Thursday, October 18, 2012

Essential Scrapbooking Tools

Hi! It's Nicole, the Creative Genius of Creations Galore, here to share some of my favorite scrapbooking products! Another session of Scrapbook Design is about to start, and I'm getting excited to share the love of scrapbooking with some new students. In the first class, each student will get to try out tools and supplies, determining which is the best for them. Are you new to scrapbooking? We'd love for you to join us for class... Until then, let's look at some of the basic tools that scrapbookers rely on to create their layouts.
Cutterpede Straight Edge Trimmer

1. A good paper trimmer is a must have! You'll want a reliable trimmer that will create clean, straight lines. If you're working with 12" x 12" cardstock and papers, you'll want a trimmer that can cut 12" or larger pieces. For at home, I love working with the Large Base Guillotine from Tonic Studios. It has a safety paper clam that makes crisp straight lines. They even have a a smaller, more portable version that still cuts 12" x 12" materials and saves on space! For crops, I prefer the very lightweight, slim Cutterpede Straight Edge Trimmer from EK Success. It cuts full 12" x 12" papers but has an extended measuring guide that extends to 15". The clear top allows you to see right where you're cutting, perfect for cropping photos. The replaceable sling knife blade can easily be replaced with a scoring blade or other creative blades to alter the looks of your paper. No more crooked lines from decorative scissors!

Honey Bee Scissors
2. In addition to your paper trimmer, you'll want a sharp pair of scissors. I carry the Honey Bee Scissors with me everywhere! It cuts ribbon without fraying the ends, has comfort grip handles and a safety cover, the non-stick blades cut stickers, foam risers and tape with ease, and the pointed tip is perfect for cutting in small areas and tight corners.

MyStik Permanent
3. Adhesives. There are so many different adhesives out there that I could do a separate post devoted to them! I would recommend finding both a wet and dry adhesive to use, as they serve different purposes. Dry adhesives provide mess-free results and are easy to use. My personal favorite is the MyStik Permanent Adhesive. It truly is permanent, and I've never had problems with the adhesive roll getting stuck in their precision wheel. It has an adjustable grip, giving me personalized comfort. You can personalize it with photos or patterned paper, making it easy to find at crops. And my favorite feature? You can mix and match any of the MyStik refills (permanent, vellum, and repositionable) in the dispenser you originally bought!

Glossy Accents
Wet adhesives are great for adhering small die cuts, ribbons, and other embellishments. For small die cut letters, I pull out the Quickie Glue Pen. Because it writes like a ballpoint pen, it eliminates the hassle of shaking and squeezing. You can write on the smallest of paper pieces and rhinestones, as well as draw or write anything, sprinkle with glitter, and achieve spectacular effects! For ribbons and metal embellishments, I use Glossy Accents. A 3-Dimensional Medium, Glossy Accents turns any sticker, paper piece, or stamped image into an epoxy sticker. But it can be used as an adhesive too! If you're a fan of Tim Holtz, you're sure to have seen him use this to adhere ribbons, metal embellishments, and buttons!

With adhesive, comes adhesive remover! Let's face it: There will be times where we will want to move a photo we've already glued to the paper, we'll accidentally transfer too much of a rub on, and we'll squeeze more glue than was needed. For these moments, I run to my Adhesive Remover and Un-Du. The Adhesive Remover from EK Success is an affordable tool at only $1.99, and with a quick rub easily removes rub ons and excess adhesive. Un-Du is an acid free and photo safe sticker, tape, and label remover. It also works great for removing grease, tar, gum, and candle wax. It's a must have in the scrap room!

ZIG Writer - Black
4. To preserve your thoughts, journaling, and memories for years to come, use only archival markers and pens designed specifically for use in your scrapbooks. Archival markers will not fade or change color over time. They also won't bleed if they come in contact with moisture. These markers come in a wide variety of colors and tip styles; therefore, the hardest part comes in choosing just one! Have fun with your journaling markers and pens, even experiment with calligraphy. When starting out, I recommend the ZIG Writer in Black. It dries fast and has a dual tip that is sure to be perfect for any style of lettering.

Heavy Duty Circle Punch
5. As a beginner, it's easy to become overwhelmed by all the unique shape cutting tools and punches available. Therefore, I recommend starting with tools that create basic geometric shapes, such as circles and squares. Look out for nesting shapes, punches, or a circle cutting tool that cuts a variety of sizes. You may also want to invest in a Corner Adorner to round the corners of your photos, mats, and papers. I suggest the Rounder Punch from EK Success. Having a basic hole punch on hand is nice as well. I prefer a 1/8 inch size to assist in adding brads, eyelets, and ribbons to my layouts.

With just a few basic tools, you'll be able to make a variety of layouts! Don't feel you need to purchase every tool on the market to begin scrapbooking. Grab your photos, some paper, and a tool or two, and begin the journey of preserving your precious memories!

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