For starting scrapbooking or cardmaking you require the same basic craft tools . These are: a cutting tool, pencil, ruler and eraser, a creasing tool, adhesive, paper and card. There are many other useful items, but these basics will get you off the starting blocks. You can add other more specialized tools as and when your enthusiasm or wallet allows. As a general rule I encourage you to support specialist craft stores (large, small, physical or online), however sometimes it can be less expensive to buy some more general items at other less specialized stores.

We’re talking about basic tools just now, but will cover and review many others later.

scissors largeYour initial cutting tool will be scissors. You’ll find it useful to have a small, sharp, pointed pair to cut out intricate designs that will add detail to your scrapbook layout or card. A large pair of scissors with long blades makes cutting long lines easier. It can be more difficult than it looks to cut a straight line, so at a later stage you may decide to buy a craft knife or a paper trimmer. Just a point to note here, don’t use your best fabric scissors as paper will blunt them.

Tweezers are a great help to pick up and place small items. Most folks will have some in the first aid box, so at this stage you won’t have to go out to buy special ones.

pencilsSelect a medium/HB pencil for drawing lines and patterns, keep it sharp and work lightly, and a soft, clean eraser to remove lines after cutting. Kneadable erasers are very efficient and don’t leave ‘crumbs’ behind. Coloring pencils are handy, and a ruler and a triangle/set square will get lines straight, angles accurate and positioning good.

Bone folderA bone folder – sometimes called a ‘burnisher’, and more likely to be plastic nowadays – is excellent for scoring card and making clean, crisp fold creases. The rounded, blunt edge of your scissors or an empty ballpoint pen may be enough in the early days. As in all situations the right tool for the job does feel more comfortable and will make things easier.

As for adhesives, apart from ensuring they are acid-free, there are a lot to choose from and it’s really up to your own preference. A glue stick is a convenient place to start, but do check it is acid-free.

And finally, you won’t get very far without scrapbook card and paper. Again, check these are acid-free as you don’t want to spoil your photos and scrapbook with chemicals seeping from the paper. We’ll talk later about why we stress using acid- and lignin-free products.

There’s a wealth of beautiful scrapbook papers available. Find some you like, get going and have fun. Then email us a photo of your creations and we’ll include it in the gallery.

[tags]scrapbooking, start scrapbooking,scrapbooking tools[/tags]