Over the last few years I gradually moved from making mostly 12x12 pages to 8.5 x 11. Here in Australia, wide format printers are expensive and not easily available, so as a digital scrapbooker it was nice to have a finished, printed page for my album rather than storing up pages for batch printing a few times a year at Persnickety Prints. I also just started to favour starting with the rectangle page over the large square (and found it much easier, physically, to flick through my 8.5x11 albums than the big 12x12 ones).
When Ali Edwards first introduced 6x8 Story Book Albums to her store earlier this year, I immediately ordered three. I had made a lot of 6x8 projects over the years - a couple of December Daily albums, some photo books and Project Life one year - and the albums can be hard to find. I had never even considered making day-to-day scrapbook pages that size until I saw Ali doing that in her class content, it just seemed more a project size to me.
One afternoon I decided to give 6x8 a go and made this hybrid spread about my work space using various digital elements from Ali's kits (including the Hybrid class).
I printed it out, stuck some letter stickers on and called it done. I quickly made another using the Build kit about my son's Lego and was hooked. That first month, I put 21 layouts into my little greige book (I counted). Amazing! I would have been lucky to make 21 layouts in the whole of 2016. I started sharing in the Facebook group and Instagram, singing the praises of 6x8 like a crazy person.
It's been five months since I made that first little layout and my first album is almost full.
I've been trying to distill what it is about these pages that has reinvigorated my love for scrapbooking. Obviously, it's a size thing. These layouts are just so cute, like they have been shrunken down, and I love flipping through this little book. The mini size means less room to work with but as a minimalist, that totally works for me. I don't really need more room to tell my stories. I'm getting down to the essence of what I want to say and which elements support the story.
There is something less intimidating and formal about this size. I feel like I am free to make a page about anything, things I probably would have felt were not significant enough to dedicate a whole 12x12 page to if that makes sense. I've made pages about my favourite cardigan, the freezer burritos I make my husband for work, a really good burger I cooked for dinner one night and how much I was looking forward to Twin Peaks being back. These little everyday stories make me so happy.
In terms of design, I'm used to the rectangle shape of 8.5x11 so it's just a matter of shrinking everything down a bit. I am a big fan of full page photos in scrapbooking, so 6x8 is a perfect size for that. A full 12x12 or even 8.5 x 11 photo is HUGE so I use that technique sparingly at that size (it needs to be a great photo for me to enlarge to a full 12x12), but at 6x8 I'm making so many double spreads. It's not difficult to come up with a full page of journalling on the opposing side compared to the bigger sizes, where a full page of journaling is a lot.
I'm so thankful to have tried something new that ended up working for me. Something I need to remember in other parts of my life too!