Well, no matter if I'm packing for an evening crop, a weekend retreat or a long road trip, I approach it the same way - I take some time to pre-plan and make PAGE KITS. These little babies are lifesavers for scrapping on the go and make the most efficient use of both packing space and scrapping time! They contain everything you need to make a page all in one neat little package. Let me show you how I made them up ahead of time...
1) Sort through photos from your to-be-scrapped photo album, pile or box. Select some that you think you want to use on a layout (you don't need to know exactly which of the photos you are going to use - just keep a group of potentials together so you have some options). I know I want to create a page using these Stampede photos of Grayson and Shane...just not sure which ones will make the cut.
2) Next have a look through your supplies and choose some papers or a collection that coordinates with the colors, theme or subject matter of the photos. Also pull out any stickers, embellishments and title or letter stickers that might work. Again...you don't need to know exactly which ones you are using - just set a few aside for consideration.
3) If you like to start a layout with a sketch or page plan, choose one or two that have approximately the same number of photos you think you will be using. Photocopy the sketch to add to your kit or draw a rough copy of it on a scrap piece of paper to refer to on the road. I have a friend who takes this a step further - she copies any sketches she thinks she may want to use into a small notebook and takes the notebook with her to crops and retreats so she has lots of inspiration!
4) Now consider all the photos and supplies you have set aside. Ask yourself if they will all work together. Do you need to add anything else? Put something back? Can you pre-cut or punch something now so you don't have to haul all your larger, heavier tools with you? Here's my final selections to bring with me...the photos, some paper and stickers from an older CM power palette called Discover, some stars pre-punched from coordinating solid paper and a couple of possible journal boxes.
5) Once you have pretty much settled on all the elements for the layout, you'll need to package them up into a page kit. You can use an extra large manila envelope or zip-loc bag you may have around the house, or purchase reusable poly "craft keepers" that have string closures. I like to use zip-loc bags - no little pieces can escape if my scrapbook bag gets turned over, and the contents are protected from any spills that might happen. (I realized afterwards that I didn't have my page plan inside, so I tucked it inside at the last minute!)
Make as many page kits as you like or think you'll have time to scrapbook. Since I have been putting these together now for several years, it only takes me a few minutes to make each kit. I brought about 6 with me so I have a choice as to what I want to work on. If I don't use all the kits I can save them for the next crop I go to, or just use them when I get back home...once you make up the kit you are ready to scrapbook on a moments notice!
6) Finally, gather all your essential tools. For me this includes a tape runner, precision point adhesive, foam squares, scissors & multi-purpose tool, a corner rounder, paper trimmer, a black and brown journaling pen, a pencil and eraser and a ruler. With the exception of the paper trimmer, I pack my tools in a Daisy Case which keeps them all together and easy to use on my work surface, even if that is just a small hotel desk or table!
7) Now pack it all up in a scrapbook tote that will keep the page kits accessable, safe and wrinkle free. I used my Daisy Weekender Bag - it has plenty of room for my kits, tools, a magazine or two for further inspiration or easy reading, and a padded section that is intended to protect an album but works equally well for my computer. It's perfect for scrapbooking on the road!
Although I'll be scrapping on a balcony overlooking the ocean for the next few days, I'll still be posting - I'll be continuing the Christmas in July series here on the blog and if I get a chance to photograph the layouts I create en route, I'll post them too!