Quick Tips to Embrace Simplicity in Your Layouts

Today’s post comes from Sandra Van Heems.Quick Tips to Embrace Simplicity in Your Layouts by Sandra Van Heems for Traci Reed Designs

Do you find it difficult to make a clean & simple page with a lot of “white” space? I always have to work at it.

It’s definitely a step outside my comfort zone. In a digital kit there are so many beautiful papers with patterns and great elements to use, that’s it’s easy to get caught up in using them ALL. But there isn’t any rule saying you have to use all the papers and elements…

The importance of a clean look is “keep it simple” and not to overcrowd the page with a lot of elements. Less is more, and that puts the focus on your photos.

So if you’re going to attempt a clean & simple page, here are some tips for you:

Don’t be afraid to leave a lot of white (or negative) space on your page. In digital kits, most designers provide solid or neutral papers. You don’t have to use a white paper, any color will do. I use a lot of white, kraft or gray as a base, but in the layout below, you can see that a color pink paper can do as well.

Choose your photo with care. It can be a black and white picture or a full-color one – perhaps even with a filter! Or for greater variety, use one of each and get some contrast.

Quick Tips to Embrace Simplicity in Your Layouts by Sandra Van Heems for Traci Reed Designs

In the layout above, I used Traci’s Pocket Life: February Collection. There are SO MANY beautiful cards, elements, stickers, and alphas in this kit that it can be difficult to keep things simple. But it IS possible. : )

Plan where your photo and journaling will be placed and add elements groups of threes so you create balance. If it’s a color photo, you can choose a contrasting or similar element to get the focus on the photo. I used a black neutral frame and underneath I place a patterned journal card. I always like to have a little border on one side of the page, just to give it more contrast.

If you think the neutral background looks empty, you can always blend in a patterned paper for some visual interest. Just place it above the layer with the neutral background and then select a blending mode for the patterned paper to get some more depth. In the layout above, I placed a patterned paper full of circle clusters atop the pink paper and scrolled through the blending modes until I got the look I wanted.

There are many great templates for a clean and simple page, but you can also make one yourself because you don’t have many layers. If you find it difficult you can always look through the Sweet Shoppe Gallery or Pinterest to find some inspiration. And you can even scraplift one! Even when scraplifting a clean and sinple page you are still creating your own unique simple look. So don’t feel like it’s cheating!

I hope this helps you step outside of your comfort zone and give the clean & simple method a try. Happy Scrapping!

sanAbout the Author: Sandra Van Heems lives in The Netherlands and is inspired by a variety of items: color, elements, or just something in a picture. Her scrappy goals for 2014 include stepping out of her comfort zone and to stop overthinking her scrapping.

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