Have you tried printables yet? They're also called digikits or digital downloads and they are files that you use to print your own papers and ephemera. I have a few tips on how you can get the most out of your printables.
Tip One - How You Print
Think about how you will use the image before you print anything. There are many different kinds of pages, and how you will use them will dictate what you print them on.
Fussy cuts are images you cut out and paste on to your pages. Print them on cardstock if you want more dimension or strength. Print them on gift tissue if you want them to blend into the page you glue them onto. (Bonus with tissue paper - you can just rough rip them out - no fussy cutting needed!) Here's a link on How To Print On Tissue Paper
Pockets and tags are best printed on something sturdy, like cardstock. Don't be afraid to try colored cardstock. The printable on the left was printed on pink cardstock. If you have vellum, try that! It's very sturdy and gives a rich, transparent finish.
If you print a soft pattern on the back of journaling cards, then the back isn't a plain white, but you can still use it to write on.
Background pages can be lots of fun. Print on both sides if you are using them as journal pages. Get creative with what you print on. The top page is printed on a large manilla envelope. The middle page was coffee dyed after printing. The bottom page was dipped in a plain water bath after printing. That gave it a crinkly, aged texture without dulling the colors like coffee dying does. All of the edges of the pages were ripped and inked after printing.
Lastly, try different weights of copier paper. 20 pound copy paper is standard. You'll find that 24 pound or 28 pound copy paper have a beautiful, fabric like feel that adds a real richness to your project.
Tip Two - How You Use Your Images
Get creative with how you use the pages you have printed.
The pocket above was just a triangle in the kit.
After I cut it out, I added cardstock fussy cuts to the edge of the pocket for interest. Then I inked the edges and sewed on the pocket.
I added interest to the teal tag with small cluster and a fussy cut teapot with Glossy Accents. The brown tag has a fussy cut tissue teapot and a cardstock teacup with Glossy Accents. It also has a strip of washi on a strip of background paper. The pink slide has a cardstock teacup with Glossy Accents. (Can you tell I just discovered Glossy Accents?) Here's a link if you are interested. Glossy Accents
A pocket edged with lace, washi tape with a background paper strip, and a journaling card turned into a tag and embellished.
More washi tape over a background paper strip.
A vellum pocket and a booklet made of two journaling cards that I left connected. Also, a fussy cut teacup and washi tape with background paper strip.
This background page had the roses printed right on it. I decoupaged washed tea bag papers to the roses to give them substance and texture. Plus, it added strength so the page could support the sewn on pockets on the other side.
Tip Three - How You Store Your Images.
I suggest keeping all of your digital downloads in one folder on your computer so you always know where to find them. Also, rename them if they have a name that is more artsy than informative. In six months, you won't be looking for "Midsummer Night's Dream," but you WILL be looking for "Mostly blue with flowers and bugs."
I hope that gave you some good inspiration for working with your printables.
Here is a video if you are interested. Video about working with printables.
Note: I may earn a small commission if you buy Glossy Accents from the link, but you will not be charged any extra.