How to know? 2pg vs single

How do you pick when to do a single page layout vs when to do a two page spread?

This is a question I get a LOT, and as I sat down to craft the other day and found myself making a double page spread I thought I would take the opportunity to both share the layout AND talk about my philosophy on the subject. It’s simple – you ready?


Yeah, that’s it. That is the whole shebang. By “story” I mean my words + photos. If my words + photos need more space than a single page can give them, I spread it across a double page spread. That is it. End of story.

I know some people feel they “must” do two page layouts so that their albums are a flawless, seamless, flowing wonderland of coordination. Well, if that makes you happy that’s cool. But to me, this limits me. When I have a single photo and a short specific memory or story, when I don’t have an idea to fill that much space, what would happen? I will tell you! I’d started (before I knew about scrapbook stores or magazines and before online galleries!) as a single page girl. Each page a new story/look/theme – until I was told that was ‘wrong’. Then I was a 2-pager only girl and I grew to really resent them. So I went back to only single page… and now (for the last 6+ years) I’ve been happily living where I’m at now.

I let the story and creative inspiration tell me if the page will be one or two pages. That simple.   

Here’s my most recent two pager. I printed out all my iPhone pics from my recent trip to Colorado sized at 2×3 so that I could use a lot more of them. Plus, the quality on most wasn’t great so smaller was better. As I looked at all these photos I realized they’d be much better off on a two pager! So there you go. Photos and story arranged. Embellishments added. Creative fun ensued.

I played with some old supplies, and some brand new goodies too!

Supply list:

I am *loving* my new Kelly Purkey stamp AND the Amy Tangerine Ready Set Go line (both now in stores – hooray!!!) They play so nicely with my other faves- love that.

One thing- I didn’t use patterned paper. You’ll see that with me a LOT with my two pagers. Another thing that I tend to do is make one more photo heavy, leaving more room for words on the other page.

I wish you a weekend of Happy Crafting!!! I’ll be posting tomorrow about “happy crafting” here (and at Big Picture – if you’re not already be sure to go get in the big idea festival!!!) and why it is worth fighting for…

Happy Friday!

6 thoughts on “How to know? 2pg vs single”

  1. I used to be a 2-page girl for that exact reason: the pages on either side have to match. Then I started taking part in sketch challenges and all the sketches are 1-pagers. I quickly figured out that I prefer 1-pagers because they are so much easier to design. We all have our own preferences and that is what scrapbooking is all about, living out our own unique creativity and loving it!

  2. I do the same. I don’t worry too much about a “cohesive” look for the album, as long as I like the individual layouts. My albums are generally themed by kid and year, so I figure that’s enough coherence. 🙂

    When I do facing single-page layouts though, I usually do try to make them look nice next to each other – pull a common color or at least try to make sure they aren’t super clashy.

  3. I started off in scrapbooking doing double pages and I suffered with trying to fill up the pages, rather than the great point you brought up …letting the photos and story drive the creation. Really enjoyed the Big Picture class this week! Can’t beat free inspiration and joining the Happy Mail gang! 🙂

  4. Thanks for sharing! I tend to do event scrapping and all my decisions as to picture size and laying pages out revolve around that 2-page mentality. I probably would have made a whole album out of your trip on the Zephyr (awesome trip, BTW! I think that’d be a great experience!) But as you said if your photos and your story don’t need more, why fight it? Thanks for helping me look at my process in a different way!!!

  5. Love your layout May!!!

    I have been scrapping in my own way for a few years now and managed to not have any scrap book type education till this year…. I do singles, doubles, whole books! Have done it on perspex sheets, cards, scrapbook pages, canvas.
    I did both my daughters albums for their 21st birthdays and ran out of pages!
    It is a FABULOUS craft and able to be utilised in so many different ways. No need for rules!!!
    Linda 🙂

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