Back to School 2011 | May’s Trendwatch

What is hot for Back to School in paper crafting? The surprising answer is: a return to classic designs and motifs. From office product inspired goods to classic symbols of back to school like chalkboards and apples, the hot trend is to kick it old school! The new products and lines coming out that will work for school pages have one significant difference from past lines, however – they are more versatile, and better designed. They make me glad to have a use for them!

Today I am going to share my hot picks and trends for Back to School 2011:

Apples are popping up all over this season’s product lines. They can be seen from the Bella Blvd fall line to Jillibean Soup’s Apple Cheddar Soup line, to accenting tags, embellishments, and more. Perfect for accenting any fall, school, or even an ‘apple of my eye’ kind of page, this fruit is the hot item of the season. From layouts to cards, to teacher gifts or a decor project featuring your child’s back to school photo, whether they are red or green – apples are super trendy!

Chalkboard, one of the biggest parts of any classroom, is being recreated in sticker form by some of my favorite companies. Pictured above (left to right) are American Crafts, Fancy Pants, and Pink Paislee’s offerings. You could use products like black gesso or a matte finish mist or paint to create a blackboard-like finish on your project as well.

Looking to stamps to add detail to your school projects is another great idea. With designs inspired by rulers, lined paper, and other school icons, you can add some inked goodness to your pages. (above left: Hero Arts, above right: Tim Holtz) These kinds of stamps are a must for me – I use them for journaling and in all kinds of layouts. These school design elements are good for a variety of topics!

Stitched detail, textured elements (such as felt), classic patterns such as argyle and plaid, and so much more are popping up in school craft supplies. Watch for animals like worms and owls, and scour your stash for items you may already have that will work well. The classic red and yellow combo is definitely reigning supreme this fall for back to school, but in combinations and with other colors that give it a fresh look, not stale or overly bright.

Now that I’ve looked at some trends, here are three new scrapbook lines that are hot off the presses and available now in scrapbook stores:


Nikki Sivils has a new school collection called “School is Cool” that would work well especially for younger kids or school-themed paper crafting off the scrapbook page. I like the lined paper, the cute little worm, and use of argyle as well.

Basic Grey has a really versatile school themed line called Oxford. Playing up those classic school motifs – and adding in patterns and colors that will work for so much more beyond the school layouts – this collection is sure to be a hit. From apples to chalkboard to rich patterns, this is a great line for the new school year.


Digital Scrapbookers should be on the lookout as well – in browsing I found all kinds of wonderful school themed products, including these word overlays by Ali Edwards. There is so much available – be sure to check out your favorite sites! I really like the fonts and phrases used on the above overlays.


Fancy Pants does a great job of combining so many classic school elements in their new line “Off to School” which is now available. This collection pack contains stickers and papers, they also have some great embellishments that work with this muted color line. I will be showcasing this line in a video today on my blog if you want to see more!

Stay tuned here at Scrapbook Update as well. I have been doing my homework, and I have more back to school inspired posts coming throughout this week!

Want to stay up-to-date on all the latest scrapbook news?

7 Responses to Back to School 2011 | May’s Trendwatch

  1. Denise August 22, 2011 at 4:21 pm #

    I guess saving all of my paper that’s five years old was a good thing then, huh? :-)

  2. Jan Wilson August 23, 2011 at 4:50 am #

    Love the Oxford paper by Basic Grey. Will be using that for my grandchildren’s first day of school!

  3. lyneen August 23, 2011 at 7:44 am #

    Love the stamps that Tim Holtz has out for back to school. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Cindy deRosier August 23, 2011 at 8:29 am #

    I’m glad to see apples as a trend. I love them- such a great design element, and as you pointed out, very versatile.

  5. Tina V August 23, 2011 at 12:49 pm #

    I am going to be on the look out for the Basic Grey Oxford line, it looks fantastic. Now I need to search my paper hoard to see what apple papers I can find – I should have lots of it as I am drawn to back to school motifs, you never can have too many apples!

  6. Gab August 24, 2011 at 6:39 am #

    I think it’s so fun that there are all these chalkboard accents in our modern days where our schools all have interactive whiteboards!!!

  7. Lola August 24, 2011 at 7:58 am #

    Love school papers I buy them no matter what. I just can’t help myself.

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