Scrapbooking Terms

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ABC ALBUM: An album assembled using layouts representing each letter of the alphabet. For example: the A layout would have a large A and photographs, stickers and die cuts along with journaling and labeling highlighting the letter A
ACID : Acid is a substance found in paper that causes it to weaken and crumble. Skin and saliva are also acidic
ACID FREE : Many papers can be considered acid free immediately after manufacture however unless they have been buffered, i.e. treated with a neutralizing agent, chemical reactions with substances such as sizing or bleaching will cause the paper to become acidic over time. All plastic by its nature is acid free however some plastic is unsafe for use in photo albums
ACID FREE SCALE: The Acid Scale goes from 0-14. 0 is very acidic while 14 is very alkaline. 7 is considered acid free but a pH value of 8 is preferable for use scrapbooks
ACID MIGRATION: Acid migration occurs when something with acid is placed against an article that is acid free. Photographs mounted on acidic paper will weaken and crumble. Acidic memorabilia can be added to photo albums if encapsulated in polypropylene sleeves or placed on buffered card on a page underneath a protective sleeve
ADHESIVES: Product used to attach photographs and other components onto a scrapbook page. Adhesive types include photo corners (clear plastic stick on style or paper "lick and stick" style) which are considered to be non permanent, photo tape, photo tabs, tape runner (all forms of double sided tape) which are considered permanent but in actuality articles can be removed with slight damage to the album page, and glue which can be considered permanent and not recommended for adhering photographs
ALPHA CELLULOSE: The strongest and most stable of all plant fibers. Because of this stability it is used in permanent paper
APC: Altered Playing Card - decorated but still showing the original number and suit
ARCHIVAL QUALITY: A non-technical term which suggests that a substance is permanent, durable and chemically stable. There is no guarantee that this is the case. It is safer to look for acid free and lignin free when purchasing scrapbooking components
ATC: Artist's Trading Card - 2.5" x 3.5" cards decorated and traded with other artists
BORDER: The margins of a scrapbook page. Usually spoken of in terms of decoration brad wear: stickers of letters on top of brads
BUFFERED: Something that has been subjected to the addition of alkaline substances such as magnesium carbonate or calcium carbonate to prevent acids forming in the future due to chemical reactions
BULLET JOURNALLING: Journaling listed in point form. A fast style of journaling which can be used to describe events relating to the photograph but not necessarily in the photograph. A dot, sticker or whatever your heart desires denotes the start of each new point
CASE: Copy And Steal Everything!!! A term used by scrappers to describe the copying of layouts. Usually tongue in cheek. As someone copying your work is the height of flattery*. (note: submitting it for publication as our own work isn't.)
CIRCLE CUTTER: Tool used to create circles from photos and mounting paper. Cutter systems vary in type from tower to template style, fixed blade to separate knife systems. Different cutters suit different people so it is best to try a few before you commit to one
CORNER ROUNDER: A type of punch which rounds the corners or photos and mats. A very important tool for those who are working with photos from the 70s and 80s which came processed with rounded corners. Comes in plain or decorative styles
CROP: to be with other who enjoy scrapbooking; the act of scrapbooking
CROPPING: Cropping is the trimming of a photo to remove unnecessary sections. Cropping should be done to improve a photo not just to make a pretty shape. Cropping also allows for more photos to be added to a page. When cropping some attention should be paid to maintaining the historical integrity of a picture. Never crop out anything that identifies the time period in which the photo was taken
DEACIDIFICATION: This is a common term for a chemical treatment that neutralizes acid in paper and lays down an alkaline buffer to counteract further acid attack. Deacidification technically refers only to the neutralization of acid present at the time of treatment, not to the addition of a buffer. For this reason, the term is replaced with the more accurate phrase "neutralization and alkalization". Deacidification increases the chemical stability of paper but it does not restore strength or flexibility to brittle paper
DIE-CUT: A shape or letter cut from paper by machine using a die pattern
EYELET: Eyelets are small metal circles through which the laces are threaded on a pair of shoes. They are used in a scrapbook context as decoration and as a means to "rivet" components onto a page--mainly card stock
ENCAPSULATION: The process of placing a document (paper) between two sheets of transparent polyester film and sealing the sheets together at the edges. Encapsulation will protect your document from damage caused by handling, moisture, contact with acidic material and harmful chemicals. If papers are not de acidified before encapsulation a part of the edge should be left unsealed to help air circulate. Encapsulation is not the same as laminating as encapsulating is reversible. No adhesive is applied to the papers but just to the edge of the polyester
FIBER BASED PAPER: A paper used for a black and white photographic image print. Images printed on this are very stable. Unfortunately the processing and drying is time consuming which makes it expensive and the paper is not suitable for color images
GROUNDWOOD PAPERS: These are papers made with timber pulp and characterized by high lignin content, density, and high-speed printability. The pulp has relatively short fibers and the paper has a limited life
HERITAGE PHOTO: A photograph that is of special significance due to its age, rarity or/and historical importance
JAPANESE PAPERS: These are light but strong papers made in the orient from long fibers, such as mulberry. The lengths of the fibers gives the paper exceptional wear capability and beauty. Many are not acid free
JOURNALING: Journaling is writing down the Who, What, Where, When and Why of your photos. An important part of scrapbooking that is often skimmed over for reasons such as not wishing to ruin a page with bad handwriting or simply putting it off for later. Journaling should always be done using permanent, fade and water proof pens
LAMINATION: The coating of paper with a thin, translucent plastic. Lamination is considered unacceptable as a conservation methods due to the high heat and pressure used during application and its irreversibility
LIGHTFAST (or Color Fast or Fade Resistant): Colored paper or ink, which is resistant to fading with age or exposure to light, heat, and other unfavorable conditions
LIGNIN: A substance found naturally in the cell walls of plants. It is the reason that timber pulp manufactured papers turn brown and brittle. Newsprint only contains around 4% lignin. While it is becoming the norm for acid fee products to also be lignin free that is not always the case
LIGNIN-FREE: A product that contains no lignin. Lignin is either removed during processing to make paper safe or the paper is manufactured from a base material that is already lignin free such as cotton
LSS: An acronym for Local Scrapbooking Store. Often used on internet scrapbook boards
MAGNETIC ALBUMS: Also known as Peel and Stick albums these albums are not really magnetic. They have strips of adhesive on a backing card onto which the photos can be placed and then a page protector is used to cover the photo and any adhesive left exposed. Some magnetic albums have all three damaging components i.e. PVC, acid and lignin. Others are labeled as being photo safe. None-the-less they should be avoided as at the very least a fine layer of adhesive is placed onto the front of any photo put into a magnetic album
MAT: The placing of a photo for decorative effect onto cardstock cut slightly larger and then placed onto a scrapbook page
MEMORY OR KEEPSAKE ALBUM: Another term for scrapbook
MOUNT: The placing of a photo or memorabilia onto a scrapbook page using adhesive
MULBERRY PAPER: See reference under Japanese Papers
MYLAR: A reasonably hard wearing protective polyester covering that can be used to cover album pages or for memorabilia sleeves
NEUTRAL: Materials with a pH level of 7.0, meaning they are neither acidic nor alkaline
PAGE PROTECTOR: These are protective plastic sleeves which cover your scrapbook pages. They are available in a variety of sizes and can be side-loading to cover scrapbook pages that are bound or top loading which means that the protectors themselves are usually incorporated into the binding and require that the scrapbook pages be slipped into them. Polypropylene and Mylar are two of the most highly recommended plastics for protectors
PAPER DOLL: Die cut in the shape of a person. May be dressed and posed to match a layout
PAPER PIECING: The use of cut out shapes to produce a picture. Similar to appliqué, pieced paper pictures can range from very simple to complex, and can be a page decoration or constitute an entire layout
PERMANENT: What a material is if it will resist chemical deterioration
PHOTO CORNERS: A non permanent method of adhering photos to a page. Small triangles of plastic or card stock one for each corner are adhered to the page and the corners of the photo slotted in. The photo is held in place but may be easily removed for copying, etc.
PHOTO SAFE: A marketing term used for products sold for use with photos and memorabilia. As "photo safe" is an ambiguous term and one that is not regulated, it is preferable to select products clearly marked acid free, lignin free and PVC free
PHOTO SPLITS OR TABS: Double sided tape which should be acid free, lignin free and photo safe. Generally dispensed in one centimeter lengths. Considered permanent
POLAROID OR INSTANT PHOTOS: A photo that develops before your eyes. Until recently these were the least stable of photo types. They have improved but are still very prone to fading in light. Due to the nature of most of the prints they should not be cropped. Cropping may result in chemical seepage which will damage the print and may be harmful to skin and eyes
POLYETHYLENE: A chemically stable, transparent, food safe plastic used in photographic preservation materials
POWER PUNCH: Tool into which you can place a punch, apply pressure using a lever and create a punchie. A much easier way to create multiple punchies that using your thumb
PUNCH: A tool used to "punch" decorative shapes from paper or card stock
PUNCH ART: A decoration made up from punchies. The components may or may not have anything to do with the final art. For example, a flower may be made from overlapping heart shaped punchies in a circle with a small circle punchie in the center. Freehand cut a stalk and place leaf punchies along it. Punch art can be simple to quite elaborate
PUNCHIES: The paper shape which results from using a paper punch tool - not the hole left by the punch. Punchies can be used on a scrapbook page for decorative effect, if they have been punched from acid free, lignin free paper
PVC (POLYVINYL CHLORIDE): PVC is a common plastic which because it is chemically unstable releases a chlorine gas. When this gas settles onto a surface it turns into hydrochloric acid. This acid will cause photographs to fade and discolor
PVC-FREE: A product that does not contain any PVC (polyvinyl chloride)
QUILT ALBUM: An Album with a quilt style layout on every right hand page. Instead of fabric, paper pieced blocks are used. Usually a square format album such as a 12"x 12" is easier to use. "Stitching" is done by drawing in small lines with a black pen. Left hand pages have photos and journaling mounted to complement the facing quilt page and stitched borders and or mounts to pull the whole layout together
RAG BOARD/RAG PAPER: Board or paper made from material other than wood, such as cotton, which is naturally lignin free, stable and durable
RED EYE REDUCTION PEN: A pen used to cover the red eye effect sometime seen on photos taken with a flash. As pen types vary and this is a new technology it is not known if the use of a red eye pen will accelerate the deterioration of a photo in the area used
RESIN COATED PAPER: A paper used for both color and black and white images. The resin coating is actually two layers of polyethylene. This protective coating decreases drying time and offers some protection to a print however due to differing expansion rates of the paper and the coating cracking is more likely to occur. The images are also more susceptible to fading
SCRAPBOOKING: The tradition of taking photos, and memorabilia, and placing them in family keepsake albums along with relevant journaling
STICKERS: Self adhesive printed paper. Stickers for Scrapbooking should be marked as such. They should be acid free, and lignin free and have an adhesive which will not dry out or seep out around the edges. Never place a sticker on a photo. Even if the sticker is safe you are still doing something that may be irreversible
TEMPLATE: Plastic or card sheet with punched out shapes that can be used to crop photos and photo mounting paper into shapes. Some templates are suitable for drawing outlines or journaling lines. Tool used for straight cropping of photos and cardstock. Can come in guillotine, rotary or blade style
VELLUM: Once made from animal gut, vellum is now manufactured from wood fiber which is, to put simply, beaten until clear, or plastic. It has a wonderful translucent quality and is slow to absorb ink. Vellum is available in both acidic and non acidic forms
WAX PENCIL: A soft acid free pencil designed to write on glass, plastic and photographs. If used on the front of a print it will rub off but when used on the back will become permanent. Comes in all colors but blue is the color used most often by scrapbookers.



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