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Coffee Hour March 2006: Modern Scrap Booking

Author: Tsukuba Information Center, Issue: March 2006, Topic: Coffee Hour

This is a regular event hosted by the Tsukuba Information Center usually on the 4th Wednesday of the month.

For centuries, people have been recording history, their own, their friends and families, and their country’s, through scrap booking. In the years before photographs, families collected memorabilia in sturdy books often made with cardboard and wall paper. These collections included newspaper clippings, birth announcements, baby teeth, pressed flowers, greeting cards, diary entries. In 17th century Germany, for example, girls would often clip locks of each other’s hair and weave them together in intricate designs, then store them in scrap books as tangible examples of their interwoven lives. American author Mark Twain designed nearly 60 scrapbooks, with his patented self stick design, selling them through Montgomery Ward catalogues. My own father has the original newspapers stored from the days of Kennedy’s assassination to September 11th. Famous scrap bookers include Thomas Jefferson and Queen Victoria. Scrap booking is a meld of personal journaling, family heritage, history, and collage art.

Most recently, scrap booking has found a revival in popularity as dozens of companies have brought a new approach to this centuries-old hobby. Sturdy albums, fantastic paper choices, and the mass availability of such products has blown the dust off of Grandma’s photo album and made this pastime the number one most popular hobby in America. Number One. And now, scrap booking, in its latest incarnation, has jumped across the pond, and the current trend continues to thrive the world over. Now, with the influx of digital cameras, the internet, and user-friendly graphic design programs, the hobby has gone high-tech. Some people opt for digital-only alternatives, posting their family photos complete with graphics and text, in online albums. Others marry the two approaches, using traditional paper and glue albums with computer generated layouts and backgrounds.

Scrap booking is an enjoyable hobby. Mark Twain devoted every Sunday to it! But more than that, it’s a productive hobby; making albums that your family and friends can enjoy browsing through, recollecting and remembering.

Please join me, Heather Bradford, at the Coffee Hour this March and learn more about how to get started in this great pastime.

<< Child Care Center | Master Index | Evening Forum March 2006: A Brief Introduction to an Even Briefer Poetic Form >>

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