Marielen Wadley Christensen (pronounced as the names "Mary Ellen"), of Elk Ridge, Utah, United States (formerly of Spanish Fork, Utah) is credited with turning scrapbooking from what was once just the ages-old hobby into the actual industry containing businesses devoted specifically to the manufacturing and sale of scrapbooking supplies. She began designing creative pages for her family's photo memories, inserting the completed pages into sheet protectors collected in 3-ring binders. By 1980, she had assembled over fifty volumes and was invited to display them at the World Conference on Records in Salt Lake City. In 1981 Marielen and her husband Anthony Jay ("A.J.") authored and published a how-to booklet, Keeping Memories Alive, and opened a scrapbook store in Spanish Fork that ended up with the same name, that remains open today.
According to Google Trends, the search terms related to scrapbook and scrapbooking have seen a 70 percent decline since its peak in 2005-2006. However, there is much debate among the community of people who engage in memory keeping about what the decline means for the health and future of the industry as a whole. What seems to be clear is that traditional scrapbooking is once again in a transition period due to many forces including current economic issues, the influence of social media and the ease of digital sharing, and the rejection of the stereotype of traditional scrapbooks being something that is for older women. However, if one takes a closer look, it is easy to see all the ways people continue memory keeping even if it doesn't fall strictly within the definition of traditional scrapbooking as defined here.
For example, college women around the turn of the century used scrapbooks extensively to construct representations of their everyday life as students. Without photograph albums to provide images of these life events, students created unique representations through scrapbooks in order to illustrate their lives using ephemera and memorabilia. A guest list or group of visiting cards might represent a young woman’s visit to a party. A playbill and ticket stub might serve as reminders of a trip to New York to see a Broadway show. Solid objects such as plants, silverware, or small trinkets were also used when further visual representation was needed.