all that. Sometimes, all it takes is a browse through an online gallery, or a few Pinterest boards to get us inspired and raring to scrap again. This is especially true when it’s only been a week or two since I’ve scrapbooked.

Accept a scrapbooking challenge

This is my favourite method. There are so many scrapbooking challenges on the internet. Colour challenges, recipe challenges, sketch challenges, subject or idea challenges. There are no end to them. Often the limitations that a challenge can impose on us are all we need to stretch our creativity. Some that I love to use are: CSI Color Stories Inspiration, the Cocoa Daisy blog and the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge.

So far, I’ve cleaned off my table, gathered my unfinished pages into a pile, started some crafty decor projects and ordered a bunch of photos. Now I’m ready to actually scrap again. What are your favourite ways to get started scrapbooking again? I’d love to hear.


I'm in! Week in the Life

WITL: Monday (and so it begins)


WITL Walking the dog
Great morning for a walk in the park

Day one is almost over. I’m starting to figure out how to balance getting things done and documenting my life. It’s a busy week around here this week and I wanted to get on top of the basic household stuff like food and laundry so I can ignore it a little later in the week. There were plenty of times when getting things done took over and photos were forgotten. Like vacuuming and picking up milk (I forgot to save the receipt to document grocery prices). That’s OK. I’m sure I’ll shop again this week. And I pretty much stopped making notes shortly after lunch. Might try to enlist more support from my boybarians, but they are more tolerant than enthusiastic, so maybe I shouldn’t push it too far. But my experiments with propping up my phone to get photos of me making dinner and banana bread at the same time worked reasonably well.

WITL Cooking up a storm
Multitasking – making dinner and baking

I’m noticing a tension between the life I want to take photos of and the life I’m actually living. Even something as simple as walking the dog this morning didn’t actually look the way I wanted or expected it to. I wanted to show Juno walking ahead in the sunshine. Instead, she seemed reluctant and kept walking behind. Very unlike her. Until a cyclist rode by. Suddenly she picked up the pace and looked friskier. So I did get the shot I wanted to in the end. But that tension will return. I’m trying to embrace simply documenting what is imperfections and all. But I also want to take photos that look good. I’ll settle for well exposed and well composed and let reality be what it is.

Fencers going to practice
My fencers going to practice

I’m also starting to think about how to put all these words and photos into an album. I want to use what I have and keep it as quick and simple as possible. I am enjoying sorting the photos in Lightroom as I go, but that won’t always be possible. For now I’ll stick to my Midori for writing in.

Week in the Life 2016 – Getting Ready

I'm In - Week in the Life 2016

Ali Edwards’ Week in the Life 2016 project starts tomorrow. I’ve never completed an album for a Week in the Life project before, but I did take photos in for Week in the Life 2009. We were on vacation in Vancouver, so it wasn’t a typical week, but I figured I’d be taking lots of photos anyways, so why not add a few more of the details of our days. After that week, I was overwhelmed by the number of photos to organize and how to create an album with them, and all the little details that I forgot. I found the photos from this week recently, and was struck by how different our lives were then. The week doesn’t reflect our typical daily life from that time, but I still see glimpses of our routines. My how things have changed in the last seven years – diapers, duplo, strollers and colouring books are not part of our lives anymore. Rather than regretting not completing this project when I saw the photos, I finally felt inspired to start working on an album for them, even without some of the details and words that would complete the full story. And I’m inspired to try again.

So I’m scrambling a bit to get ready, or at least come up with a game plan. It has to be simple, or I’ll run the risk of not completing it again. I have signed up for the free community/class on Ali’s site, joined the Facebook group, printed off the daily sheets and started to brainstorm a list of things I want to capture this week. Our daily life will be very different next year. My family is months away from having a teenager and having a child in high school. This feels huge to me. It feels like the beginning of the end of the ‘little boy’ years. It makes me proud, happy, sad and sentimental all at once.

My process for this project will have to be quite simple. Our schedule is pretty full this week, more so than usual with a couple of birthdays and a fencing tournament next weekend. I’ll need to build a routine and try to follow it. I’m looking forward to writing reflections on the day each evening, but I know that I’m certain to miss some. I’ve printed out the ‘daily sheets’ from Ali’s website, but will also set up a place in my Midori to record the details of our days. I’m more likely to write in my Midori than remember where I put some printed papers.

I don’t feel ready, but I’m excited to get started tomorrow. As looking back on my previous attempt proves, even incomplete and imperfect will capture so much more than not trying at all.