KISS me - Keep It Simple, Sister

Some of my favorite pages and layouts are the simplest ones. First, because they are easy to duplicate, and they usually don't take up much of my time - in the creating or duplicating. I also often like the clean, classy, simple look anyway. If every page is a gathering of elements, layers, and embellishments, it starts to feel cluttered and/or complicated - much like eating a seven-course meal every single day. Your taste buds grow impervious to the fancy food, and you soon find yourself longing for a simple hamburger on the grill.
A simple, classic look for Hannah's junior high volleyball
days.  The background paper does most of the work.  I added
a title and a couple layers on the left side, and on the right,
I simply added the arrows to point out Hannah.

Consider this your keynote sentence for today's post:  Not every page in your scrapbook has to be a masterpiece. Now, go back and read that again - out loud. Go ahead; I'll wait.

This can be a tough one for me. I take my time with almost every page, and it's usually a while before I stop saying, "Hmmm,,,it's missing something," or "It needs something else." This is just another way to get bogged down in scrapbooking with no hope of ever catching up, so the reverse perfectionism starts kicking in. You can't do things well and/or fully to your liking, so you start procrastinating, and then that procrastination becomes a sad acceptance that you'll never get to those scrapbooks like you promised yourself you would.
The background on the left is from an old calendar. I find
myself using these a lot. They make gorgeous pages, and all
I have to do is add a picture or two. Then because that page
is getting all of the attention and already has the "wow"
factor, I don't have to add much to the other side/page.

Another important thing to note is that you want the pictures to be the focus of every page. The point of scrapbooking is to show off the pictures, not necessarily the backgrounds and embellishments.

So - for your own sanity, Keep It Simple, Sister. (Not that our fellow brothers don't need this reminder, too, but how many guys do you know who'll be reading this? 😏) So, how do you do that (keep it simple)? Start by finding layouts that you like and sticking with them. Use different colors and embellishments, but  the same basic layout. That way, you don't have to think about how to lay it all out. And for a lot of double page spreads, add nothing except pictures for one of the pages (like the picture below, where I actually added nothing to both sides because I had so many pictures to include. I don't do that often - no title or embellishments for both pages - but I do it often for one side).

It's okay to do that - really. I am giving you permission; now, all you have to do is give yourself permission. And lastly, do a search on Pinterest specifically for something like, "simple scrapbook layouts." Repeat after me: Not every page has to be a masterpiece.

Now, go finish up about 3 double page spreads.  If you keep it simple, you can do that in one sitting, so go...create...scrap...enjoy your pictures.  Why are you still sitting here...go! 😉

A clean house is the sign of a lazy scrapper.

Scrapbooking is my happy place. I can't help it, it just is. There are times we all need to just close our eyes and go to our happy place.  I close my eyes and think about new scrapbook pages, new greeting card ideas, and so much more. I can get lost on Pinterest and the pages that are posted there for hours. It's fun - I mean, really fun!

However, there are some things that can mess with my happy place, and I'm sure that you and I share some of them.  For example, if you don't have enough time, you find yourself procrastinating until you find the perfect time with the perfect idea, which leads to weeks, months, even years of getting nothing done. If you are trying to scrap on a budget, the lack of variety you think you have because of a (temporary) inability to get many accessories and/or tools can turn parts of scrapbooking into a chore. Who needs that? No one. Exactly. I have some ideas that might help.

First, keep your craft/scrap area clean and organized as much as possible. Now, while I wait for my family to pick themselves up and get back into the chair they just rolled out of from laughing, I'll give you some time to ponder that. If you know me even a little, you know that I am, more often than not, embarrassed at the state my home is in. The term 'clean freak' was invented as an antonym to me. Look it up in a thesaurus, and under the antonyms for 'clean freak', you'll find my picture. Now, everyone is going to pounce on this and try to tell me that everyone has imperfections, quirks, and weaknesses with housekeeping, but please don't. I am talking about real struggle and heartache due to a lack of cleanliness.  But I digress...

I do seem to be able to do well with it in two specific areas of my life - work (most of the time) and my craft area. This hasn't been without a lot of trial and error - figuring what
One of my favorite organizational
hacks.  These shelves are made
from metal cubes - a set  of six -
that are sold as a storage solution,
but not usually to be used like 
this. Click here for step-by-step
works, what doesn't, what could work better, and what organization tools I need.  

It's been worth it, however, because I am likely to scrap much more when my area is kept reasonably cleaned up. Organization saves LOADS of time AND money. How it saves time is pretty obvious - like I mentioned, I love to carve out as much time as possible to scrap. That is easier if my area is reasonably straightened up, so I can jump right in when I do have the time. It keeps things (somewhat) stress free, especially w/o having to search for everything, so I enjoy scrapping much more. And it means I don't have to set hours aside; I can do half an hour here and there if I need to.
This was my hubby's idea. This
is a set of drawers usually used

in the garage, shed or basement

for screws, nails, etc.  My hus-
band wasn't using this one any-
more, so he gave it to me.  
I used it for ink pads for many 
years. Now, it's perfect for small 
pieces of card stock and paper. I 
love how the clear drawers allow 
me to see what is inside.

But saving money? That might not be so obvious to some, but think about this - if you are constantly forgetting and losing supplies you already have, you're likely to buy them again, only to find what you just bought is deep in the clutter of your crafting life. Again, who needs that?  

Every so often, I find that for one reason or another, I need to do an overall reorganization and clean up my craft area.  It is such a pain, but it is helpful, and even fun, to be reminded of all the cool things I already have. I have more designer paper than I realized, tons of great accessories, and even tools that I may have forgotten about.  Since I've been making time to scrap, I learn what works and then figure out more/other systems, tools, and designs that might work better. 

These types of storage drawers are pretty
common. I did not pay one penny for any
of these. They were gifts from friends
and family, purging their own homes,
or finding them at garage sales and/or
I have a fairly large craft area in my basement.  My husband has a similar area for his hobby. In that way, we are blessed. Yet even with plenty of space, it is so easy for a mess to develop quickly, and it's even easier and quicker for that mess to get out of control. For me, especially when I am on a roll and trying to get some things done, it's like - I use this, set it aside; bring out a bunch of samples or ideas, decide on one, set the rest aside; spot something I'm pretty sure I'll use soon, bring it out so I'll see it and remember. The next thing I know, I've got piles here and there that I keep digging through to find the scissors, the glue stick, or whatever else I need next. Then I shove it all aside to use the paper cutter...  Yeah, not hard at all to quickly feel overwhelmed with the scraps of scraps! It's almost a daily struggle with me. But I LOVE to scrap, so if I feel too overwhelmed to do it often, it affects everything else in my life, including my mental and spiritual health. In the past, there have been times, that I have let my desk/area, and therefore my scrapping, go for so long that thinking about it makes me crazy, so I try to ignore it - unsuccessfully, of course.  So, the motivation to scrap more helps me to (try to) stay clean and (somewhat) organized.

Now, if only I could apply that direction of thinking to my house...