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How do you make a scrapbooking page kit?

how to make a scrapbooking page kit
making a scrapbooking page kit
Earlier this week my glittery friend talked a bit about preparing page kits while she was looking for ways to combine older supplies with new. Page kits are certainly not the only way to gather supplies for a page! But they are exceptionally useful if you want to scrapbook away from home or without making much mess, and they can help with supply economy, either because you want to make sure you use what you have or because you need to get the most from a limited crafting budget.

But what do you actually put in your page kits?

I start with paper – usually a mix of scraps and full sheets (including at least one full sheet for the background but I will often include two so I have a choice). I err on the side of too much paper rather than not enough.

I also need lettering in my page kits. Although I have a die-cutter, I prefer to use that just for embellishments and not for lettering. I nearly always use Thickers and another small flat letter sticker style for my titles, so most of my page kits will have at least two kinds of peel and stick lettering.

Then I turn to embellishments. Sometimes this includes more paper that can be cut apart to make embellishments (like those viewmaster reels). But it also includes stand-along items like the tag and paper flags here. I’m usually looking for something that includes dimension and at least one texture other than flat paper, so in this case the pins on the flags provide some dimension and the stitched tag includes the texture of the thread rather than just another printed paper. If I don’t have predetermined embellishments I want to include, I might die-cut or punch papers that I can layer to create my own embellishments. If I’m going to crop at home, I just leave the paper in the page kit and use the punches or dies as I come to that step. If I’m going to crop elsewhere I will go ahead and cut the shapes I think I will need and add them to the page kit (just loose shapes in the page protector) so I don’t need to pack so many heavy, bulky items.

My last step is to look to the in-between elements that will tie it all together. These include things that can work as a strip, trim or border, so it will commonly include border stickers or washi tape along with either twine, thread or ribbon. I often use a border punch in that category too, but that would be packed with my tools. I try to plan on using just one or two border punches if I’m cropping away from home so you’ll see designs that are more general and less specific to the page theme. (Or I may borrow a punch from someone else at the crop. If we’re really organised we make a plan of who will bring which punches so we can have the maximum number of shapes with the least weight to carry. No duplicates!)

Then I place that page protector in an album and start to fill the next one! But what about the photos? It depends on my mood and the project as to whether I create the page kit to match the photos (photos first) or create a page kit and then decide on the pictures (supplies first). I do both equally! Whichever comes first, I just pop the photos in the page protector too so they are ready to go. Putting them all in the album makes it easy to transport and the finished pages can go right back into the page protector so they are safe for the journey home. I also really like this format of album planning so I can see a project come together from the beginning even if I haven’t made or sketched out a single layout just yet.

I also pack a separate kit of my basic tools: scissors, adhesive, journaling pens, pop dots, sewing needle, black and brown ink pads and ink applicators, and anything else that I know I want to use but is too bulky for the page protectors, like spools of twine, punches or bottles of paint or mist. That plus my album of page kits and I am ready to go!

Your turn… do you use page kits? And if so, what do you put in them? Do you err on the side of too much or too little? I’d love to hear your process!

15 April 2012

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60 Comments for How do you make a scrapbooking page kit?

  1. Loni Says:

    It’s so difficult to gather supplies and not forget anything that you will need later. (especially for a crop) I hate not finishing a page because I’ve left something else at home. BUT, what if you made yourself finish with the supplies you have on hand – I think that’s a great way to make what you have work and maybe create a bit faster. I’m going to try it next time!

    Anyway, to answer the question – I err on the side of too much. I want the project finished :)

  2. Kelly Says:

    I do tend to use page kits, but that really started not that long ago after I took Pretty Paper Party (thanks Shimelle). I almost always start with photos first though. I guess that’s just the way my brain is wired. I’m going to a four day crop this fall and am trying to wrap my head around the fact that I will need to put together lots of page kits and that I probably will want something that I know I have at home. Thanks for your suggestion Lori. I am going to make myself finish pages with what I have on hand.

  3. Cathie Says:

    I use page kits. When I’m at home it’s just paper and pics. I like to pick through my stash so I add embellishments as I work on each page.

    When I crop away from home I take my letter stickers and favourite embellishments with me. They’re organized in containers that are easily portable. Or I might leave embellishing until I get home – if I can’t find what I need at the crop.

    I don’t have large blocks of time to scrap so page kits definitely work from me. Keeping my desk tidy helps too.

  4. Julie Says:

    I’ve never put together kits, and I just saw the Glitter girl episode and bam..I get it. I usually took the easy way out and bought a whole prepackage kit. I’m starting to see things differently now! Julie

  5. Heatheranne Farley Says:

    I don’t usually do a page kit as I’m lucky enough to be able to leave stuff I’m working on out. However I do tend to use a particular collection for an album and keep all that together ready for when I go to a crop.

    This weekend has been great for me because I am using older supplies and odd sheets of paper and embellishments that in the shop I just had to have. So far I’m really pleased with the results:-)

  6. helen salthouse Says:

    Hmm…my page kits tend to be thrown together at the last minute, although that can be a good thing as it forces me to make decisions. I love the idea of keeping the kit in an album – how organised is that!? Sadly I don’t have D-ring albums, or I’d be stealing that idea! I’m not always sure whether I want a plain or patterned background sheet, so I’ll put in at least a couple of each, and then go through my scraps to see if anything matches. If I’m taking it out with me, there will be a Distress Ink pad in there with some foam, and then some sort of paint – either acrylic or, more likely since it doesn’t require a brush, a spray or a bottle of dimensional stuff. Packs of brads cos I have loads, ribbon, buttons…how many embellishments I throw in there depends on how much time I have to go through my stash! I also like to add any sticker sheets or die-cuts which match the selected papers. One thing I don’t always do is add alphas. Instead, if I’m going out, I take all my half-dead sheets of Thickers etc and force myself to use them!

  7. Chriss Says:

    I don’t put together kits, but I also always scrap at home. The only exception might be for a mini book, but I don’t do them very often.

    I scrap by colour, so I usually am looking for a ‘blue something’ to go on a layout so I pull out the blue paper bag and just find whatever colour goes best. As a result I constantly mix manufacturer, mix old and new, and use up lots of scraps.

    If I buy a collection (very rare), I’ll keep the collection together as a kit for a while, then break it up into my colour system which gives a different way of looking at the papers/embellishments.

    It is a system that works great for me, though I’m sure it would drives others nuts. :)

  8. Sharon Says:

    I am getting more and more into page kits. I used to package some papers in the same colors and then photos from one trip/event, and toss in embellishments and the like. Thie makes for a large project kit, that I can pull and use for different pages. But I now throw in a kit or two (I always do it with photos in mind, though) just in case I get really bored with the same papers at a long crop.

  9. Louise Says:

    I’m a home only scrapper so don’t tend to make a full-on page kit. I tend to buy several pages from a pp range so my kit tends to be this with plain cardstock added and then a few bits and bobs that I discover in the bottom of a drawer or tray of ‘to be sorted/put away’.
    I definitely need a craft room as when I do tidy it away properly I forget sooo much of what I have.
    I have recently discovered you scrapbook starting points and I’m finding these very inspiring (and useful at using up stash).

  10. Jacky S Says:

    I use page kits when scrapping away from home. I always start with the photos and then some co-ordinating plain card and decorative papers.I then look for other bits like alphabets,ribbons,chipboard,flowers etc. I always err on the side of too much!!

  11. Rachel Says:

    I make up a basic kit cardstock, patterned papers and photos and have them ready for when the snatched moment to scrap comes. then I pull embellishments, ribbons and lettering as I work on a page. This seeems to work for me but sometimes I look again at kit I’ve put together and wonder what on earth I was thinking of!

  12. Jean Marmo Says:

    I love kits – makes it so much easier to ensure that everything matches. I have been trying to match old items together to use things up though. Love how you put things together!

  13. Kathy Says:

    Recently I have got more into buying several papers from one collection anmd buying plain cardstock that matches with it at the same time. I don’t normally put embellishments in becaue I have so many I wait until i’ve got the papers and pictures laid out then I can select my ‘bling’ I oftem make my own decorations using punches.

  14. Stephanie Christ Says:

    I never thought about putting page kits together until I watched the last Glitter Girl video and realized it makes pulling layouts together so much easier! Thank you a million times over! I don’t know why I never thought of it before. I used to just start with the photos and a blank piece of paper and tried to work from there pulling random ideas out of my head. Many of my pages ended up looking very similar because of this. Now I’ve started pulling anything that has to do with the colors or theme out of my stash and just laying it out so I can see it all and pick and choose from it, also helping me use what I have but forgot about.

  15. KateT Says:

    I rarely use kits unless I have kit club or collection to use. On the rare chance I get to go to a crop or work away from home I take way too much and often totally the wrong things!!

    ** Kate **

  16. marianne Says:

    I used to crop away from home quite a bit so all my organization of product is portable. I don’t always have time to make up page kits but when I do, I generally pick some photos and arrange them how I think they will go. I make a loose sketch and then gather some paper to go with them. If I know I will need a specific embellishment, I will usually either grab it, or jot it down with the sketch. I always bring my sticker letter file and most of my Thickers, all my current embellishments, a variety of punches and stamps, ink and maybe mists (messy at crops)and maybe a select few jars of ribbon. I have a basic tool caddy that comes with me too. Yes, I do make at least 2 trips from car to crop table but I do like to have my “stuff” with me!

  17. senoritascrapper Says:

    In an effort to be organized, i always put together kits. I don’t have a separate craft room, so its almost a necessity. I take at least three different papers, four to six embellishments, stamps and the photo/s. I then place everything in a zipped art folder and work with that on the table. It’s my sure fire way of getting the project done.

  18. Allie.Duckienz Says:

    In the past I have just taken everything. LOL People are always coming to me to borrow supplies etc. My ex would happily carry everything and set it up for me so it wasn’t a problem. However now I can’t take everything so I will have to pare down. I am leaning towards fat kits. Enough product for 5 or layouts and a lot of varying photos. I don’t work in albums or order so this works for me. Will see how it goes next month when I go to a camp.

  19. Helen Overton Says:

    I’ve recently been reorganising my papers into large ‘kits’ with similar colours or papers that work together. So I’d probably just choose some photos and cardstock to go with the kit and then some embellishments. I don’t have a lot of variety of embellishments so it tends to be grabbing anything that might be workable for the kit.

  20. Emma Says:

    I love to use page kits, and find that I’m more productive when I do, otherwise I can literally waste hours trying to choose papers. I don’t include embellishments or letters in my kits though, just the paper. All my embellisments are stored in a basket and a few jars (I really don’t have a lot of supplies!) so when I start making the page, that’s when I’ll grab a few embellishments to go with it.

  21. Lynda Says:

    I make kits, but never thought of them as such! I start with an idea or photos. Then find patterned paper, followed by cardstock. Next comes any themed embellishments, ribbon, ink, stamps, brads, etc. I keep it all in a 12 X 12 Iris box or a plastic envelope (by Generations, I think), depending on how big the kit is. I only have one problem with this system. I work on more than 1 project at a time. Sometimes, I can’t find what I’m looking for because I’ve stored it in another kit!

  22. Melissa Says:

    I use page kits only when I’m cropping away from home which was not often until this year when I started planning more get-togethers with friends. I always start with my photos, then pull a couple of full sheets of cardstock or patterned paper that could be used for the background and matting. I add letter stickers and a few embellishments. Just like Shimelle: I err on the side of too much paper rather than not enough. I keep each kit in a page protector in a 12×12 file box. I take my scrap file with me as well as tools, flowers & brads, so I can add bits of other papers & handmade embellishments.

  23. Jennifer Grace Says:

    I don’t really use page kits as I don’t go to any crops (though that may change now I can drive, they were a bit hard to get to by public transport round here). But the couple of times I have, I always chose my photo first, and I always put in too much paper! But then if I have a lot left over from a page kit I try to make a card straight away with the leftovers so it’s being put to good use! x

  24. Melanie Says:

    I only make kits if I am going to scrap away from home and that doesn’t happen more than a few times a year. When I do, I make the kits to go with specific photos. I coordinate the colors or choose a theme and pull things that go together.

  25. Tammy Says:

    Years ago, I always scrapped with page kits. I was working 50-60 hours a week and traveling often. Some nights I’d come home and my brain would be fried and scrapbooking was out of the question. But sorting through photos was doable. Looking for coordinating pattern papers was doable. Finding embellishments to match and looking through sketches and inspiration was doable. So I got into a routine of putting kits together at night during the week and when I had crafting time on the weekend, I could just focus on creating.

    But then the economy turned south and I was laid off. For the past almost 3 years, I’ve had the luxury of going to my scraproom any time and creating a layout from start to finish anytime I want. So I stopped with the page kits.

    Two things I’ve noticed – 1. it takes me MUCH longer to create a layout and sometimes by the time I assemble all the products and papers sometimes I’m no longer in the mood to create and 2. I’m not using everything I own the way I used to, I tend to just reach for anything I can see instead of searching.

    Now that I’ve relocated back to Orlando and the job search is going well and I’ll soon be employed again (fingers crossed) I’m anxious to go back to the page kit approach and see what that does for my creating. I usually include 2-3 cardstock, 3-4 pattern papers, several alphas, ribbon (which I will actually use if it’s in the kit), a few embellishements, though I will add other stuff once I get a feel for where the layout is going. I do include photos too and if I have the time to sketch something out, I’ll include the sketch so I can just pull a page kit and go to work.

  26. Lisa M. Zepponi Says:

    I don’t normally use page kits unless I buy it that way. I have made kits to take to a crop, but haven’t been to one in over a year.

  27. Cynthia Says:

    I don’t make kits either. I always scrap at home. I just know I’ll arrive at the crop and not have what I need. ;-)

  28. Little Nat Says:

    Hmmm…. Not really as I tend to start with photos rather than supplies. I also don’t scrap away from home so I have everything to hand all the time.

    I will think about it though as sometimes I wish I could scrap when we visit the outlaws but I’m never prepared enough to do it!

  29. Mary M. Says:

    I have to admit I’ve never made a page kit. The very idea terrifies me! =P I’ve never done any scrapping away from home though. One of these days I should challenge myself to try making a kit, just to see what happens. =)

  30. MaryAnn N. Says:

    I try to select photos, paper, embellies and alphas (thickers usually) put it together in a 12 × 12 bag for a crop away from home. I make up my kits about 10 -15 for a weekend crop and 5 -8 for a one day crop. I find this keeps me organzied and I usually have more than I can finish as I’m too busy talking and visiting but having fun.

  31. Chipper Says:

    In the past I would have always only scrapped at home and after selecting my photos I would choose papers and cardstock to match and then go from there. However, I am now so time poor that I am thinking of starting to make up page kits with the photos and all. The longest part for me is pulling out all my supplies so if I made a pile of kits up I would only have to pull it out once :-) I might get back to getting stuff accomplished!! On the odd occasion when I do scrap away from home I always make up kits – I forget less that way!
    My mom is a kit scrapper. She will select her photos and then choose a sketch/pagemap to go with it. Then she will collect everything she needs to complete it with that sketch in mind. Everything is then kept together and that works well for her. It is a little too ridged for me, but it is useful if I want to get alot done in a short space of time :-)

  32. Megan Smith Says:

    I used to put together and use page kits when I used to go to crops, but I rarely do anymore. I prefer to have all my supplies available at my fingertips to use any way I please on any layout.

  33. Sharis Says:

    Thanks for sharing your process! I have often thought this was a good idea, but then I have a “what to bring/add” crisis everytime I try and make a page kit. I perfer to have people over, so I can be surrounded by my supplies. Muhhaaa! I perfer to spontaneously scrap. I don’t plan ahead of time. My ideas usually spring from paper or photos and I just pick supplies as I go. I think that is why I perfer to have everything with me. I always bring WAY to much to crops!

  34. jen Says:

    I normally start with patterned paper, then add in cardstock and embellishments, including alpha stickers. I tend to overpack so it’s not as neat and organized as it sounds … I also love to use kits from kit clubs! :)

  35. Talia Says:

    Usually when I go away to scrapbook I’m going for a weekend, so I just take all my stuff.

    On occasion I’ve done some card making just for the morning at my craft group, and in those situations I just take a whole paper pack so that I know I have co-ordinating stuff!
    I can always add more embellishments when I get home if the stickers etc. that I’ve brought with me aren’t enough!

  36. Kirsteen Says:

    I never make up page kits, I mainly scrap by collection so I guess the kits is already made for me. I don’t go to crops so don’t have to worry about packing up my supplies :)

  37. Ali Says:

    I use page kits if I’m scrapbooking away from my table – it just makes it easier. I usually err on the too much side, but I try to have an idea or a sketch of what I’m planning in the bag with my papers, letters and embellishments.

  38. abbeyviolet Says:

    I tend to not make them. I do carry around SC kits and a set of tools if I’m scrapping somewhere other than my desk, but otherwise, tend to toss a bunch of things in a tupperware and hope for the best—- not a great system.

  39. Debbie P Says:

    I made a page kit once during the Pretty Paper Party. It was fun putting together and I used it quite a bit. But I’d rather just pick and choose here and there. I mainly had matching papers and a few matching embellishments.

  40. furrypig Says:

    I learnt to make kits from you Shimele and your advice in pretty paper class. I have never been to a crop, though I did go away for a crafty weekend and I took a kit and photos inspired by your advice on how to match papers. It has really helped me and it was a fabulous class xxx

  41. Pepper Says:

    I recently fall in love with preparing page kits! It’s like shopping in an LSS , dont you think? Other than you dont need to pay for the item you pick :p I start with background paper and then pattern papers, then embellishments i usually go for twines and die cut shapes. Sometimes adding stamps and tools like punches and other mediums. And after ‘shopping’ for the items i lay them down on my desk and start playing with them! I dont usually prepare many kits at one go though. Nice to see some of the comments here

  42. Sinead Says:

    The only kit I’ve ever assembled was for Journal Your Christmas last year, and it was so helpful in getting pages together quickly on those busy days! I used lots of precut patterned papers and some kraft/cardstock (I had an A5 album), tons of paper scraps, a few alphabets, ribbon and gems, diecuts and other embellishments, and the essentials – scissors, adhesive, trimmer, pop dots, ink. I should really use more page kits as they make scrapping so much quicker:)

  43. Lorraine Says:

    I haven’t done this before but am loving the idea of doing this!

  44. Daphne Says:

    I only do page kits when I’m attending a crop, which is atm quite rere. I gather my photos first, look for about three PP and then choose two or three different CS. Then embellishments. Which background for the back I’m going to use is totally open – that’s why I chose more in the first place and then can decide at the crop!

  45. Shelly Says:

    I don’t make page kits but might give it a try in the future.

  46. Christina Collins Says:

    I guess you could call what I do “making kits”. I usually start with my photo and from there decide on what type of layout I want. I either draw up a sketch or grab one off the internet (or I get inspired by other people’s work). Once I know what type of look I want and how many papers I will need – I gather my papers. Afterwards I also put together my stickers and embellishments. I save my letter stickers for last and usually don’t pull them until I have the entire layout put together.

  47. margie visnick Says:

    I do make up kits-I am on the DT for the Counterfeit Kit Challenge Blog, and we choose a kit club to be inspired by each month, and make up kits to create from out of our stash…it is so much fun! I do always put too much in my kits, but that’s ok-it’s my stash!

  48. Linsey Says:

    Honestly, I never make up page kits. I scrap at home for the most part and just grab supplies as I need them. When I head out to a crop, I am one of those that tries to pack everything but the kitchen sink or (if I am going to a crop at a store) I bring just photos and tools and basic embellishments and just walk through the store with my photos and buy the paper and such that I need there. Terrible system, I know.

  49. Mel Says:

    I love making page kits. I don’t do it too often, mostly because I rarely go to crops. Maybe once a year. Every once in awhile, though, I make some page kits for home, just to simplify things for myself. I usually have a pretty good idea what the page will be ahead of time, so I cut everything to size, include all the embellishments, and when I’m ready to scrapbook, I just adhere everything and write the journaling. I haven’t done that in quite awhile, but that’s the way I do it. I like your way better, Shimelle. It seems to be more spontaneous.

  50. Crystal Says:

    I don’t do very many page kits, I usually scrap at home, so I start with a full collection, then spend half my scrapping time looking for things I want. On the rare occasion I go to a crop,its always at my LSS. I usually pack way to much and still spend half my time roaming around the scrapbook store looking for things to add. I’m turning over a new leaf, though, partly thanks to glitter girl and some other inspiring internet scrappers. I’m planning a Mother’s day crop with my mother and my sister, I’m packing page kits to take with us. Wish me luck! :)

  51. Malin/malwa Says:

    I don’t create kits on my own (but has bought kits now and then), so when I go to crops I bring “half of my scrappy belongings”. And use only a very few of them… ;)

  52. Karen G. Says:

    I don’t usually use page kits. I just pick patterns and embellishments as I go. If I ever do use one, which is rarely, than I gather the supplies and photo and put them in a page protector in my album.

  53. Jennifer Says:

    I use page kits but unless I’m going somewhere else to crop (which is rare) I just put a little kit together one layout at a time. I’ll pick out my photos and main papers. Then I’ll look for some coordinating papers, usually from my scraps. Then I’ll pick out some embellishments. I usually have way more than I end up using, but I like to be able to pick and choose. :)

  54. Rochelle O Says:

    I can put paper kits together very easily, but when it comes to adding embellishments it takes me FOREVER! Especially if I’m going to scrap away from home. I try to pack light, but I feel like I need to pack every possible embellishment in case I want to use it. I end up with a rolling tote I can’t lift!

  55. Siobhan Fry Says:

    I usually end up rifling through almost everything every time I want to make a layout. I’m not terribly well organised! Which is also why i find scrapping away from home quite difficult, having to choose in advance what I might want to put on a layout is just too much for my little brain.

  56. Briel Says:

    I usually make kits by buying them! I’m a long-time fan of Apron Strings Designs. BUT, when I have extra papers or I buy special other papers, I try to put together three patterns with one card stock. I usually try and remember the idea of one multi-color pattern, one small pattern and one medium pattern. Then I throw in some embellishments. If I’m cropping away from home, I figure that I can add in other details when I come home. That way I’m not tempted to bring my entire scrap room with me :)

  57. So.Ceative Says:

    I don’t process with a kit: I have a starting point ( a photo or a paper) and little by little I pick in my stock to add on my layout^^

  58. Janice Says:

    I make a page kit just like I scrap a page at home! I find a sketch I like, pull some photos that will work with it, choose my patterned papers and then all my embellishments, stamps, title stickers, etc. Then I put all these items for one project in a 12×12 plastic sleeve to take along to a crop. I store the photos separately to avoid the possibility of having the embellishments damage them in transit. Because I always think my layout through before starting, packing for a crop comes kind of naturally for me (but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t stress me out!).

  59. S Says:

    I got hooked on kits in May Flaum’s Adventures with Scrapbooking Kits class. Then I became part of the Counterfeit Kit Club Challenge blog that copies kits each month, and my productivity has really increased. I almost always start my kits with inspiring paper then add things in reverse order of size – so that the little buttons and bits are last. Having “limited” supplies is a great way for me to focus.

  60. Dea Says:

    I was putting page kits together at home and didnt realize it until i read your article. Thank you for the insight!

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