Building Your Digital Stash
Browsing through digital scrapbook stores can be both exciting and a little overwhelming. There’s so many things to see, and with a few clicks of your mouse, voila! You can shop – and scrap – in the comfort of your own home in your pajamas, and all in a matter of mere minutes. It’s like being a kid in a candy store: you want everything. Starting out, it’s tempting to just click and buy whatever catches your eye. However, as you begin to accumulate supplies, it’s important to look for foundation pieces; the ones you know you’ll go to time and time again.
How do you decide what you must have in your digital supplies, your “stash”? If you’ve scrapped with paper products before moving to digital, then your list of must-haves may be easier to identify than you think. Grab some of your traditional layouts and put them on a table or the floor or an area where you can quickly skim over multiple pages. Without getting into the details like tiny elements or journaling, what sort of trends do you see in your layouts? Do you always use a solid background for your pages? If so, a good kit of digital cardstock might be right up your alley. Do you always use flowers, stitching, or buttons? Remember, this is not an in-depth to-the-detail review of your layouts; it’s just a quick once-over to see if there are items that you reach for on a repeating basis, ergo your must-haves.
Never scrapped before? A few words of advice for the brand-new-to-scrapbooking individual:
Don’t buy a kit “just because”. Yes, you will be able to re-use digital items over and over again, but if you buy a kit just because it has one or two “cute” items, is it really value for your money? Think about the types of memories you’ll be wanting to preserve (family events, vacations, Project Life). A fabulous winter kit with snowflakes and ice, no matter how well it’s designed, probably isn’t a good fit for a summer vacation album, now is it? There are many designers that I totally love, but I have very little of their kits, sometimes nothing at all. It’s not that I don’t like their designs; rather, I don’t think I’d have a need for the theme or style of the kit.
Beware the freebie. Free kits can be a great way to get started. I mean, there’s no cost outlay and you can just start playing. Look for freebies from your favorite designers, designers you know you’ll keep going back to – you’ll be able to combine their kits for some total awesomeness. You can often find free items on designer blogs or by signing up for their newsletters. However, a word of caution: just because a kit is free, doesn’t mean you’ll use it (yes, there’s the “just because” thing again). I’ve also found that freebies seem to multiply, like rabbits, taking up valuable storage space – and that will become all too important as you accumulate more supplies and get to creating. Be selective and discerning with your purchases, even if they don’t cost you anything.
What are my foundation pieces? I have some kits that I purchased quite a few years ago, and I still go back to them, over and over again:
- A selection of kraft papers, some lightly textured, some distressed.
- Straight lines of stitches in a variety of designs, e.g., straight, zigzag, blanket stitch.
- Three of four journaling fonts.
- Three different staple designs.
- Date brushes.
Hope you enjoy building your stash – it’s a lot of fun!