Digital vs Traditional Scrapbooking

I started scrapbooking soon after Landon and I were married because I went to a Creative Memories party that my sister-in-law hosted.  I loved it immediately, but really didn't do much until I had Logan.  Also, that is when I got a digital camera and it made it much easier.  I have loved creating each layout that I have ever done, but it is expensive, messy, and really time consuming.  I am REALLY behind, too, which is overwhelming!! 

Last year, I converted to digital scrapbooking because I thought I might be able to go faster and have some chance of catching up sometime before my kids are grown.  I know I have issues (many of my friends thought that I had lost my mind), but I started over with Logan's first scrapbook.  I want all of their scrapbooks to be the same and it would really bother me if I had the first three done traditionally and the rest digitially.  Needless to say, I am even further behind, but I think digital scrapbooking is the way to go.

I use Adobe Photoshop Elements to do all of my layouts.  For my birthday, I got an updated version (9) from my mom (thanks mom!!), but almost all of mine so far have been from version 5.  Elements is a simpler version that Photoshop, and it is much cheaper.  I started doing simple projects such as invitations and photo cards to get familiar with the program.  Basically everything that I have learned is from reading tips and tutorials from online sources. 

Why I think digital is better:
1.  CHEAPER:  I was spending around $35 on my albums, then getting them embossed, then all the 
     pages, page protectors, paper, stickers, stamps, ink pads, and embellishments on and on.... 
     With digital I get my books printed at Shutterfly, but you could get your pages printed individually
     and put them in regular albums. Also, you can reuse your digital papers, layouts, and embellishments
     where you can't if you are using traditional methods.  Here is a layout I have used in two different

2.  NOT AS MESSY: With traditional scrapbooking, I would take forever to just get all my stuff out
     just to get started.  I am so thankful for a craft room, because I can just shut the door, but at my
     other house, my kitchen table was often taken over by all the scrapbooking supplies everywhere.
     With digital, the only thing I need is my laptop and external hard drive. 

3.  PORTABLE:  We have had scrapbook get togethers at church with our babies in car seats, walkers,
     pack and plays, or running around since they were born.  This last year, we started a once a month
     craft night at church.  (Thanks to all the husbands who keep the kids:)  When I did traditional
     scrapbooking, it was an ordeal to make sure that I had all my supplies ready for the layouts I would
     be working on.  I also hurt my back moving my scrapbook carrier one time too.  Now, I just have my
     computer bag to bring instead of lugging all the supplies.  Also, I can work on layouts while sitting down
     to watch TV instead of isolating myself in the craft room.

4.  NO PHOTO PRINTING:  It would never fail that when I would be in the mood to scrapbook I would
     never have the pictures that I needed.  Then once I would get the pictures, I would have many 
     leftovers of ones that I didn't end up using in the scrapbook.  With digital scrapbooking, you just
     insert your pictures right into your layouts from your computer, so no more last minute runs to Wal-
     Mart or Walgreens right before a scrapbooking night. 

5.  SHARE AND REUSE:  With digital scrapbooking, you can share supplies and layouts to make them
     you own.  If you are doing the traditional method, this is not possible.  It is also easier when you have
     multiple children to make books for.  You can just modify by taking out the pictures of another layout to
     make another book without starting from scratch.You can also order an extra for you to keep and the
     other one will be for your child.  You can even order one for a grandparent and that is MUCH easier
     than having to create each of those separately. 

6.  YOU CAN RECOLOR:  One thing that I always found difficult in traditional scrapbooking was getting
     just the right color paper and embellishments to match my photos.  With digital, this is easy to do.  You
     can recolor any paper, text, embellishment, or even photo, if necessary.  I do this in every layout, but
     here are a few examples...

7.  USE MORE PICTURES IN A LAYOUT:  In traditional scrapbooking, I would use three  
     or maybe four pictures on each layout and would be limited on how I could arrange them.  In digital
     scrapbooking, you can use more pictures and adjust the size of the photo easily giving much more
     possibilities.  These type of layouts would be a nightmare to do traditionally... 

The only downside that I have discovered in digital vs traditional is you are not able to attach momentos into your books (art, tickets, birthday invitations, first lock of hair from the first haircut).  So instead, I take a picture or scan what I can and it has worked so far.

Here are some resources that I have discovered that I find useful.  When I first started, I used mainly freebies that I found from Shabby Princess.  I also bought some of theirs that wasn't free because I appreciated them getting me started.  However, now the only resource I use is Designer Digitals because they have the biggest selection and gallery for ideas.  I "scraplift" from this gallery often:)  Here are some examples of some of those....


I don't "scraplift" all my layouts, but it is great if you aren't in a creative mood and can't come up with your own.  Here are more of some of my favorite layouts...

Also, my tastes have changed a bit over the years.  I used to want every inch of the page covered with something, but now I make some pages really simple.  It is ok to have some blank space:) Here a few examples...

I am in the mood to scrapbook now:) 


  1. Once again, you have made me want to start digital scrapbooking. And one day, I really will. :)

  2. I will teach you, Casey:) Or your sister can.

  3. Terri, I am enjoying browsing through your blog. Maybe you can teach me how to do digital scrapbooking. I take a bazillion pictures and have a very nice Canon camera but alas all of my pictures are stored on my hard drive and none are in an album. I also have another bazillion pics, printed, and stored in my cedar chest waiting to go into a scrapbook. Let's see...I am a good 10 years or more behind...