I always wonder what other people think of my Mom and I on vacations… we’re scrapbookers which means we literally hoard each and every bit of paper we can find along the way. Maps! Tickets! Magazines! Shopping Bags! Room Keys! The whole shebang!
One of my friends saw me picking up an extra set of tags at the Haven blog conference this year and when I told her they were for my scrapbook she said “oh you’re always so funny!.” Honey in this house we take our scrapbooking seriously!
Of course, I do scrapbook in the traditional 12×12 pretty album, lots of stickers, tulle flowers kind of way but since I discovered travelers notebooks I have discovered a new passion… scrapbooking on vacation!
Scrapbooking in the evenings is a wonderful way to wind down from the day and it’s a great creative exercise because you’re 100% limited to the supplies you have with you.
Which is great until you run out of scotch tape in the middle of the Bahamas!
Whether you decide to give scrap
booking on vacation a try or hoard your supplies until you get home here are my tips on how to scrapbook (using what you have) while you’re on vacation!
Just take a peek at how cute my little Pelle Studio Travelers Notebook is stuffed full with all my vacation memories! I even made little “laminated” tabs for each day so you can see where one day ends and another begins!
Alright… let’s start with one of the most obvious ones! When you travel anywhere new you typically find yourself with a few maps. Especially if you’re out of the country and trying to cut down on roaming data charges on your phone.
No gps y’all which means we go back to good old fold out paper! Which is perfect for scrapbooking because a map is wonderful visual of somewhere you’ve been. You can add a little star to the places you visited or trace the route you took over the streets!
Of course, in this case the fold out part of the map is actually a little trick to help the map fit into my planner. If you have a larger planner (mine is pocket sized so it’s pretty tiny… it’s just so cute!) you may not need to worry about folding quite as much but when you’re using a tiny planner and stuffing so-much-stuff inside every little bit helps.
So instead of folding this guy into sixths I cut it into sixths and then used clear packing tape to put it back together with a little bit of space in-between the pieces. That way it will fold easily on the packing tape seams and be compact in your planner.
(If this is confusing leave a comment down below and I’ll put together a post showing exactly what I mean)
Even with the packing tape I added a cute little planner paperclip to the top of this fold out map to keep it from popping open every single time I went past this particular page. Plus… any excuse to put a rose gold llamacorn on something is right up my ally.
Directions to your Room or Cabin
Okay, if you’re checking in to a hotel or a cruise ship chances are the folks who check you in hand you a little something with directions. Sometimes it’s a piece of paper with a sketch, sometimes a map or all the rooms, sometimes a little foldout map of the ship!
This is the perfect place to mark down your room and put it in your scrapbook! One day you’ll have a blast looking back on all the different cabins you’ve stayed in. Plus it’s a perfect place to do a little journaling about reaching your room… I like to add any kind of small story as it happens.
The little things will be easily forgotten within a week but they’re so much fun to remember.
Tickets or Boarding Passes
Everything seems to be digital these days but chances are you have an airline ticket, boarding pass, luggage tag, movie ticket, show ticket… from somewhere along your journey. These little tags are tangible pieces of your trip you can add to your scrapbook.
If you go to several shows or fly to a cruise you may even have multiple tickets to save! I may or may not be a ticket hoarder from way back… everyone in my family knows not to throw away a movie ticket stub in my presence!
Of course, if you have the option to go paperless vs a paper boarding pass that’s your call but even without the physical ticket you can write down the info! Draw a little ticket onto a blank page and add the date, time, location! All the fun details that would have been on your ticket.
Confetti from Shows!
Okay so this one is a little specific but there is typically confetti of some sort thrown in the air during the last act of the night on a cruise ship! If you’re seeing a show in a theater (like the Fox in Atlanta!) you may not have confetti but chances are there is a play bill you can snag for your scrapbook.
I have collected ribbon confetti, square confetti, circles… but this particular show had metallic hearts which were fun to experiment with. If you only have one or two taping them into your planner is a great reminder of a show… with a whole bunch you can make a fun statement page!
Even better? Create a little envelope to put them or even a sweet little shaker pocket!
Traveling for work? Maybe you have a business card of the steward for your room or the manager of your hotel. Try adding a business card with a bit of tape on the front and back edges so that you can flip it back and forth and see both sides.
Plus you have the added bonus of a little hidden spot behind the card… I’ve put photos from my little sprocket photo printer but it’s also a great place to journal a bit about the card itself.
Just an FYI if you’re playing around with scrapbooking on vacation I absolutely adore my sprocket… this is the first trip I brought it on and I loved being able to add in pictures as we went. I drew a lot of graphics last time but the pictures add a little something extra that you just don’t get with drawing… unless you’re a really good drawer.
Which I am not.
Alright y’all now we’re getting to the good stuff! When you’re on vacation there are always racks of brochures… usually by a desk in the lobby and they usually get overlooked. They have maps and ads… all kinds of fun stuff to clip out and add into your scrapbook!
This little brochure had a map and lots-of-ads for the island. I particularly liked this little 100% unspoiled ad since we had just gone to Princess Cays (which is an island owned by Carnival with literally nothing else to do but go to the beach!) so I was acutely aware that there are islands in the Bahamas that are unspoiled… let exactly as nature intended them to be.
Little clippings from brochures can spark fun little writing prompts like this so I like to clip them out, add a bit of white paper to the back and make them journaling cards. It’s all about writing down how you’re feeling or experiencing the world while you’re on vacation so that you can re-capture a bit of that feeling once you’re back home.
Even better than clean bits of white paper? Hotel stationary! I love anything with a logo because it adds that added bit of “this is from my trip, I picked this up far away.”
Adding a bit of stationary in-between two blank white pages breaks up the space while adding a bit more journaling room. Since it’s journaling space you can really add it anywhere in the notebook and it will make sense. Like this little page about the portholes in our cabin.
This may be one of my all time favorite things to add to a scrapbook! A little bookmark is the perfect way to highlight a particularly special part of your trip. While you can use a plain ribbon or even a sturdy piece of cardstock little dangling charms make it easy to flip to a particular section and allow you to bookmark the activity with one charm at the beginning and the other at the end.
Just make sure that you pick a keychain that’s the right scale to become dangling charms on a bookmark… the little blue fish on the right is adorable but it would be huge as a bookmark! While the three charms on this little keychain from Atlantis are just the right scale.
Of course, there are plenty of ways to make a bookmark but in the spirit of using only what I had on vacation I decided to cut the ties off this Pandora jewlery bag. They made up the actual bookmark and then I was able to attach the charms to the bottom.
Speaking of Pandora… I was able to find an ad in a magazine to clip for my little scrapbook. If you go to a specific store or restaurant you may just find the perfect ad to use as an image.
Try thinking about where you stopped to pick up a souvenir or what stores caught your eye as you were walking around a different city. Maybe you stopped at an amazing Mexican restaurant and there’s an ad in a magazine for something similar.
Remember that the skies the limit here… we can always cut, paste and change things around so they tell our story.
Sometimes magazines have the perfect answer… even if we don’t know we were looking for it. Remember the island of beaches I talked about up above? Princess Cays? Well even with sunblock and an umbrella I came away with a fun sun burn.
So this little “sun kissed” picture from a magazine was the perfect tongue in cheek way to put in that I had a little bit too much sun on our second day.
Try to think outside the box when combing through magazines and brochures to see what you can add to your scrapbook that might not be straightforward (like a Pandora ad for a Pandora souvenir).
Okay first of all let’s talk about who decided to spell pamphlets like that! People are crazy! Anyways… if you’re on vacation chances are you’re going to go to at least one spot that has a pamphlet… like Atlantis on Nassau, or swimming with the dolphins on St. Kitts.
If so make sure to grab plenty of pamphlets (there’s that word again!) because they’ll have the gorgeous professional shots of all the fun activities. You can add these little pictures in as easy reminders of where you were… and if you have a sprocket you can even add in pictures of while you were there!
Okay I’m not suggesting you add in every single cardboard piece of packaging from your trip but if you spend day after day looking for scissors and tape because you forgot to bring yours and you’re trying to scrapbook while you’re on vacation and you finally find some but it’s $4.95 a roll?
Yup that baby has a story so it’s going in the book.
I would add in a scissors package as well but I couldn’t find any for sale and the folks at the desk wouldn’t let me borrow theirs because “their too sharp and it might be a safety hazard” Well jokes on them because the folks at Camp Ocean (the day care on board) gave me a pair of safety scissors to use… success!
Anyways the point of the story is to tell the story so add in the bits and pieces that help you to do that.
Alright these are almost like maps but they typically have more info on the area. If you’re on vacation and you see a travelers information stand they probably have a booklet like this with places to go and things to see.
They usually have lots of pictures so the chances are good that you’ll find photos of whatever it is you’re doing in the area.
We spent the day at the Aquarium at Atlantis… there were so many sting rays! It really is just like the photos. It makes my little fish tank at home look so small.
Alright y’all… there are probably a million more things you could add into a scrapbook. Just remember that it’s all about telling the story of your vacation so write down what you’ve done, seen, been through. The little things that happen to make up your trip.
At the end of your trip you’ll have a fun souvenir that’s completely unique to your trip and what’s best of all is the memories within it.
Leave a comment below and let me know if you’ve tried this… I’d love to see pictures!
Get Your FREE Bucket List Printable!
Our Christmas Bucket List will help you check off each and every piece of holiday cheer!