Scapbooking chronicles lives, features new media

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By Robert Villanueva

By ROBERT VILLANUEVA rvillanueva@thenewsenterprise.com ELIZABETHTOWN — Linda Brown wanted a pop dot for her ticket. At one of three tables covered in pages of brown, yellow and green cardstock, 3-D stickers and various paper strips with designs on them, Linda found the package containing the tiny globs of adhesive that are used to raise cut-outs from a scrapbook page. Linda used the adhesive to raise a cut-out that resembled a movie ticket. Linda was one of five people who attended a scrapbooking workshop given by Annie Brown (no relation) in her Elizabethtown home recently. During the two-hour session, participants are shown a layout design for a page and are provided with the materials to copy it. Later, they take it home to personalize the pages further with their own photos. “It’s totally not your mom’s paper crafting,” Annie said. Years ago, scrapbooking meant photo albums personalized with maybe some text printed out or written in the margins and maybe newspaper clippings or other something similar. “When I first started it was nothing,” Patty Burnett said. “You had your paper and a few stickers.” Nowadays scrapbooking incorporates intricate pattern paper, multicolored designs, stickers, stamps, buttons, fabrics, transparencies, cardboard flowers, ribbons and a multitude of add-ons in a variety of media. “If it’s small enough to fit on a page, I’ll use it,” Annie said. Annie not only teaches weekly scrapbooking workshops in her home, she teaches scrapbooking classes at Hardin County Cooperative Extension Service and at a store in Horse Cave. Kay Reynolds, who began scrapbooking in 2002, said today’s scrapbooking is more about what is going on in the photos. As part of scrapbooking, most participants “journal,” or write descriptions, about the photos included on the page. Reynolds said that’s the most important part. “You put so much thought into each picture,” she said. As a representative for Stampin’ Up!, a company that makes rubber stamps and accessories which can be used for scrapbooking, Reynolds has seen the evolution of the hobby that now includes specialized decorations. She even found tiny karate and camouflage uniforms for one of her projects. The creative aspect of scrapbooking, Reynolds said, is a big draw. “Scrapbookers draw from each other,” she said. Ornately decorated scrapbooks — which are a standard 12-inch by 12-inches — hold the pages. But scrapbooks come in several sizes. And scrapbooks represent a variety of themes from marriage and children to vacations and anniversaries. “A lot of people scrapbook their pets now,” Annie said. “That’s very popular.” The “going trend,” however, seems to be scrapbooking about children, she said. Linda, for example, has made scrapbooks chronicling her grand-kids first year. At Annie’s recent workshop, which cost $20, participants socialized as they cut out designs that would be taped to card stock. They discussed life, family and their own experiences with scrapbooking. As they cut, taped and pasted their designs, they had little worry about following the design to exact specifications. “That’s another thing about scrapbooking,” Patty said. “There is no ‘wrong.’” Most of the scrapbookers had family members who didn’t understand the fascination with the craft, including Annie, whose husband calls the weekly group “the cult.” “My husband goes to the flea market all the time,” Linda said. “So this is my outlet.” “I could never have as much scrapbooking stuff as my husband has fishing stuff,” Denise Adams said. Still, scrapbookers tend to accumulate supplies. “Everybody usually has a scrapbook room,” Annie’s mom, Peggy Salmon, said. “My daughter’s room is now my scrapbooking room,” Patty said. Denise and her daughter, Lisa, cut out floral shapes and taped down decorative items. Like the others there, they would complete six pages in the two-hour session, a far cry from what scrapbookers generally do when they first start out. “It would take me three days to make a page,” Linda said. “Oh, my God, I would make one page … it would take me all night,” Denise said. Scrapbookers seem to thrive on the creative energy they derive from a group setting. In fact, scrapbookers sometimes get together in what are known as “crops,” events during which participants work for hours or even days. “That’s one good thing about scrapbooking” Patty said. “We’re just one big happy family. There’s no strangers here.” Robert Villanueva can be reached at (270) 505-1743.