Dimensional Digital Scrapbooking

Dana Hinders
Digital kits that mimic traditional scrapbook supplies add dimension to your projects.

Dimensional digital scrapbooking makes it easy to create rich layouts with the appearance of texture and depth. Even if you're a computer novice, there are plenty of tutorials available to show you the basics of this exciting new art form.

Dimensional Digital Scrapbooking Techniques

While digital scrapbooking is convenient way to preserve your memories, it does tend to lack the textural appeal of traditional scrapbooking methods. To get the best of both worlds, you'll want to incorporate dimensional digital scrapbooking techniques into your work.

The first step to creating digital layouts that appear handmade is to choose the right supplies. Look for digital background papers that incorporate the appearance of textured cardstock. If you wish, you can even find digital versions of buttons, brads, silk flowers, ribbon bows, chipboard tags, and many other popular traditional scrapbooking embellishments. Start your search for digital supplies by visiting the following sites:

When you're creating your digital layout, remember that image editing programs let you layer different components of digital scrapbook kits. Instead of using scissors and a glue stick, you'll simply use your program's cut and paste tools to layer various papers and photos. The more layers you create, the richer your layout will appear.

Drop shadows offer an easy way to add the appearance of depth and dimension to your digital scrapbook pages. In Adobe Photoshop Elements, one of the most common image editing programs used for digital scrapbooking, the "Layer Styles" option lets you add drop shadows with a hard, soft, high, low, or noisy edge. Experiment with a variety of options to see which ones you like best.

Embossing is another popular technique that's simple to duplicate in the digital world. In Adobe Photoshop Elements, this effect is also accessed through the "Layer Styles" option. You can create a basic embossed shape or combine embossing with a drop shadow for added emphasis. Embossing letters adds interest to your page titles as well.

Creating Hybrid Pages

Another way to add dimension to your digital scrapbook pages is to create a hybrid layout that combines both digital and traditional scrapbook supplies. This is also a great way to begin experimenting with digital scrapbooking if you're an experienced traditional scrapbooker who isn't sure digital techniques are right for you. By designing pages that incorporate both scrapbooking methods, you'll help accelerate the process of developing your personal style.

If you want to give your digital layout a little extra pizazz:

  1. Print two identical copies of your design.
  2. Cut out small areas of one layout with sharp scissors or a craft knife.
  3. Mount these cutouts onto the second layout using pop dots or foam adhesive squares. You may also want to try folding up flower petals, butterfly wings, or other similar details.
  4. Add tiny bows, brads, or other embellishments as desired.

If you don't have access to a 12x12 printer, yet want to add dimensional digital scrapbooking layouts to your standard family album:

  1. Design an 8x8 digital scrapbook layout featuring your favorite photos and journaling.
  2. Print your layout onto glossy photo paper or acid-free cardstock.
  3. Mount the digital layout onto a 12x12 piece of cardstock or patterned using foam adhesive squares.
  4. Create a dimensional "frame" for your digital layout using buttons, brads, chipboard, die cuts, stickers, patterned paper, and any other embellishments that catch your eye.

"Digital scrapbooking can be an accent or addition to traditional processes or replace them," digital scrapbook designer and teacher Jane Conner-ziser recently told LoveToKnow Scrapbooking. "Technology opens doors that you just can't get to in the real world and you're only limited by your imagination."

Dimensional Digital Scrapbooking