Preserving Memories: Tag Art, Masculine Decorations, Family Trees and Embellishments

By Patti Swoboda Premium


Add some holiday cheer to your family album with a popular scrapbooking technique: tag art. You can use handcrafted gift tags to personalize presents and preserve memories: First, create tags to dress up a package; then use the tags to identify the recipients and gift givers on scrapbook pages.

The tag on the page above is embellished with rubber stamps, but you can use punches, stickers, ribbons or whatever supplies you choose. Select papers in traditional colors. Mat your tags on complementary paper and trim with decorative-edge scissors. Holiday die-cut shapes make great tags, too. Remember to use acid-free products for better preservation.

You can even add pictures to the tags — the tag example at right incorporates sticker pictures taken with a Polaroid i-Zone instant pocketcamera (800-343-5000, <>). These tags show you whom the gift is to and from.


Creating masculine-looking scrapbook pages can be a challenge, but the right products can help. Victory Springs and Riley Mountain have joined together to create Heritage Memory Products just for the men in your albums. Choose from a selection of frames in architectural Victorian styles with intricate borders and silhouettes. Laser-cut in real maple, cherry and walnut woods, these masculine designs are photo-safe with acid-free backing. Ask for the “men’s line” at scrapbook and craft stores. (603) 588-7234


The 19th century brought us today’s most integral element of heritage albums: photography. Complement the unique look of your family’s early photos with these 1800s-style scrapbook products:


This fabric-covered scrapbook from Timeless Tapestry <> makes a great home for pre-1900s scrapbook pages.


Look for papers to represent 1800s styles and colors from Anna Griffin <> and K & Co. <>.


Imagine opening your heritage album to reveal a stunning display of your ancestors’ names, all nestled on a printed painting of a tree.Déjà Views’ Family Tree Kit lets you beautify your family’s branches with minimal effort (or artistic ability). The kit includes one 12× 12-inch acid-free, parchment-style cardstock page printed with a classic tree design and 24 oval tags for recording your ancestors, plus tips from the heritage issue of Memory Makers magazine. The $3.99 chart is an ideal solution for organizing and exhibiting your ancestry — on a page that fits your scrapbook perfectly. (800) 243-8419, <>

Digital-camera owners, you can print realistic photos on your home computer with llford’s Printasia paper for desktop printers. Choose the photo glossy finish for a shiny look or photo satin for an understated look. The papers are available in a range of sizes, from 4×6 to 13×19 inches; a pack of 20 8½×11 sheets retails for $9.99. Visit Printasia’s Web site for tips on how to take and print photos. (888) 727-4751, <>



Your family’s holiday gatherings are a prime opportunity to gather family history information. This year, try these ideas for sharing family fun and memories:

• Memory box — Place an open box, some pens and strips of paper on a table. Invite everyone to write down a special memory or phrase of a loved one on a strip of paper and place it in the box. Later, read the memory slips aloud and challenge everyone to guess whom the memory is about. Write the correct person’s name on the back of the paper strip. Preserve this information in your heritage album.

• Pass the picture — Dig out those old photographs of ancestors you can’t identify or don’t know much about. Pass the pictures around and ask people to name the mystery person in the photo and share memories and stories about these ancestors. (You may want to use photocopies to avoid damaging the original photos.) Journal this information in a scrapbook with the pictures.


Enhance the look of 1800s photographs with K & Co.’s adhesive photo corners <> and Mrs. Grossman’sPaper Whispers lace <>.


Add laser-cut frames and embellishments from Gina Bear <> for touches of elegance. Gold photo corners, Rubber Stampede’s nostalgic train and buggy stamps <> and Fiskars’ Victorian Paper Edgers <> also fit the era.

From the December 2002 issue of Family Tree Magazine