Which tools should be in a scrapbookers room, what you can do with them and more....
PUNCHES: Punches are tools used to punch shapes out of paper. They come in shapes of all sizes, from large circles to small flowers, alphabet letters to corner edgers and small borders. You can find them at craft stores in the paper section. As a beginner, you’ll want to pick the most versatile shapes. My favorites have always been circle punches and squares as they can make life easier in many ways since they are very versatile. To use, simply slide the paper in the metal slit, then punch down, keeping your hand flat on the widest part of the punch. I’ve found that you can lubricate a stiff new punch by punching through wax paper. To sharpen a dull punch that’s been frequently used, punch through a piece of tin foil.
EMBELLISHMENTS: You can decorate your pages with all sorts of embellishments, which you can easily find at a scrapbook store but alo in your garage, kitchen and even on a fleamarket. Buttons, fibers (fancy yarns and threads), metal accents, beads, craft wire and fabric ribbon roses can all safely be used on a scrapbook page. I like to use Glue Dots™ to attach them or double sided tape.
CHALK: Decorative chalks come in a set with lots of different colors. The set comes with two applicators, and you can also apply the chalk to paper with your fingers or Q-tips. They’re nice for adding a touch of soft color to a paper, or shading and highlighting tags and die-cuts.
EYELETS, SNAPS and BRADS: These are great for attaching vellum to paper, decorating a photo mat or making a border. They now come in various sizes and even shapes. To use eyelets, you’ll need a setter and a hole punch, plus a pounding mat and a hammer. Many companies, such as Making Memories, offer eyelet toolkits that include all of these. Please see my special guide on how to set eyelets.
RUBBER STAMPS: While stamps are a bit of an investment they can also do double-duty for making handmade cards. When shopping for stamps, look for designs you can use on lots of different pages. To stamp, you’ll also need an inkpad (black is a good color choice when you start).
DIE-CUTS: These are paper shapes that come in all sorts of colors and themes. Often made from cardstock, you can buy them individually or cut your own. If you do not have a die cutter like SIZZIX, ACCU-CUT or other models scrapbook stores will mostly have a die-cut machine which they let you use for free if you purchase the paper. The store usually charges you for the paper and a usage charge on the machine.
TEMPLATES: are a great tool for lettering or making different shapes, they usually come in durable plastic, so store very easily in a folder.
SCISSORS: A wonderful thing is a whole caddy full of decorative scissors. With these you can add a unique touch to your projects as they cut in a variety of shapes along the paper.
BOTTLE CAPS: Are the latest rage right now and not only add dimension to your projects but also can be used in different ways. They now even come in a variety of colors to accomodate all your needs. Please see my special guide on bottle caps.
SLIDE MOUNTS: Used before in photography to store your negatives slide mounts have now found their way into scrapbooking and even have changed their dimension and shapes. They make a great little frame for featured pictures and add texture to any project.