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This article is written by Ann Strecko Koeman
While I attended the last Craft and Hobby Association Conference and Trade Show in Anaheim, California in the United States, I often heard the following phrase: “Scrapbooking is dead.” Now, I also heard several people bemoan that statement and even express complete denial, while others nodded in agreement and expressed their own agreement.
Although I do believe that the commercial and retail aspects of selling scrapbooking supplies has reached its peak and is quickly declining as so many fads do, I don’t believe it will completely disappear. After all the concept of collecting and cataloguing memories in paper form has been around since the invention of paper, it also continues to be essential to our existence and to the history of our future generations. Although the accumulation and collection of memories is done differently these days and appears to be the wave of the future. We take a lot more digital images now and record a lot more of our experiences, we just do it differently.
So what are we to do with all of those tools and supplies we have invested in over the decades? I say, keep them and use them. If however you have chosen to completely give up on anything handmade then please send your unwanted tools to another loving home. But if you are reading this, I gather that you still have a love for the handmade process. Mixed Media artists now is the time to take advantage of all those clearance sales and cast offs of unwanted scrapbooking tools. Just because a tool or supply is marketed to be sold in one market does not mean it cannot be used in another. Over the years I have collected a variety of skills and thus a vast collection of tools including an overpriced collection of intended for scrapbooking tools. I am keeping my best tools for my Mixed Media work. As a Mixed media artist any supply is game and any tool is game. I will use my straight edge 12 inch trimmers, my punches, and even my page layout guides in my art. I still need to cut things, make shapes, and those plastic page layout guides, well they make great stencils!
As for all those 12 x 12 papers I have collected, they are great in mixed media making, especially in making my own books. so are those stickers they make great masks. All those embellishments are just that, embellishments. I am also hanging on to my old scrapbooking supplies and tools because I am way behind in my memory album keeping. For example I have yet to finish my now 18 year old son’s baby album! In the mean time I am having fun collecting more of my neighbours unwanted out of date scrapbook papers, and buying out lots of discontinued embossing folders at low prices. Scrapbooking may be a dying fad but Mixed media art making is very much alive.
Ann loves to collect and organize as many tools and supplies as possible because she is always making things. Incredibly she finds a use for most of her collections. She enjoys making Mixed Media Art because it allows her to use all her skills and collections.