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Preserving memories is big business

The scrapbook craze has gone from a home hobby to a billion-dollar business, with devotees buying paper and stickers and stamps of all sorts, as well as heading off for “scrapping weekend” vacations with like-minded craftspeople.

Last weekend, Once Upon A Page, a scrapbooking store in Burbank owned by Joanne Miller, celebrated its 12th anniversary.

The store offered free classes and treats for scrapbookers, who set up at long tables stacked with supplies. Marcie Krezel, a South Pasadena resident who teaches scrapbooking classes at Once Upon A Page and elsewhere, said people come to the table for one reason, but find much more.

“In the beginning it is preserving memorabilia in a way that is safe,” said Krezel, noting that photos in traditional albums yellow and deteriorate over time. “Later it becomes an artistic outlet.”


Scrapbooking also becomes a social activity. Krezel just returned from a “scrap hop,” hitting nearly three dozen Southern California scrapbook stores in a 16-day period.

“For me it is a de-stressor,” said Tara Mistrulli of Studio City. “It is something I can do in my own little zone.”

Once Upon A Page, at 2800 West Burbank Blvd., hosts Friday night scrapbooking events, which run from 5 p.m. to midnight. Visitors learn the tricks of the trade and experiment with the new baubles, paper cutters and stamps as they come on the market.

“If you are willing to try it and buy it, they’ll make it,” Krezel said. “Which is really bad for me.”