Thursday, August 13, 2009

Scrapbook Basics!

Color Blocking
Today's scrapbook focus is on a very popular scrapbooking technique called "Color Blocking".

As the name implies, color blocking is a technique that uses blocks of colored paper to create a background layout for highlighting your photos or design elements. The technique is simple and versatile. It can be used on any theme of page.
Creating blocked backgrounds can be done in several ways. However, regardless of how they are done, there are two things to remember.
First, the blocks are not overlapped, but rather have a 1/8" in between them to let the background color show through.
Second, the blocks are usually placed over the entire layout/backgound and then the photos are placed on top of the blocks. This makes the technique different then simple matting.
The number of blocks you use in your background is up to you. A very simple blocked background may use 4 blocks the same size and one or two colors. (Example - To make an 8 1/2" x 11" page cut yellow paper in rectangles that are 5 1/4" inches tall and 4" inches wide. Arrange them on a sheet of black paper so they are evenly spaced. Double-mat your photo with black and yellow, then center the matted photo on the page - To make the same layout on a 12 X 12 page you would need to cut the blocks 5 3/4" X 5 3/4") Other backgrounds may use blocks in varying sizes and shapes and 2-4 colors.

Tips and ideas:
Always pick your color palette directly from colors in your photos to avoid overwhelming your photos.
Mat your photos & other elements to avoid them getting lost in the layout.
Repositionable adhesive such Hermafix Transfer is best for this technique in case a block isn't quite straight the first time.
A paper trimmer is essential.
Try tearing the edges of the blocks to make a torn block layout.
Try using a combo of 1-2 solid cardstocks with one matching patterned paper.
For a masculine or outdoorsy look, try cutting your blocks and then crumbling them.
Apply pastels to the edges of the blocks for an antiqued look.
Use vellum for some of the blocks, or layer vellum over blocks to create a muted look.
Of course, add accents or patterns to the blocks with your stamps and punches.
* Thanks to Sudsol - Scrap 101 for this article & Barb Baeckman for the sample pages


Traci said...

Very cute layout!