Even the best crafters suffer from scrapper’s block every once in a while. In fact, after designing hundreds of layouts, it’s not uncommon for the most experienced scrapbookers to resort to beginner techniques or materials.
Recently, I was quite shocked to learn that my neighbor and scrapbooking mentor (she has been creating elaborate memory albums for more than 25 years) uses instructional scrapbook paper from time to time. The paper she uses comes from a manual called Layout Blueprints. The spiral bound book features dozens of page designs that you can place on a copier and print out to meet your individual needs. For example, if you are looking for a pre-made layout to accommodate six photos, you just turn to the chapter that includes page designs for multiple images. The pre-made mats are set-up for double page layouts, though you can crop them to create a single page design. In addition to the mats you can print out, the book also features dozens of colorful samples illustrating how others have customized their memory albums using the pre-made designs.
Blueprint scrapbook paper can be used to create a variety of themed layouts, though some work better than others. For instance, the book my neighbor owns has a vacation mat that features 16 squares. I love that the design allows you to include all of your favorite photos on a single layout. After all, family trips typically yield dozens of photos, and having to pick and choose just a few to feature on a layout can be very trying. Layout Blueprints’ two-page vacation layout provides ample space for your pictures and also includes room for a title and journaling. The journaling space comes in handy, especially if you are splurging and using a bunch of your photos in one layout and you want to add some funny anecdotes or background to the most outrageous images.