Digital scrapbooking kits are getting bigger -- in size and in price. I'm not talking about the crazy sales that sometimes happen, but rather about the going rate for a full kit. As I poked around the digi world the main price range I saw in some of the more established shops was $6.99 - $7.99. That's a lot of money! However, there is a trade off. You are getting a LOT more in your kits than you used to. When I first started scrapping a normal kit had 6-8 papers and maybe 12-15 elements and it sold for around $5.00. Now, kits often contain 15+ papers and over 50 elements! You may be paying a lot, but you get A LOT.
Here's the deal, though. If you only use your kits once you lose both ways -- you are paying more and you are wasting more. There is no way you are going to use 15+ papers and 50+ elements on one page, so what's a scrapper to do?
Easy. Use your kits more than once.
Otherwise, your scrapping costs are at $7.99 a page before printing. Ouch. And people keep saying that digi is cheaper!
For some of you, this is easy. If that is you, you can just skip the rest of this post. But if you find using a kit multiple times a difficult thing, keep reading! I am going to give you some basic tips on reusing kits and then I am going to show you one cool method I tried this past week.
TIPS FOR USING KITS MORE THAN ONCE
1. Think before you buy. Make sure the kit you are adding to your cart is really one that you love and that you have plans for. If you truly love it, you are more likely to use it again.
2. Buy more generic kits than "themed" kits. Buying generic kits with no specific theme allows you more flexibility in your scrapping. If you do buy themed kit, stretch yourself to see how far you can stretch the kit (see below for an example).
3. Buy kits that are your style. I love looking at all the fantasy type kits out there and I enjoy scrapping with them every once in a while, but really, they don't fit my scrapping style. I almost never am able to use them again. If you know your scrapping style buy kits that fit it and don't buy kits that don't fit it. The same goes for color palettes.
4. After you unzip your kit, go through the kit and COPY (not move) elements that you REALLY love and that would work on lots of different pages into an elements folder than you can pull from later on. I tend to pull flowers, alphas, and generic elements. I tend to leave behind staples (I already have my favorites), kit specific items, and elements that although I might love, will most likely never make it on a page.
5. Challenge yourself to use a kit on multiple pages. Although I do tend to reuse kits, I had never challenged myself to see what I could do. It was a great exericse in stretching me, making me think back over memories, and making me take advantage of digital techniques like recoloring.
HERE IS WHAT I DID
As I was searching through my hard drive I came across this super fun kit called Doctor, Doctor by Lauren Grier and Melissa Bennett.
I purchased this kit and scrapped with it back in February. But, I definitely hadn't made use of all the fun stuff in here. So this is what I did:
I opened up the preview file and looked carefully at everything as a whole. I then made a list of layouts/stories that I could tell using the papers and/or elements. I knew I wouldn't be able to use all of it, and some of it is not my style, but there was still a lot of GREAT stuff in there. Here was the list I made of pages I wanted to do:
- Caleb's accident
- Alaina's trip to the hospital
- Me sick in India
- A non-sick/hospital layout still using the kit
Then I opened up all of the elements and papers in the kit (I don't usually do that) and looked through them all one by one. I closed the things I knew I wouldn't use at all and left the rest open to help inspire me. I started with the layout about my son's trip to the ER for stitches and ended up with this:
(24 x 12 layout )Doctor, Doctor by Lauren Grier and Melissa Bennett, staple by Shabby Princess, fonts are CK Ali's Writing and Typewriter Scribbled
I then moved on to my daugher's one stay in the hospital
Doctor, Doctor by Lauren Grier and Melissa Bennett, staples by Shabby Princess, font is Typewriter Scribbled
I then wanted to do a layout about the time I was in the hospital in India (the worst experience of my life!) but I realized that I didn't have any of those in digital form. So, I moved on to trying to make a layout with the kit that wasn't tied to the theme. I started by looking at all the elements and seeing what inspired me. I just loved the gingham bows so I chose that as my starting point. I then pulled the green paper to match, with no plan for the rest of the page. I looked at it for a while and then remembered a skirt my daughter has that has the exact same green in it. I then looked through iPhoto and pulled some pictures from her first day of school last year. Perfect. I needed some school type stuff to go with it so I grabbed some of the felt goodies from the Pam Donnis kit in THE DIGI FILES 7. I also used the ABC paper strip. I finished it off with one of my favorite alphas -- Teacher's Pet by Lauren Reid (doesn't look like it is available right now). I was so happy with how it turned out and happy that I have this story saved.
Doctor, Doctor by Lauren Grier and Melissa Bennett, School Stuff by Pamela Donnis for THE DIGI FILES 7, Teacher's Pet Alpha by Lauren Reid, fonts are Typewriter Scribble and Quicksand Dashed
Feeling good that I had now completed four layouts (for a total of 6 pages) with this kit, I started to close down all my files in PSE. As I was doing so, I came across the adorable little bandaids in the Doctor, Doctor kit and knew that I had one more layout to do. A little recoloring of the bandaids and I was good to go!
Doctor, Doctor by Lauren Grier and Melissa Bennett,Note paper by Pamela Donnis for THE DIGI FILES 7, fonts are Typewriter Scribbled and MTF Sweetie
So there you go -- one kit, five layouts, a total of 7 pages. If I paid $7.99 for the kit (in reality, I have no idea what I paid, but I do know that it is in the Penny Candy section at SSD right now), then I am at just over $1.00 a page. Not bad, eh? I loved the process of actually writing down stories that I wanted to use this specific kit for. It gave me guidance and focus. And because all of these stories are from different time periods, you would never notice in my album that I reused the same kit so many times. And I know that if we ever find ourselves in the hospital again, I already have a go-to kit ;)