Over the next few weeks, I will discuss my results regarding how scrapbooks are actually organized.
Think about the following phrase for a moment:
I scrapbook chronologically.
What does this phrase mean?
From my non-dissertation observations, there seems to be some confusion as to what a person actually means by this. From my dissertation observations, there are at least two meanings of this phrase. For some, scrapbooking chronologically really means scrapbooking stories in chronological order. For others, scrapbooking chronologically means organizing layouts in chronological order. These are two very different meanings of the same phrase.
Moreover, even thematic scrapbookers tend to organize their finished album chronologically. For example, a vacation scrapbook begins with what happened at the beginning of the trip and ends with what happened at the end of the trip with everything in between organized by time, too. Time is a primary means by which scrapbookers lump various photographs and memorabilia together for inclusion in a scrapbook.
Most respondents in my study indicate they scrapbooked both thematically and chronologically (N=21). For example, a scrapbook may be about one vacation (theme) but is organized by day (from the beginning to the end of the vacation). Four respondents indicate they organize their scrapbooks thematically and seven indicate they organized their scrapbooks chronologically. Two scrapbookers scrapbooked whatever inspires them and place the completed pages in an album wherever they want rather than by theme or time. In this case, the scrapbooker may lump photographs from different points in time but of the same subject together (see also Demos 2006). Three scrapbookers did not answer the question. One respondent says she also sometimes organizes her scrapbooks by color or technique in addition to thematically and chronologically organizing her scrapbooks.
Personally, I organize my scrapbooks chronologically, but scrapbook whatever I feel like. I rarely make an album organized solely by theme. What about you? How do you organize your scrapbooks? Is there any order to how you scrapbook?
Demos, Elizabeth J. 2006. “Scrapbooking: Women Making ‘Me Time’ and Doing Family Through Making Memories.” PhD dissertation, Department of Sociology, Loyola University, Chicago, IL.