Are you looking to save a little money? Crafting can be expensive! If you're like me, you're always feeling a little budget conscious so to help you, I’ve compiled a list of ways to scrapbook on a budget and another list on how to scrapbook for free.
My husband and I have set some pretty strong financial goals for ourselves in the years we’ve been married. Our goals affect all areas of our lives, including my crafting hobbies! This year, I really delved into the world of creating and found that it's easy to want to make trips to the craft store or purchase items I see online. I found myself wanting to buy “all the pretty things”. After a month or two, I had to slow down and rethink my process. Memory keeping is a creative outlet for me and while it is a very purpose-driven hobby, I knew I needed to find ways to still enjoy my hobby and preserve our memories without breaking the bank!
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How to Scrapbook on a Budget:
1. Use what you already have.
If you’re like me, you’ve been crafting for a while… Chances are, you’ve got a little stash of supplies laying around. Use it! I took one afternoon to sort through all my scrapbooking/craft supplies and pull out things that I either really loved, forgotten I had (don’t laugh!), or would like to use. I then added them all into my raskog cart where they would be “in sight, in mind” so I could use them regularly. I now do this every few months and call it shopping my stash (see what I did here for my #LittleSummerJOY album). In fact, whenever I start a new project, I shop my own stash first before going online or to the store.
2. Use items from around your home.
Ok, you know those loose buttons that you find in the laundry and have NO IDEA what they came from? Those make great embellishments! No seriously, sometimes just browsing around my home I find all sorts of things I can multipurpose with. Not long ago I found some cute tags I’d bought at Target for gift wrapping, never used, and well they made their way into my album. In addition, you’re more likely to find tools you can use - scissors, binders, page protectors, paint supplies, markers, and if you’re lucky enough to find a wood burning kit you can use it if you don’t have a Fuse tool yet! (Seriously, I used my wood burner for nearly a year before I won this Fuse tool in an Instagram giveaway!)
3. Buy only what you NEED.
This was a big one for me. I had to stop myself from going into my local Hobby Lobby, Michael's, and Target (darn that dollar spot!) on any given whim. Whenever I go to just look, I end up buying. So I started only going into the craft stores when I need something and I do my best to stick to my budget and not buy additional things. You know that old, “Do I NEED it or do I WANT it?” phrase? Yeah, it works. This is also the reason I don't subscribe to any monthly kits. I find for the money spent, I can easily collect my own things and not have excess left over.
4. Utilize Sales and Coupons!
My budget (and my husband) really appreciate that I buy things on sale or with a coupon. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I paid full price for a craft item. When I NEED something, I make a shopping list. I wait to get that item until it is on sale or until I have a coupon for it. I usually shop at Hobby Lobby and Michael's who both have coupons regularly. I like to use the RetailMeNot.com app on my iPhone for when I’m shopping because of the hundreds of retailers it accesses, but you can also find coupons on most store's websites or mobile apps. Warning: A sale is not a good excuse to buy more than you NEED. It’ll get you in trouble every single time. Just get what you need and for heaven’s sake, get out.
5. Minimize What You Use
I’m a huge fan of keeping things simple. In fact, less is always more around my home. This concept is growing more and more popular in today’s society. Even Becky Higgins has been talking about it after reading Marie Kondo's book, "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up". Minimizing what you use, means keeping your “stuff” at a minimum. For me and my crafting, that means doing a little planning ahead. If I plan to buy only certain items that coordinate well, it is easier for me to not spend outside my budget. Therefore, I have planned to use only certain kinds of embellishments, determined black and white as base colors, and stuck to a certain size and style of pocket page protectors.
6. Generate an Income
A surefire way keep the budget happy is to add money into it. Some ways to do that are to sell what you don’t plan to use - either in packages or by creating something to sell. Check out Caylee Grey’s instasale idea here.
7. Split purchases with friends or borrow from friends!
If you’re fortunate enough to have crafty friends, consider making purchases with them and splitting the merchandise. My mom and I do this pretty often and it works out well for the both of us when buying something that will include more than what we need. In addition, if there’s a tool you really can’t afford to buy, think about borrowing it from a friend first to try it out and see if you like it before you purchase it. In addition, if its a toll for just a one time use, why not borrow and return vs. purchase?
8. Lastly, consider digital.
Digital kits are fantastic… Since I began using the hybrid method, I’ve found that my supplies go farther because I only print what I need, I can use the designs over and over again, and I can use them on multiple types of projects!
Those are my go to ideas for now! I’m certain there are many more!
I would love for you to comment below and share what ways have you found to save!