budget scrapping

I have been scrapbooking on a budget for many years and thought I'd share some of my tips:

• I generally don't buy rubons, transparencies, or other items that are printed in black or color. I can print those at home. White is another story. Luckily, white can be very versatile too. You can often recolor white things with paint, chalk, or ink.
• Never buy things you won't use just because they're trendy. If you know it's not your style, don't bother adding it to your stash 'cause that's where it'll stay.
• Also, don't buy complete sets of items (certain stamp sets come to mind...) if you'll only use a few of them.
• Buy your most-used cardstock in bulk. I use white, black, and craft the most, so I stock up on those and only buy other colors when needed.
• Watch for sales, coupons, clearance, ebay, etc. I love hunting for a good deal!
• Avoid buying items you'll only get one use out of. Look for versatility in your products. I avoid buying themed items for this reason.
• If I come across an image I know I'll want to use over and over, I'll try to find a similar stamp rather than buy a bunch of rubons or stickers.
• Become familiar with Word and Photoshop programs. Print items in reverse and handcut. The possibilities are endless this way!
• Find digital freebies online that you can use (either digitally or in hybrid scrapping).
• Buy only those tools you know you'll use. Look for tools that don't have expensive parts that will need to be replaced often (blades, ink cartridges, etc.) Find cutters that are self-sharpening, for example. Watch demonstrations and read reviews for items before purchasing too (wish I'd take my own advice before I bought the Blade Runner!!)
• Don't buy impulsively. I 'sleep on' any item over $10-$15. Sometimes I wake up wondering why I'd ever want it. Other times, I know I won't sleep again until I have it! LOL
• Save your scraps to use for embellishments or card-making.
• Look for items outside the 'scrapping' label. Buy silk flowers, ribbons, paint, alterable items, and office supplies in other areas or from non-scrapbook stores to save cash. The markup on scrapbook supplies is sometimes ridiculous.
• Buy the tiny pigment ink pads in many colors and use clear embossing powder with them rather than having many colored powders. They cost less than embossing powder and come in more colors. (My favorites are Versacolor).
• If you're unfamiliar with an item and want to try it, buy a small quantity or the smallest size available (ink comes to mind, but this could be true of papers and other things as well).
• Avoid buying page kits unless you consistently love at least 75% of the products you're getting each month.
• Buy things in bulk and split them with a friend, but only do this if they're things you'll actually use.
• Look for generic items rather than brand names. For instance, generic o-wires are less expensive than the bind-it-all brand and they work identically.


Corina said...

GREAT tips! Thanks for sharing! :D

scrappinfor5 said...

Awesome tips!

Where do you get the generic o-wires?