How often do you use your computer for your scrapbooking? Did you know that there are some very useful programs for scrapbookers that are easy to acquire and cost little to no money? Here are six of my favorites that I use almost every time I scrapbook.
1. Microsoft Word: While the full version of Word isn’t free, most computers come with Microsoft Word Starter already installed. This free version is more than adequate for basic word processing jobs. I use it for journaling, titles, labels, lists, and some printable embellishments. It is even possible to arrange a full sheet of photos in a Word document and print them out without using a graphics program.
2. Photo Sheet (Photility): Another free program that I find very useful is Photo Sheet. This is a small but very helpful little program. With it I can print two 3” x 4” photos on a 4” x 6” sheet with hardly any effort at all. I use this option quite often for Project Life, as well as when I just want some smaller photos for my other layouts. Photo Sheet also offers a number of other handy page and grid designs. You can find out more about this program, as well as download it, at http://www.photility.com/photosheet/.
3. Picasa: This free program is owned by Google and offers quite a bit for traditional scrapbookers, digital scrapbookers, and anyone who wants to share his/her photos online. It is a photo organizer, image viewer, and image editor. I frequently use it to create photo collages for my scrapbooks like the ones below. You can read more about Picasa and download it here: http://picasa.google.com/.
4. Photoshop Elements (Adobe): This versatile photo editing program costs around $119.99 ($79.99 to upgrade from an earlier version), and I use it several times a week. Not only do I edit my photos with it, but it also helps me get the most out of digital scrapbooking elements, create digital photo collages, and print my photos at home. I can get near-professional results when I use PSE to adjust the lighting, sharpness, and brightness of my photos. I also crop, enlarge, and print my photos in non-standard sizes. You can purchase and download PSE atwww.adobe.com.
5.Day One Journaling App (Bloom Built): I Love this app!! As a Project Lifer, this handy little journaling app is invaluable to me. I can take a picture on my iPhone, add some journaling, and have everything backed up on Dropbox. Then I can print everything from my phone using my wireless printer. This app works with the iPhone and iPad, and it costs $4.99. It’s the best $4.99 I’ve ever spent on an app. You can purchase and download Day One from the iTunes store.
6.Die-Cutting Software: There are several different programs available right now that work with electronic die-cutting machines. Some work only with a particular machine, while others are compatible with more than one machine. I use Sure Cuts A Lot (Craft Edge), and I use my die-cutting machine on almost every layout that I make. I cut titles from my computer’s fonts, shapes, journaling boxes, and other digital elements. I never have to worry about running out of letters, and I can cut them in almost any size I want. Other die-cutting programs include Make the Cut and Silhouette Studio (Silhouette America). They all accomplish basically the same tasks, and they are relatively inexpensive (approximately $49.99-$59.99). You can find electronic die-cutting machines in theScrapbook.com store.
These are only a few of the many software programs/apps that can be used in scrapbooking. While not all of them are free, many are inexpensive and all are well worth their cost. Since this is Computer Learning Month, why not give some of these handy apps a try when you create your next layout? “Appy” scrapping!