I’m still not sure how she managed to do it, but somehow, my mom created hand-made photo albums for every one of her seven children and a couple for herself to keep. I’m feeling like a slouch since I can’t even manage to to get any photos printed , let alone into a book with little cut-outs, stickers, and captions!
But, wait. I have a solution now. And really no good excuses to NOT make family albums since the new digital options mean there’s no need to designate a craft table that will get attacked by my toddler, no need to go buy stickers and paper, and acid-free pens, and glue and plastic sleeves or even get prints made!!
I give you iphoto.
If you were smart enought to buy a Mac, you are all set. All you have to do is click the “make a book” button in your photo gallery and you are on your way to a clean, beautiful, professional, hard or soft covered book full of your photos that will show up on your doorstep in a week and a half. See it here, and watch the tutorial video.
If, however, your husband said he’d rather be shot in the head than own a Mac (as mine did) …. then you’ll need to use one of these or some other program designed for a PC:
My Publisher (My friend recently used this program and was really pleased with the quality, paper, printing etc. Also, she mentioned that they offered some online coupons that cut the price down a bit too.)
I used Aileen’s Mac since iphoto seemed to have some of the best prices out there and I just think Mac is awesome with all of its artsy-fartsy stuff. I ended up with 40 some pages, and it cost just over $60 with shipping and handling. It does sound like a lot, but I never paid for film/printing/supplies/a blank album etc. so I really think it was worth it. Also, if you buy multiple copies of the book, you get a reduced price.
This is how I went about making a family photo album in a painless and really fun way:
1) Decide what you will include in the album (one special event or a vacation, or a collection from your family’s life between certain dates)
2) Edit all your photos (crop, enhance, boost the color or contrast, turn them black and white etc. You can fix almost ANY photo, even ones that look like they are no good)
3) Write in some dates and captions that are worthwhile, but don’t feel the need to create a novel.
4) Don’t get carried away (I had to finally decide August 2009 was the cut off date because I could have just kept adding pages until I turned grey working on this thing! I’m warning you, it’s addictive.
5) Finally, be brave. Just click the “buy now” button and wait patiently for it to show up in the mail.
When my book did arrive, I was overjoyed. The pictures all came through bright and crisp (even the ones that the computer had told me may have too low a pixel count). The book’s dimensions were a bit smaller than I anticipated but other than that, I loved it.
These photos don’t quite do the book justice since I took photos of photos, but this gives you an idea of how it can look:
The possibilities are endless! And I loved closing up the clean, little, white laptop as soon as I had had enough for the day. No mess, no stress, and, no, you don’t have to get a bumper sticker that says “I live to scrap book”