Scrapbooking Q & A : Techniques, Photography + Printing


I have a question that has been bugging me for a while. The strips of journaling that you and everyone else use so often. I can never seem to make my strips the same width/size using the paper cutter. I end up triming with the exacto and that works sometimes and others not so much. How do you do it??
Another question. When I paint large spaces on a layout the paper seems to get all warped - is there a way to prevent this?

Posted by: Jen

I use a trimmer or an x-acto too - sometimes they turn out better than others. Most of the time mine are not exact either and I just go with it. I think that is part of the nature of handmade crafts.

As for the painting on cardstock, that happens to me too. I think it has to do with the weight/consistency of the paper. I just work with that too and try not too worry about it too much. One thing you can do is let it dry and then place it under some heavy books to flatten it out.

1. Do you have any tips on writing on TEXTURED cardstock? Mine just doesn't turn out.
2. Do you print your pictures out differently when you going to be covering parts of them up? example: your Seattle Simon layout. If I tried this I would have all the faces covered.
3. Do you normally stamp directly on the main layout or do you stamp and then cut it out and adhere?

Posted by: {vicki}

1. I don't have any specific tips for writing on textured cardstock. Over the years I have just gotten used to the way a pen goes on (or doesn't completely) onto the textured cardstock. I have also changed to a Bazzill texture that is lightly lined (vs. orange-peel) - that seemed to help. Lily white is my favorite Bazzill white.


2. I don't think that I print them differently most of the time. Instead I move them around (4x6 photos) on the page before cropping to figure out their placement. I had to move the photos around a bunch on that Seattle Simon layout to get them in places where most of the main content of the photo is seen.

3. I do normally stamp right onto my layouts. Often I get a little extra ink on the page (one of the beauties of stamping for me is the imperfection) and just move forward with the design. If it is a major mess up I will cover it up with another element.

I see a lot of sewing on scrapbook pages... Is there a tension setting on the sewing machine that works well on cardstock? I am scared I would mess up a layout if I sew on it.
Posted by: Rachel Ann Paci

Good question - I wish I knew the answer. I know very little about the specifics of my sewing machine and just push the paper through if it starts to get tight. I am really all about messing around with the sewing machine. Anyone know of a source where someone talks about specifics related to sewing with paper?

I need some specific information. I love the font you have "Hello Life." but how do I get it and then how do I actually use it?
Posted by: Rebecca F.

Are you talking about this layout? The journaling on there is handwritten directly onto the photo. You can download an official font of my handwriting here.



Any advice for taking great pics? Your pics always look so rich. Do you photoshop them?
Posted by: wendy kwok


As photos, for me, often are the inspiration,
my question is about pictures . . . . I find that mine often don't
capture the moment. I come back to the computer to the computer and
find them lacking.
What do you keep in mind when you start snapping? Is it the angle, the color, the expressions??

Posted by: Beth Nixon

We take a ton of photos around here. Neither Chris nor I are anything near professionals when it comes to photography. What we are good at though is paying attention and having the camera out & available and taking the shots. We aren't afraid to get up close and then go far away. We change angles (from below + above) and move around the action. We are also unobtrusive (read more about that in a question below) and work hard to be a part of the experience as we are capturing moments.

I have found that the more photos I take the more
likely I will get at least one that captured the moment the way in which I experienced it or the way in which I saw it (emotionally,

As for Photoshop, I really like "natural" photos - meaning photos that have not been overly adjusted in Photoshop. The only editing I tend to do besides cropping and resizing is to lighten a photo that may be too dark. I am not big into using actions or other enhancements - part of that is because I think for me that can become another distraction from getting to the actual creating/telling stories.

I do know lots of people who view the post-processing experience as a part of their personal creative/artistic process. I completely understand and respect that choice as well.

I quite often feel overwhelmed by the amount of photos that I have. How do you overcome that feeling?
Posted by: Tracey Holdyk

I am a deleter. Because we take so many photos around here, more than I could ever work with and more than we would ever need, I
have gotten significantly more picky with our photos after uploading
them. Do I need 50 photos of Simon playing Star Wars from today?
Unlikely. I will keep 5-10 - maybe - if they are different enough and I
can envision using that many to tell the story. Part of this is that it is entirely possible I would take that many more of a similar play situation tomorrow.

For travel situations I am also picky. I love digital because I can take tons and tons of photos. I also love it because I can easily delete duplicates, horrible shots (a matter of opinion on what consists horrible - I don't always delete blurred shots), and just keep the ones I love the best - the ones that will best tell our story.

It is ok to delete some of your photos. You do not need to keep all of them, they can all too easily become part of all the excess.

You have really inspired me to take photos of everyday things - which I've been doing ever since my 2-1/2 year old daughter was a baby. However, she has gotten to the place that she HATES the camera & runs away or starts crying every time she sees that I have it out. I thought it was just a phase she was going through, so I backed off but... it's been going on for months, now, with no end in sight! Have you ever had something like this happen with your son & if so, what did you do about it?
Posted by: Shari

One of the things we have tried to do with the camera around here is be as unobtrusive as possible. It is rare, if ever, to hear me or Chris say, "Simon look over here. Look at the camera." Instead my goal is to capture him in his environment, doing whatever it is he is doing. Sometimes I am lucky and he will look up or look at me or I will get one of those great shots of him laughing - but those are all "in the moment" shots as I watch him experiencing life.

I have not had it happen where he cried when the camera is out. I think in that case, backing off (like you did) is a pretty good idea. Maybe you can start bringing it out when she is engrossed in something else - a toy, a book, playing at the park, etc. and begin re-introducing her to the camera in an unobtrusive way.

i love your enlarged pictures especially those that are 4X12 or 6X12. is there somewhere i could print them affordably online or at store? since i don't print my pics at home, having more options of shopping for pics would help alot!
Posted by: anna

I use and have been really pleased with their service - I love their enlargements.

What is the best way to print on transparencies/acrylic so that it does not smear? I have had a problem with that when I run a transparency through my printer.
Posted by: Jill

First, make sure that you are printing on the "rough" side. Second, make sure to select the correct paper type before printing (choose transparency or something similar). Third, let it dry a bit before working with the photo after it has been printed.

What is your photo upload/download process? Do you transfer pics weekly and then save to PC, send to photo gallery (like Shutterfly) and then do an EHD save? How to you manage all the pics? LOM way? (quarters and seasons)
Posted by: telisj

I backup and burn monthly right now. This is actually on my list of things to do this week. My photos are organized by months (inside of years) and I don't always send all of them to be printed. This has a lot to do with the way I work - often spur of the moment in terms of deciding sizes, etc. I like the instant use of my printer while in the middle of projects. From time to time I will send big uploads to for 4x6 printing.

My question is about your Printer-HP Photosmart D7360? Is it user friendly? Can you print different sizes? (i.e. wallets, 2x3, 4X6, & 5x7)??? What 'bout the quality? Is it slow or farely quick at printing?
Posted by: Dawn M.

I have been really happy with the HP Photosmart D7360 in all areas (quality, speed, ease of use). Very user-friendly. I usually print different sizes on a sheet of 8x5x11 HP Premium Plus Photopaper  (organized in Photoshop) but I know you can run 4x6 photo paper through there as well. I would say my photos are probably 60% printed on my home printer and 40% from

When you print your own photos, are you worried that because it's done on an inkjet printer the photos will fade?
Posted by: KazT

This is not really one of my concerns. HP claims their Vivera inks last for generations (105+ years) - I am not sure how accurate that is, but I have been really happy with the quality so far. Check back in a few years.

How do you organize your digital photos? I would love to see your folder structure. Do you tag your digital photos in any program?
Posted by: Cindi

Right now they are just ordered by year/month and within the month by event. I have not gotten into tagging them yet. It is not a sophisticated system, but it works so far.


Q & A posts :
MiniBooks/Sharing Your Story/Supplies
Design/Inspiration/Finding Your Style
Events/Teaching/Internet/Creating Keepsakes/Misc.
Hybrid/Digital Scrapbooking/Photoshop
Excess/Feeling Behind/Overwhelmed/Purging/Donating Supplies
Organization + Storage/Work + Life + Finding Time
Scrapbooking Baby/Getting Started + Design Teams/Telling Your Story
Techniques/Photography + Printing

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