From Kit to Complete | Scrapbooking Process

Earlier this week, I shared how I have been splitting up the scrapbooking process into two steps — the non-creative kitting step and the actual creating step. When I have two or three hours to create a layout from start to finish, I will grab some photos and just go with it organically and see what happens. I wish I could do that more often.

The problem is…I do not have that span of time anymore. I have short spurts. I need strategies to help me, knowing that I can’t just turn on a creative switch. I know that many designers will cringe at the idea of thinking ahead. But when I am feeling creative and want to put layouts together, it’s best when I have a kit prepared with everything I need so that I can just get to work.

The creative step – assembling a layout

When I’m in creative mode and feel like creating, I will go through the layout kits I’ve created and select one that is speaking to me at the moment. I assemble paper, lettering for titles, any Silhouette cuts, a few embellishment, the photos and a quick sketch. (The sketch I created for this layout was inspired by several different Scrapbook Generation sketches.) Then I’ll pull everything out, look at my sketch, put the background paper down and start moving stuff around.

For this layout, I knew I wanted a variety of strips in different widths across the page. (For this layout I’m using the Awesome 6×6 paper pad from Simple Stories.) While that was part of the sketch, there are times that once I get working on the layout, the sketch isn’t working. If that’s the case I look through some other sketches quickly to see if I can change things up and fix it. But if it’s still not working, I may actually put everything away and select another kit. Time is short and I need to stay productive.

I selected the three photos I wanted to use and trimmed them. I laid all the strips out, to make sure I liked how it looked. I went ahead and inked just the journaling block to make sure it would stand out against all of the paper strips in the background.

For this design, instead of inking the edges of all of my paper strips, I decided to hand stitch around the entire strip block.

At the last minute, I decided to add some mist splatters before I adhered my photos.

Once the mist dried, I added my journaling and title. Which just leaves the last bit of embellishing. I rarely use all of the embellishments I put into the kit. Sometimes I don’t know what’s going to work until I have the layout in front of me. In this case, the orange circle star embellishments were too big in scale to work with the background. The smaller green chipboard shapes worked better and I also added a few Studio Calico wood veneer stars that were not in the kit.

And here is the finished layout. It took me about 45 minutes to complete from the time I unloaded the kit contents to the time it took for the mist to dry and to get all the embellishments on.

If I had to print photos, make product selections and decide on a design, it probably would have taken me 2-3 hours from start to finish. Most days, I just don’t have that much time. But 45 minutes to complete a kit is just about right!

Thanks for stopping by today.

P.S. I also have a fun page up at Scrapbook Update today inspired by subway art. Check it out here!


  1. This is a great boy/masculine page, Tammy. I love the arrows and how you worked the fiber in there.

  2. Love seeing your step by step process! The layout turned out wonderful! Loving the stitching and mists!

  3. awesome just awesome oage i love it.. there really into there gamming..

  4. Oh, that is so cute, Tammy!!
    And love that handstitching, too 🙂

  5. This is great, Tammy! I love your composition on this one with the strips and 3 photos!

  6. Love this layout and I love the process you take to create! I know what you mean about limited time and this process is optimal.

  7. Tammy, it looks great! I always enjoy seeing the steps – appreciate that. I love the strips and how you layered on top of them!

  8. totally love this page!!!

  9. Love seeing your process and really like how you used the strips of paper

  10. Love the layout! I will have to try this layout 🙂

  11. Great layout, enjoyed seeing your process.
    I think I may need to put together a kit or two…that might help me get going again on my layouts.

  12. So much fun to see your process! I also have to think in small chunks, otherwise I would never get anything done. Rarely do I have a 2-3 hour block these days.

  13. This looks great Tammy – I like all those paper strips!


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