What is Japanese Scrapbooking

What is Japanese Scrapbooking

Jan 24, 2024 Tags 

If you love arts and crafts projects, then you probably know that scrapbooking is still a popular art form done by many people worldwide. Did you know that scrapbooking is insanely popular in Japan because it is easy to get scrapbook supplies from stationery stores like DAISO, LOFT, and MUJI? Japanese scrapbooking is a whole new level of advanced techniques, the use of awesome materials, and amazing concepts.

Today, we're delving into Japanese scrapbooking. It's not just about sticking photos in an album; it's an art form and a journey into creativity that's as unique as a sushi roll. 


What Is The Purpose Of Scrapbooking?


Scrapbooking is more than just a collection of pretty pages—it's a heartfelt way of preserving memories. Imagine flipping through the pages of a scrapbook and being transported back to the day you climbed Mount Fuji, visited a Kyoto temple, or experienced the chaos of Tokyo's streets. The main purpose of scrapbooking is to capture moments, both big and small, and freeze them in the form of pages in a book. 

In today’s world of digital media, it’s easy to assume that the pictures on your phone can perform the duty of a scrapbook, but nothing beats making scrapbook pages yourself while reminiscing about beautiful moments in your life. It is an amazing experience that lets you feel the textures of paper, smell adhesives, and get the satisfaction of placing that perfect sticker just right.


Is Scrapbooking Popular In Japan?


Traditional Japanese Art


Now, you might be wondering, do the folks in Japan share our love for scrapbooking? Well, the answer is yes! Scrapbooking has carved out its own niche in Japanese culture, blending with the country's appreciation for art, cute things, anime, and stationery. Ancient paintings in Japan have a striking resemblance to how people sketch for their scrapbooks. Paintings from different periods of time mostly depict everyday life, from people in markets to landscapes and sceneries, instead of abstract art. Japanese artists knew the importance of capturing moments and freezing them in time centuries ago. 

While scrapbooking seems like a more modern art form, the main purpose is similar. This could be the main reason why it is popular in Japan. In fact, you will get the best Japanese pens, notebooks, pencils, stickers, and washi tapes from a variety of stationery stores in Japan. It is a haven for scrapbook lovers because some of these stores are dollar stores where every product has the same price. You won’t spend too much money to buy a lot of scrapbook products in Japan.

Scrapbooking goes beyond a mere hobby in Japan; it's a form of self-expression and a celebration of the country's rich tapestry. From traditional crafts to contemporary designs, Japanese scrapbooking is a mix of the old and the new.


How You Can Start Scrapbooking


Now that we've set the stage let's talk about how you can dip your toes into the world of scrapbooking. Pro tip: it's easier than you think!


Gather Your Materials


Japanese Scrapbooking Supplies


The foundation of any good scrapbook lies in the materials. Japan has some of the best stationery you can find in the world. Anything from high-quality paper to two-tone markers and amazing stickers, you name it, they’ve got it. Stock up on supplies like adhesive, paper, scissors, and, of course, washi tape to start your scrapbooking journey.


Choose Your Theme


Japanese Scrapbook


Your scrapbook, your rules! People make scrapbooks for specific trips, while others decide to document every memorable moment of the year or friendship moment inside one scrapbook. Before you start scrapbooking, decide what type of memories you want to include in it; a theme helps give your scrapbook a cohesive look.


Print Your Photos


Japan Travel Photos


Time to raid your camera roll! Not many people use instant cameras to take Polaroid pictures nowadays, so you have to take pictures with your smartphone and print out the ones that you really connect with. You can go for classic prints, polaroids, or even just print the photos on hard paper to save money. If you have some graphic design skills, arrange the photos in different shapes and sizes on an A4 document, print them out, and cut out the pictures.


Be Creative


When you start scrapbooking, anything goes. You can choose to have order in your layout or go for complete chaos as far as it makes sense to you. Start arranging your photos, experimenting with layouts, and adding decorations. Don't be afraid to let your creativity run wild.


Journal Your Thoughts


Journal Your Thoughts


Many people forget that a scrapbook isn't just about images; it's also a place to capture your thoughts and memories. Don't forget to jot down reflections or even quirky captions beside the photos to really capture the memories.


What Are Some Japanese Scrapbooking Methods?


Now we come to the heart of the matter—the distinctive Japanese scrapbooking methods that elevate your creations.


Using Washi Tape


Did you know that Washi tape was created by a Japanese company? It is to Japanese scrapbooking what sushi is to Japanese cuisine—absolutely essential. With its various patterns and textures, washi tape can completely transform your scrapbook by adding layers, borders, frames, and patterns.


Inserting some Origami 


Some scrapbooks have a 3D effect where decorations aren’t just tapes and drawings but crafts that elevate the page. You can use Japanese origami art to get the same effect. Fold the paper into fans, cherry blossoms, or any other shape that goes with your theme. 


Embracing Minimalism


Japanese lifestyle embraces minimalism. For instance, the popular Marie Kondo Philosophy leads towards living a minimalistic lifestyle. Surprisingly, scrapbook designs often lean towards minimalism. By using clean lines, uncluttered layouts, and a pastel color palette, you can create visually appealing pages that do not feel too overwhelming.

So there you have it, fellow craft enthusiasts! Japanese scrapbooking isn't just a hobby; it's a celebration of culture that deserves its own place in your heart. Whether you're a seasoned scrapbooking pro or a beginner ready to dive in, let the charm of Japanese scrapbooking inspire your next crafting.

Have you been looking to buy some high-quality Japanese stationery? You can check out our ZenPop stationery store for the best deals from Japan. 

This article was originally written by our freelance writer Umm-Kulthum Abdulkareem and edited by us.