Scrap size: 8.5x11 vs. 12x12

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Posted 2/5/2010 by jeffiner_09 in Digital Scrapbooking

2Ps Digital Creative Team

PeaNut 454,038
January 2010
Posts: 648
Layouts: 567
Loc: Ohio

Posted: 2/5/2010 1:42:17 PM
Hello all! I am new to the scrapbook world... period. I have decided to go digital because I prefer using my computer and being able to undo with the click of a button. I received PSE 8 for Christmas and I've created 2 pages thus far, but I'd like some input with the size that people scrap.

Do you scrap 8.5x11 or 12x12? What are the advantages/disadvantages? Why did you choose to scrap this size as opposed to the other?

I'm trying to figure out what size I want to scrap and I'd like to get some info from those who have been there before me!

Thanks in advance for all of your advice!


PeaNut 287,976
December 2006
Posts: 307
Layouts: 26
Loc: Phoenix, AZ

Posted: 2/5/2010 1:56:26 PM
I am sorta starting out as well. I like to do 12x12 then I can print them 8x8 if I want. I have a case full of photo paper that is 8 1/2 x 11 inches, tho, so I was thinking of doing some digi on that and then hybrid a bit onto 12x12 cardstock to use up what I have. Then it would be in a 12x12 album as well.

But I think square is nice because then you can print it out in different sizes to make smaller albums as well.

Going Up

PeaNut 438,732
September 2009
Posts: 1,266
Layouts: 419
Loc: Dayton, OH

Posted: 2/5/2010 2:02:09 PM
I do 12x12 so that I can resize down to 8x8. I started out with Shutterfly's predone 8x8 books a few years ago and I really like that size. They fit nicely on a shelf, now that my kids are interested, they're easy to look through, etc. I did do one 12x12 book of a family trip to Germany in 2007 because I wanted to really showcase all the scenery and photos from the trip.

I'm thinking of doing an 8.5 x 11 book for a friend before we move, but I don't have any templates or anything yet. I personally think this will be a challenge for me since I'm more used to laying things out based on a square as opposed to a rectangle so I'm thinking of finding mostly templates to help speed me through the designing part of it. I can still personalize but I'll be guaranteed it'll be done when I need it to be to give as a good bye gift.

Loving Digital Scrapping, using PSE7.0 - scraps for the memories

Livin' in My Own "Pea-rivate" Idaho

PeaNut 103,985
August 2003
Posts: 5,722
Layouts: 380
Loc: Idaho

Posted: 2/5/2010 2:41:35 PM
I've been doing 8.5 x 11 since I started out as a paper scrapper almost 13 years ago. I prefer this size because the albums fit on shelves better than 12 x 12 pages.

When I switched to digital, it made it possible for me to print them on my home computer. When I was a paper scrapper, I liked that I could also scan the page at once, instead of having to scan each side of a 12 in page and stitch them together. But with digi-scrapping, that really isn't an issue so much.

I also like the fact that I can go to Costco or another big warehouse store and buy the big packages of 200 sheet protectors. For some reason, I've never gotten into the 12 in. pages.

However, I realize that I'm in the minority. While there are more and more 8.5 x 11 scrappers everyday, so many people do 12 x 12. I'm not sure why...perhaps more people like the small increase in size that you get with them, but for me, it's not been that big of a difference.

I do, from time to time, do a 12 in. page, but I never print them full-size. Like Amy, I make the page 12 inches but print them out as 8x8. That way, they fit into my American Crafts 8.5 x 11 cloth albums.

If you choose to use a printing company, Such as Shutterfly or Blurb to have your pages printed and bound into a book, There are more printing options for 12 x 12 or 8 x 8 from those types of companies. There are some that offer printed books in 8.5 x 11, but so many more offer the square sizes, so you should consider that.

Really, this all boils down to what you prefer. There really is no "right" or "wrong," either size works in the long run.

My Blog: Common Sense Scrapbooking


PeaNut 307,816
April 2007
Posts: 12,819
Layouts: 962
Loc: So Cal Gal Living in NJ

Posted: 2/5/2010 2:46:30 PM
I scrap 8x8. It takes up less space on my harddrive to store lots of the smaller size LOs. On the occasion whe I print, I also like the smaller size for viewing. I have also gotten hooked on the square format. I like how my designs work in that format. Also I do a lot of 2 page layouts, and I like the proportions of the 8x16 size. It's just personal preference, a lot of scrappers like the 8 1/2 x 11 size. There are quite a few templates and pp designed for letter size.

Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 290,201
January 2007
Posts: 12,947
Layouts: 0

Posted: 2/5/2010 3:44:50 PM
I generally print 8 by 8 even if the layout was designed as a 12 by 12.

Sometimes I want a rectangular layout, so I use 11 by 8.5 (landscape orientation). If I'm giving a layout as a gift, I often use 11 by 8.5 because it's easy to find nice frames, and that size works well either hanging or as a tabletop item.


PeaNut 352,358
December 2007
Posts: 867
Layouts: 7
Loc: Ohio

Posted: 2/6/2010 7:32:06 AM
I decide first what I'm going to do with the pages and let that be my guide. I mostly do 12x12 and then I have the freedom to choose whether the page will go in my 12 x 12 albums or 8 x 8. There are so many albums available in those sizes that it makes it easy to find what I want. I also like to scrap in 11 x 8.5 (landscape) as I think the proportion works well for journaling and putting several photos on a page. However I've only found one source for albums in that size and they are being discontinued. I even once made an entire album in the 4 x 6 size for a special gift.

Mel's Scrapbook Blog
Beyond Room 108 (My work/teaching website)

Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 290,201
January 2007
Posts: 12,947
Layouts: 0

Posted: 2/6/2010 9:46:59 AM

However I've only found one source for albums in that size and they are being discontinued

Martha Stewart has some albums in that size - I've found them locally at Hobby Lobby.

Digital Scrapbook Place also has the 11 x 8.5 clear view page frames that are great for displaying (or giving) individual page layouts.


PeaNut 352,358
December 2007
Posts: 867
Layouts: 7
Loc: Ohio

Posted: 2/6/2010 10:09:19 AM
I was getting the Martha Stewart albums at Michael's and they are no longer carrying them so I thought they were totally discontinued. The closest Hobby Lobby is about an hour from me, but I will definitely check that out the next time I drive in that direction! Thank you.

Mel's Scrapbook Blog
Beyond Room 108 (My work/teaching website)

Ancient Ancestor of Pea

PeaNut 290,201
January 2007
Posts: 12,947
Layouts: 0

Posted: 2/6/2010 12:00:20 PM
If you don't have a Hobby Lobby locally, you can order the albums directly from Martha Stewart Crafts.


PeaNut 255,439
March 2006
Posts: 257
Layouts: 22
Loc: Connecticut

Posted: 2/6/2010 12:26:27 PM
For me the question is the shape. I just feel freer with the square format than I do with the rectangle, but I'd love to try the landscaped oriented 11 x 8.5. Usually my digi layouts wind up being 8x8.

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PeaNut 352,358
December 2007
Posts: 867
Layouts: 7
Loc: Ohio

Posted: 2/6/2010 2:55:25 PM
Thank you for the link for the albums! Not a bad price either.

Mel's Scrapbook Blog
Beyond Room 108 (My work/teaching website)

Nursie Pea

PeaNut 243,673
January 2006
Posts: 6,091
Layouts: 1,086
Loc: Vancouver, WA

Posted: 2/7/2010 3:55:06 AM
I scrap in 12x12 because it is easier to do the math for cropping but I buy 8x8 albums from Shutterfly. I very occasionally do a 8.5x11 LO because my sister likes that size so if I do anything for her, I do it in that size. It is not my comfort zone though as I can never seem to figure out how to get a balanced LO in that size. I've had to buy some templates from Erica Hernandez to make them work a lot of times.


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Olympian Pea

PeaNut 104,224
August 2003
Posts: 18,856
Layouts: 1,874
Loc: North Carolina

Posted: 2/7/2010 3:52:23 PM
I do both 12x12 and 8.5x11. You don't have to choose one over the other unless you have a preference.

I started scrapbooking in 2003, my first layout was a 2 page 12x12. I always saw them done in the scrapbook magazines that way. When Cathy Z came out with her Clean & Simple Scrapbooks idea books, I loved the graphic style of them and thought I would create my son's baby album using 8.5x11 with her simple designs.

I like both sizes, but tend to do more in 12x12. I'm a hybrid scrapper, however, and do not care about printing out pages so that's not an issue for me.


PeaNut 89,258
June 2003
Posts: 243
Layouts: 37
Loc: NJ

Posted: 2/8/2010 10:56:41 AM
IT with Mom2C.
When I paper scrapped, I was 8.5x11"
When I started digi- I used that size, since that is what I was used to. But then there was the issue of printing pages.

SO I switched to 12x12 and I resize down to 8x8 for printing. However, occasionally I'll find a template I like or I am scraplifting a LO and I love the way it looks in a different size.
Gotta love the flexibility of digi!

No Day But Today- Rent


PeaNut 359,040
January 2008
Posts: 537
Layouts: 13
Loc: New England

Posted: 2/9/2010 9:05:11 AM
This is an interesting thread. I am surprised how differently people work. I started doing 8.5 x 11, but found the space was too small. I like to use a lot of photos, and 12 x 12 provides more space for more photos. I love working on a spread, 24 x 12! Ahhhhh lots of space!

Best of luck to you finding what works best for you!

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