Speed Scrapping

Every scrapbooker has found themselves in the same situation.  Despite the best of intentions to “stay on top of it” this time around, we find ourselves falling very much behind in our memory keeping.  At least, this is where I found myself with March rolling in.  The truth is, I switched to the traveler’s notebook size for this very reason, thinking that the smaller format would allow me to stay current.  Well, just like before, I started getting bogged down in trying to do original, crazy creative layouts and I found myself behind once again.  I let the product take center stage instead of the stories I wanted to remember.  So, in an effort to catch up, I decided to give myself just over an hour to get as many simple layouts done as I could.  And, I thought I would give you all a little insight into what I do to try to speed up the scrapping process!

1.  Print All The Photos

Instead of going photo by photo, I decided to do a quick run-down of what photos I would be scrapping.  All of my photos are currently stored on my phone (not ideal, but this is real life).  I scanned through my photos quickly and “favorited” the ones that I anticipated wanting to scrap.  After that, I edited each one to change it to black and white.  There are a couple of reasons for this.  First off, I just prefer to print pictures in black and white when I know that they will be in a small format.  Most of the pictures I printed for this project were around a 2″ by 3″ size, so definitely small. Secondly, if the pictures are black and white, it eliminates the need to coordinate papers and elements with the colors of the pictures.  This simplifies and streamlines the scrapping process, allowing me to work faster!  I then quickly put the pictures in as close to chronological order as I could remember.  I know that not everyone scraps in their TNs chronologically, but I prefer to!

2.  Gather Supplies

Because I know how I like to work, my supplies are organized accordingly.  I had previously taken the time to trim all of my Felicity Jane papers to a 4″ by 8″ size to fit in my traveler’s notebooks.  I also organized the papers by solids and patterns to make what I was looking for a bit easier.  I keep many of my TN embellishments in a chest of drawers away from my desk, but they are also stored in small bins that are easy to remove from the drawers and lay out for easy access.  Having my supplies out of the drawer and on hand makes it much easier for me to reach for what I need!


3.  Keep it Simple

It has been quite a while since I’ve sat down and actually done some scrapbooking, so in the beginning, it felt pretty clunky to get started.  In order to get into a flow, I actually started with doing two single page layouts.  I had two completely unrelated pictures to document, so I decided they could stand alone on single pages instead of trying to do a double page spread.  That meant less space to fill up and simpler layouts!


4.  Phrase Stickers are Your Friends

Tim Holtz phrase sticker books are a life saver!  I know there are many phrase stickers out there, but for me, these are so versatile and cover such a wide range of topics.  I grabbed for the Small Talk as well as the Snarky Small Talk.  Using these phrase stickers saved time on journaling because so many of the phrases really encompassed the feeling of the pictures.  Additionally, they often help me narrow down ideas for titles, saving me even more time!


5.  Go With Your Gut

Laying out pictures on a page can be tricky for sure.  So, when I am speed scrapping, I generally mount every picture on a neutral piece of cardstock and quickly lay them across the page in the very first place that feels like it makes sense.  I try not to second guess myself.  Pictures on a page are always more successful than pictures left on a phone, so I feel like it shouldn’t be something we overthink.  I quickly lay out my spread and adhere right away so that I won’t spend time moving things around too often.

6.  Use Up Unfinished Sticker Sheets

The quickest way to make a layout feel pretty cohesive?  Use a common sticker sheet on both sides of the layout!  I have collected so many stickers over the years and often hoard some of my most favorite.  I’ll use one or two here and there, but leave the majority of the sheet behind.  Or, maybe I have managed to use a few more of the stickers, but can’t quite part with the three left on the sheet.  TN layouts are a fabulous way to use up those sticker sheets and quickly bring together a page.  On the last layout I did in my session today, I used these dimensional drink stickers to tie the pages together even more and add detail with not much effort.


I was able to scrap these three double layouts in just under an hour and am pretty proud at the progress I made!  Am I caught up?  Haha, probably never, but this speed-scrapping session really gave me a nice jumpstart!  Now, I am anxious to jump back in once my kiddos go to sleep!

What are your techniques for getting caught up on scrapbooking?  Do you get anxious about falling behind like I do, or do you just not sweat it?  Let me know in the comments below!

Keep it creative,

-The Scrappy Wife

Published by Elisa

I'm a mom of 3 who loves all things creative! My current passion is bible journaling, a creative outlet that has really shaped my faith journey. I'm also excited about diving into some memory-keeping projects and dabbling in a bit of art journaling.

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