Six by Six by Six – Double Page layouts and 6×6 papers

Happy Sunday, dear Readers, its Ruth here on a Sunny Sunday afternoon. This morning we walked to the park in the sunshine and I happily thought of ticking off another point from my list so that I have now completed 3 (and a bit, as I have just only started reading something terrific, but have a while to finish it), and my walk in the Sunshine today to the park was soul restoring, indeed. There is something amazing and miraculous about sunshine that we often take for granted, but when you stop to reflect, it is the most amazing, life-sustaining stuff.

I feel like that about the internet sometimes too, LOL.

Yesterday I was on the Twopeasinabucket forums and was prompted by Scrapn Nana’s thread which lamented the reducing number of 2-page layouts that are shared in the gallery. I think that the 2-page layout is still very popular in circles who do not post their layouts on the internet, but it is not as easy to share as a single page layout. In addition, many of the designers use single pages for their manufacturer team work as a) It showcase the products more effectively, with just a single photo, and b) The products look bigger and easier to see in the layout photos and c) The layout just looks better on a screen more suited for a square than a long rectangle. It is discussed in some depth and interest on PRT #92 The Two Page Layout Show as well as some great ideas for layouts.

I decided to create my next layout for my 6×6 Paper series as a double page layout and kill two birds with one stone. I have once again used the Citrus Twist PL kit paper pad for this layout, and in fact have only used Thickers and Mist to complement it, otherwise it is all paper. A simple and cheap layout to make. Here is the layout, then we will chat a bit about the pro’s and cons of two page layouts, and some tips for using 6×6 papers on them.
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Left Page
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Right Page
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Detail Shots
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The design uses a sketch from the queen of the two page layout, Allison Davis of Scrapbook Generation. She has a whole class on 6×6 paper uses that I would highly recommend. One of the ideas that she embraces in her sketches is that the photo does not need paper behind it. When I first sat down with 6×6 paper pad in hand, I was baffled about what to do, as it was only as long as my photo, how could I put paper behind my photo if the dimension was the same? This design above is one of my easiest answers, namely DON’T! Use the fact that they are the same measurement to place them together in a grid-like design, all the same height (or width) and let the photos fill your layout instead of the papers.

The second design idea on this layout I would like to attribute to Elsie Larson’s influence, in days of yor she was my scrapbooking crush and brought some amazingly fresh ideas to the industry, including a sense of whimsy. The journalling lines and the side border are my expression of this here, though the layout as a whole probably doesnt look very “elsie” to anyone else. I also love making borders like this as it’s a great way to use a lot of patterns, and also to use up scraps at the end of a kit. This whole layout is generally a great design to finish up the leftover papers in a kit when you have run out of embellishments and full 12×12 sheets.

But why use a double layout at all? PROS: Double layouts have some great pluses, they fit a lot more photos, and often there is a lot of story to be told in the photos themselves. I find it hard to pick just one, as there are subtle nuances in having several, and it is hard to fit more than 3 photos on a single page. Secondly, it can improve the experience of reading the album, much like a magazine, it is smoother and more flowing when the page appears as a single 24×12 layout, rather than two layouts that might clash when placed next to each other. This is especially true in a post-bound album. where the layouts are pressed up against one another (as oposed to a ring bound album, where there is a honking big ring binding mechanism between then). I think the additional space can also give more accomodation for lots of journalling, or lots of embellishing, or both. Often the journalling is last in the page process, and in 24 inches wide of space, there is always room to write a little more than only 12″ across.

CONS: There are a number of reasons why most of the pages online are single page, however, aside from the sharing element I discussed earlier. Single pages need less clear desk space (for the messy (like me) or when you don’t scrap on a dedicated space (actually also often me). Single pages are easier to rearrange in your album to accomodate new pages if you do not scrap in order and are easier to find inspiration and sketches for, as the majority of online scrappers seem to prefer this size. Single pages are much easier to buy product for, as you never need to have two of the same peice of paper (e.g. to use as a consistent 24″x12″ background). Finally, single page layouts are faster to finish, simply because there is less canvas to work on.

I must admit that the desk space factor often decides for me over the rest of them, as I love to scrapbook wherever I am struck with both time and inspiration and a single page is easier to fit on the outdoor table or the corner of my work desk, it takes less time to clear my scrapbooking desk or a corner of the dining table for a 12×12 than a 24×12.

I love this layout, though. The mix of photos and a story I am happy to have written down, as I have verbally expressed these thoughts often but not yet scrapbooked about it. It was a fast one to put together, finished within 2 episodes of a TV show, photographed this morning in the light in about 10 minutes (thought lining it up straight proved significantly harder than with a one pager). I hope this post wasn’t too wordy for you.

What’s your experience with making 2 page vs 1 page layouts? Any Pro’s or Con’s I missed in my list that make a big difference to you? Anyone out there mixing it up like me, and making both sizes? I would love to hear from you in the comments, lets get a discussion going. I read every single comment and always try to answer you.

Coming up next… how to scrapbook from a sandwich bag and leave the kitchen sink at home.

16 thoughts on “Six by Six by Six – Double Page layouts and 6×6 papers

  1. Monique

    Your post reminds me that I haven’t made a two page spread in ages! I used to do them regularly. I think that as I have been doing a few more digital pages lately and using templates more and as most templates are one page I have moved towards only one page! I may just have to break out a two pager! Let me think on that.

    1. ruth Post author

      I can image that the digi scrapper have their own pros and cons for 2 and 1 page layouts, Im more of a paper girl myself, but I wonder whether 2 page digi would be easier on one 24×12 canvas than 2 12×12. I know that when I scrap them, I treat them like a single shet of paper, sometimes i even use washi on the back to keep them together like that.

  2. Shay

    such a fun double spread! I too LOVE using 6×6 papers on say a 12×12 LO, I just like the scale of the busier patterns sometimes! Can’t wait to see what you make next ;]

    1. ruth Post author

      thanks Shay! I like the smaller patterns on 6×6 too, which was why I kept buying them, and eventually have had to get strict with myself about using them more, and it is really fun and much easier than i was expecting.

  3. Catherine

    As you know, I mostly do two page layouts because I’ve (so far) only got post-bound albums, and I do quite like the look of the double page spread. I tend to save my single pages for the first and last page of an album, and when I have limited matching photos (so I’ll do one page of Nicky at the park, and a matching one of Alex for the facing page).

    I love how you’ve used the 6×6 papers here to unify the pages through the circle motif and the 6×6 block of strips. Also, I really like the inking of the edges here; I’ve been feeling that it’s overused in general, but it makes the sparse decorations on the RHS really stand out against the blank page.

    1. ruth Post author

      You see pretty relaxed about the decision of 1 or 2 pages. I know that I used to have a bit of a hangup about it, and would actually leave those front and back pages empty, because I didnt know what to put there. Partly because I never actually made 1 pagers and partly because I wasnt keen to commit to where anything was going to live in the album. You can really get yourself in a tizz if you see all these things are big decisions. Then one day I decided to just take it one layout at a time and not make anything a big commitment. Turns out that was really freeing, and made the whole thing more enjoyable :-) Lucky for you, you are clever enough to have started out like this, just doing whatever works for you and enjoying it.

      1. Catherine

        I don’t know that I’m relaxed about it – certainly I stressed a bit doing the single page layouts at stamp camp. But at the same time, I couldn’t figure out a way to make my idea for the swinging chain of olympic rings layout work as a double, so it had to be a single.

        As well, I only have two full albums. The first is my graduation album, which opened with the happy shots of my finished thesis, and closed with a collection of photos of the uni, as a way of saying goodbye. The other album is random layouts of the kids, my friends, and me, and doesn’t really have a proper order to it. So I stole an idea from Heidi and did a single page of Nick posing for photos like a movie star for the opener, and on the back it was the “once upon a time” page. And now that I’m thinking about it, I should swap those. :)

        I’m trying to relax more. I think I need to scrapbook more around you, because you really aren’t that strict about following any rules.

        By the way, I love your avatar. There’s an evil part of me that wants to hack in every few weeks and change it so she’s left her sunnies behind at a friend’s house. 8)

        1. ruth Post author

          ROFL well that would certainly be an accurate portrayal of me! Right now I have NO sunnies, (down from 3 pairs a few weeks ago) and I am wearing a pair that I borrowed from my sister in her car a week or two ago that I have been carrying around and forgetting to return to her LOL hopeless right?

          ETA: It was a tough call to choose between holding a cup of tea and holding a phone, but luckily the phone looked kinda old school, whereas the tea looked exactly like my work mug i am drinking from as we type.

  4. Barb S

    I love two page layouts. For all the reasons you listed above and more. I like layouts that show a progression of photos which usually don’t fit on just one page. And i rarely make a layout with just one photo on the page. It’s more about the story and pictures for me, although the way I like to buy product, you might not know that.
    One idea for a two page layout if you have just one sheet of a patterned paper is to cut it in half and use half in different ways on each page (background, photo mats, embellishment) along with card stock and that will unify the two pages but allow for variety in design. Another thing I do with single page layouts is to tell complementary stories on facing pages and use papers that coordinate so they will complement each other but not have to match.
    Looking forward to your ideas on the next post!

      1. ruth Post author

        I love your idea of cutting it in half and then using each half differently. The idea of making the pages work together without necessarily being the same is much more fun to create, I think.
        I also really agree with you about the progression with photos. With digital camera in hand, I take way more photos than with my old film camera, so often you can see a story unfolding from one photo to the next, and it is lovely to have the space to show that visual story on the page, isnt it?

  5. Jen Ritchie

    I have never ever made a two page layout… i think mostly because it’s too much space for me. If I am feeling like i need to get a layout done quick I downsize to 8.5 x 11 or print a huge photo!

    1. ruth Post author

      I love the way you incorporated so many photos onto your page on your blog right now. You have a lovely style.

  6. Sandy Ang

    I have to agree the main reason for not doing double pagers is what you said – how hard it is to show them effectly on the internet. Love what you did with the Pebbles paper pad on your page !

    1. ruth Post author

      Thanks for reading and commenting, Sandy.
      I’m really enjoying the Pebbles Seen and noted collection, it is full of really happy designs.

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