Scrapbooking is very popular right now, and due to that popularity there are so many choices for products. Local scrapbook stores are filled with rows and rows of paper choices and products, and even the large chain stores now each have scrapbook sections. There are also numerous internet stores that have thousands and thousands of product options. This being said, I may sound a bit crazy..........but there are actually times I cannot find paper I am looking for! Maybe it is because I have a visual in my mind and cannot find something that fits my vision. Or maybe it is because 99% of the time when I do scrap I use paper that I have previously purchased (since like so many of us I am a paper addict and have so much), and it is not exactly what I am thinking. So in those crazy moments when I am looking for something that doesn't exist I have come up with a plan B.....customizing paper. Basically I just use pieces of what I do have to create what I see in my mind.
As an example, I bought this gorgeous paper probably 2 years ago. It was a dressy black and cream paper, with a detailed edge and a black and cream pattern over the entire page. I bought it with no specific purpose in mind, but just loved the look of it. During the last 2 years I have brought it out many times, but never used it because with the detailed edge and full pattern it was just too busy for every project I considered using it on. Then I started working on the layout below. I wanted to scrap our 2009 Holiday card and chose an embossed cream paper for the background. I loved the look, but I wanted something a bit more dressy for the paper. That is when I thought of the paper I had purchased 2 years ago. When I pulled it out, again in full it was too busy for this layout. But the edging worked perfectly to dress up the embossed paper I had chosen. So with an exacto knife I cut out the entire edge and then added it to the embossed background paper, and all of the sudden I had customized a scrap page into something that was a perfect fit!
On this second layout, I wanted to use colorful, playful paper that would fit round photos for a baseball layout I wanted to do about my son's first time playing baseball with his Dad. Again nothing exactly fit the images in my head. So I started with just white cardstock and a plastic circle template I have, and then just took some colored pens and colored in the template holes to make a customized fun, circle dot pattern all over the paper.
So if you are like me, and ever get scrapbooking ideas stuck inside your head and they won't go away.... instead of searching and searching, look to bits and pieces of what you already have, to make your own customized paper.