Hey there! Noreen from OrganizedandCreativeMom.com here to share some ideas for using two fabulous new Paper Packs from Creative Memories – Rustic Manor and Sky & Water. These collections include gorgeous photographic background papers that can be a bit intimidating to use. Creative Memories Swim and Soar and Find Beauty Everywhere Scrapbooking Collections by Creative MemoriesThese amazing collections feature beautifully photographic background papers that include images of water, sky, beaches, clouds, the Northern Lights, trees, foliage, moss, marble, and wood grains. I don’t know about you, but I’ve always been a little apprehensive about using these types of papers…I mean, the background images are so lovely, why would you cover them up? On top of that usually, there are no specific embellishments that coordinate with the papers. It always seemed kind of daunting, so I’ve steered clear of these papers in the past. But when I saw these new papers, I knew I had to challenge myself to use them, and I love the results! Here are a few tips I discovered for using these types of papers:

  • Let the papers shine! I quickly figured out that you don’t need to add more paper – just photos and some embellishments. Pretty easy actually!
  • For maximum impact, choose photos that make sense with the theme of the paper. (For example, my beach photos just wouldn’t look “at-home” on a marble or woodgrain background.)
  • Set off your photos by clustering them or matting them so they stand out from the background. For two of my layouts, I printed my photos in 3” x 4” size so I could add several photos to the layout yet still see a good portion of the background paper.
  • Hunt in your stash for embellishments that coordinate with your theme. For the beach theme layout, I used leftover mat cards, stickers, and embellishments from the Sun-Kissed Collection, and for the flying and outdoor layouts, I chose items from the Gallivant Collection.
  • Add some solid papers to break up the papers with over-all patterns (like those with water, trees, woodgrain or foliage), or treat them as you would any textured/patterned paper and cut them up to add to layouts

Here are a few layouts using these awesome photographic background papers.
First up, I chose the beach paper from the Sky & Water Pack – an aerial shot of the sea and shore with lots of little people frolicking on the beach and in the waves. Photographic Background Paper by Creative Memories for 12X12 Scrapbook Layouts Designed by Noreen Smith | Creative Scrapbooker MagazineI matted several 4” x 3” photos on coral “flamingo” paper from the Sun-Kissed Paper Pack and placed them over the water portion of the paper, letting the beach scene along the top to act as a border. I added a text sticker to each photo in a zig-zag pattern to direct the eye down the page to my title sticker and journaling at the bottom. Photographic Background Paper by Creative Memories for 12X12 Scrapbook Layouts Designed by Noreen Smith | Creative Scrapbooker MagazinePhotographic Background Paper by Creative Memories for 12X12 Scrapbook Layouts Designed by Noreen Smith | Creative Scrapbooker MagazineFor the next layout, I chose a paper with blue sky and lots of clouds to highlight a couple of photos taken from an airplane window.  Photographic Background Paper by Creative Memories for 12X12 Scrapbook Layouts Designed by Noreen Smith | Creative Scrapbooker MagazineI matted the photos on the neutral map paper from the Gallivant Paper Pack and clustered them together in the centre of the paper. I added some stickers and die-cuts to reinforce the travel theme, then punched a strip of airplanes with the Jumbo Jet Border Maker Cartridge and the Original Border Maker System from another paper that picked up the mustard color in the embellishments. Photographic Background Paper by Creative Memories for 12X12 Scrapbook Layouts Designed by Noreen Smith | Creative Scrapbooker MagazinePhotographic Background Paper by Creative Memories for 12X12 Scrapbook Layouts Designed by Noreen Smith | Creative Scrapbooker MagazineAnd for the last layout, I used the trees paper from the Rustic Manor Paper Pack to showcase some photos of my family’s zip-lining adventure! I could see the photos would easily get lost on the all-over pattern of the trees, so I used the orange toned paper from the Rustic Manor pack as well. Photographic Background Paper by Creative Memories for 12X12 Scrapbook Layouts Designed by Noreen Smith | Creative Scrapbooker MagazineI trimmed a large piece of the orange paper, ripping one edge for a bit of rustic texture, and clustered my 3” x 4” photos onto it in a grid pattern. I added a strip of tree stickers above and below the photos along with a couple of embellishment clusters. I trimmed one of the cards from the Gallivant Variety Mat Pack that had a great quote and placed a die-cut word title above it. I loved how the tree paper below peeked through the open letters of the title, so I punched out a small border strip using the Arrow Border Maker Cartridge from a piece of coordinating gray paper to repeat that look. Photographic Background Paper by Creative Memories for 12X12 Scrapbook Layouts Designed by Noreen Smith | Creative Scrapbooker MagazinePhotographic Background Paper by Creative Memories for 12X12 Scrapbook Layouts Designed by Noreen Smith | Creative Scrapbooker MagazineI hope these tips encourage you to try some photographic background papers in your layouts! All Creative Memories products featured in these projects are available in Canada on my CM website, and you can find advisors in the US and other countries by using the Advisor Lookup feature. Please drop by my blogFacebook group, YouTube Channel or my Instagram feed for more ideas and inspiration – I create layout sketches, cards and other projects which showcase Creative Memories products & tools on a regular basis.

Happy Scrapping!

Noreen Smith | Creative Scrapbooker Magazine
Noreen Smith

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  1. ABSOLUTELY LOVE, LOVE, LOVE these layouts! The photographic papers are intimidating to work into album pages for fear of overwhelming photos. These 3 ideas are super helpful in imagining my memories with these GORGEOUS designer papers! THANK YOU!!