Scrapbooking Secrets

Scrapbooking Secrets

Salvaging unsafe scrapbooks and dos and don'ts

Salvaging Secrets

Use these tips from Jeanne English and Al Thelin, authors of Saving Our Scrapbooks (Creating Keepsakes), to salvage old albums:

Creating backups: Make color copies of the pieces you want to use, or scan them into a computer. Print with permanent powder toner and printer ink on acid- and lignin-free paper. To back up old photos, have a professional photo lab or restoration service make new negatives and prints.

Rescuing photos: For glued-on photos, place the page face-down on the table. Use a blow dryer on the lowest setting to soften the glue, then slowly peel the paper from the back of the photo with a knife. Use dental floss and a knife to lift photos from magnetic-album pages.

Dismantling documents: If newspaper clippings, letters or other paper documents have been glued with acrylic adhesive, a remover called un-du (Doumar Products, 888-289-8638, <>) will help. Older albums probably used animal-based glue, so you may have to settle for copies.

Safe Scrapbooking Do’s and Don’ts

Golden Rule

Don’t cause any permanent damage to your irreplaceable images.


• Use scrapbook-safe materials.

• Use copy photos, placing originals in storage.

• Enhance the value of your album by labeling images.

• Use photographs that are of good quality.

• Create a lasting work that future generations can enjoy.


• Use magnetic albums with adhesive pages.

• Crop original photographs.

• Write on the front of images.

• Include images that are of poor quality or in disrepair.

• Place adhesive directly on an image or attach cutouts.
 From the December 2000 issue of Family Tree Magazine

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