Now that you have chosen the right paper for your background, it is time to choose your coordinating patterned papers.
I always pick patterned papers that coordinate with the solid color. Usually, I pick 4 or less papers that coordinate with each other as well. Then, I decide which of those papers I want the most of on my layout. Does it look good with the photo as well? If it does, then that is usually what I start with.
The reason that I pick so many papers up front is so that I can narrow down what will look best as I go. I don’t just slap down all 4 papers, and finish up. I spend lots of time laying things out on the page to get it just right. This is the part that is the hardest to teach. Everyone has their own ideas of what looks good. To me, what looks good may be totally different than what looks good to you. But, here are a few ideas for deciding which of those patterned papers to use.
*Pick a patterned paper that is a theme for your photo. Maybe it’s a first birthday layout, and using a paper with balloons on it will give your page a birthday party feel.
*Your papers do not have to match. So many times, we are afraid that papers don’t “go” together. Don’t be afraid to use several different patterns on your page.
*Make sure that you are in the same color family. For instance, don’t pick some papers with pastels, and another paper with bright, bold primary colors. You won’t get a cohesive look that way. Either pick all muted tones, or bright colorful ones. Whatever is your preference is fine.
*Look at your photo over and over and over. This is the best way to ensure that you are choosing the best papers. Does it enhance the photo? Do these colors distract from the photo? Is my photo full of bright colors or muted tones? These are the kinds of questions you should be asking yourself.
*Overlap your papers. This will make it look more like you chose those papers to coordinate on purpose. You definitely don’t want it to look like an accidental mess.
There really is no “perfect” paper. But, these are tips that can make it feel like you did choose the one perfect for your photo.