Design Help for Two Page Layouts

Are you someone who tends to scrapbook every photo? Or have so many photos that you just want to fit as many as possible on your layouts? When I first started scrapbooking, all of my layouts were two pages. That’s I what I thought scrapbooking was: take photos, use every photo in your layouts. Simple.

That’s not how I scrapbook today. When Simple Scrapbooks magazine came along (may she rest in peace) and I discovered the one photo, one page layout — it changed the way I scrapbook. As a single girl with no children, I was finding it harder and harder to fill up 2-page layouts and scrapbook in a chronological fashion. When I created my first random single page layout out of date order, I really fell in love with scrapbooking.

How to pull off a great 2-page layout

It doesn’t mean that I stopped creating 2-page layouts though. There are still events through the year that need to be documented on a 2-page spread. But because I’ve been scrapbooking single page layouts for so long, I suck at designing them. I usually end up with two 1-page layouts that look like they kind of go together. Not a cohesive 2-page spread.

The only way for me to do it right is to use a sketch created by someone else.

Enter Allison Davis, who I first discovered on the pages of Creating Keepsakes magazine. The girl simply ROCKS the 2-page layout. I’m not sure what it is about her designs that I’m so drawn to. Maybe it’s the pattern paper strips or the die cut mats she often uses or the hand stitching. But whatever it is, whenever I have enough photos for a 2-page layout, I turn to one of Scrapbook Generation’s sketch books.

2-page worthy event

Since the weather here in Nashville has already turned wintery (which is way too early in the south in my humble opinion), I thought it was time to scrapbook last year’s wintery photos. With the help of Sketches for Scrapbookers Volume 5, I was able to capture this memory:

Supplies: Paper – DCWV cardstock, and AC cardstock. WRMK January Mitten, Branch, and Twig. Embellishments – AC White Jewelry Box Thickers, Ranger Patina stickles,  Fiskars snowflake squeeze punch, EK Success snowflake punch, Heidi Swapp ghost snowflakes.

If my own experience is any indication, it’s not always easy to pull off a well designed 2-page spread. If you are looking for design inspiration for 2-page layouts, I can highly recommend these books. But don’t expect glossy pages and idea book style examples.

These sketch books offer up just the sketch and leave it to the scrapbooker to use their own creativity to pull it off. Every sketch is a 2-page layout using 4×6 photos. Many also include smaller sizes that can easily be cropped from 4×6 sized photos. Very rarely, there is a sketch that includes a 5×7 enlargement, but not many.

Other resources:

  • Once a month on her blog, Allison runs “Sketch Week” where she takes one of her 2-page sketches and creates a layout every day showing how she uses the sketch in different ways. She’s running her last sketch for this year and planning a new website in January, along with a brand new Volume 7 sketches book. Check out the details.
  • Debbie Hodge offers a 2-page article series on Get It Scrapped called Double Up. These articles offer design tips and sketches to help you create well-designed 2-pagers.
  • This month at Masterful Scrapbook Design, the topic is event scrapbooking. This is a paid subscription program put on by Debbie Hodge from Get It Scrapped. The fee is $10 a month, but the information presented throughout the month is awesome. When I think about events, I generally assume I’ll have lots of photos and will need 2-page designs and that’s exactly what is being presented this month.
  • Creating Keepsakes magazine routinely features 2-page layouts in their magazine. On their blog every month, they offer downloadable sketches featuring 2-page layouts – like in this post here.
  • One of my favorite scrapbook designers, Nichol Magouirk, creates stunning 2-page layouts. For example, check out the one in this post, the one in this post, and this one at 2 Peas.
  • Ella Publishing has a new e-book out called Double-Page Design. The ebook is filled with great style, tips and ideas to help you fit more photos on your layouts.

So dear blog readers, do you like to create 2-page layouts? Where do you turn to get 2-page layout inspriation?


  1. I love Allison Davis sketches too, although I don’t have any of her books…yet. I’ve used some of her sketches from her website and love the way my layouts have turned out. I just need to place an order now!

    • I’ll be picking up volume 7 for sure. Her sketches have made me actually WANT to do some two page layouts! LOL.

  2. Almost every LO that I do is a 2-pager! I have 3 kids, and so a 1 page often seems squished. A lot of it is intuitive these days, as I have been doing 2-pagers since like 1998. However, I do find challenges on the internet through scrapbook calls & contests to give me inspiration and keep me motivated!

    • That’s how I feel about my one pagers – it’s more intuitive. I’m not sure what it is about 2-pagers that I struggle with so much. I’ll take help anywhere I can get it. 🙂

  3. i love 2 pagers! thanks for your tips! plus i have to agree with you i love nichol magourik’s work–she is amazing!

    • You are welcome! 🙂

  4. I love Allison Davis’s sketches and own several of her books. Great post with wonderful resources!

    • I’m really looking forward to volume 7. I think they just get better and better! 🙂

  5. Your layout is beautiful.
    I am a 2 page girl. I have trouble with the one page layouts.
    I will have to check her out. I have never seen any of her sketches, at least I don’t think so.

    • Thanks! I’m anxious to see what she’s planning for the new site. I’ll take the help anywhere I can get it. LOL.

  6. Hi, Tammy, Love this piece. And thanks so much for mentioning Masterful ScrapbookDesign.

    • Thanks Debbie! I appreciate your continued support. I love the daily dose of inspiration at MSD so it’s good to spread the love! 🙂



  1. I Love Winter | A Scrapbook Layout - [...] 2-page layout without a Scrapbook Generation sketch. I love how their sketches flow and since I am 2-page challenged,…

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