Friday, September 14, 2012

Tips to save money on Digital Scrapbooking

Digital scrapbooking is becoming increasingly more popular over the past few years. While it certainly is less expensive than making traditional paper scrapbooks, it still can become a rather pricey hobby. Fortunately, there are many ways to save money doing this digital craft and still come out with amazing looking pages and layouts.

Here are just a few tips to help you save money on digital scrapbooking supplies:

1. Use Free

Open Source Software or Other Low Cost Alternatives: The most popular choice for digital scrapbooking is Photoshop - however the latest version of Photoshop CS5 costs several hundred dollars, which is out of the budget for many. Fortunately, Photoshop Elements does nearly all the same things and is priced much more reasonably. If that is out of your budget, there are also free graphic editing programs such as GIMP that also work well for making digital scrapbooking pages.

2. Stockpile on Freebies

There are tons of freebies out there for items, the main disadvantage to this is you can waste a lot of time searching, as well as you can never be too sure about the quality. Another problem with this is that you might not get a full kit to work with, but only little bits and pieces here and there. Still, there are lots of great freebies out there, so it may be worth the extra effort.

3. Join a Creative Team

Did you know designers will give you free scrapbooking kits in exchange for you making layouts with them to show on their blog and other websites? It helps the designer promote their latest kit, and you get some great scrapbooking supplies without the price! Many designers will post their calls, or of course if there is a designer you admire you can always ask them if they are looking for any new creative team members.

4. Sign Up for Club Memberships

Most sites sell individual kits for $5-$8 each. This can really start to add up month after month! One way to save and still get great quality items is by signing up for scrapbooking club memberships, which can save you hundreds of dollars each year! Most clubs range between $5 a month to $35 for a full year unlimited access, so this is well worth every penny!

5. Do Not Steal Supplies

Designers each day work very hard to make great looking kits and designs for their customers. If you steal supplies from illegal file sharing websites or share downloads with someone else, this not only can get you in big trouble legally (up to 5 years in prison and a $250,000 fine in the US!) it can also make the designer have to raise their prices or worse, stop making kits completely.

6. Reuse Items in a Creative Way

One of the best aspects of digital scrapbooking is that you have endless possibilities with the way you use your supplies. Perhaps you could recolor an item to match your photograph or blend two papers you have together for something different.

7. Participate in Challenges and Chats for Coupons

Many designers participate in chats and challenges where they will give you a coupon for submitting a layout you make with their product. Just be certain that it is something you really enjoy and that the coupon would not cause you to spend more money than you might have spent without a coupon!

Digital scrapbooking is a great hobby to get into, and it does not have to cost a lot to get started. With these tips, you'll be making fantastic looking pages at the fraction of the cost in no time!

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