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Old 03-20-2004, 09:56 AM
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Make Scrapbooking Pay For Itself

As an avid scrapbooker you undoubtedly have a plethora of scrapbooking materials fit for a queen. Several polls have been taken to determine how much money the average scrapbooker spends annually. The consensus is that spending $500 per year on scrapbooking materials is not abnormal. In fact, most obsessive scrapbookers look at that figure and 1) wish they only spent that much in supplies or 2) Are in denial and actually spend much more! So how can you offset the cost of scrapbooking and make your genealogy hobby pay for itself? Here are a few ideas.

Although this is the most obvious way to cut down on your costs, you would be surprised how many scrapbookers don't take the time to enter. There are to many contests available to list but you will want to enter not only at your local scrapbook stores but also online. Most scrapbook online sites and group lists offer a contest. Prizes are usually scrapbook supplies or gift certificates from the store or sponsorship company.

Even though Scrapbooking comes easily to you and is something you enjoy keep in mind that it is not a creative success to others who attempt to organize their memories in this way. If you have the time and the talent, you can offer your scrapbook services for pay. Keep an open mind to bartering as well. Many scrapbookers moms have received free piano or dance lessons for their children, bartered scrapbooking for furniture upholstering, and more!

Your scrapbooking talents are not just knowing how to creatively preserve photographs, many scrapbookers have photography talent that can be put to work as well. Scrapbook magazines often purchase photography for their in-house designers to use. Even local scrapbook stores will often accept your duplicate or un-used pictures and offer you a discount in exchange as well.

You probably already know if your scrapbook talents are good enough to teach, muster up the confidence to give it a try. Teaching at your local scrapbook store can offer pay, a discount (usually 10-35%) on scrapbook supplies or even a percentage of the students tuition. As with any contract, its usually negotiable! Some stores offer a % of the class fee anywhere from 1/2 to 40% or more. Be sure you understand who will be expected to provide the class materials and who is expected to advertise the classes being held. More students will undoubtedly sign up if you write up a good description and have samples for people to see that it will fill up. Teaching opportunities can be found in many different places but you can start by calling the recreational department, after school program director, local churches or youth summer camps! For best results focus your class on a specific aspect of scrapbooking. Classes can be tailored for beginning or advanced. Valerie Brincheck is a published designer for Creating Keepsakes Magazine as well as a Fiskars demonstrator, she suggests themes for classes including punch art, heritage pages, paper dolls, moving pages, lettering & die-cuts.

This is a relatively new concept in scrapbooking. Basically students sign up online and pay a fee just as any other class is held. However, you are given a password and link to meet in a chat room during the scheduled class time. Valerie explains how her online classes work " I type out directions as they follow along. (They can attend as many classes as they like) Some do the project, other watch and ask questions, and still others just pop in to say hi. The rest do the project on their own, without ever coming into the classroom. The directions are very clear and so far no one has had trouble doing them on their own."

Valerie explains that you may need to provide specific materials for your project that can be mailed ahead of time to students. It is also a good idea to have a "previous classes page" where students have continued access to the project instructions. Check out Valerie's upcoming on-line classes

If your home allows room to spread out, you may consider holding a crop at your own home or rent a space for the event. Crops can be small events or big extravaganza's! Some retreats include food, lodging, entertainment, cropping classes, contests and drawings or product demonstrations!

Scrapbooking magazines have a submission guideline on the inside cover of their publication. You can also find the address and requirements of several publications at once by checking out the "Writers Guide 2001" at your local library and look under the hobbies and craft section. Other than the big scrapbook publications, many home craft magazines publish an annual scrapbooking segment as well.

Scrapbook pages are not the only thing you can submit to magazines. You undoubtedly have gained a tremendous amount of knowledge about this craft that could be shared through article writing. Magazines generally pay anywhere from .5 cents per word to over $2.00 per word for established writers. Most online publications do not offer much in the way of a paycheck but don't rule them out. If you have a product to sell, website or newsletter to advertise, offering free use of your article in publications can give you valuable advertising in the "Author Byline" section following your article. Be sure to read the fineprint of all contracts offered to protect your copyright.

Scrapbook companies often need design work to include in their advertisements showing layouts of creative ways to use their product. Your chances of being published increase if you have an original way of using the product or if the product is fairly new on the market. Keep track of which products you use in your layouts and contact each specific company with color copies of your work.

Companies that create scrapbook products often hire product demonstrators to show other crafters how to effectively use the products. This is similar to design work but generally includes hands-on quick projects you show the consumer. Often Scrapbook stores will need extra help at scrapbook conventions in demonstrating products or offering make and take items.

There are many online auctions that take little money or are free to list your used or new scrapbooking supplies. Personally I have seen paper piecing sell for several dollars each making it a profitable way to pay for your hobby. E-Bay is a popular choice but is an excellent resource and although not as well known, is completely free to buy and sell from.

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