THE HISTORY of PRINTED SCRAPS 4
THE HISTORY of SCRAPBOOKS and ALBUMS
A look at the development and history of scrapbooks, scraps and albums
This article was researched from the book "The History of Printed Scraps" by Alistair Allen. It deals with the topic of scrapbooking and cards in depth and I highly recommend it.
Scrapbook albums flourished from the early 1800s to late Edwardian times. Early scrapbooks were an extension of the vogue for recording personal mementoes and thoughts, which was popular at the time.
A great deal of personal writing and poetry was included which often included personal narrative and verses in journal-style. Extracts of plays, passages from literature, and dedications on the flyleaf were also featured.
Pencil drawings and water colours are a feature of the early scrapbooks too.
The scrap evolved from the simplest black and white engravings to heavily embossed chromolithograph reliefs printed in sheets. As scrap albums became popular, they were crammed full of scraps of embossed reliefs.
Albums revealed a spectrum of subject matter and included pictures ranging from the romantic to wildlife, agriculture, architecture, the military, flowers and seasonal.Quips, comments and verses were included.
The scraps were combined with a variety of material selected by the compiler of the album. These included photos, postcards, certificates, greeting cards and advertising material. In fact, scrap albums can be roughly dated by the type of material included in them.
Some of the earliest examples of embossing in the UK were decorative and embossed price tags, wrappers and milliners stock control tickets from 1820 to 1830. These were often ornately illustrated and were valued motifs in scrap albums.
During the 1830’s and 1840’s companies dealing in reliefs and chromos expanded their production of luxury paper goods to include specially manufactured albums.
Albums of this era were of high quality with covers of fine-tooled leather and paper of exceptional quality. They included prepared pages with rectangular and oval spaces for the insertion of lithographs and printed material and had lavishly printed endpages. Beautiful pages with scraps devoted to particular themes were created by creative owners.
Some albums had engraved clasps and brass locks. Many had extra pages with magnificently embossed images like birds and flowers or additions of thicker pages for drawings and water colours. Some also had decorations preprinted onto some of the pages and contained preprinted poems and texts from plays and literature.
The fronticepiece of an album often contained a pun on the word scrap. Examples are titles like “Scrapiana” and a picture of dog with a message in its mouth that reads: “Scraps most greatfully received” or “ I want all the scraps I can collect”.
The 1850’s to the 1880’s saw a great increase in the use of cut out paper material juxtaposed with reliefs. Clippings and pictures from newspapers, magazines and Ladies’ Journals were used alongside embossed scraps. Many collectors arranged their albums thematically and some spectacular reliefs were devoted to topical scrapbooks like Queen Victoria’s Jubilee.
The period from 1880-1890 was the Golden Age of the printed relief scraps. Sophisticated albums were created with many categories of reliefs. The enormous range of subject matter mirrored the varied interests of the age. Scrapbooks often had material from many different countries.
The scraps of the First World War and depression era were produced on poor quality paper with bleeding inks. After the 1930’s the demand for scraps started to fall. People stopped creating their own entertainment when radio and cinema became ever more popular. The rise of popular photography also meant that albums were devoted to snap shots and captions in stead of scraps and journaling.
After the Second World War, the look and nature of scrapbooks changed completely as they simply became holding places for clippings from magazine pages and newspapers and were often chucked away. They no longer were the cherished creations of the 19th century.
Scrapbooks had to wait for the scrap revival of the 1990’s to once more take their place as lavishly created keepers of memories. Professionally designed scrap pages and elements reappeared to enchant creative scrappers with endless beautiful themes.
Anni Arts Crafts has professionally designed and illustrated printables for 3D paper crafts,
handmade card designs and craft templates specially created for lovers of paper crafts
by designer Anneke Lipsanen http://www.anniarts.com
Printable crafts created with vintage scraps are part of the Anni Arts Vintage ranges.
FURTHER ARTICLES ABOUT THE HISTORY OF PRINTED SCRAPS:
• The History of Vintage Valentines
• The Production and Printing History of Scraps
• The History of Fancy Printed Goods and Cards
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