Scrapbook Lingo

A basic glossary of common scrapbook terms specific to the hobby. If you come across a word not defined here, please email me.

Scrapbooking Terms

Acid Free ~ means that the paper's pH is 7.0 (neutral) or higher (alkaline). Acid free papers will last up to 200 years under normal use and storage and not cause damage to your photos.

Adhesive ~ Products used to stick pictures and embellishments to your page. For most scrapbooking items, you'll want to use dry scrapbook adhesives such as glue dots, glue sticks or double-sided tape. For embellishments such as plastic items or metal charms, you'll need to use a liquid glue.

Border ~ A strip of embellishments and paper along the side (sometimes top and bottom) of your page. Made with paper, punches, stamps and pens. Often in a theme to match your page concept.

Collector (aka hoarder) ~ The art of buying more supplies than you are actually using. LOL

Crop ~ To trim photos and papers to fit a particular size. Another use is to attend events/gatherings of scrapbookers to work on their albums in a group setting. Often with prizes, demos, classes in a fun filled environment.

Die Cuts ~ paper cut into themed items (pumpkins) or in design formats. Can be made with a cutting machine such as a silhouette or made using metal die shapes and a hand crank machine like a Big Shot.

Die Cut Machines ~ The hand crank machines, like the Big Shot used with metal die cut shapes/designs and electronic cutting machines such as the silhouette that have their own software programs.

Distressing ~ altering paper or embellishments to give them an aged, vintage or well-worn look. It is a very inexpensive technique that can add a lot of depth and texture to your pages. Distressing looks great with heritage photos, sepia photos and black and white photos.

Embellishments ~ brads, eyelets, flowers, rhinestones, buttons, charms and a gazillion other 'little somethings' that will bring your design to life and add depth, color and creativity to your pages and projects.

Embossing (stamps) ~ Using a slow drying ink pad to stamp an image and then adding an embossing powder while it is wet. After shaking off the excess, you use a heat gun to melt the powder creating a raised image.

Embossing Folders ~ made of hard plastic that has a front and a backside with a design on it. One side of the folder has the design raised and the other side is depressed. You insert your paper item into it and roll it through the hand crank machine to imprint the design onto the item.

Ephemera ~ Ephemera is generally defined as collectible memorabilia that is was for a short term purpose. Think show tickets, ticket stubs, playing cards, postcards and more. Ephemera is almost always paper-based and is often written or printed items that were expected to have short term popularity or usefulness. Ephemera is not normally considered something to collect, save, cherish or keep. But often times, we do keep and cherish ephemera items - especially vintage ones and we often put them in scrapbook pages.

Fussy Cut ~ using precision scissors to cut out an image from paper or a photo. Often to avoid elements in the paper or photo. Great way to create a 3D effect by layering multiple images.

"Helper" ~ kids and fur family that are hanging out in your scrap space. Usually NOT helping.

Journal ~ to write the details behind the events. The basics of who, what, where, when and why but in a way to capture your personality and flair.

Journaling Block ~ A piece of cardstock designed as the designated space for journaling. Often used so that mistakes can be fixed with out redoing the entire page.

Layout ~ arranging photos, page title, journaling and embellishments in an attractive pattern on your album page.

Masking ~ a rubber stamping technique that involves layering rubber stamp images to create depth. By rubber stamping images one on top of the other using masking you give the illusion that images are in front or behind each other.

Matte ~ cutting a coordinating paper larger than your photo to help make it pop! Often used on the focal point photo and can be double matted.

Matte Finish ~ helps enhance any textures in the photos and reduces glare and dreaded fingerprints that often come when using a glossy finish.

Memorabilia ~ objects kept or collected because of their historical or sentimental interest. Items such as ticket stubs, report cards, a child's artwork, ribbons won, recipe cards. love notes etc.

Mixed Media ~ a way to create scrapbooking layouts with paints, metal and other materials.

Page Kits ~ can be purchased or put together by you. Often includes various items based on a theme. Contents included may be enough to make several pages.

Page Map (Sketch) ~ is a drawing of a layout design showing placement of papers, pictures, elements and journaling. These are used to inspire layouts and give scrapbookers new ideas.

Power Crop ~ creating page kits for your exact photos. Adding all the items you will need to complete each page. Often used to take to a crop as it helps with packing and getting pages completed!

Punches ~ various shapes and designs that when pressed with your hand, makes little cut outs or extravagant borders for use on your page.

Rule of 3 (odds) ~ is about eye movement. What you want to do is create three points of interest on your layout to keep the viewers eye moving; this is often done in a triangle, but doesn't necessarily have to be. If adding more than 3 items, work with odd numbers for better visual appeal.

Rule of Thirds ~ dividing your page into nine equal rectangles as if you had drawn a tic-tac-toe grid over it. The main focal point should fall on one of the four intersection points, while other important points of interest should lie along the lines or as close as possible to them.


Scraplifting ~ Copying all or part of another's page. It is a high compliment and we all do it! In fact, it is encouraged!

Scrapcation ~ Any planned time alone or with friends to enjoy the art of scrapbooking! Occasionally, more chatting and snacking is done than scrapbooking. Much like old school sleepovers.

Score ~ The best way to prevent cracked card stock is to score your card stock before folding using a scoring blade on your trimmer or a scoring tool and a ruler. This makes a nice line that has already been creased a little so that folding paper is neater and straight.

Also, when you get a great bargain on a lot of goodies!!



STABLE ~ Stash Totally Above and Beyond Life Expectancy

Template (Stencil) ~ high quality plastic stencils that have designs especially made for tracing and then cutting out your photos to create a designed page.

Trimmer ~ a device used to trim photos and paper. Some have decorative blades and a slide out arm for easy use with 12 x 12 paper.

Wall Paper ~ Using a full size sheet of paper as your background and then adhering it to the album page.

Weeding ~ removing the not needed little pieces, usually referring to vinyl creations made with a machine such as Silhouette. They make tools to make it easier. An example would be the inside of an O.

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