HOTP Ribbon albumIt’s fun to make lots of scrapbook pages, but there quickly comes a time when you want to organize and protect them. The easiest way to do this is within an album. And while a list of basic scrapbooking tools would include an album, it does not have to be bought at the outset.

If you’re relatively new to scrapbooking you may prefer to practice on different sizes of paper before committing to buying an album. However there are many inexpensive options for you to try, to build your confidence.

The experienced scrapbooker

may have a favorite size of page to work with and a favorite type of album. If that’s the case may I suggest you try something new? There’s a world of excitement awaiting you out there with so many marvelous products. We’ll discuss some of these in a later article. For the moment we’ll look at the basics.

Size and Style

You have two basic decisions to make when buying an album: size and type. Within these categories you have a wide range of choices.

The sizes available are the usual scrapbooking paper sizes of 6″x6″, 8″x8″ and 12″x12″, but also include 4″x4″, 8″x11″.

It’s when you come to type that the choice broadens considerably.

Traditionally ring binder or post bound albums are the most common, but there are some innovative styles around now. You can choose from 4″x4″ accordion albums, spiral bound chipboard and inexpensive board covers all ready to customize.

A ring binder is the simplest. You place your scrapbook layout in a sheet protector and place it on the rings. You can buy decorated binders or blank ones ready to decorate yourself. Re-arranging the order of your pages is easy with this type of album.

Post bound albums are usually the most expensive, but also the strongest, most secure and very professional. They usually come with 10 or 20 sheet protectors, but can be extended to hold up to 40 pages. It is easy to change the order of your pages – you simply unscrew the posts to move the pages.

If you prefer to make double page layouts then you will find a post bound album is a better option. Because the holes of the sheet protectors are held on the posts within the binding, they are unseen and the edges of the two pages are close together. With a ring binder the spines of each page are visible so the pages lie farther apart and you lose the impact of a double page spread because of the gap.

Spiral bound albums are also popular, especially for smaller projects or gifts. Some come with fixed pressed board pages on which you make your layout and others with sheet protectors into which you insert your scrapbook page.

You will very likely find you use all of these and more in the course of your scrapbooking life. Most manufacturers have their own ranges and variations. Have a look at your local store or online and find your favorites.

Then have fun recording the sunny hours of life in your [tag]scrapbook albums[/tag].

It’s just a case of deciding which of your pages you want to preserve in an album, then deciding on the size and style you want. Here’s a link to help you choose, and get to see a large selection of albums at Jo-Ann.