Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Lesson 5: Protecting Your Memorabilia

Hello again! It's been a while since my last post. I've actually created a few cards over the past few days and attended a one-on-one scrapbook
ing class over at Ms. Helen's scrapbook shop called Memory Lane. I really had NO idea it was going to be one-on-one! hehe Good thing Ms. Helen was so patient at teaching me.

So the reason for having no pictures to post is that I left my good ol' camera with my sister-in-law. I know, I know. I'm such a clutz. But I hope to get it later today. Then I'll post my recent projects including the layouts we created at Memory Lane soon!

Let's proceed to our lesson then. Sorry for being so late at posting, by the way. Lesson 5 gives us eight commandments on how to protect our memorabilia. Yes, of course it goes well beyond using acid-free stuff..

1. Liquids destroy photos, negatives, articles and a whole lot of stuff!
- Whoa! Really? Wow, who would have thought... hehe Sorry, I'm in a playful mood at the moment. Yes, of course they do. So Rule 1, absolutely no liquids in the work area except for glue and paint please.. The author also suggested to keep your work area away from water-prone areas such as pipes (they may leak), open windows (it might rain), etc.

2. Always have a back-up of your digital photos and digital layouts.
- At the moment, since I'm not yet fully into digital works and I've only created a few layouts, I use a flash disk to create a back-up of my "arts and crafts" folder. But then I guess sooner or later, I'd have to get me one of those external hard drives for more space.

3. Keep all heirlooms out of direct sunlight.
- So, yep, better to keep away from that window then. Whether it's rain or sunshine, more harm is done than good. Sunlight, according to the author, eventually diminishes the quality of your photos.

4. Extreme temperatures damage them too!
- Okay, do I have to say it again? No no to windows.. Have your work area in a place where humidity is low. Like maybe if you're here in the Philippines and you live in a multi-storey house, you might want to avoid setting up your area on the top floor since humidity tends to be pretty high up there. Even if your room will be airconditioned when you're working, it would still be pretty humid when you're not around and the cooler is off.

5. Oil on fingertips will eventually make fingerprints on photos visible over time. Handle photos carefully, touching only the outer edges. Wash hands frequently or use acid-neutralizing wipes. Use lightweight cotton gloves to keep pictures pristine.
- Hmm.. Let me be honest here.. I don't think I'd ever get to the point where I'd be wearing gloves and looking like a detective rather than a scrapbooker. hehe Careful handling, yes. Gloves and wipes? Nope. Well, maybe baby wipes. I don't think I'd actually bother buying acid-neutralizing ones. But then that's just me. Of course, credibility and experience being the basis, I highly think you should follow the author's advice. She knows so much more than I do. hehe *wink*

6. Handle and store your photos and negatives properly to avoid scratches and tears. Use page protectors, acid-free envelopes, plastic sleeves or sturdy containers.
- I've only gotten around to having our photos printed just last night. So I guess it's safe to say that as of the moment, they're in a photo envelope, unsorted. I think I'll keep them in a box much like the one below as soon as I have spare time.

7. Avoid materials made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) or polyvinyl acetate (PVA) as these chemicals tend to destroy your photos over time. Look for acrylic or polyester (polyethylene and polypropylene) materials.
- Eh? *scratches head* Say what now? hehe Sorry, my vocabulary on scrapbooking and materials are pretty much limited to the ordinary, everyday words. But um.. I guess if you have the time and patience to look for the appropriate storage supplies, acrylic and polyester are the materials you should be looking for.

8. Never assume that a paper is acid-free unless specifically stated in its own packaging. Not even if it's bought from scrapbook stores. Safest way to check would be to conduct a pH Test with a pH Test Pen.
- Haven't seen one of those pens but I think they'd be available in scrapbook shops of course. I'm not very particular on the acidity of my papers though I do think I should be. I guess it's because I'm still in my "practice" mode and not really going professional at it yet. Plus, of of course, the usual problem of having limited funds. Acid-free stuff is a bit costly. hehe
There you have it folks. Eight commandments. To follow or not to follow? Depends on you actually. If you have the time and funds for it, I say follow everything. These are advices of an expert who has been scrapbooking for years. Better be safe than sorry I'd say..

Til next time! Thanks for dropping by!

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