The art of scrapbooking can be said to be an industry on its own as it has gained a lot of popularity over the years thereby providing people with yet another interesting hobby and the people that sell the products a revenue. People have discovered that they can be creative in the way they handle photos, projects and keepsakes.

As mentioned above, because scrapbooking has become such a widespread industry with different types of methods and skills involved, it could be somewhat intimidating for someone who is interested in scrapbooking but does not know where to start.

Well, here is a basic guide to help those that fall into that category.

To be honest, if you are able to handle a pair of scissors and glue, you are on your way to scrapbooking! Do not think that if you don't spend a lot on scrapbooking, the end results will be ugly - no! If you can lay your hands on some basic materials and some creative ideas, you are one step away from producing scrapbooks that will stand the test of time in your family!

You do not need to spend a lot when you are just starting out and what is most important here is that you enjoy what you are doing! I have listed a couple of things required in order to get started.

Scrapbook Paper
These come in various colours and patterns and will be needed for basically more or less all the components of scrapbooking. For example, it is needed for the pages, the journaling, to create photo mats and the accompanying accessories.

An Album
These come in varieties depending on what you want to start with and can be found at most craft supply stores. The most popular sizes are the 12" x 12" and 8 1/2" x 11", but you decide what you want. You could ask them at the craft supply store to show you other sizes.

There are different types of adhesives available out there, but when you are starting out, it's best to go with glue sticks or double-sided tapes.

Cutting Tools
A pair of scissors and perhaps a paper cutter will suffice just to start with. The paper cutter will serve as a guide if you are not good at cutting things in straight lines.

If you are the type that has accumulated photos over the years, you can start with them if you wish but that is not compulsory, you might decide to take new pictures for your scrapbook project - the choice is yours really.

An important point to make here is to ensure you that the scrapbooking materials you purchase are acid free. This prevents any harm coming to your photos.

Simple steps

Mat the Photos
You can achieve this by cutting a rectangle or square that is about a half inch longer and wider than the photo you want to mat. The next step is to glue the photo to the centre of the shape you have just cut out.

In order to produce a photo that looks outstanding, you could double mat the photo by cutting out a shape which is a half inch longer and wider than the first mat and then centre the matted photo on it. If you feel this sounds complicated, just stay with the first bit explained.

This where you put down your thoughts or concept about the photo or subject matter. This makes the scrapbook unique because you will be detailing your own personal thoughts about the photos or subject on a page. It is best to make use of paper that matches the background and most importantly use an acid free pen.

You can get that added finished look by using borders. The borders can be made out of strips of the scrapbook paper. You may want to add the borders to the side or top and bottom - it doesn't have to be anything fancy. If you want to go a little bit further, you may want to add stickers - but this is not compulsory because you are just starting out and you are only learning the basics here.

There you have it - scrapbook basics. You can learn and enjoy scrapbooking without spending a fortune!