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Leigh King, at left with her craft supplies, said she experiences a spiritual side of scrapbooking in the inspiration she feels turning images, words and bits of things into visual memories.
Daily photo by Brennen Smith
Leigh King, at left with her craft supplies, said she experiences a spiritual side of scrapbooking in the inspiration she feels turning images, words and bits of things into visual memories.

Spiritual scrapbooking
Some crafters focus on sharing belief, displaying God's blessings through writings and keepsakes

By Melanie B. Smith
msmith@decaturdaily.com · 340-2468

One tiny snip of a corner with a cutter, then another snip, and Leigh King had trimmed a paper rectangle just as she wanted.

She used an inked pad to give a worn look to a printed Scripture verse, Jeremiah 29:11, "For I know the thoughts I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace ..."

Using a specialized tape dispenser, she attached the Scripture to the background paper. She glued a button and bit of ribbon to trim the page, which she added to a handmade journal.

King is a dedicated scrapbooker. Her love for her work is evident in a room of her Southwest Decatur home. It is filled with scrapbooking paper, tubs of trim, assorted tools and bins of embellishments. Many of her projects record trips, celebrations and special moments involving her family — husband Sean and their three children.

But beyond seeing her designs as a creative outlet, King lets her faith show in her one-of-a-kind books, planners and journals.

One decorative photo page, for example, shows pictures of her smiling. The title on a lift-flap reads, “Behind the Smiles.” Underneath, she plans to write the conversation she had with God during the time of the photos.

It was a difficult time, she said, and the “journaling” and scrapbook activity helped her work through it.

Other pages show favorite Scriptures and spiritual journal themes, done in a winsome, reflective style.

King demonstrates that scrapbooking can chronicle more than a baby’s first steps or a beach trip, as important as they are. Many crafters include or even focus on faith and spiritual life. “Faith booking” is one word coined for the craft.

King said she also experiences a spiritual side of scrapbooking in the inspiration she feels turning images, words and bits of things into visual memories.

Her designs have appeared in publications for Hobby Lobby, Creative Concepts and other companies.

“I see what I do as an opportunity to make a difference in people’s lives,” King said.

Products for faith

Sandra Joseph of Moon Township, Penn., said when she started Reminders of Faith four years ago, there was no scrapbooking company emphasizing spirituality. Now there are many product lines, she said.

In the market today are stickers, patterned paper, rub-ons, stamps, tags and more, all featuring Scriptures, religious symbols and spiritual quotes for Christians, Jews and others. Reminders of Faith offers kits and supplies on themes like prayer, hope and more.

Joseph said her idea is to help believers create reminders of God’s faithfulness to them. She said scrapbooking about faith is similar to the Israelites picking up stones to build a monument, as described in the book of Joshua. Anyone seeing the marker later would recall how God led the people, Joseph said. Likewise, a faith-related scrapbook is a marker of belief, she said.

The gospel writer Luke said Jesus’ mother “treasured up in her heart” experiences related to Jesus’ birth, Joseph said.

“I believe God gave her those very important memories because he knew that one day she would be standing at the foot of the cross saying, ‘This doesn’t make any sense,’” Joseph said.

The recording of memories is a valuable tool that God gives, she said.

Joseph has spoken at women’s gatherings and is the author of “Scrapbooking Your Spiritual Journey.” She said her company is now offering materials for chronicling faith in many ways, such as creating picture frames.

Guidance

Judy Hardwick of Huntsville said she saw that many scrapbookers wanted to include faith in their work but needed guidance. She started Faith Based Pages, an Internet company offering kits related to religion and spirituality.

Hardwick said a personal example is her use of the Scripture “O, Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth” on a scrapbook page about the Rockies.

The verse came to her mind while in the mountains, she said.

“If faith is important to you, it’s something you need to show in your (scrap)books,” Hardwick said.

Hardwick will be among instructors at Simply Southern Scrapbooking Convention at the Von Braun Center in Huntsville, Oct. 4-6. Hardwick will teach how to make a “Faithful Women in Our Lives” book and other projects.

Expanding

The owner of The Scrapnook in Decatur, Orlaina Barfield, said she is expanding her store’s religious lines because her own spiritual life is growing.

Barfield was filling out an order recently to add to her faith-theme products. She already stocks paper and stickers with Christian messages and can do custom dye cuts for titles like “Amy’s Baptism.”

Barfield said several churches and Hospice of the Valley have offered scrapbooking activities. One church group formerly met in her store, which is in Gateway Shopping Center.

King, who will also teach classes at the Huntsville convention, said she knows her work is a calling and a gift from God.

“Through my pictures and journaling about my struggles, my faith, my family, our perseverance, I have the opportunity to be a witness to God’s love and grace and the hope he has given us,” she said.

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