Scrapbooking, to me, seems like one of those things that has gotten really excessive. Layouts and embellishments have to be perfect - there's a constant pressure to get those photos printed and arranged just right. I know a lot of people who dread scrapbooking because it's so much work! Their photos pile up and they get more and more behind which makes it harder and harder to get motivated to begin.
I didn't want to dread scrapbooking, I wanted to love it. Project Life appealed to me since it was so simple - print photos, stick them in the photo pages, and journal about the photos on 4x6 cards that fit in the pages alongside the photos. But Project Life products are a little pricey and you are a little limited in designs. (Later this year, Project Life is releasing a beautiful new collection designed by one of my favorite bloggers, Elise!)
I was on the fence about Project Life. I wanted to do it but getting started seemed intimidating since there was so much to buy and the products go in and out of stock.
As I was looking through scrapbooking products on Amazon, I started seeing Smash Book products. I was intrigued and started looking into it more. I kinda like messy things and for as long as I can remember, I have loved collaging. As a teenager, I collaged anything I could get my hands on including a wooden chair and the light switch plate in my room. Loving collages so much sparked my interest in Smash Book.
A Smash Book can be anything you want it to be. There are people who follow prompts and "smash" on a particular topic each day and there are people who use it as an art journal. For me, I just smash photos and souvenir scraps and document our life. It's so fun and allows me to be as creative as I want to be.
I smash about once a week - I have a little storage tub with all my smash supplies stored inside. I use scrapbook paper, paper scraps, some embellishments, washi tape, etc... anything that I feel like using. My layouts don't have to be perfect (I love not being a perfectionist!) - I just want to write down what we do and how I feel and what's going on in our lives. I've never been great at journaling and this helps me take time to reflect.
The fun thing about Smash Book is that the books are all themed and the pages all have designs on them already. I sometimes cover up the pre-printed designs and sometimes I leave them as-is. In the above wedding spread, I incorporated the flowered background into my design. Sometimes I cover the entire page in scrapbook paper, like with the Ollie spread. I wanted to be able to control the colors on those pages... but sometimes I just keep the original pages and smash all over them. I have complete creative control and I love it!
Stay tuned tomorrow for a very fun Smash Book prize pack giveaway!! I can't wait to share Smash Book with a friend. :)
Oh, and for a behind the scenes look at creative chaos... this is what it looks like in our living room when I smash:
It's a mess - but it's a fun mess!
Edited to add:
The best part about my smashing is that when I'm done with whatever pages I did, Andy takes the book from me and reads aloud what I smashed in a HILARIOUS voice. It makes even the serious pages seem funny. :)
Also --- This post is not sponsored by Smash Book at all! I just love smashing. I've been telling my friends about it for months, so I'm excited to be able to really show people what it is! Tomorrow's giveaway is provided partly by me and partly by Smash after I contacted them to see if they would be interested in doing a giveaway.