Looking to add some pizzazz to your layouts? Typically, when I think of jazzing up an ordinary scrapbook page design I turn to stickers or stamps; however, during a recent scrapbook workshop I learned how to design pretty paper at home.
Instead of relying on store-bought brands, I scanned some photos and used them as the background for my own design. If you don’t want to use photographs, you could opt to scan clip art. Regardless of the image you choose, you’ll have to work with photo software or an imaging package to tile the artwork or enlarge it, so be mindful of the types of subjects you want to use as background art on your homemade scrapbooking paper.
Another factor to consider when making your own paper is acid content. When scrapbooking, it is extremely important to use high quality acid-free paper in order to preserve the integrity of your pictures. Before buying paper in bulk, read the label; it should indicate that it is acid-free. Otherwise, you can test the paper for acidity by using a pH-detecting pen. In addition to the high-quality paper, it pays to work with a high-quality inkjet printer when designing your own paper. Cheap printers may not be able to give your paper the professional look you desire.
An easy way to make sure you are using decent paper is to look for heavy-weight varieties. Another option is to use a lightweight cardstock. Craft stores carry dozens of cardstock selections, which can give your homemade paper welcome texture. You can also make your paper pop by embellishing it with rubber stamp borders or make photo frames from stickers. If you are a bit more creative, then opt for chalk or sand the paper for added intrigue. Another really easy way to make plain paper more interesting is to layer it with other printed pages.