Monday, June 23, 2008

:REVIEW: PageMaps by Becky Fleck

I don't always use sketches when scrapbooking, but sometimes they can be just the boost of inspiration needed when in a rut or simply to help a busy scrapper who's short on time.

When it comes to sketches, Becky Fleck has been a long-time favorite. I was lucky enough to have one of my layouts featured in her PageMaps newsletter last June and have featured several more of my layouts created from her sketches on this blog in the past.

So, I have to say that I was pretty excited when I found out that she was coming out with a book - Scrapbook Page Maps: Sketches For Creative Layouts.

The book is divided into four chapters:

1 - Using Sketches & Making Them Your Own
2 - The Versatility of Sketches
3 - One Sketch, Three Ways
4 - From Simple to Savvy
In this book there are 60 sketches featured in 5 common scrapbook layout sizes:

8 1/2 x 11 vertical
8 1/2 x 11 horizontal
8 1/2 x 11 double
12 x 12
12 x 12 double
Every sketch has at least 2-3 very unique examples - with totals up to a whopping 144 inspiring layouts in a wide variety of sizes and styles!

The book includes many layouts by Becky herself, but also features the talented work of 14 other contributors as well: Marla Kress, Mindy Bush, Tiffany Tillman, Judi Vanvalkinburgh, Denine Zielinski, Shawna Martinez, Amy Goldstein, Dawn Inskip, Kim Kesti, Patti Milazzo, Becky Heisler, Sheredian Vickers, Vicki Harvey, and Connie Petertonjes.

You can tell that Becky really does admire her designers. Each layout is accompanied by a commentary from her about how it is unique and highlights any special elements or techniques that deserve a little more attention.

There are also a few other fun little features in this book. Eye spy's call attention to creative little details on layout that really help it to stand out in the crowd. Tips come from the artists to help you create more successful layouts. Give it a try's are step-by-step instructions of how to achieve some of the techniques featured in the book. There are over four dozen of these three features throughout the book.

Last, but certainly not least, the book comes with a deck of sketch cards! The laminated cards featuring each of the sketches in the book are ready to be popped out and put into the box (also included and super easy to assemble). The sketch box is PERFECT for taking to crops or anytime you need a little on-the-go inspiration!!


??? I am always curious and open to hearing the opinions of others. If you own or have read this book, please feel free to share your opinion of it in the comments below.

Visit the Scrapbook Page Maps: Sketches For Creative Layouts page at You can also read more of my reviews for other recommendations.

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