TWO things I had almost forgotten about.


Anybody remember these little video clips we made for Simple?

This clip shows that I have on too much makeup.
It also talks about personal style and the importance of practicing imperfection and being authentic.

Watching this reminded me how much I miss Simple Scrapbooks, which reminded me about …


This article that I wrote for Scrapbook & Cards Today. It was not printed.

I attempted to illustrate three progressively more valuable pages, moving from a desire to include photos and get pages done (good) to event-based pages that share a unique perspective (better) to pages that pull from various moments and memories to reveal the meaning behind photos and events (best.) This of course is MY OPINION, but one that I felt important to share because I *think* a lot of people start scrapbooking and with magazines and online galleries as inspiration (sadly) work to create pages that aren’t that satisfying in the long run. I have worked from the beginning to grant scrapbookers the permission to step outside the lines of what seems acceptable/trendy and focus on the stories they most want to tell. I am still working through Big Picture Classes to educate people about what we can do that is truly unique and valuable.

I completely understand the pressures and challenges of running a magazine and the need to balance readers’ needs against advertisers’ needs. I also understand the demands of best-practices in print media (which BTW, are quickly unraveling in our new economy of collaborative consumption.) In this particular case the editors chose not to print my article (the first layout isn’t that pretty and doesn’t use the latest product) and they posted it online instead. I don’t think this was the right thing to do. I’ve thought long and hard about this and whether my disappointment was just my ego getting in the way, but I don’t think so.

I *think* when you have a voice — you have an opportunity to be authentic. You have an opportunity to influence. You have an opportunity to publish ideas that teach or just ideas that showcase your abilities. You have an opportunity to reveal your whole self or just that part of you that you want others to see. We are now living in a world where anyone who wants to have a voice can have one.

YOU can choose to have an authentic influence.
I believe if you choose to do this, you will be remarkable (a Seth Godin word) and you will find a much greater degree of satisfaction in your efforts.
On this beautiful Monday, I am re-committing myself to authenticity. I challenge you to do the same.

p.s. In the editors’ defense, they gave me the opportunity to make adjustments in my layouts. I chose not to. I still very much appreciate the contribution this magazine makes to our industry. I just think that they and MOST other magazines fall short of their ability to teach. MOST of the time, they choose to showcase amazing talent, rather than teach the ideas and principles that readers really need. This is why I LOVED Simple so much and this is why I miss it.

Would love to hear your thoughts, both positive and negative.
Have a HAPPY Monday!


  1. Being anything less than authentic takes far too much work. Through teaching and not just showing, we lift people up and avoid comparing. Comparing is something I’m so done with!

    Thanks for sharing an important perspective.

  2. I really like how you present this reflection – especially because I think it touches on just how broad the world of scrapbooking is becoming. Just as in other hobbies and lifestyles, there are some people who enjoy the basic purpose of it…there are others who appreciate it for the deeper significance it provides…and there are others who have fun with all the “stuff” of it.

    Personally, I tend to drift between the “scrapbooking to get the memories on paper” and the “scrapbooking to reflect and record the changes/opportunities/moments in life.” Keeping up with the latest trends and products is not something I feel necessary…for me. But that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy seeing what other scrapbookers do with the “latest and greatest.” =)

  3. You have articulated something that has been bothering me lately. I feel like the scrapbooking magazines do far less “educating” and have become a gallery of layouts. I always liked Simple Scrapbooks for the articles. I learned so much from the articles, from photography to design to story telling. Articles that basically consist of just layouts using products don’t do a whole lot for me. I’ve never been one to use a lot of products on my pages anyway. I’ve already decided that when my subscriptions run out on the two magazines that I still subscribe to, I won’t renew them. I miss Simple Scrapbooks!

  4. Bec_Kilgore says:

    Preach it, Stacy! What you are saying applies to so many areas where women, especially, struggle with being true to themselves and feeling that they have to be a certain way to be viewed as worthy.

  5. I get exactly where you are coming from here. I am committed to a voice of authenticity of whatever i do. whether it’s blogging (i get flak for it sometimes) or scrapbooking. I too have told a magazine…I’m sorry, I’m not willing to change this. Because to me, what’s the point of it if you don’t put your whole heart into it? If you aren’t YOU? honest, flawed, authentic.

  6. Bravo, Stacy! More than ever, I am clear that I scrapbook for a variety of reasons, in a variety of ways. I used to think I was the most ADD scrapbooker on the planet (although I am quite sure ADD plays a large part in my whole life anyway!) because I bounced around from simple to more complex pages, pages that were event-based and pages that told stories my heart wanted to tell. As scrapbooking has expanded how it is done (in large part thanks to your philosophy), I find myself feeling free to just be me: to create, to play, to tell stories. My rather non-linear brain can still find a home in this meaningful hobby–and for that I am grateful. What’s really helped me to do that is to better understand good design principles, find my OWN style, stop comparing myself to others, appreciate others’ work, find a way to quiet my inner critic by playing music when I scrap, and to buy fewer magazines and product. Thanks for a great post, Stacy.

  7. You’re so right Stacy! I have never had interest in applying to be published because of those exact reasons – being authentic to me is not what the magazines would want. I’m saddened by what is happening in the print industry. Reading on a kindle or iphone (don’t have an ipad yet) is just not the same as the pleasure I get from unplugging and going to the park and sitting on a bench and just browsing a magazine. I wish there was a print home for me still . . . and I’m so thankful I at least have an “online home” at BPC. Thanks for continuing to carry the message of Simple there.

  8. I truly miss Simple Scrapbooks and I could not put my finger on why or what made that magazine so very different. And now the light has come on. The thing I loved the most about Simple was that is wasn’t soley focused on the latest and greatest product or every layout published was produced by the next, great scrapbooker. Simple was authentic. Simple concentrated on the “needs” of the individual and not just showcasing the “talent” of a few select. There is too much in scrapbooking that leads us to compare our work with everyone else. I almost quit scrapping once because I didn’t think my pages were as good as a friend’s. My style was way different but this was at a time when style was not really discussed. The thing that keeps scrappers like you and Ali Edwards and Cathy Zielske forever in the fore front is your basic philosophy of pictures and words – whatever else happens on the page is purely personal style. Thanks, Stacy, for my aha moment for the day!

    • You said this very well! My favorites were also Ali, Becky, and Cathy because their focus wasn’t on product or appearance over substance. They use pictures, they use words and every thing else is just a very minor part of the process, and that’s what appeals to me. Those layouts, while beautiful and fun, that focus on product or the latest trend, don’t last the test of time. Simply showing a picture and telling a story will always be great.

  9. Agreed. I started scrapbooking to tell my story which means many pictures, maybe not perfect or posed, and in depth journaling, maybe (probably) handwritten. The trend in magazines these days seems to be to showcase “pretty” pictures and make those artists “famous” with their 1 or 2 posed picture layouts. Those are great for display but they don’t tell my stories. If I can’t connect with the intent of the magazine or I feel like they’re unfavorably comparing my choices to their “featured artist”, I don’t subscribe. BTW – I maintained an annual membership to Simple Scrapbooks and miss it too. It makes me sad to feel that most of the people in the industry now aren’t in it to tell their stories, they’re in it to make $ or get “famous”.

  10. I completely agree! A friend recently purchased a couple of scrapbook magazines for me while I was at home sick. I was a subscriber of Simple and miss it a lot. It does feel like the magazines are mostly about the product. And for someone who does not have much time for scrapbooking, I then feel like I need to wait until I get that particular something in order to have a pretty layout. Mostly, I realize I just need to let go of that expectation for myself.

  11. I too miss Simple Scrapbooks. I would happily trade all of the other subscriptions I ever had or currently have just to have this ONE back! Thanks for the years you put into making it the best subscription magazine I ever had. I believe that Simple had your authentic voice back then, the way BPC does now. Thank you so much for keeping it real!

  12. Karen C. says:

    Amen Sista! :)

  13. I have decades of pictures that need to get into albums, and with the help of Karen Grunberg’s current class at BPC, I’m able to find my authentic self. AND I find that I as I pull together some pictures, I’m remembering the connections of older pictures. So I do need to do both, to be true to myself!
    And your makeup was fine!! ;)

  14. I haven’t read your article yet and thanks for posting. The whole magazine industry is missing my boat. I would have jumped and the bought the magazine in a heartbeat knowing you had an article in there or some other “famous” scrapbooker that I love without even looking at the magazine and without you posting the link I would have missed it. I also feel the pressures of everyone’s life is “perfect” and when don’t see real people you start to judge your abilities and question every thought you have. I struggled with that last year. Not being who you are is a lot of work and not a lot of fun. ~Ann

  15. Melanie K says:

    Amen! I 100% agree with you. I have dropped all my scrapbooking subscriptions because I got tired of seeing only pretty, trendy layouts. I know find my inspiration in art magazines – and lots online.
    I would much rather know the ‘why is this layout so appealing to me? What makes it so and how did the artist get there?’ or ‘How did she/he make that?’
    Great post!

  16. tchrtiff says:

    I miss Simple Scrapbooks for these very reasons–you, authenticity, teaching, imperfection…

  17. Lately I have not been enjoying the scrapbook magazines that I subscribe too and I couldn’t figure out why – until now. Suddenly I see that they lack substance. It’s all about how to copy exactly what is printed on their pages and not how to discover yourself or you style or how to truly portray your message or style. I, too, miss Simple Scrapbooks and am now inspired to go back and reread all issues ( I have kept them all). Thank you for being a true voice for this craft (its definitely more than a hobby).

  18. Sherri Stone says:

    This post really spoke to me. I bought a magazine a few months ago and was very disappointed after I finished looking at it. Maybe 3 layouts appealed to me. Of course they want to sell product but the heart of scrapbooking is about the memories we are trying to preserve. Tonight I will see if I can determne my “style.”

  19. I miss simple too! So much!

    I am going to try to say something, and please forgive if it comes out not so great, because it really is a compliment — I love your pages because they are imperfect — they are not the oh so pretty-perfect pages in magazines, that for me, are quite frankly unrealistic. Matchy-matchy looks nice, but really is something I would never do — I never have an entire product line, nor would something like that look good in my books because is not my style. I like that you use a little of this and that — that you include story and you include a variety of photo shots (groups, close ups, things, etc). Your use of color and whimsy (Don’t think I speeled that right!) go further for me that using an entire line of coordinating products and making just a plain fun page. Funny — the page they put on the web is the one I like the least!

    I agree that magazines are advertising heavy in the layouts they choose and they also protray the hobby as that of perfectionists and artists. Yes, we are all artists in our own way, but a new comer to scrapbooking will run screaming when faced with these impossible standards. There are some incredibly talented people out there — they make beautiful layouts and cards and should be commended for doing so. However, then there is the rest of us — thank you for addressing and helping out the rest of us! Imperfection rules!

  20. Melissa Norstrom says:

    Wow, I never knew that and I am going to go write my statement! Thank you Stacy! And I too miss the magazine. No other magazine is like it now. Have a happy day!

  21. I really liked reading the post when it appeared online. I loved the perspective, the moving from the 1st page to the last one. Like how life is, how our days are, how are minds move forward/back, how we get things done quick/slow. I just finished today a whirlwind of page creation((~65 pages in 2 weeks) – for someone else. If I was to have depended on magazine layouts for my inspiration – the photos/stories would not have gotten saved! Just lots of $ and frustration. I get so frustrated when the galleries & companies, magazines and even us scrappers seem to play a ‘keeping up with the Jones’. Breathe of fresh spring air to hear the background story to these pages. Thanks.

  22. You cracked me up with your too-much-makeup remark. I loved watching the clip . . . and I would add “she talks really fast, too!” And while I enjoyed the clip AND the message, I much prefer the do-it-yourself videos you do now. Perhaps you’re just a lot more comfortable speaking to a camera than you were then.

    And speaking of videos, I wish your furniture would hurry up and arrive, because I am dying for the video tour of your new office.

  23. Stacy, once again you have hit the nail on the head. The more time you spend making your pages your own and the less time you spend re-creating someone else’s style, the more please I feel you will feel with your pages. Of course, I didn’t always think this way. I thought all my pages HAD TO look like the ones in the magazines for me to be happy. But of course, I didn’t have the money, time or talent… Then I decided to take you (and several others in the industry that preach the same thing) up on your word and give this personal style thing a try. Now, I realize that I don’t have the need for that sort of perfection either. My pages are imperfect, yes, but they are perfectly mine.
    Thank you for continuing to be an authentic voice in this industry and for speaking to the common scrapbooker who is just trying to get the story told. Thank you for not “selling out” on your philosophy despite the pressures to continue to compete as a scrapbooking icon. I think your ideas are still fresh and innovative and I think there is still a niche for “simple scrapbooking”. Simply, thank you!

  24. I have to say, Stacy, that your authenticity and honesty about life, scrapbooking and just getting through things is why yours is the only scrapbook/craft blog I still regularly check. I love scrapbooking, but right now is just not the right time for me to do it.

    Recently, I have had to choose whether to be authentic and true to myself or whether to compromise on things I believe just to keep the peace. I’ve chosen to be myself while still attempting to be respectful of others. It has been a hard choice almost forced upon me, but I am glad to not have lost myself, or my voice (in this case, my blog) in the process.

    And for the record, I miss Simple, too.

  25. As an LOM alum, a former Simple subscriber and current NON-subscriber to any print publications, I have to put in my 2 cents. I miss Simple. I want someplace (online) where I can get creative inspiration and learn in a “simple” environment. Even most of the digital communities are more collage-y than I’m comfortable with. I post my simple, straightforward linear/graphic layouts and feel like a sore thumb. I miss Simple; that’s my authentic.

  26. Gypsy Chaos says:

    Stacey – YES. I miss Simple Scrapbooking mag also. I use your first book as a reference more than any other book or mag I own. Ok, I don’t use references much at all.

    I realized awhile ago that I do not, can not and will not scraplift. It is so not my style. Yesterday I proved once again that scraplifting and I are not buddies. I used a template to put together a collage of nine photos. It was 12 x 12; I needed 8 x 10. I changed the background color. I enlarged the mat size. I added two texture photos to the original nine. I did other things too.
    When I was done I could see the resemblance, but that was it.

    KISS principle works for me with scrapbooking!

  27. I don’t think you are wearing too much makeup; I think you look great!

  28. TracyBzz says:

    Those videos were great. I see they still re-run your segments of Scrapbook Memories too – that proves the advice is timeless.

    Awhile after I started scrapbooking I discovered magazines and they taught me that I didn’t need to do sticker sneeze on every page. I learnt alot from magazines. But now that I’ve been doing this for a long time and have more than enough product I want to tell stories in interesting ways. The magazines are all about selling the latest and greatest product – which will date it’s too one day. It will all look dated in 25 years and your kids won’t care about matching products, they will just care that stories, memories and pictures where documented.

    Oh and how cute are you girls holding you mom sideways :)

  29. Wow, I loved the article. I know nothing about the magazine industry, but i do know that I am a huge fan and follower of your philosophy in scrapping. Guilt can so easily sneak up on me and the thoughts of my pages aren’t good enough keeps coming back so I love hearing your message again and again in different ways and formats. It is why I don’t subscribe to any scrapbook magazines any more. They are too perfect and I find that I start allowing my self to have doubts about what I do and how I do it. I don’t have the latest and greatest, I just have stories to tell and I want to do it in a way that feels “right” to me. Thanks for the thoughts and you openness about your philosophy and style.

  30. I agree agree – I am me you either like me or you don’t. Its your choice I can’t make you like me by changing who I am because that’s just me warts and all!
    Can I recommend “The gift of Imperfection – let go of who you think you’re supposed to be and embrace who you are” By Brene Brown.

  31. I hope we’ve managed to maintain some of the spirit of Simple at WCS, though I think we worked so hard to keep ourselves separate after the initial implosion and fallout that maybe we’ve strayed too far from the philosophy that brings us all together there. Hmm. Lots to think about. I do know that I still give my “simple philosophy” soapbox speech to anyone who will listen and expresses frustration with scrapbooking or not knowing where to start!

  32. I think that print resources are becoming more and more scarce so that choices will have to be made. Surely you don’t see being published online as that big a step down, that you would really have to feel disappointed at all. I’m sure that I am missing something here, because I just don’t get it. It isn’t the published or non-published status of your work that makes it “authentic”, isn’t that right? If your perspective is widely shared then eventually the magazine’s audience will almost force them into providing more “authentic” content because that’s what scrapbookers will want to learn about. I think you should just say “oh well”. So considered yourself hugged, and get on with other things.

  33. The other evening I was having a conversation with a girlfriend who is a “celebrity” scrapbooker who suggested I learn how to “fake it” in order to get over my current hesitation on with a couple of assignments. In the last year she has made over 100 layouts, they are all breathtaking, but only six are meaningful to her. Last year, I made the same number of layouts, and though I may not like some of my paper/bling/font choices, 100% are authentic. With limited time and many stories to tell, I’m going the authentic route. Thanks for the support and encouragement! :) Your post today – and the comments – had me sigh with relief at the knowledge I am not alone!

  34. I am reading this blog entry for the perfect time for me! I recently contributed 4 pages for my son’s hockey scrapbook. I love the simple philosophy and use it as a way to showcase the memories and pictures not the stickers and extras; I had a bit of white space but my focus was on showcasing all the players which I achieved. When I handed in my pages, the mom asked me, “what are you going to put up here”. I noted ‘nothing’; her response ‘oh’. OK I admit by ego was a bit crushed. I worked hard to achieve my goal, and was happy with the end result. The next day, I heard the yearbook coordinator talking to another mom who was handing in her pages. The yearbook coordinator was giving her a lot of positive feedback for her pages which included stickers, cut out pictures, no names, no journaling….
    Well enough said, I just want to say I agree with your philosophy of scrapbooking and after 12 years of scrapbooking I have regrets about my early pages that focus on stuff, stuff and more stuff and could have benefited by the focus of the article you have written above. PS I miss Simple Scrapbooking magazine too, it was always my favorite, thank goodness for your blog :)

  35. thank you for your timely reminder about living authentically, so often I feel i am trying to be who (I think) people want me to be, when really I should just be me.

  36. Mary-Lou says:

    Today is my 11th anniversary of scrapping. While none of my albums or pages would be picked for publication – I do not care. I scrap for me. I do not have children related albums and this has always created a look at most big public scrap events. I scrap my horses, my cats, my garden, waterfalls (a hobby), milestone birthdays, Disney trips, friends, work and on and on. I miss Simple Scrapbooks and am so glad I saved all the issues, because I pull each one out and re-read and re-joy and re-connect to the idea that it is not about being perfect. Currently reading Brene Brown’s The Gifts of Imperfection – good read. Thanks Stacey (& Cathy Z) for your great blog sites – it keeps SS alive. I think I will scrap about page about my first blog post :-)

  37. I very much agree. I stopped subscribing to scrapbooking magazines once Simple was gone. They all seem to be way more about encouraging people to buy new product than anything else. Not that I don’t love new product, but I really don’t need reminders to be tempted to get new stuff. I need reminders to do things, inspirations for making more albums and pages, new techniques to try, etc. Then I will make more pages and that will lead to needing more stuff anyhow, right? Thanks for all your work in teaching people to find the relationships in their photos. =]

    • Cindy, I very much agree. I’ve tried scrapbooking and I don’t think it’s my thing….yet. But I had very much the same thought the other day when I picked up a U.S. photography magazine. It was just one long advertisement trying to get me to buy the newest gadget to make my life “easier” not help me figure out a plan to understand when I was doing to start with. It seemed to be most glaring after I picked up a U.K. magazine that while talked about product, devoted a large amount of it it’s space to bettering your images as a whole. I’m glad I’m not the only person that is seeing this trend am put off by it.

  38. I wish I had discovered Simple before it went out of print. I didn’t subscribe to any scrapping magazines in those days, because the ones I flipped through made me feel like my albums weren’t good enough. I’m currently in Finding Your Way and i.scrap. FYW is helping me to figure out my scrapping style, and i.scrap is helping with the authenticity side of things (and style in seeing just how much I gravitate to my happy color!). So, BPC is surely carrying out your hopes for other scrappers! Thank you!

  39. I’m working on this concept right now, of making pages with more “meaning” rather than just making pages. I no longer have a desire to make another Halloween layout just because I took pictures of my daughter trick-or-treating, and I no longer take 100 pictures of each birthday year after year that really all look the same. I’m letting my pictures “breathe” a little before I rush into making a layout.

  40. This is why I admire you and am so glad that we are friends and are able to work together.

  41. Really a nice statement and video. It’s hard not to get caught up with all the “perfection” in scrapbooking. I think I have developed a style but it’s always evolving. Keep up the good work and thanks….

  42. Love you Stacy!! You continue to be an inspiration!!! Thanks for this reminder. Back to basics is always the best for me.

  43. I just had to tell you that I don’t think you have too much make-up on at all! I think it makes your eyes look gorgeous!! I so, so, so miss Simple Scrapbooks magazine. It was my favorite. After it went away, I’m just not very into scrapbook magazines anymore–and I am a magazine junkie!

  44. I love when you through out an “uh-uh!” Its like I hear you make your comment first, then the “uh-uh” really drives it home! Fun to hear it here, and more recently on PRT!

  45. Wow…..were you reading my mind????/ I am getting ready for a scrap weekend…..for the last week, but nothing is together. I am definitely a victim of trying to emulate other scrappers style instead of embracing what is unique to me…. Thanks for the insight!

  46. YES!!! And THIS is why after 11 years I have let my subscription to CK lapse. I always read it for the article focusing on content rather than technique or layouts, and they have gotten so far away from that. I miss Simple very much. I’m so glad that I can still get inspiration from people like you and Ali Edwards online.

  47. Thank you so much for reminding us what is important – our authenticity. I have always been overwhelmed with learning certain techniques that it has taken away from what I really wanted to showcase in my layouts – me, my family.
    And as others have stated, I too miss Simple :)

  48. I want Simple Scrapbooks Mag back! Period! :)

  49. Thank you for being you – and for making it alright for the rest of us to be us.

  50. I really appreciate your thoughts behind your actions…since I know there isn’t time for a lot of the folks that make the layouts for publication, to have deep thoughts. Having said that, I find that despite my daily intake of ideas from blogs, magazines, etc. I still revert to my own ideas and desires in the design of my scrapbook pages. I have found nothing published that compares to what I prefer. And I don’t buy into ‘designer’ rules such as the rule of thirds. People look at my pages for the photos and I just try hard to compliment those (and not distract) and have fun at the same time. I am not a wordy person, so I tend to just give facts and maybe a few personal observations on occasion. And so, I find most scrap lessons to be a bit over the top. But I appreciate new techniques, unique photo taking ideas, creative titles and useful quotes. I tend to scrap events, make theme albums, and have little time to scrap beyond that. I do enjoy new products and paper lines. And I appreciate you.

  51. I appreciate your post and agree with it to a point. But I also think there is room for both. Pages can be authentic because they are meaningful and tell a story. They can also be authentic because they are the end result of a creative process. I do pages that fall into both categories and love them equally. Pages that tell my or my family’s story are not necessarily more important than a page I created to try out some favorite techniques or the latest products. The page as a creative outlet is just as necessary to MY sanity!

  52. I miss Simple.

  53. Wow, you were reading my mind. I am getting ready for a scrap weekend and have been totally stuck. I fall prey to emulating other scrappers style instead of embracing my own style. That, combined with ADD, leaves me in a muddle rather than capturing my memories. Thanks for sharing your perspective :-)

  54. I haven’t purchased a scrapbooking magazine since Simple left.

  55. Deirdre says:

    I live in Utah, which I thought was the “scrapbooking capital” before we moved here, but no one I know here still scraps.

    I look at my oldest son’s baby album, that I spent FOREVER on, and it is only the pages that capture our personal story that make me grateful I spent my time on it. Your books, Stacy, changed my whole perspective on scrapping and without them, I know I would NOT still be making layouts.

    I love the magical combination of photos and stories and pretty paper, and I believe we all have an intrinsic need to be creative. Some will keep scrapping due to their love for technique and products, but I think without the emphasis on story, there won’t be enough of them to support any industry.

  56. Cheryl Smith says:

    Stacy, you have always been the voice of reason and you “voiced” it again here. We love your attitude and it helps so many of us, less than perfect people out here to feel good in our skins and be ourselves. Thank you. Keep speaking your mind. I find more inspiration from places like your blog, Paperclipping Roundtable, other blogs than I ever did from the glossy magazines. (Although Simple Scrapbooks was the exception….still miss it!) Thank you!!

  57. I, too, miss Simple! I would create a page I truly loved, and then when I compared it to others, it looked so “plain”. But it was ME. I’ve not scrapped in about three years now because I lost my passion for scrapbooking. I think I expected too much in terms of the finished product and lost sight of the process. You’re right…we do need to be more authentic. I think that’s why your approach appeals to so many of us…YOU are authentic!

  58. I LOVE this post, and I, too, am re-committing myself to authenticity. It’s so easy, at least for me, to focus on pretty and being fantastic and making everyone like me and my blog because me stuff is so fantastic. Thanks for reminding me that if any of that stuff happens, I want it to be because my stuff is so original and so ME, not because it’s so shiny and perfect and well done.

  59. Colleen says:

    You know what? I don’t really miss Simple all that much.

    Yes, I loved the magazine, and it was by FAR the best scrapbooking mag out there (and would still be today if were in print). But I don’t REALLY miss it for the simple (ha!) reason that I get my “Simple” from you and Ali and Cathy and Noelle and … the whole crew online. The magazine may be gone, but the ideas and inspiration and cool-as-all-heck women that made it so very special are all still here. And going strong.

    Thank you for keeping us focused the “whys” instead of the the “whats” of scrapping.

  60. i miss Simple very much. It was my favorite scrapping magazine. i loved when it came in the mail and i could set it aside and have coffee and slowing enjoy each article. You and Simple gave me permission to scrap my way. What was significant to my family and what made sense to me. Thanks!

    In other news: i still desperately want to know how the light saber 18th birthday delivery went over. :)

  61. You have no idea how much I miss Simple Scrapbooks. I subscribed from the beginning through to the end and I still have my issues. I would LOVE it if they would bring it back. It just fits. :)

  62. CarrieH says:

    I miss Simple. In fact, just yesterday I was looking through some of my saved issues for ideas and inspiration and I found both. More and more, I have realized that Simple really is my style, that it is timeless and true to what/how I want to scrapbook. Thank you (and Angie, Cathy, Elizabeth, WCS, Cathy, etc., etc.) for keeping me inspired and motivated to tell my stories.

  63. I miss the magazine, while I am glad to be able to still go back and reread the issues I have kept and I am thrilled to be able to get inspiration from you and other incredible women through blogs, PRT & BPC I miss having the magazine because I am a tactile person and I miss getting all that inspiration in a way that I can hold in my hands.

  64. I’m sorry your article didn’t get picked up. That’s always tough.

    I whole-heartedly agree that Simple Scrapbooks did teach you how to scrap; find your own style and go with it and many other things. I miss that magazine so much but love the Write. Click. Scrapbook. blog. It attempts to teach us a huge variety of things and I appreciate it so much. I have always enjoyed Creating Keepsakes magazine but they are a showcase magazine and I probably won’t renew my subscription when it runs out. I’d rather spend my money on something else.

  65. Thank-you for reminding me what is at the heart of every page I make, my story! I am sometimes overwhelmed by the talent out there so thanks for saying it’s ok to just scrap in my style. I needed this post!

  66. I too miss Simple, but I also believe a missed “teaching opportunity” is a horrible thing to waste. I for one bought “Simple” and other magazines for the purpose of learning. The finished product is great to see, but I always want to know How you got from a grouping of items to a completed page. Simple did that. That to me set it apart from the rest of the others. THat is also the reason I gave up the other subscription and only bought “Simple” UNTIL BPC came along.

    BPC has taught me over the past 5 years how to better stand on my own creative two feet. I have not taken a class that a teacher states “just do it by the handout.” Every teacher has stated CLEARLY make it your own, we guide, suggest, and show you how we did it. THAT so totally makes it worth my time and money to keep coming back.

    Hope it helps.

  67. Amen sister! Kudos to you for sticking to your original layout. A good reminder to stick to your style work with what you have.

  68. Love you Stacy! Finding my own personal scrapbook style was very liberating for me! I still try new things, but try to put a “Stefani Spin” on them! Thanks for the reminder!

  69. I am new to this and don’t know the magazine but I would sooooo rather see things where I can learn. I like some of the layout but some are just to much. But in all I would love to know how they did them! How did they make that flower, the border, etc. I guess you can only show how to make a flower so many times. But then there are the concepts also! Like your that did not get published! :-(

  70. Barbara says:

    So true! Nice to know I am not the only one who feels this way…and especially from someone on the “inside”! One of the most profound influences on my approach to scrapbooking was a blog post by Ali E where she began all of her journaling about a trip she took to Italy with the words “I want to remember….”. I am doing a whole album from this perspective and it has made all the difference. Much more depth and meaning to my journaling…easily helping me ‘tell my story’.
    Don’t get me wrong…I love and NEED the inspiration of great artists, but sometimes the teaching message can lead me to a more creative and satisfying finished product!

  71. Kary in Colorado says:

    I completely agree, Stacy. And I STILL miss SS as well. The best magazine by far. I find I can hardly look at scrapbooking magazines anymore because they are so focused on pushing product and not on making pages that anyone will want to look at in ten years. I love product (just look at my overflowing studio!!) and I love being creative, but “pretty pages” will be much more likely to be tossed by those who come after us, while the pages that tell stories and reveal our lives will be cherished. I don’t have that much creative time–I want to spend it well. That is why I love Big Picture–I have learned so much through the classes I’ve taken there, and those classes have made me think and stretch. Thank you!

  72. Annette says:

    I agree! I didn’t start scrapbooking again until I found Simple. I loved the concepts. I knew it was me. I absolutely love BPC and that I can continue to find my style and let my voice be heard in my layouts. I love learning to combine product to enhance my layouts and creativity and I love that I can just leave it all off if I want. It is awesome.

  73. I really miss Simple too. When I was starting to get into scrapbooking, I looked at all the other magazines out there, and chose Simple as my inspiration of choice simply because that’s how my mind worked. I hate, and yes I mean Hate, feeling like a magazine is forcing style choices and products on me. From the very first time I came across it, Simple was about story, and that’s why I scrapbook. I have a story to tell about myself and my family that I want to share with them. Trends aren’t important, techniques aren’t important, but digging deeper to find more interesting stories? That’s important.
    That’s what Simple helped with. That’s what you and BPC and the rest of the former Simple crew do now.
    Thank you for helping me get started on this fantastic journey, and for continuing to share it now.

  74. Ruth Ann says:

    Thank you Stacy! I too miss Simple Scrapbooks!! I thank you for your committment to authenticity. I have done exactly what you said we do, to compare mine to what is out there and each time I remind myself that that isn’t me. That is great for them but I like what I do better, it is ME!
    Thank you!!!!!!!!!!

  75. bea medwecky says:

    I am sorry your article did not ger published. As you know from the iScrap class, I really love your layouts. I have been trying to figure out why and today you provided the answer for me. They are authentic. That’s why they jump for joy, and that’s why I am so drawn to them. Authentic pages is what I want to achieve this year.
    Thaks for BPC and for your blog.

  76. KristiG says:

    I SO agree with you…they should have printed your article regardless of what product you used (btw, your layouts look great to me, but I’m just a non-trendy not-into-product scrapper, so I guess I’m not their target audience). None of the current sb mags hold a candle to SS. I miss it so much, but am so glad that the philosophy lives on in your blog, and of course BPC.

  77. Natalee says:

    I couldn’t agree with you more. I made the decision to stop getting the scrapbook mags because I felt exactly this way…they are pushing product and not really teaching. I just wasn’t feeling inspired by them anymore. I purchased Cathy Z’s Clean and Simple book and it COMPLETELY changed the way I looked at Scrapbooking. Now I am doing Project Life (Becky H) and it is working so well for me. I think for me (thankfully) I have moved way more towards telling stories, and not worrying so much about how my pages look. Thanks for this post! You hit the nail on the head.

  78. I didn’t discover you, Cathy and simple until it was gone. I have really enjoyed reading your blog and big pictures classes. Thank you for keeping your ideas going!

  79. Loved the article Stacy and thanks for sharing the link. I loved the way you illustrated the process and difference.

    I wasn’t a Simple Subscriber, I think I only saw an issue or 2 and I have a special mini-album issue that I loved that I think was published moments before shutdown. I know though that your philosophy just speaks to me in so many ways and I’m so glad that BPC is there to keep your word and mission alive.

    I’m sure you’ve heard this a jillion times but I would love to be a certified LOM instructor that could do live, local education. There are so many that I think will never make their way through the online world to find the gems and I think a corp of instructors would be a wonderful resource and opportunity. What a wonderful thing if you could get new CMO’s off on the right foot!

  80. Anne-Liesse says:

    I miss Simple, too. I can remember saying to my scrapbook friends that it was the one magazine that I really read and learned things from that I later incorporated into my own scrapbooks. Plus, the philosophy was liberating.

  81. Corinne says:

    For me SS was too simple but only because is not my style. I totally agree with AriaMo, if you like to scrapbook using the latest there’s no problem. Always make the pages for you and if you liked thats what matters

  82. I totally agree with you. Even now I look back at pages and realize that i didn’t include things that now I wish I would have (and I’ve been scrapbooking for a little over 10 years). I truly appreciated Simple for keeping that in mind.

    I am losing interest in the magazines now days (even though I’ll keep my one subscription forever probably more for sentimental reasons and to see new product). I find that I only look at the pictures and don’t read the content b/c it doesn’t apply to improving the content, just the aesthetic view.

    I am also disappointed b/c we had a fire in our house (kitchen) but with the smoke damage they threw out what i had of Simple Scrapbooks–including idea books. In time I am going to try my best to find them.


  83. Susan M says:

    Finding your authentic voice is not easy, and then living it every day is also a challenge. Thank you for sticking up for your authentic self and knowing that you want to teach a very important message. Before I found BPS, I was almost ready to give up this hobby because I was overwhelmed by the photos and no longer having fun. A focus on the product only got me so far. Your LOM class a couple of years ago changed things for me (you even printed one of my posts as part of your weekly message to us!), and I’m glad that you are continuing with your message, and attempting to teach it in as many forums as possible. I’m a high school teacher, and having a frustrating year. But just yesterday, a former student came to visit. She had come from a rough family situation, but has graduated high school, and is now attending a well-regarded university. Seeing her again made me realize why I keep fighting the good fight. I may not reach them all, but I do reach some of them.

    (Wow, hadn’t really meant to self-analyze here!) Anyway, I appreciate all that you do! Keep on with your message! :)

  84. I just posted about what I’ve learned about myself and scrapbooking. I’m currently taking your i scrap class and Karen Grunberg’s Finding Your Way and the two classes simultaneously going have made me think about what my personal style really is and think introspectively. I think I’m liking what I’m finding out. The video clip is a perfect addition to the two classes.

  85. Very thought provoking post! I love the video and what you have to say in it. If I’m right in my inturpretation of what you are saying, you are saying embrace my own personal style and be who I am and be happy with that. Love the idea of writing down the bullet points.
    About that 2nd part of the post. I totally agree with you that the mags in the industry need to support more teaching and less showing off. There is nothing more frustrating than opening a magazine and seeing over the top layouts and projects that the average jo can’t possible come up with. I consider myself a pretty good scrapper and crafter in general, but there is no way I can ‘compete’ with what I see in some of the magazines. I do cut out things I like and use the ideas in the future when it is something that will blend with my personal style, but I never totally scraplift a layout. I think there are many new scrappers who look at mags and then look at their layouts and feel that they aren’t doing a good job with what they do. I work in a scrapping studio setting and I say more times than I can count. “If you like it, then all’s good” or similar words. I tell people not to try to be like the designers as many of them are just that, designers. Take some of their ideas and learn from them and become yourself and scrap what you like.
    Having more realistic layouts and a bit more instruction would be wonderful!
    Thanks Stacy for speaking about this. Being who we are and doing what we like is so important!
    And I understand that they want to feature all the newest and brightest and best, but we can’t all afford to have it all, it would be nice to see some old things made new again.

  86. Yes! I remember those clips and I remember watching that one about personal style when it first came out. It was a goodie, still is. And about the magazine article – I totally agree. The mags don’t teach, they showcase. My crafting journey has been a huge one that has taught me so much about myself, how I craft, general life things and stuff that it’s amazing that that doesn’t translate into the mags. I know, you wanted to teach in your article and get a message across, it’s sad that it didn’t happen.

  87. I miss Simple too… I felt like I could relate – the most important thing being to tell the story, second only to expressing my creativity.

  88. I lived for Simple Scrapbooks each and every publication.

  89. This really resonated with me, Stacy. I miss Simple too! It was most assuredly the magazine that kept me “in the game” (scrapbooking)!

  90. Ashleigh says:

    I adored Simple…wished I would’ve known about it earlier. I subscribed an issue or two before the end. CK mag has never filled the void although I still enjoy the magazine (whenever it actually arrives without having to make a phone call–but that’s another story). I agree that we have to not get so obsessed w/pretty that our pages have no substance.

  91. I had every issue of Simple from beginning to end. I took The Big Picture to the dentist last week just because I so enjoy reading anything and everything you have to say. I read Clean and Simple, The Sequel cover to cover last week and this week I have made two 7-page double spreads for my Disney album I had put off for a year and a half. I went about a year without making any layouts and I’m having so much fun! Reading yours and CZ’s books really helps me stay focused on my own style and what I do best. I can do simple. I can do linear. I know what works. It’s when I try to be something I’m not that I lose my will to create. It becomes WORK and creating should never be work. It should always be fun. I’m so glad I have you in my life! Smooch!

  92. LOL – I mean to say I’ve made 7 two-page spreads for my album. Gosh. I’m crazy.

  93. thanks for sharing. I miss Simple Scrapbooks. I’m beginning to find my authentic style as I participated in Embrace Imperfection, followed by Finding Your Way and i scrap. I’m learning to let go and stay true to me and not get caught up on what everyone else is doing. Love what you are doing over at BPC. I have slowly been regaining my confidence while I participate in the classes that celebrate who we are. Take care, Deb xx

  94. Oh how I miss Simple. I am so thankful that you have chosen to to do your site. I need these reminders from time to time.

    Thanks girlie!

  95. I so miss Simple Scrapbooks. It was my favorite. Thank you fo rthe reminders from time to time of what we sre really trying to do. I love what you are doing with BPC. Keep being you-we love you! Have a happy day.

  96. Dawn F. says:

    Totally agree with you in regards to the observation of current magazines. I have my issues of SS dogeared. I am looking for timeless not the latest product – I can’t afford every new line that comes out – so to see “older” products in a new way is always refreshing. Thanks for your blog and your committment to BPC.

  97. Oh my! Good luck getting thru all this, miss, but you asked for comments! ;-) I completely miss Simple. I don’t understand the nuances of finances of magazines these days – and I’m not impressed with any scrapping mag out there – ANY of them right now. Simple was & still is TOPS to me.

    DID read your article posted – and certainly completely agree with the point you were trying to get across. But then you’re preaching to the choir or an audience who shares your view already. I think the editors missed a bet in connecting with those who haven’t discovered your philosophy yet! But then – they’d be risking turning the reins of the mag over to you. Bah that it was the pages they didn’t care for. It’s a different philosophy from what they publish and they’re not ready for it – “simple” as that.

    Fortunately, you have your own forum to go play as you wish – expand on it and make it a BPC class, free or otherwise. You’re still finding new scrappers there – and your friends will eat up anything you have to offer – always have. ;-)

  98. Cyndy Recker says:

    I really miss Simple too Stacey. I still have every issue and still refer back to them. Along with many special issues too. Thank you so much for creating BPC. I am also starting to buy the ebooks from Ella. Looking forward to LOM this summer for the first time. Please keep up the awesome work. I am desperately trying to teach my friends your philosophy of important scrapbooking and journalling.

  99. Cathy S says:

    Twice in the past year, a BPClass has given an assignment to look through past layouts and make note of what I love best about them. Both times, the layouts that stand out are the ones with connections and photos that span time and place. These are the layouts that make me pause and think. I bet if scientists studied people’s brains while looking at scrapbooks, connection layouts would be the ones that showed a spike in brain activity. These layouts, like your last one in the article, reveal so much about the person creating them, like what is important to them and what their thoughts are, things that don’t come across in a more traditional layout. They are the ones that will stand the test of time and be appreciated by our loved ones. So keep on giving voice to your beliefs. They are most definitely heard by many, and we are doing our best to spread your ideas by our actions.

  100. Maureen says:

    I think they are overlooking the draw a ‘scrap celebrity’ has to their readership, and though your article might not have had sufficient buy it now bling, your name would motivate many people to purchase which in turn gets them to look at the adds, and other things in the magazine and maybe buy it again. I for one have never purchased this mag, but if I saw your name on the cover I would, because I like what you have to say, and by extension would be interested in what some who publishes you has to say. I love that you were true to your self.
    PS I loved and missed simple, but I love BPC even more.

  101. after thinking about this a bit more…i do want to come back and say something else, and i hope that’s okay.

    catherine at SCT is just doing her job, trying to cater to what she thinks the readers will respond to. in an industry where so many businesess and publications are failing, i can’t fault her for that. she has to do what she thinks is best. i just want to say that, b/c she’s a wonderful lady. xo

  102. This is why I don’t buy magazines anymore. It got to be less about the story being told and more about how much product can be crammed on a page! Also scrapcelebs…give me a break! No one knows who these women are outside of the hobby. The egos do not match the contribution.
    My pages are filled with pictures and stories.Sometines the pages are rockin- sometimes they have mistakes! It’s a scrapbook, not a graph design book! Perfections are what make it a scrapbook of memories. Good bad and in-between.

  103. I miss Simple Scrapbooks too! No matter how much I try and be the fancy scrapper, I go right to making a simple page to tell my story. The magazine left with the May/June issue in 2009, but it feels a lot longer than that. I wish it would come back. :(

  104. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again now…..I adore you. and this is why. Simple was my favorite magazine and I miss it too!!!

  105. Like many others I miss Simple Scrapbooks…I found you just about the time the magazine was ending…I loved that the magazine emphasis wasn’t all about the pretties on the pages. I was so encouraged to make the pages that are meaningful to me all the while learning a few design principles and enjoying the process.

    I am so glad that you have an internet presence and although you are one busy lady, you take the time to share what you are learning and feeling…I so appreciate the bit of life that comes to my email from you!

    It’s so true! Everyone can have a voice these days. We can only hope that people are taking that opportunity to enrich the lives of those around them.

    We can all spread a little more love and help the world go ’round!

  106. Kathleen S. says:

    I still miss Simple, too. You are right on about the concept of teaching; the specifics apply to whatever style a person likes. I don’t see many scrap mags out there, and what I do see doesn’t lead me to buy. I read comments from people who collect scads of product yet rarely or never scrap. I’m glad you held the line on modifying what you were teaching through your LOs. And very happy for BPC!

  107. Heather Crawley says:

    You hit the nail on the head and that is why I have stopped buying or subscribing to scrapbooking magazines. They have lost the focus on the everyday scrapbooker. The layouts featured in the magazines are beautiful and use great product, but are not realistic for those of us who are creative, enjoy capturing stories, but don’t have the time, money or storage space to create a visual masterpiece on every page. (They can be still be masterpiece, but for different reasons.)

    I appreciate BPC, Write.Click.Scrapbook, Ali Edwards, and others who keep the focus on the what is important…capturing our lives and recording them.

    I also agree that magazines have to work in a balance. However, as a reader, I have not found a stamping/scrapbooking magazine that does that well.

  108. I just commented on another post that the “competition” is ridiculous. I might get an idea from a “celebrity” but my pages don’t look like anyone else’s. Mags are about sales and about pushing product. I am currently going back through Simples and find they are NOT out of date. It’s about the story, stupid! I follow blogs that teach me a new technique, that teach me about life, AND that tell stories.

  109. Thank you for this. Often I have felt that because my layouts aren’t ‘magazine’ quality they are not that great or important. It was nice to get the honorable mention from you recently about having a great event page. And the look on my daughter’s face when you mentioned my name, is worth more than anything in the world. It has helped me re-evaluate why I scrapbook and I am accepting your challenge to become my authentic self and to use my own voice and go with my gut on layouts. And, if they aren’t perfect according to editors, I know that they fit just right with my kids.

  110. Stacy,
    Thanks for TEACHING us! I still like to browse mags for inspiration but ultimately the important and lasting things are more than just eye candy.

    Your statement that “perfection is highly overrated” is all too true. It is ironic a few days ago I was reading a book by Don Aslett and he was talking about computers and how they offer “perfect everything” and WHILE I was reading it I was thinking back on your “Minute to Win It” game you created and how much life it had simply being hand drawn/written.

    But then again if I didn’t use the computer at all I wouldn’t be able to connect with you and others and learn so many things. So, as it is with so many things, it’s all about balance.

    Thanks again for your authentic self. I get the sense and always have Stacy that you do it all out of genuine love. It is appreciated!

  111. You’re exactly right Stacy. I enjoy looking at the pretty layouts in the magazine but I also used to find myself “stressed out” because my pages looked nothing like them. Since I’ve completed your LOM class and several other classes on BPC I have scrapped more pages then ever and they are meaningful and authentic. Thanks for teaching me what scrapbooking is really all about.

  112. Thank you for stating so well what I think a lot of us scrapbookers are feeling. When I open a current issue of an industry-related magazine, I feel overwhelmed with all the products and techniques used on the pages. More often than not, I have to look hard to actually find the photos. While there is nothing wrong with this if that’s what floats your boat, I don’t believe this is representative of the majority of scrapbookers. I started this as a hobby about 15 years ago, and it has now become a passion for documenting every little facet of my family’s lives. I have always strived to keep the focus on what’s important, and to me that means photos and journaling presented in a simple, straightforward fashion. Simple Scrapbooks was my favorite magazine because it never failed to inspire me and supported the reason why I scrapbook.

    I appreciate you standing by your convictions on this one, Stacy! Thanks for continuing to be my inspiration.

  113. Your post has haunted me since I read it yesterday. Not only being honest about your feelings about the scrapbook industry (which I totally agree with BTW) but your overall goal in striving for more authenticity. Thank you for making me think.

  114. I miss Simple tremendously. I really enjoy your blog and the work you do to keep the Simple principles alive. I think, as a history major, I really appreciate your approach about keeping the context alive. Really, it is about the context of the photos and the stories that it boils down to. For example, there’s not a lot of photos of my dad smiling…people would probably think he was a sour personality, and not nice. In fact, there’s not too many photos of him smiling, because he was very self conscious about his dentures slipping in photos. But, if that story isn’t shared, you can’t get the context of the other photos. Thanks for reminding us that scrapbooking isn’t about the products, or the pretty, but about the history and the stories…keeping it all in context!

  115. i miss simple scrapbooks too! I love your layouts, and i am also disappointed that they did not publish your article. I agree with you that these magazines should be teaching values, or ideas behind scrapbooking, not the products or overly complicated layouts.
    I find that when i look in these kinds of magazines, the majority of layouts are crammed with product, showcasing one photo. I try to fit as many photos on a layout, and i try and focus on my journalling rather then the product i use. This is also what i miss about Ali Edwards column, she always taught us to focus on the story, her layouts were relatively simple, but it was the idea behind it that made them shine.

  116. Kelli C says:

    I am so thankful Stacy, that you have taught from your authentic voice, because without being exposed to a much more meaningful way of scrapbooking, I’m not sure I would still be doing it. I see my scrapbooking friends burning out, running out of enthusiasm, because the meaning has been lost. Since finding The Big Picture(I think that green book called to me!) five years ago, I feel like my scrapbooking world has opened up, my creativity has skyrocketed and I am still loving telling the stories of my life and my family’s. Along with that, your perspective has helped me to see how scrapbooking enhances my life in bigger ways, it keeps me grounded in the present moment, focused on appreciating all the little things and connected on a deeper level with myself and those I love. That is so much bigger and better than a perfect lay out using the latest products. I still love looking at all the wonderful artistry in magazines, but you get what this is all about! Keep teaching in the way you do, the scrapbooking world needs it!

  117. After Simple Scrapbooks, I quit subscribing to all the scrapbooking mags. It turned out to be a blessing. It made me thing about why I was spending my time and money on them. When I thought about it, the magazines didn’t speak to me anymore. Frankly, I can find what I need on line very simply and they ceased to inspire me. I don’t think it was one thing. I think it was s combination of many things. I know I will never have hours to spend on my hobby and I am totally OK with that. It doesn’t decrease my love. I’m not hip, trendy, cool or particulary crafty. I do want to document my and my family’s journey. Also, I don’t want to spend my time wanting the next new thing. Believe me I have a craft area of stuff I “HAD TO HAVE” that I have yet to use. For me, staying true and authentic to myself and my story meant unplugging from what others (with different talent, time and energy) thought I should be doing and following the few voices I admired and respected, including you. I miss Simple Scrapbooks, but have come to terms with the loss.

  118. {vicki} says:

    1st—that’s not too much makeup.

    I find that most of my favorite pages are my “simple” pages. Its about the story and photos for me.

    Thanks Stacy

  119. I am sure all the magazine people have to do what’s best for their magazine from their perspective. And they do have to answer the the more and more powerful bottom line.

    That being said I have to agree with the other posters who are disappointed with the magazines available for scrapbookers. Ever since we lost Simple and Ali Edwards and Becky Higgins left CK I feel like the HEART has gone out of the industry. It seems like they wave shiny new product at us and expect that to distract us from the lack of authentic voice. It makes me sad. Honestly, would I know if something was the lastest whatever, no. But I would know if the page spoke to me and inspired me to make more of my own. Thank goodness that you all have blogs and BPC. :)

  120. Renee T. (italgal on BPC) says:

    What is that saying, “give a man a fish, and he eats for a day…teach a man to fish, and he eats for life.” Your essay today reminds me of that. I know soooooo many people who have given up on scrapbooking, because they feel their authentic style is no good enough, and all the magazines seem to promote talent or technique that my friends don’t feel they have. One of the things your many followers LOVE about you, Stacy, is that you have always been a TEACHER. You encourage us to think, and find our own way, while always been so clear and enthusiastic about the processes you have followed to find YOUR own way. I, for one, hope you never give up on your mission to teach! Thank you, by the way, for my Happy Mail! I am not sure if you will see this, or if this is the correct forum to express my appreication for your cute little gifts…but I can say for sure that Happy Mail really does make one HAPPY!!!

  121. I still miss Simple too. It was my one & only scrapping magazine. I’ve looked at and tried others – but they just don’t compare. I hoard each & every issue I have – and still use the layouts as inspiration.

  122. THANK YOU! You summed up for me the reason I stopped subscribing to scrapbooking magazines. I no longer needed “talent” shoved into my face. In the past, seeing good aspired me to better. Now seeing good only disappoints because it may be a beautiful work of art (that I don’t have the time, money, and or talent to achieve). Also, (and I realize it’s not mine and I’m making a generalization here), but I don’t see those pages saying a lot or coming across meaningful for the long haul.
    I could never quite put my finger on the it though so thanking for giving me a picture to solidify my feelings and needs.

  123. I forgot one note also. . . it implys that if you don’t have the newest products you can’t be “great” by industry standards. I have a whole room full of supplies, I certainly don’t need to go out buying the newest craze if I could find a store that will stay in business long enough to buy it from.

  124. Tammy B says:

    I so miss Simple Scrapbooks. It was the best scrapbooking magazine to date! I am planning on going back through every issue and using the ideas and layouts to get scrapbooking again. I find that some of the other magazines just don’t inspire anymore.

    To be quite honest, I would rather read the blogs of wonderful scrapbookers like yourself, especially when you share so honestly and openly your life and your true self. I enjoy reading Cathy Z’s blog and her openess about health challenges or Ali E’s blog and her musings on daily life. That is authenticity in it’s true form. It’s unfortunate that the magazine chose not to run your article. I imagine they had their reasons. But I love your layouts and they speak to me on a level that no other layout in any magazine can. I’m not into all the fancy techniques and extreme amounts of embellishments. Simple is my style and I appreciate what your magazine did for the years that it ran. Thanks Stacy!

  125. This is why I love you Stacy! You don’t try to sell us a fish for dinner. You teach us to fish so we can eat every night. I think that was a weird analogy but I’m sure you get it.
    I love that you are authentic, and not perfect. I love that I can look at your layouts and think “yes I can do that”. Sometimes I think the world moves too fast. When I find something I like, there is not enough time to enjoy it before others have moved on and are “over that”. I love that you stress concepts rather than product.

  126. ana smith says:

    i miss ‘simple’ too. love it so much more than ck. i now understand how to figure out ‘my’ style. i want to find’the big picture’ it’s a must read for me………your make-up is not the only difference… you talk slow!

  127. I so miss simple, I wish it was still around. I just got the mag 6 months prior to them stopping. I wish more people would TEACH. I get magazines and they dont help. Can you teach us more. thanks for your blog. it is great


  128. LOVE this post Stacy! You are so inspirational and this is one of the reasons I continue to read your blog and take classes at BPC. You “get” real scrapbookers and I have learned SO much from you, your books, classes and Simple. In fact, I still have ALL of my simple mags. I won’t ever throw them away! Keep getting your message out!

  129. Stephanie says:

    Simple was the only magazine I continued to subscribe to because it spoke to me. I didn’t start to scrap for years because I felt that if I couldn’t create perfect pages with lots of embellishments, hand-cut borders, and lots of layers, I wasn’t scrapping. BPC and Library of Memories made me see the light & for that I am in your debt.

  130. Cee-Cee says:

    I too enjoyed Simple Scrapbooks! That being said, Scrapbook & Cards Today is a wonderful magazine that is working hard to help keep local scrapbook stores alive. For those of you who criticize without knowing more about them, the team at SCT has created a magazine that is offered for free! They are not taking your money. They provide an amazing magazine that helps bring people into the stores. Stores provide the magazine to their customers because it brings people into their stores. It is consumers at small local scrapbook stores that keep the industry alive. How many of you have seen store after store close because they can’t compete with the big boxes. The local scrapbook store owner spends time teaching crafters to scrapbook and scrapbookers to be creative. If we lose all the lss then we will have nowhere and noone to teach scrapbooking. We should be grateful that SCT works hard to help keep small stores alive. The big boxes can’t compete with us as the magazine is not made available to them. I am a small store owner and thank the SCT team for all the work they do to help get people into my store. Instead of asking my customers to spend $5 or $20 on a magazine I offer for sale, they ask my customers to visit my store, pick up the magazine and maybe shop while I am visiting! Thanks to SCT for keeping my dream alive!

  131. Gracie V. says:

    I’m glad I found your blog Stacy. I remember watching you on a scrapbooking show(can’t remember the name) but you always talked about telling our stories. I loved that. I have a friend who is on a design team and sometimes I felt embarrassed showing her my layouts because I thought they weren’t good enough. She’s very crafty and keeps up with the trends. Me…not so much. But then I looked for your blog and I started reading it. I realized that my style was simple. It’s all about the pictures and the stories for me. I now take between 10 to 20 minutes to finish a page. It’s simple, cute and gets my story across for my family to read and enjoy. And that’s all that matters to me. Thank you for letting me realize that!

  132. Angie F says:

    Thanks so much for posting the video clip! LOVE it! I enjoy watching your videos so much…thanks for sharing!

  133. Wow great article! Their loss and really all of ours too for it not getting published! I too am an independent store owner and am saddened that SCT made that decision. Not the right one in my opinion but I still do appreciate what they attempt to do.
    I agree the majority of scrapbooking world is more product driven than process driven and that is a HUGE mistake.
    THANKYOU for being who you are! You continue to inspire me and obiously one or two(tee hee)(more like thousand) of us think the same.
    Keep doing what you are doing I will continue to listen and follow!

  134. Hi Stacy
    Thanks so much for the post! I agree with everyone, I miss SIMPLE and the focus in the industry is too much “flash” (product) and not enough substance (story and the “why”). I recently spent a few hours working with a “new” scrapbooker who had purchased a ton of CM product, tools, etc…. but was almost paralyzed when it came to actually putting things on the pages because she didn’t want to do it wrong! I tried to help her but I felt so sorry for her that she couldn’t just enjoy the pictures and the process and she hardly had any words at all…too bad and I fear all too indicative of what happens to people who get overwhelmed!

  135. Your words are exacly mine too. It´s so sad with all the flash and no substance in the magazines. I want to read about the thought behind the page, not just how to copy someone elses page! That is truely a loss. I miss Simple Scrapbooks and I miss the old Creating Keepsakes, that used to give me all that, now CK is just one among all the others. So sad. Thanks for keep standing up for the story and simplicity!

  136. I think I am missing something here! Why is it such a slap in the face to be published online?

    Since Simple was discontinued, do you not interact with the majority of your followers in the online world? You obviously have used this online forum to reach your followers.

    Instead of bashing SCT could you not just have provided a link to your article with a positive post about what you were trying to say.

    As a past magazine creator, did you never ask for changes to be made to artwork or an article. Is this not the purpose of a magazine editor? And is the publishing of articles and layouts not at the discretion of the editor and publisher? You yourself stated that you were not willing to make the requested changes.

    It saddens me that you would use this forum to bash SCT. I think it is disgraceful and far more self serving than anything!

    You repeatedly refer to authenticity in your post. Are you insinuating that all the other layouts in the magazine are not authentic, that they are not the truth from the person who created the layout? They may not be your style, but they are the style of each individual designer.

    Not all scrapbookers are the same. Some scrapbookers are looking to create simple quick layouts. Other scrapbookers want a more detailed page and there are also others who prefer to spend hours on a single page and layer it with bling. All of these scrapbookers have a place in the industry. There is room for everyone!

    You cannot assume because Simple was successful for a time being that everyone wants simple. Many scrapbookers pick up a magazine to be inspired!

    I am saddened that you would lower yourself and write a post such as this where the intent is obviously to hurt someone!

    • Summer Mobley says:

      Stacy did not bash SCT. If you read it carefully she says they gave her the chance to change her content, but she didn’t choose to change it, and thus shared it with us. Yes, she could have shared these layouts without saying anything about SCT, but then the message about authenticity would have been lost.

    • Donna Clark says:

      Hmmm…I see your point, but I have to say, if anyone is bashing anyone, it’s you bashing Stacy. I disagree with almost everything you said except that it is a magazines choice to publish what they want. Stacy’s point was to reach out to more people to make our passion realistic and accessible to everyone- that’s it’s not all about the products, or even the design. Not just the “popular kids” or the people who can afford the latest and greatest. Not to mention the fact that many people try to use what they have for a variety of reasons. We want to continue to inspire the people who are passionate about this lifestyle as possible and strive to include everyone who wants to join us. The most current products are fun and fabulous and they are but one aspect that drives this industry. Sometimes substance over style is the way to go if you want to go for the long term.

      To say that Stacy “lowered” herself is pretty harsh, in my opinion. I don’t think she could sleep a wink if she knew she hurt someone and to say you know her intent, is simply impossible. You can certainly “assume” that; as you accused Stacy of “assuming” that “everyone wants simple”-which she clearly did not. People picked up Simple for many reasons, and I can only speak for myself as to why I picked it up-to be inspired to create however I wanted, whatever I wanted, and whenever I wanted.

      STACY- I know you can defend yourself if you wanted to, but I’m posting because I want to. I have met and spoken with you in person at Treasured Memories in Oak Park and got a real feeling of how “authentic” you really are. Love u! :)

      I could go on and address each and every statement, but I’ve got to get back to my BPC class! :)

  137. Nicky from Canada says:

    Miss Simply – think it was so great!!!

  138. First, I LOVE both your earlier pages. I love the design, the use of multiple pictures, the colors, the layout itself.

    To me, your pages are far more inspiring in terms of inspiring me to want to scrapbook and tell my story. Pages with a lot of newer product are not inspiring to me. Pages with one photo and a lot of product and skimpy journaling are NOT inspiring to me.

    I originally started the blog I have — on another site — in order to mostly complain about scrapbooking magazines for the exact thing you are talking about. I worked in print publishing for 10 years so I think I know a thing or two about magazines. And I really really did NOT like what I saw in the industry.

    I did like Simple. I thought it was a little light on the content, but what there was, was great.

    Right now print is struggling to survive. You know how it is. They have to do what they think will keep their readership or they cannot sell enough ad space to survive. Is it the right decision? I don’t know without the numbers.

    All I can say is, your pages inspire me, how they are built and created. The use of 4×6 photos, the lack of PhotoShop mania (and I use PS professionally so I am certainly not skeered of it), the combinations of older and newer products, the bits and pieces. And the journaling, which is always meaningful and interesting.

  139. There is a layout on the floor behind me of my godson’s third birthday party. The base cardstock is a bright, apple green, with tiny tonal polka dots. Even though the color expresses my godson’s exuberance and the happiness of the day, I found myself looking at the page with a frown, thinking “Ali Edwards would never use bright green as base cardstock on one of her current pages. Maybe I shouldn’t either.” Then I listened to your video and thought, “That is dumb. Ali Edwards has her personal style (love it!) and I have mine.” I like color! I do! Sure, I love me a sheet of kraft cardstock as much as the next girl, but I love a sheet of bright, apple green paper with tiny tonal polka dots, too! I need to be me. I need to accept and embrace my style. Thanks, Stacy, for the reminder. Oh. And I miss miss Simple, too. You will never, never know how much.

  140. Margaret C says:

    Oh yes…. I TOTALLY AGREE.

    That’s why i REALLY miss Simple.

    And why I declined to re-subscribe to Creating Keepsakes…

    (…and why I don’t even bother with the UK produced magazines.. )

    Oooh, off to dig out my Simple Scrapbooks and be reinspired ! XX

  141. Shannon says:

    I totally agree and have stopped my subscriptions to all scrapbook magazines because of this fact. I miss the “old way” and instead of spending the time on the magazines, I spend time on the blogs of those I still adore. The “original” and best scrapbook artists as far as I’m concerned. I love your Library of Memories concept and your inspiring ideas that keep me focused on the “real” purpose of scrapbooking. I also love Cathy Zielske, Becky Higgins, and Ali Edwards too. Becky’s Project Life and POTD concepts is a perfect example of what all of you are about. Cathy Z’s “Pottery Barn” style is beyond perfect….as I said, you are all great! Keep up the good work……I’m sure there are others out there like me that want to be inspired by you and not BLING. Nothing against that target market, it’s just that so many magazines speak to them and there are not any left that speak to the rest of us. :-(

  142. Love your video. My husband gave me Big Picture Scrapbooking and Photo Freedom last July for my birthday. Your websites and books have let me just jump right in! Having so much more fun with my scrapbooking now that I have jumped in. Thanks for all you do.

  143. Cindy Lyles says:

    I believe most persons in positions of power within this industry continue to fail in understanding that the craft buyer/consumer/customer has evolved, is more educated within the crafting realm, and is making more decisions based on ‘how can I use what I have/how does this evolve me/grow my knowledge of xyz’, and not on ‘oooh what eye candy/new product/omg is that the latest…{squeeeal!}’ I fully agree with your post. Insustry leaders’ failure to evolve with the buyer will continue to result in turning off the consumer…and lordy we’ll all end up knitting. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. ;)

  144. You remind me of the actress Julieanne Moore – gorgeous, definitely not too much make up!

  145. I soo miss Simple, but I am very grateful for BPC and the blogs of my old “Friends” I miss Memory Makers too, and CK is not the same any more…so I don’t subscribe to any Scrapbooking magazines any more. Thanks for the encouragement to be authentic.

  146. I so so so miss Simple Scrapbooks….Still! Your philosophy behind the magazine still holds true today. I am thankful to have BPC. Taking classes there have been a joy for me and helps me to renew my passion for scrapbooking.

    • sorry, I hit submit before I finished my thought which is…I started scrapping with CM years ago because my SIL was a consultant. I will forever be thankful because she ignited a passion to record my family memories. However, all I learned in the beginning was to scrap “Our day at the park” or “Family Reunion” etc. I only put the facts (most of which were obvious from the photos).
      That all began to change when I read Big Picture Scrapbooking. I was so drawn to your layouts that told REAL things, something funny someone said, or how someone was feeling (with a random photo -a non-event photo – gasp). While I wasn’t fully able to completely jump on board with this concept at the time, I was no longer content with event based scrapbooking or just stating the facts for my journaling. But, I didn’t quite know how to get out of that way of thinking.
      Finally, your Big Picture Scrapbooking website started up. I took a few classes, then I took the mother of all classes…LOM. That spelled Freedom to me…freedom from chronological scrapbooking, freedom from the pressure of “being behind”, freedom from stricting telling the facts of the photos, freedom to tell random stories with random photos. Freedom to journal from the heart.
      I am still learning how to let go and speak from the heart (and not care that someone might think I’m ridiculous).
      Thank you for that freedom, Stacy.

  147. Summer Mobley says:

    I miss Simple so badly! It was the only magazine that made me think of my life in terms of stories, and I always felt like telling my story when I put an issue down. I’ve been really let down by the direction CK has gone. In one of the last issues, there was an article about scrapbooking styles where they tried to give a name to the distinctive style of several women. My head almost hurt trying to figure out the difference between “cutesy” and “artsy”, “classic” and “clean”, and wondering, why does it matter, can’t we just create?

  148. KathyinMN says:

    Count me in on the peeps that miss Simple Scrapbooks Magazine. I did not re-up my subscription to Creating Keepsakes, as it does not meet my needs for scrapbooking. I find I follow many of the old SS designer’s blogs and now take on-line classes or buy Ella books to fulfill my scrapbooking needs. And I try to take it one step further-when I’m out scrapbooking at crops, I like to show off what I’ve done (the journalling especially) just to show others it isn’t all picture-picture-picture-fancy embellishment. One of the last times I was out, someone actually said “you write a lot on your pages”. LOL-yes I do. And then I explained why they should too, and fill their heads with information about non-chronological scrapbooking. SS lives on!

  149. Bev Mascara says:

    Dear Stacy, I miss the magazine Simple Scrappbooking A Lot!!! Don’t subscribe to scrapbooking magazines after I started understanding that I (74 year old Grandma with 11 Grandchildren and 2 Great Granchildren) I don’t have to be perfect to scrapbook and that your ideas hit a nerve with me and I have been applying them and find my life is happier and less stressful. My Retired Scrapbookin Project is to get 13 Scrapbooks done.
    This is not easy when I look for magazine that continually have too many advertisements which overwhelm me. They also have so many layouts that are not clearly explained or helpful information is not provided. This is my personal opinion and I don’t expect anyone else to feel this way, but I truly follow The Big PIcture and PHoto Freedom books to guide me. I have put them into notebooks for easy reference. Although I read articles from a lot of different authors on scrapbooking, I find your helpful, sincere and funny advice to be the best! Thank you for your perserverance. Do not give up. I need all the help from you I can get :-)

  150. I love looking through mags – they do showcase some amazing talent out there. But I’m noticing something more and more. I flick through and admire, but I don’t read. Mostly because there isn’t a whole lot to read – the teaching of scrapbooking element is missing. I also was hung up on the whole “why isn’t my style here” and tried many times to have some of my work published. It never was – and I believe it was because it was not show casing all the “now” product, wasn’t arty, wasn’t “beautiful” enough. Once I learned to let go of that wanting to see my work in the mags, I came back to getting my pages done because I wanted to do them. Makes such a difference. And that is something that I think Simple reiterated time and time again.

    I really miss Simple!

  151. Stephanie says:

    Stacy, I used to always get the Simple Magazine and miss it too. The REASON I loved it was exactly what you said, it focused on the pics and the stories. I do agree that a lot of the popular mags out there now focus on only the presentation of pages where you know the person spent hours on the embellishing (as beautiful and artistic as it may be) and then included only one picture on it, no words, dates, etc. I guess that is ok, if your only goal for the hobby is a creative outlet, but if you’re also interested in telling the story, preserving the memory, that just isn’t going to do the job. I also think that kind of approach alienates those who don’t have gobs of time and money to devote to this hobby. These are my thoughts to add, and thanks for your words on authenticity. I appreciated them, and the intent behind them. I’m really looking forward to your photo freedom class….I have searched all over for your book and I’m sure you already know this, but there are none to be found anywhere unless you have $90 to spare…the cheapest used price I could find. Will you be re-releasing the book now that you own the rights, or will it only be in class format now?

  152. I miss Simple too – started with issue one and continued to the end :sigh:

    I like your article and agree – whilst I do turn out ‘fun’ pages where I’m playing with photos and products they aren’t as interesting or valuable to me as the ones where I dig deeper, think more and move into emotional territory. Thanks for the reminder :)

  153. thanks for sharing about your unpublished article
    and your thoughts for not reworking your layouts
    AND for NOT changing just because someone didn’t like it enough

    I miss Simple for so many different reasons
    but mainly because I always got something from that magazine
    BESIDES just what I *should buy*

    although I do subscribe to another mag now, I sometimes can’t get past the cover
    I learned too much for Simple (especially the last issue) about design
    magazine design that is …
    now I’m hypercritical BUT I also know WHY things appeal to me
    and understanding the “why” makes things seem to clear

    because of Simple and because of you, I do not usually criticize my pages
    (any more)
    thank you for that – what I produce is not only good enough, it’s perfect
    perfect for me – for my family – for where I am today
    and that is the best I can do …
    it’s more than enough :-)

  154. Hi Stacy…

    I love that video – haven’t seen it before – but wow – what a good idea. I’ve been trying to figure out how to define my style (for my little tag book) so this is perfect.

    Just an FYI – I stopped buying scrapbook magazines since Simple went out of production – but I still have all my old issues. I just recently went through them and realized – all the principles taught here and the pages that were published STILL speak to me. I’m keeping them all…. but – I’ve given away the other magazines I collected and used to subscribe to. SIMPLE are my ‘go to’ publications when I need a little inspiration or just feel like browsing and am not in the mood for the internet.

    Thanks for all you do now and all you did back then. You are an inspiration to me and oh so many others….

    … Sabine.
    a very loyal fan and LOMer…

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