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January 31, 2015

6 More Pages DONE!

I finished up those last six pages I started, and I'm here to show them to you. I broke from using my Double Monthly Challenge Templates for these pages. I wanted to try out my new Simple and Sweet Block Album Templates, and this was the perfect opportunity.  These templates made my scrapping go so fast, and I love the clean and simple design...it helps show off all those pictures I took.

Simple and Sweet Block Album Templates by Scrapping with Liz
Imperial Palace by Dream Big Designs
This park was gorgeous, probably the most beautiful place I saw while in China....but boy, was it HOT!

Simple and Sweet Block Album Templates by Scrapping with LizImperial Palace by Dream Big Designs
 Look at that smile!

Simple and Sweet Block Album Templates by Scrapping with Liz
Pool Rules by Dream Big Designs
If only I could capture the smells of China...it's very distinct. Maybe you can imagine by looking at this page.

Simple and Sweet Block Album Templates by Scrapping with Liz
Korean Wave by Hat of Bunny
The bullet train was a fun experience for us all. I can't believe I didn't take more pictures of us inside the train....just that one lone picture of  Matthew.

Simple and Sweet Block Album Templates by Scrapping with Liz
Great Escape the Kit by WMSquared Designs
Great Escape the Extras by WMSquared Designs
 And a one night stay in a resort hotel, the night before we visited the orphanage.

Simple and Sweet Block Album Templates by Scrapping with LizGreat Escape the Kit by WMSquared Designs
Great Escape the Extras by WMSquared Designs
I have a feeling the next few pages might be harder to make. Not sure what all to include about our visit to the orphanage. Hoping to work on those today.

-Liz

January 30, 2015

2015: Week 3

My Life Templates 1 by Scrapping with Liz
Snap Happy January 2015 Collection by Bella Gypsy
Life's Little Moments - January Daters by Hat of Bunny
This week I did a poor job at pulling out my camera, I think because we were just go, go, go this week. I did snap a few with my phone. On Saturday I went around the house and snapped a few pictures to fill in the gaps....books we are reading and other things that are filling up my time. I thought maybe I should do that more often. Just take pictures of things around the house. 

Here are my pages up close.




You can see I wrote a little 'mommy moment' section, a little bit more about what fills up my personal time (besides scrapbooking, of course!). I think that maybe one day my kids might enjoy seeing what their momma did during her 'free time'. 

Okay, back to scrapping!
-Liz


January 29, 2015

January Review & Sweet and Simple Block Album

I have a couple of new template sets for you to play with this week. They are sure to help you scrap a bunch of a photos in a snap! Both sets are 20% OFF through 2/615.

This first set is designed to help you scrap a January Review page. I thought it might be nice to have a quick page to look back and reflect on how the month has gone. Look for upcoming monthly review templates throughout the year.

http://scraporchard.com/market/January-in-Review-Digital-Scrapbook-Templates.html

My Simple and Sweet Template sets are perfect for putting together albums in a snap. I thought it was about time for another one. This set offers you spots for lots of photos, a clean and simple design with just the right mix of element to add all those pretties.

http://scraporchard.com/market/Simple-and-Sweet-Block-Album-Templates.html






The winner from Monday's Giveaway is.....Kaleena! Hope you have fun scrapping with all of those templates!


January 28, 2015

Scrapbook Album Comparisons


Last week I shared my 2014 Layflat Shutterfly Album.  While I had my album out taking pictures of it I thought I would take pictures comparing it (mainly the size) to some other albums I've printed. I thought you guys might like to compare different sizes to see what might work for you.


Right to Left: 12x12 Layflat Shutterfly Album, 10x10 Layflat Adormapix Album, and 8x8 Layflat Shutterfly Album.



The bottom (12x12 Layflat Shutterfly Album) has 106 pages, the middle (10x10 Layflat Adoramapix Album) has 26 pages, the top (8x8 Layflat Shutterfly Album) has 20 pages.


Here's comparing the thickness of my 12x12 Layflat Shutterfly Album to my 12x12 Blurb Album (not layflat). These both have about the same amount of pages. You can see how much thicker the layflat album is.



Here's what they look like opened up. The pages of the Shutterfly Layflat Album are much thicker and more durable. And to be honest I think the print quality of the Shutterfly Album is much better.


Side by side. I do like the glossy, shinier look of the Shutterfly Album. The white is brighter too.


Now, here's what I was really interested in, comparing the journaling and photo size. Could I have printed my 12x12 as a 10x10 or 8x8 and still have been able to read the journaling and liked the size of the photos? In both albums the journaling is readable. It is much smaller in the 8x8 but still readable (same font size).  The photos and elements all look great in both albums. I actually think that the elements look more like a realistic size in the 8x8. Maybe I go a little big on my elements on my 12x12 pages.....I'll keep that in mind.




And here's the 8x8 and 12x12 opened up next to each other. It's quite a big difference, but both look great and the journaling is readable in both.


The 8x8 album is much easier to hold and look through. When we look at the 12x12 we have to lay it on the table. It's kind of difficult to sit on the couch and look at it.....but I'm okay with that because that means my kids know it's a special book that doesn't just get drug around the house to get looked at.



All in all I think my 12x12 Layflat Album would have looked just fine as an 8x8 or 10x10.  I think I'll still stick to the 12x12 for my yearly family albums. I'll probably go for the smaller size for gift albums or special vacation albums.

Hope that helps you with any decisions you might have to make in printing your albums.
-Liz

*There are affiliate links in this blog post. All opinions are my own.

January 26, 2015

Want to Win a BIG Set of Templates?


This week I have two new template sets releasing that are really going to get you scrapping those photos. One is a BIG set that will help you put together a whole album in a snap and the other set will help you make some great Month in Review type pages. I've already used several of these templates (which you'll see soon). I love them so much, and I think you will too!

If you want a chance to win them just enter the giveaway below. I'll be announcing the winner on Thursday's blog post.

Happy Monday!
-Liz a Rafflecopter giveaway

January 24, 2015

More of Matthew's Pages

I was able to finish up 3 more pages for Matthew's Album. I also started 6 more using my scrapping fast method. Hopefully I'll get those finished up next week. Now that I've got a groove going with this album I'm thinking I might possibly get it finished by Matthew's 6th birthday. It's only two months away, and I have approximately 300 photos to scrap. Maybe it's wishful thinking, but I'm going to try!

Double Monthly Challenge Templates 5 by Scrapping with Liz
Little Boys by Kristin Aagard

Double Monthly Challenge Templates 7 by Scrapping with Liz
Big Sibling Adoption Add-on by mle Card Designs
Big Sibling Adoption Word Bits by mle Card Designs

Double Monthly Challenge Templates 13 by Scrapping with Liz
Wake Master by Dream Big Designs
Splash Zone by Dream Big Designs
That is all!
-Liz

January 23, 2015

2015: Week 2!

My Life Templates 1 by Scrapping with Liz
Everyday Life January Kit by Juno Designs
Week 2 is done! Have I mentioned how much I love these templates. I can really put together my pages in a snap. I did have to modify this one just a little bit. I added a few photo spots (there were just too many photos to choose from this week) and changed some of the journaling spots.  I used about 1/2 phone pictures and 1/2 DSLR pictures. I think I like the mix.

A closer view of the left and right side:



How is your 2015 scrapping going?
-Liz

January 22, 2015

Edgers, Tags, and Recyclables 36

Liz has some fun stash-builder sets for us today, as well as a new set of Recyclables. These new products are 20% off through January 29, 2015.

Edge Templates is a set of 8 layered clusters to put at the edges and corners of your pages. These clusters have paper strips, date tags, and also artsy pieces like paint, doodles, and scatters.
https://scraporchard.com/market/Digital-Scrapbook-Edge-Templates.html

Tag Templates is a set of 10 layered digital tags. Most have a photo spot and are decorated with paper pieces and embellishments. They come in a variety of shapes. Use them to replace a simple photo spot in a traditional template, or build a page around them. Some of the smaller ones could be used for adding QR codes to your page.
http://scraporchard.com/market/Tag-Digital-Scrapbook-Templates.html

Finally, Recyclables 36 is a set of past freebies and challenge prizes. This set is all multi-photo designs. You will find blocked collages, tilted designs, and some fun background work.




The winner from Monday's Sneak Peek and Giveaway is Breon R. Congrats! Make sure to check out next Monday's post because they'll be another sneak peek and giveaway and Lis has something big coming.


January 21, 2015

My 2014 Layflat Shutterfly Album


I finished my Daily Life Album a couple of weeks ago and ordered a 106 page Layflat Album from Shutterfly. I've ordered other layflat albums before, one from Adormapix and a few from Shutterfly, but never one quite this big.  I usually choose to use Blurb for my bigger family albums (2011 here, 2012 here, and Lydia's Album Here), but I REALLY love the layflat books so I decided I would bite the bullet on the extra price (and bulkiness) to see if I liked them better.

Boy oh boy, I love it! Yes, it's big and it's quite heavy but it's a special album and I think the size of it gives the impression that this album really means something to our family. It shows the time and effort I put into documenting our memories and how precious they are. It is special.

If you didn't want to go with the 12x12 size I believe all the pictures and journaling would still look great in a 10x10 or even an 8x8 size. I actually took pictures comparing my 8x8 layflat album to this one, but you'll have to look for that blog post next week since there's already too many pictures in this blog post!

Here are the specs on my album:
  • 12x12 Layflat Shutterfly Book
  • Hard Photo Cover
  • 106 Pages
  • Double thick, premium professional-grade paper. Satin finish. (from the Shutterfly Website)
  • Binding: The pages are glued back to back throughout the album and then to the front and back of the album. They are not attached to the spine. This is probably the only setback to me - I am a little worried over time that they may come apart. My other layflat albums have been fine so far, but this one is a lot bigger.
And pricing:
  • 20 Page 12x12 Book  - $64.99
  • Additional 86 pages ($1.50 each) - $129.00 
  • Layflat Pages - $50.00 (it's a flat $50 no matter how many pages you have)
  • Shipping $11.99
  • Price before coupons: $255.98 
  • Tax $8.24
  • TOTAL Price with 50% off coupon and Free Shipping: $130.24 Wait for those coupons. It's worth it! The 50% off coupon I used was right on their website, and they give them out frequently.
So, I'd say that is a pretty good price for a 106 layflat 12x12 album. My 100+ page Blurb books cost me just over $100 and those weren't layflat. I would say the extra $20-$30 is worth it.

Now to the actual album.

I've decided that I really like the white background on my cover pages. I did use the Shutterfly cover template to make sure my front cover design would look right.


It's nice and glossy. It'll be easy to wipe little smudges off. The photo quality is spot on. Looks just like it did on my computer screen.


Here's the spine. For some reason I completely missed adding text to my spine. I didn't even think about it when I was uploading. Oh well, my fault!

It's thick but not anywhere near as thick as my traditional 12x12 albums.


Here's the back. Just a little barcode. You can customize the spine and the back but I chose not to. Although I do regret not putting our family name and date on the spine. It totally slipped my mind.


And this is how it lays. There's a little bow, but not too bad.


A little close up of the spine and binding.


There's the little bow again.


This is what it looks like opened up.


More. Just so you get a feel for the binding.


Now some close ups of my pages so you can see the quality of the prints. I'm very satisfied.


The pages are pretty heavy duty. I won't have to worry about my kids bending or tearing them, unless they get a little crazy. But they know how precious these are and we do have "rules" for looking at albums. You must only take one book down at a time, you must carefully turn the pages and you must always have clean hands!


The pages have a pretty smooth, satin finish.



All of the journaling is crisp and clear. I used a mix 12 and 14 pt. I actually could have probably gone down to 8 or 10, but keeping it at 12 or 14 will give you the option of printing an 8x8 or 10x10 album.


I'm always amazed at how 3D my pages look when printed. Just like traditional.




Here are some shots of the full layouts. I love the layflat with no gutter. Totally seamless. I actually would love to try these with a double page spread with photos and/or elements in the center. I think it would look pretty nice.



Even the pages with black background papers look amazing.





You can see here on the right side page that my leaves got a little close to the edge. I must not have been using my guides when I created this page. This was the only page with something cut off. You HAVE to account for bleed if you are going to print this way.


I also realized my QR codes could be a little smaller. I do love that everything else is so nice and big with my Daily Life Templates. I really think this album would have been just fine printed at a 10x10 or 8x8 size.


And here's the final page. There's one sheet of white paper in the front and back of the book.


And last but not least the whole reason I scrap and print my digital scrapbook pages. This:


I think my kids might have been more excited to look at the book than I was. They loved seeing pictures of certain events and pictures of themselves. I think my oldest girls especially liked reading my journaling. And Matthew was so excited that we finally have an album that has pictures of him in it (a reminder that I really need to get his book done!). The album has already been pulled off the shelf and looked at several times. 

Totally worth it.
-Liz

P.S. If you have any more questions that I didn't answer in my blog post about my Shutterfly Album please let me know, and I'll try to answer them.

*There are affiliate links in this blog post. All opinions are my own.


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