Scrapbooking on a Budget
9 Ways to Find Discount Scrapbook Supplies
by Susie Cortright
Memories are priceless, but the cost of preserving them can be high. Here are
nine tips for making the most of your scrapbooking budget.
1.Be on the lookout for scrapbooking supplies everywhere you go. I once made the
cutest shabby chic card with the corrugated cardboard liner in a light bulb box.
Another example: you can buy 100 brass brads for less than a dollar at the local
discount store and then customize them to match your layout with acrylic paint
and/or sandpaper. Or look in the clearance bin for ribbon, fiber, and fabric
remnants - or bouquets of silk flowers, which you can take apart and attach to
your cards and layouts with brads, eyelets, bottlecaps, or button. You'll find
all kinds of treasures at office supply, hardware, and dollar stores, as well as
flea markets and garage sales.
2. Keep your supplies organized. When your papers and embellishments are
logically arranged and easy to find, you'll always know what you have, which
means you'll buy fewer duplicates. And you don't need expensive racks for
storing your paper. The large 14" Ziploc bags are perfect for storing 12x12
paper. You can even hang the labeled Ziploc bags from skirt hangers to maximize
your space. A few inexpensive baskets or plastic containers can hold your
adhesives, pens and trimmers. And a common tacklebox is great for small
embellishments. Or use resealable Ziploc bags to organize brads, eyelets and
other small embellishments by type or color and store in a shoebox.
3. Here's a little known secret. You can join a scrapbooking direct sales
company, simply to get the discount on your own supplies. Of course, you'll need
to make sure the monthly minimums are low enough that you'll be able to meet
them with your purchases alone. Here is one such company with monthly minimums
of just $25 wholesale per month.
Details are here:
4. Use your scanner to create a unique patterned paper, perfect for your layout.
Scan items of clothing, for example, that match the clothing in your
photographs. Print the paper and use as part of your background or as a tag or
5. Do a google search for "free fonts" and "free scrapbooking." You'll find
thousands of free templates, fonts, and other free resources for scrapbookers.
6. Check your local paper for 50% off coupons at large discount crafting stores.
Save these coupons for your larger purchases. Subscribe to Joann.com's email
newsletter at the store's website: http//www.joann.com. This store frequently
offers special discount codes to newsletter subscribers. But keep in mind, when
you are shopping the sale aisle, a good deal is not a good deal if you never use
the product. Buy only those things that you love - and know you'll use.
7. When shopping for tools, keep quality and versatility in mind. Investing in
quality tools will ultimately save you money, because you won't need to replace
them very often. You'll also want to look for trimmers and cutters that allow
you to replace only the blade - and not the entire cutting system. The Coluzzle,
by Provocraft, is one of the most versatile cutting systems available. It takes
a little practice, but once you get the hang of it, you can cut a huge variety
of shapes and alphabets, as well as envelopes and tags - all with very
8. Save and organize your scraps. It's amazing when a small scrap is perfectly
suited for a card of scrapbook. And you can always use the backside of
white-core cardstock or patterned paper when you need white. Or give your scraps
to your children. My kids are constantly making friendship cards out of my
scraps. They each have a basket on the family scraptable, and at the end of a
project, I divvy up all my scraps in the three little baskets. They love the new
art supplies, and I love to share my love of scrapbooking - and my time spent
scrapbooking - with them.
9. Network with other scrapbookers for more low-cost ideas. Arrange a supplies
swap with your scrapbooking friends. And read through the scrapbooking magazines
for more money-saving ideas. In the last few issues of Scrapbooks, Etc. and
Memory Makers, for example, I've read (and then used) the following ideas: (1)
Take photos of interesting signs and cut out the letters for fun, eclectic
alphabets. And (2) make your own stamps from your favorite font or images with a
computer printout and some foam board.
You can subscribe to these magazines at significant discounts online. I've
compiled the best deals on the industry-leaders here:
or see if you can check out current issues from your local library. Scrapbooking
magazines often feature sweepstakes, drawings, and layout contests, in which you
can win free supplies, as well.
You can also save on scrapbooking idea books and techniques books by shopping
online. Overstock.com often has these books at an even greater discount than
amazon.com, and their shipping is usually much less, too.
Susie Cortright is the founder of momscape.com -
http://www.momscape.com and Momscape's
http://www.momscape.com/scrapbooking - devoted to helping visitors record
and preserve their cherished memories. Subscribe to her free scrapbooking