In this fast-paced, electronic-based world, it''s difficult to find an activity to share with your children that doesn''t involve the television or the computer. Scrapbooking might help to bridge that gap of having fun but staying interested. The hobby helps stimulate conversation and keeps your kids away from technology. You and your kids can enjoy some time together and reconnect over a common hobby.
If your kids are small, such as preschoolers or young elementary school children, they probably do not have a lot of photographs of their own that they want to have in a scrapbook. You can help them think of a theme to scrapbook to get them started. You will also need to provide their photographs at the beginning.
A good theme might be to do a scrapbook about the grade that they are in at school. Help your kindergartner; for example, develop a scrapbook showcasing the highlights of their first school year. You will do most of the work for this scrapbook, but your child will help every step of the way. This is a great opportunity for them to practice gluing and cutting skills. Have your child do the journaling about some of the pictures and memories, and do not forget to include school projects in the album.
When you are done creating a school memory album, you will have taught your child some of the fundamentals of scrapbooking. You will also have spent time getting to know your child''s creative side. As the child gains confidence and skill, allow him or her to start working on pages with less help from you.
Remember that kids will not be able to work on scrapbooks as long as you will. The younger your child is, the shorter their attention span will be. The important thing is to make the scrapbooking fun and exciting, not tedious. When your child starts to get bored or distracted, put the project away for another day.
Do not be afraid to let your children make some decisions on the scrapbook. They need to have the opportunity to experiment with colors and textures as they develop their skill and tastes for the craft. Even if they choose something you do not particularly care for, remember that it is their scrapbook. Encourage them in another direction, but avoid the temptation to stifle creativity by forcing your own ideas about their pages on them. This is the quickest way to kill your child''s interest in scrapbooking.
If your children are older, give them the supplies and let them go with their own ideas! You will be pleasantly surprised by the creative streak that almost all upper elementary children possess. Give your children disposable cameras so that they can capture some pictures of their friends and activities on their own. This is the best time to teach them about how to properly handle photographs and negatives. You can scrapbook together, working on your pages while they create their own.
While you are saving memories with your children in your scrapbooks, you are creating more memories as the books are created. They''ll look back and remember how much fun they had while cutting and pasting pictures or decorations. Enjoy the family time together and let your children explore their own creativity. So go ahead and grab that paper, dig out the markers and the crayons, and maybe add a little glitter while you''re at it. Start a scrapbook together today!
Graham Johns runs and writes regularly for Easy Scrapbooking Ideas where you can read many more articles on scrapbooking journals.
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Rubber stamping is a fun and versatile hobby that is gaining new interest thanks to scrapbooking, card making and other paper arts. With rubber stamps, you simply transfer an image onto any paper surface by pressing down on the back of the stamp. By using different types of inks, additives and other craft elements, you can easily transform basic rubber stamps and paper into beautiful projects.
If you've never used rubber stamps before, you need to know that there are three basic types of stamps. Wood-mounted stamps are attached to a small piece of wood, which you press on to create the image. Foam-mounted stamps are attached to foam in a similar manner. Foam-mounted stamps are normally cheaper, but they can be harder to use. Unmounted stamps are adhered to blocks of wood or plastic each time you use them, and then transferred back to a storage sheet after cleaning. Unmounted stamps give you the most control over your stamp's placement, and are great for alphabets because you can adhere all of the letters of a word to the block at the same time.
No matter what kind of stamps you buy, they all work in generally the same way. You'll want to start collecting decorative paper, blank cards and other paper products to use as your project surfaces. You can stamp scrapbook pages, bookmarks, and memo pads. The possibilities are endless.
Once you decide what type of project you want to complete, select your stamp and your ink. There are inks in every color, including gold and silver. You can use one color at a time, or you can blend several together. If you plan on decorating the image with colored pencils, chalk or glitter later on, you may want to choose black or gray as the outline color so your colors will show up better.
Many people start using stamps by pressing the stamp down into the ink pad and then pressing it on the paper. The only problem with this is that it leaves you with too much ink on the stamp, which can result in smudging on your paper. A solution to this problem is to turn the stamp over so the rubber faces you and then, holding your ink pad in the other hand, lightly press the ink onto the stamp in short strokes. This way you'll get even coverage without the risk of smudging.
If you want a lighter intensity stamp, press the stamp once on some practice paper and then press the image on your project paper. If not, simply press the stamp on your project paper with even pressure. Don't press too hard. Your pressure should be firm and even, but you shouldn't have to exert a lot of force.
After you've made your stamp, let the ink completely dry before you try to add color. This is unless you are using embossing powder. Embossing powder will make your ink rise slightly so it is raised when you touch it. This is kind of like the treatment that is used on business cards. Embossing powder needs to be added while the ink is still wet and then heated with a craft dryer.
Using rubber stamps is a fun and versatile hobby. You can get stamps in a wide variety of styles and motifs. The best part about it is that with just a little bit of practice, it's easy to become a rubber stamping pro.
Author Resource: Jamie Jefferson writes for Momscape.com and Susies-Coupons.com where she shares coupons for discount art supplies and discount craft supplies. Article From Article Directory Online: Free Online Article Submission
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When you want a great card to delight the happy couple, sometimes only a handmade wedding card will do. Then it's time to start tracking down and gathering any bits of suitable craft materials you can get your hands on.
If you're a planner then you might just work out what you want to create before hand. But if you'd rather go with the flow then your card might come together organically - as it happens. Sometimes these kinds of creations work better than step-by-step ones.
You'll need a central eye-catching design. This can be made from anything from doilies, mesh, fabric, ribbon or braid. There are no hard-and-fast rules on what to do and how to do it because handmade cards are truly individual.
Perhaps it would help to draft out some ideas on paper first, before you begin. Perhaps shading, or coloring in blocks of card will help you to balance your ideas before you move onto the fabric itself.
Think about whether to include names and personal details and how you could incorporate print, ink, or transfer graphics together with other 'stock' materials. Sometimes it's the mixture and placement of materials that makes a card extra special.
Play around with layers of things before you stick them down, positioning them in different places. Look at the effect different colors and materials make as you build them up. You might like to position some materials 'off-center' for greater effect or add something a little unusual. Where and how you place your bits and bobs will depend on the size of the background card and what you've got to use.
You'll also want to think about the overall size of your card too. If you're personally delivering your card then you have absolute freedom in how you package it and you may opt for something shaped rather than traditional.
Remember that Mail services often restrict the overall size of your envelope and a deep box-like card will require a more robust covering. In some cases the weight or size of your card will be reflected in increased postage.
Try not to keep everything in neat ordered lines or layers, but spread things out, tear, rip, pink or splodge! The idea of a handmade card - is just that - that it looks handmade, but professional. So be neat but creative, flowing but focused.
You'll soon know if it feels right. Just like the essential of Fung Shui - the art of placement, things will look and feel right when they are in the right place. So don't be afraid to experiment and see what you can create. You may find yourself making more than one special card and you'll then have the skills to know how to make a wedding card anytime you choose.
If you know the couple well then you may be able to link in with their chosen colors or styles. The bride may prefer bolder colors over muted ones, or go for a more traditional feel where you favor something more contemporary.
Think about the couple your card is for as you assemble and work on your card. Ideally, you'll have the time to 'play' around before you embark on the finished article.
You can get some great ideas from looking online. There are special magazines that concentrate on greeting cards and weddings and you're bound to find some inspiration inside one or two of these magazines.
If you're fortunate to have the space, then make a few trial runs at your card, ask friends for their opinion - as opposed to their approval.
Remember that card making is very personal, but for this special occasion you're trying hard to be objective. That is, to think of the bride and groom rather than your own preferences. Put yourself in their shoes and think about the type of card that they would like to keep with their memorabilia of the happy day.
There's loads of materials to incorporate into your card making which aren't all expensive. You can easily get off-cuts of satin, ribbon or lace at your local market and with the right background card stock you can make a handmade wedding card both you, and the couple will be proud of.
Geraldine Jozefiak has written widely on how to choose and write a wedding card. Greeting Card Guide gives you the latest news, trends and products to make your greeting card selection as quick, fun and painless as possible. http://greetingcardguide.com
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