Think about the techniques you enjoy using. Do you like rubber stamping, collage, using premade embellishments, or simply preserving your memories with photos? Apply those techniques to alter other items.
- Altered Mint Tins- try making a ‘mini scrapbook page’ on the outside of a small tin. You can buy these at craft stores, or you can buy Altoids, eat the mints, and just clean out the tin. Cover the outside and inside of the tin with paper (scraps work well), and add ribbon, stickers, or paper piecings. These are the perfect size to hold a tiny scrapbook, a gift card, candy, or a small calendar. For the outdoorsman, these are great little first aid kits.
- Altered CD Tins- these are sold at craft stores. You can cover the outside in fancy paper, and include a homemade CD inside. Or, you can cover a CD with scrapping supplies and tie a ribbon through the hole to make an ornament. (You can sometimes find free CDs).
- Altered Lunchbox Tins- You can cover a lunchbox with fancy papers and embellishments. Blank lunchboxes can be found at craft stores, but they are expensive. You can find old lunchboxes at garage sales, and small lunchboxes filled with candies are available- cheaply- at most megastores like Target or Wal-Mart. These are nice to make recipe boxes, address boxes, greeting card organizers, or put a small scrapbook in.
- Altered Coffee Cans- Save those empty coffee cans, Baby Formula Cans, or International Flavor tins. These can be covered in collage, and are perfect to put homemade hot cocoa mix in, since they are food safe. The large, Maxwell House cans fit markers and pens perfectly. You can even fold up a t-shirt in these. Just make sure you clean them well.
- Greeting Cards- these are a great way to use tiny scraps of paper. You can buy premade blank cards at craft or megastores, or you can fold cardstock into cards. At card stores, you can pay up to $5 for a mass-produced greeting card, but wouldn’t your family prefer a handmade card.
- Tags- You can make gift tags the same way you make tags for your scrapbook pages.
- French Fry Containers- go to your local Fast Food restaurant and ask for an empty, clean french fry holder. Carefully take it apart and trace the container on cardstock. Cut it out, decorate it, and put it together. These are nice to hold homemade foods, like Biscotti or chocolate lollipops, or cocoa mix. Just put the food in a cello bag, so it won’t get grease on the paper.
- Bookmarks- everyone can use a bookmark. Cut a strip of heavy cardstock into a 2inch by 5inch piece. Add a tassel and some pretty paper. You may want to use a laminate to stregthen the bookmark.
- Clipboards, Cork Boards, and Composition Books- Start by painting the clipboard and the border of the cork board with acrylic paint. Add a sheet of paper to the front and back of the clipboard using Mod Podge (available at craft stores for under $4 a jar), then pile on whatever papers, embellishments and photos you want. Cover the front and back covers of the composition book with papers and paint the spine with acrylic. You can also cover small cans to make matching pencil cups. This would be beautiful on a desk, and a great gift for a college student or office worker. With Back-to-School sales, you can get composition books for as little as a quarter or fifty cents.
That’s not all!! Try making checkbook covers, pins or buttons, plastic storage bins, desk blotters, photo frames…
If it can have glue put on it, you can scrapbook on it. Try different things, see how they turn out. Most of all, don’t think all you can scrapbook is an actual scrapbook.
There are many web sites out there that sell these materials, but always check a dollar store first to get great bargains.