When is the last time you have looked through your old scrapbook albums? We spend hours upon hours creating our beautiful layouts, but after an album is complete, what happens to it?
Scrapbooking is all about doing what works best for you. Part of that means deciding what to do with your old albums. Maybe you have albums or layouts that are falling apart. Maybe you are horrified to look through the pages because you hate the style you used. Maybe there are photos of people you don’t want anymore or you can’t remember who they are because you didn’t journal your page.
Now, you are probably thinking I’m crazy right now – “Why in the world would I go through all those old albums!?” Well, I have 6 reasons why you should redo your scrapbooks plus 1 reason why you should leave them alone. I’ve also created a guide and some handy checklists you can use to sort through your albums. You can find these bonus freebies at the bottom of this post.
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1. Your Albums are Broken
I’ve seen it before, even on my own albums. Those post bound 12×12 albums that are filled to the gills and even further. You take out your album and the binding falls apart. Now you have a stack of page protectors and layouts that don’t have a home. This is a very important reason to redo your old layouts. You can transfer your layouts to a new album and probably consider switching the type of album its stored in.
2. Your Layouts are Falling Apart
When you are looking through your old scrapbooks, do you ever come to a page where the embellishments or photos just won’t stick anymore. The bottom of your page protector has random scrapbook supplies that have fallen off the page. It’s the adhesive and textures that all work against each other over time. It’s disappointing when you open your scrapbook and the layout didn’t hold together.
When you arrive at one of these pages you have to decide how you’re going to salvage your layout. Should you get your best, super-tacky adhesive (I use the Scotch ATG runner) and put your layout back together? Or maybe you want start over and create a new layout. The decision is tough, but you need to redo those layouts to preserve them for future years.
3. Your Photos are Not Preserved Properly
Remember when you look through old photo albums with the sticky pages? All of your mom’s or grandma’s photos have turned yellow from sitting in those photo books for years. Well that’s because those pages were NOT acid-free. We may have learned our lesson from those sticky page albums, but we also are creating our scrapbooks with a lot of different material now.
We are attaching our photos to different papers, putting stickers and embellishments on our photos, and using different brands of adhesive. But what you may not know is whether or not those items are acid-free! There is an easy way to test this. I wrote about it in How to Preserve Your Family Photos for Decades where I talk more about acid-free scrapbooking. Depending on what materials you used on layouts might mean having to redo some layouts.
4. You Have No Journaling on Your Layouts
I have been shocked as I look through my albums at the lack of journaling. For me, it can feel like a chore once you finish your layout that you need to add journaling. Heck, it’s a stretch at times to remind myself to date the layout! But it should be done, because as the years pass and our memories get fuzzy, we will want to know more about the photo.
If you find yourself going through your old albums and you are narrating the story behind the photo then you should add journaling. Find a way to include the story by reworking the layout to focus on the story behind the photo. At the very least, date your layout and include the names of the people who are in the photos. You can track the layouts you need to redo in one of the checklists I’ve created for you. Get access this checklist and the rest of my free resource library at the end of this post.
5. You Want to Simplify Your Scrapbooking System
You may be overwhelmed with the amount of supplies you own as well as the amount of scrapbooks you have. There are so many albums that you don’t know where to start to simplify your memory keeping. For some that means a change moving forward, but for others it means rescuing old layouts and albums.
Sean from “Taking Scrapbooks Digital” is on a mission to update all of his old family scrapbook albums and transfer them to the digital format. He took part in the Lead Your Best Creative Life interview series and told me more about his process. He is using the Project Life App to get it all done and update his pages and memories to last a lifetime. You might find this process crucial to consolidate your albums and make your memory keeping manageable.
6. Photos of People You Don’t Want
This one is a tough one, because we all have photos of people that we no longer want. Sometimes the memories and friendships have gone sour, but it is part of our personal history. What you decide to do with those photos is up to you, no one can tell you to keep them or get rid of them. But you may want to consider either editing out the non-favorable person, or giving those photos to someone who it may want the picture. You could also decide to get rid of the layout, but I would still suggest to keep a digital copy of the photo if you have any hesitation about throwing it away.
7. Don’t do anything at all – and that’s ok!
My last and final reason is to NOT redo your scrapbook albums. As I mentioned above, scrapbooking is about what works best for you. That may be leaving everything as is, for someone else in the far distant future to take care of. You might want to see your progression of scrapbooking since it is an art.
Whatever works best for you is what you should ALWAYS do. No matter what route you take, continue to preserve your family’s stories.
The Next Step
For those of you that want to redo your scrapbooks, but don’t know where to start, I made a guide to help you. I know this is a huge task so I’ve created I walkthrough of 5 easy steps to get you started. Plus I’ve included two checklists that you can use to track your progress. You can get these in my FREE resource library and other printables I’ve created just for my crafty friends.
I’d love to hear what you think about this hot topic! Let me know in the comments. Have you redone any scrapbook albums or did you just leave them as is?
Until next time – lead your best creative life!