March 15, 2021

Brads are no longer just for the office. Brads have become a hot trend in scrapbooking embellishments. They now come in many colors, sizes, and shapes. Brads can be as simple as round and silver, or more decorative, like in the shape of a Halloween ghost.

Using brads in scrapbooking pages couldn’t be easier. Just press the brad through the paper and flatten the ends open on the other side. You may want to first make a pilot hole if you are working with delicate paper or materials, like tissue paper flowers. Remember to put tape across the back edges of the brad if you plan to use it on interactive elements like envelopes with journaling cards. You don’t want the journaling card to catch on the brad as you slide it into the envelope.

It’s easy to find just the right brad for your scrapbooking project. Scrapbooking manufacturers are creating brads in sizes from mini to jumbo, and each season they release new decorative brads for everything from holiday pages to baby pages. Most scrapbooking design lines include coordinated brads, as well. If you can’t find a brad that fits with your page theme, try changing the color of a brad. You can use paint or marker pen to easily customize the color of a brad, or glue a rhinestone to the top of the brad to dress it up.

Brads are essentially fasteners. They fall in the same line as eyelets, staples and paper clips. In scrapbooking, brads can be used in place of adhesive. They are excellent for attaching vellum to pages, because they don’t leave the visible residue some glues can cause on transparent paper. Use brads to attach ribbons to your page. Brads can attach each end of a ribbon border, or they can create an additional accent on small ribbon pieces added to a page. You also can add a ribbon piece attached to a brad to the top of a scrapbooking tag.

Brads can become a piece of another page element. For example, a brad pressed into the center of a flower becomes part of the flower. Silk flowers can be difficult to glue to a page, but with a brad as its center, it’s easy to attach it to any place on your page. Make brads a part of your lettering. Use brads in the rounded part of your letters or in place of the letter “o” in your titles.

Titles aren’t the only page elements that can be accented with brads. Try brads on your borders. Ribbon borders are only one option. Lacing borders are easy with brads. Place your brads in the pattern you want on your page. Then use ribbon, floss, string or twine to lace through the brads. You can create many different kinds of patterns with brads and a lacing technique. Finally, brads can become bullets points on your journaling blocks.

Anywhere you can place an accent on your page could be a place to try brads. Visit a few scrapbooking sites with page galleries and watch how others are scrapbooking with brads on their pages. Stock up on brads and try some of these ideas on your next scrapbooking project.

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