Scrapbooking should be hassle-free and plastic-free!
Gasp…no page protectors? So how do you keep the pages together then? Use a stapler! Not just any stapler though. (If you don’t want to read this whole article, scroll all the way to the bottom for the three tools you need to put together your journals and scrapbooks from Memorable Journals. You should also check out my video of how this stapler is used for making the journals below though!)
Besides being hassle-free, stapled-together scrapbooks are easy to take with you wherever you go. Why? They are already put together! And the pages are already decorated, making them fun to write in! You can write your thoughts while they are fresh in your mind. Having many more details in your scrapbooks make them more fun and meaningful to look through for you and your family.
The drawing above shows a pretty weird-looking tool. But it works so well for putting together the Memorable Journals that we use for journal writing and scrapbooking. (If you are not already familiar with these journals that can also be used as scrapbooks, check out the shop here to see what they are like.) Once you get used to doing it this way, you will never return to the old way of scrapbooking. That is if you had the time and money to do traditional scrapbooking!
I love this stapler so well that I have an extra one for a backup. Here’s a link to see this on Amazon. Click on the pictures and video on Amazon to see how it works. (No benefit is sent my way from Amazon or Bostitch if you choose to get one of these nifty tools for yourself.) I just did a video myself, and here it is!
Before finally getting this particular stapler, I purchased two other different long-reach staplers not explicitly designed for making booklets. Even though they both had paper guides, I never could get my staples to line up perfectly straight along the spine. (This makes it hard to open up the pages nicely.) So I highly recommend this particular stapler perfectly designed for making our journals/scrapbooks!
Regular standard staples work great for up to about 20 sheets of paper. I noticed that my newer staples work better than my older ones, which I think is interesting. I had been using a very old box of Swingline staples that was probably at least 20 years old, maybe even 25! They would sometimes twist and bend on me while I was trying to put together my journals. I had lost my box of the old staples during my move, so I got another box. Guess what? My new Swingline Standard Staples now works great for my journals and scrapbooks!! This makes me so very happy to be able to create my journals so easily and reliably!
To recap, just make sure that your staples are of good quality. Here is the link to the staples that I recently purchased. I like the tin box that these staples (1/4″ length) come in. Really, though, the staples you already have at home are likely to be fine.
So go ahead and get that wonderful booklet stapler, and enjoy making many journals and scrapbooks! Experiment with up to 20 sheets of paper (including cardstock for the cover). If you use too many sheets for the standard-sized staples, the staples won’t lay flat in the centerfold and will be prickly. Even if you just use 10 sheets, that would create a scrapbook of 40 pages! If you need more pages for the same adventure or event, you can just make another scrapbook with the same cover and call it Part 2. (a wonderful benefit of using downloadable journals!)
The journals pictured above all have standard-sized staples along the spine. The “thickest” one shown on the left has 24 sheets of paper, and it’s a little too much as the staples don’t fold down well in the centerfold, making them prickly. Keep in mind that a lot depends on what kind of paper you are using for how many sheets you can use with standard-sized staples. (For more information on papers I use, here’s the link.)
You will inevitably want to re-do a staple because it is smashed or not quite in the right place. This tool works SO MUCH better than the typical staple remover as it doesn’t scratch or tear the paper. You will love this for any job that requires you to use a stapler! Here’s a close-up below.
One reviewer on Amazon, who makes zines (small hand-made magazines), reported that her heart sings when using this stapler. That review got me to try it, and I am so glad that I did! My heart also sings when using this great stapler to create journals and scrapbooks.
So, in a nutshell, you only need the following three things to put together many Memorable Journals! (No plastic page protectors, binders, or lots of time are required!)
Staples (if you don’t already have some at home)