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Scrapbooking 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Scrapbooking Terms

Sheryl Schuff

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These are the basic words you'll need to understand before you begin your scrapbooking activities.

Acid -free: products that have a pH of 7.0 or higher; this means that you shouldn't have any problems with chemical reactions that can cause paper and other materials to deteriorate over time.

Album: book with space in it for you to store your scrapbook pages.

Adhesive: material used to stick items together; includes glue, glue sticks, mounting tabs, and double-sided tape.

Archival-safe: term used to describe products that have been tested and found to have pH levels that are safe to use with photos.

Borders: pre-cut strips of paper used to add page accents.

Cropping: trimming a photo to keep only the important parts and/or to make it a particular size or shape; also a slang term for a scrapbooking session or party.

Embellishment: any extra item used to add interest to a scrapbook page; includes things like stickers and charms.

Font: a collection of characters (letters, numbers, and special symbols) that make up a printing style.

Journaling: descriptive writing that explains the photos and events on the scrapbook page.

Layering: overlapping different materials on a page to create more interest.

Layout: placement of items on a scrapbook page.

Lignin-free: products with safe levels of lignin (a chemical found in newsprint that weakens paper and turns it yellow with age).

Mat: paper used to make a border (frame) around a photo.

Page protector: clear plastic sleeve that prevents damage to scrapbook pages.

Ph factor: number that shows how acidic or alkaline an item is.

Sheryl Schuff is a scrapbooking enthusiast who is currently working on a Disney scrapbook of a recent trip to Disneyland and California Adventure Park with her daughter and granddaughter.

For news, information, and tips on where to get Disney scrapbook supplies, visit her at


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