FIRST RULE (and most important) your adhesive needs to be acid free. Try to stay away from glues with odors (rubber cements, white glue, etc.) Some are not very safe, and can cause your photos to turn yellow, or fall off the page. Different adhesives have different uses, and sometimes you can use one adhesive for many different uses. I will list some (I\'m sure that I will forget some, but others will jump in and add to this post).
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\r\nGlue sticks: need to be acid free/photo safe. Some work better than others, and are good if you are just beginning. I think in more humid climates, the glue tends to come unstuck after a while, and things fall off of the page. Colored glue sticks (supposed to dry clear) don\'t always dry clear either.
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\r\nglue dots: these come in rolls. They are little dots (well they make several different sizes and thicknesses) of glue. I love these and use them all the time. They are great for small items and hold really well. I use mine for metal charms, small squares, buttons, and different embellishments. The thicker ones make the item you are putting down raised off of the paper so that it adds some dimension to your layout.
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\r\nphoto splits: you can buy these in little cardboard dispensers, you stick them down, peel off the little blue paper backing, and then stick the item to the paper. I use these for photos, journal boxes, etc. These also come in a refillable dispenser called Vario Hermafix tabs (nice because you don\'t have the backing). I use the Hermie tabs when I am at home scrapping, and the others when I am planning a page to finish later at a crop. Then I just have to peel away the backing and I am ready to go.
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\r\ntape runners: come in different brands. you just roll the dispenser along the item that you are wanting to put down. It will leave a glue trail on the paper. Great for when you want to glue down journal boxes, photo mats, etc. I would caution against using some of these on photos as they can cause indentations in the front of your photo if there is a ridged edge on the dispenser. I use mine for larger pieces where I need coverage all around the edges.
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\r\nphoto corners: little pieces that fit over the corner of your photo and have adhesive on the back. You can take the photo off of the lo, and then put it back on if needed. I use these with photos that I may want to later make copies of (heritage or older photos.)
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\r\nxyron: a little machine (non electric) that you roll your paper through and it applies adhesive to the back like a sticker. I love mine for smaller items that would be hard to get adhesive onto without getting it everywhere. These come in different sizes and will accommodate different sizes of paper. These work well with vellum as the adhesive doesn\'t show through the vellum.
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\r\npop dots/foam dots: these are little pieces of foam with adhesives on both sides. You use it to raise items off of the page for dimension.
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\r\nMetal glue: used to glue down metal charms, etc. Glue dots work well for those items too.
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\r\nvellum tape: nice for adhering vellum without showing through. Can be kind of messy.
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\r\nTacky tape; (or wacky tape) used for gluing down, glitter, beads, sand, etc. comes in rolls and sheets
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\r\nDiamond glaze/crystal lacquer: used to add dimension, shine, make things glossy. a little goes a long way.
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\r\nLiquid adhesives: such as tombo, zig, etc, are nice too. Tombo even makes a repositionable adhesive. Just be careful to use small amounts, so your paper doesn\'t curl.
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\r\nI would recommend: a xyron (150 model) for tiny items, glue dots, vellum tape, photo splits or a tape runner. THEN you can add to your collection as you expand your knowledge. Some people like some adhesives more than others.