The first thing you will want to do in getting started is choosing a size and type of scrapbook album as there is quite a variety.
The most popular scrapbook album size is 12″ x 12.” Having said that if you travel to visit family a lot you may prefer to have 8″ x 8″ albums for ease of use in traveling. It is important to give consideration to your own purposes and you may have several scrapbooks over a period of time so each could be a different size if that is what suits you.
Be sure that the album is made from materials that are acid-free and lignin-free. This is the scrapbook industry’s current archival standard.
You will want a slipcase with the album to protect the album from light, heat and moisture which can all cause serious damage.
Look for quality workmanship by carefully examining the album for any fraying or less than top quality fabric. You want it to last for years so be sure you are happy with the standard.
You want an album that when open lies flat as much as possible. You will be filling it with photos, memorabilia etc and you want it to stay flat so be sure you are happy with it to start with.
Let your own taste dictate the color that you are happiest with. Everyone differs and if you are buying as a gift or a present to someone after you have done the scrapbooking be sure it reflects their favourite color.
When storing the albums always keep them upright on shelves where they’re as protected as possible from light, dust and sunlight.
Your scrapbook will have a lot of hands turning pages over the years and to protect your album you will need to have page protectors. They are plastic sleeves for the pages.
There are 3 excellent options for page protectors:
1. The best page protectors and also the most expensive are made of polyester or Mylar. If you make this choice count on using them throughout to maintain consistency.
2. Polypropylene are used by many experienced scrapbookers. They are good quality and are also well-priced.
3. Polythene are safe and do a good job. They are the least expensive. They are a good choice for storing materials temporarily and there is nothing wrong with using them for the finished product either.
Under no circumstances do you want magnetic album page protectors even if labeled “acid-free” because they will destroy your photos. Also you do not want page protectors made of vinyl or acetate components because they can stick to your photos causing them to fade and change color. This will ruin your scrapbook.
Envelopes and shaker boxes are another interesting use of page protectors. They can be made into embellishments for your pages quite easily. You can put things like seeds on to your page and attach them with a piece of double-sided tape so they look like a package.