SCRAPBOOKING Creating memories

Making scrapbooks isn't just for women, an event coordinator said.
Here is a list of words you may not have associated with scrapbook albums: primary colors, secondary colors, value, tints, monochromatic, symmetric, asymmetric, paper cutter, card stock, tags, layout and fonts.
Scrapbooks are no longer plain and boring like those of 30 years ago.
For Barb Houston of Mecca Township, scrapbooking has replaced quilting and cross-stitching. "Like cross-stitching, you work with colors and art," Houston said. Four years ago Houston was introduced to it by a co-worker. "I was going through chemotherapy for breast cancer. It became therapy," Houston said.
"It's addicting," Houston said, especially now that she has a granddaughter, Alexis, who's almost 3.
Houston first took old family pictures and made a scrapbook of her husband's family and one of her own family. "It's greatly improved my photography," she said.
One thing became apparent when she put together a book of her own children. Houston wished that she had taken more pictures of her children separately. The second child is always with the first one, she said.
When her daughter started making her own scrapbooks, Houston was amazed to find that "we use the same picture, and they look so different."
Houston can spend hours on one page, and sometimes even a week. She has discovered that you lose momentum if you have to clean up every night. What use to be her sewing room has now become her scrapbooking room. She always keeps supplies on hand because she will work on a page late at night.
"So I have to have it there," she said. "Sometimes I use what I have; and sometimes I see a bunch of new stuff and I'll buy it. It grows with you. I've torn pages apart and redone them."
Houston gets her supplies at Cord Camera in Warren.
"There's a lot of talent at Cord Camera," Houston said. "They really taught us how to do a page right. The nice thing about Cord Camera is that I get my pictures developed there. While I'm there I get what I need."
She takes her pictures around the store and matches them to the right supplies.
"It's like a candy store -- matching and coordinating things to go together. That's when you pull it all together," Houston said.
Angel Talley of Youngstown teaches beginner to advanced classes at Cord.
Ten beginner classes will get you a certificate, offered by EK Success. They teach two different techniques, which include chalking and stamping. With $15, you'll have a class and leave with a completed page.
"We take suggestions from our customers," said Jennifer White of Kinsman, an instructor who went to YSU for graphic design. Customer suggestions have included pages on nerds and camping.
Other class themes include Disney, seasonal, children, sports and graduations. They also offer a time where people bring in their own crops to work on their scrapbooks. Scrapbook albums cost from $5 to $60.
"It's not just for females," said Carol Wise of Fowler, event coordinator at Michael's Arts and Crafts in Niles. She loves getting her two boys involved, adding, "It's great to pass down from generation to generation."
Wise started making scrapbooks 10 years ago, and said that it really grew in this area five or six years ago. She teaches beginner classes.
Scrapbookers use different papers and textures; and everything is acid free.
She said scrapbooks are great to display at graduation parties. They make the perfect Christmas present for someone who has everything; and they make a lovely 50th wedding anniversary gift.
Michelle Nicole Smith of Warren, also of Michael's Arts and Crafts in Niles, received honorable mention from the design team contest held by Michelle Frances. Her work is being published in "Paper Trends," a new book by Memory Makers, and a book called "Tags Reinvented."
Smith teaches techniques and beginner classes, which range from $10 to $20 and include some supplies.
Fun activity
Lynne Walters, a teacher in Howland, started taking photographs when she was a little girl. She even earned a Girl Scout badge for photography.
"When scrapbooking came along, it was a natural hobby to pick up," Walters said. She enjoyed it so much that she took photographs out of the photo albums and put them into scrapbooks instead. She loves the creativity, the colors and the embellishments. "Scrapbooks make the memories special, and it's fun!"
Walters started four years ago. She's made scrapbooks for presents like the one she put together for her brother, which consisted of each graduation -- high school, bachelor's degree, master's degree and doctorate -- including all of the programs. She is currently making one for her best friend whose son is getting married. She'll make one for the bride and groom, too.
Walters' scrapbook room use to be a trophy room and Cleveland Indians room. "The people around me inspire me. Now the pictures are out of the filing cabinet and into the scrapbooks for everyone to see," she said.
"I've always been interested in the crafts," said Nancy Manuel of Girard. She wanted to try something different. She found information in magazines, on TV and at Michael's Arts and Crafts. When her husband bought her a digital camera, she was all set to go.
"Once you start scrapbooking, you take a picture and think about how it's going to look in the scrapbook, instead of just a general picture," she said. Following in her sister's footsteps, she took a couple of classes. "Michelle has taught me to make things on my own. She shows you how to make it more unique, instead of buying stuff already made," Manuel said.

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