Are you interested in digital scrapbooking, but don’t know how to get started? Don’t want to spend $100 on Photoshop Elements and find software like that intimidating anyway? Scrapbook Max may be your answer. I have almost no experience with digital scrapbooking, having only just dipped my toe in the water starting about 2 weeks ago, so I was interested in the process that people might use to create layouts if I created some digital items. I installed Scrapbook Max to give it a try and thought I would review it here for you. There are many more features than I will cover here – I’m just going to hit the high points.

Pros:

  • Easy installation and helpful instructional video to help you get started.
  • Comes with lots of nice kits and layouts, and you can use any items/kits you download from the internet as well.
  • Allows you to start with a layout that’s already set up, or start with a blank page and import elements as you need them.
  • Includes some really nice photo effects as well as allowing you to crop and remove red eye right inside the program.
  • Printing service available for all sizes of pages. For a 12×12 it’s $3.99 a page, which is pretty reasonable considering what you might pay for items if you did the page with traditional paper elements. You could just print on regular 8.5×11″ paper and do an 8×8″ album and not have to send layouts out to be printed at all. I’ve printed right from my desktop and it’s beautiful! (depends somewhat on the quality of your printer of course)
  • There are multiple options for using your digital albums besides just printing them. You can save them as a PDF, make a screensaver, easily burn a CD for family and friends, and you can even add music to you albums.
  • Reasonable price ($39.95)

Cons (there aren’t many):

  • The kits that come with the program are okay. There are certainly some nice elements in them, and it’s nice that there are multiple page layouts within each template, but overall the quality could be higher.
  • The video should have included information about creating a page from scratch using elements other than what comes with the program.

Below is a page I did in Scrapbook Max in about 5 minutes using a kit I downloaded from Shabby Princess.

laurapage.jpg

Bottom line: this is a great program. I’ve been a paper scrapper since I started, and I’m about ready to convert (okay maybe just for some projects. I still like the dimension of a paper album). Digital scrapbooking is so much easier in many ways, and ScrapbookMax makes it super-easy and user-friendly. You can click the banner below to visit the main site for more features, and either download a trial version or buy the program.


Scrapbook MAX! Digital Scrapbooking Software


(In the interest of full disclosure, I do get a little bonus if you order the software after clicking the banner. This didn’t have any influence on my review however.)

From time to time I like to feature sites that are great resources for scrapbooking, and today’s featured site is ScrapScene!

scrapscene

ScrapScene covers every element of scrapbooking, including contests, classes, book and product reviews, designer features, scrapping techniques and trends and just about everything in between. Interested in getting to know who’s who in the scrapbooking world? They have a huge list of “celebrity” scrapbookers with links to all their sites.

The most recent contest at ScrapScene was called “Totally Transparent” – take a look at the gallery for lots of ideas on using transparent items in your layouts and projects!

I just found a great site I wanted to share with you, called Heart in Hand Scraps.  She has a long list of free project tutorials including a Memory Purse and a cute Rolodex album idea.  The gallery is a nice place to go when you’re stuck for scrapbooking page layout ideas, and it also showcases cards, tags, memory purses, and mini-albums!  Check it out!

Mother’s Day is around the corner, and if you’re looking for a unique gift to make, I have a couple of links for you:

Carolee’s Creations’s Place at Scrapbook.com – two projects here. A photo display and a “love letters” project.

Make a purse shaped mini album with DIY Scrapbooking online

Craft a beautiful 3-D floral card

Next post, I’ll have a printable quote to put inside the card, or on a special scrapbook page about Mom!

idea

Do you ever find yourself stuck for an idea when you’re working on a scrapbooking page? I found a great site that might help get us unstuck. Scrapbook.lifetips.com has tips on scrapbook page layouts, border ideas, use of stickers, journaling, themes, tools, trends, paper and embellishments. It even has an area about scrapbooking with kids! Also on this site is a glossary of scrapbooking terms that might be helpful. Hope you find it to be helpful!

For those of you who are interested in mini-scrapbooks and albums, I have found a really great list of tutorial links that I think you’ll like at Scrapability.   I particularly liked this page that has some nice Mother’s Day scrapbooking gift ideas made from CD cases, among other things (wish I had been able to see more of the pictures though).  There are also some links to envelope albums and origami scrapbook projects too!

Check out this “exploding box” project- it’s a really great idea and the instructions are written very well.  Now if I could only find the time to sit down and make one!