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August 28, 2018

Tiff's Washington DC Album

A guest post from Tiff showcasing her gorgeous Washington DC Album:

More than a year after my family's trip to Washington DC, I have finally scrapped our travels. I knew it would be a substantial album, and the scope of it was holding me back. But finally, as a summer project, I got the whole thing scrapped and printed. And it's a beautiful book! I'm so glad I got it done.

I did a 12x12 lay flat book from Shutterfly. Before this, I had only printed small Shutterfly books to give as gifts. My personal albums were always printed with Blurb. I actually started this book on Blurb, but I ran into a problem. Although Blurb offers lay flat pages, their online book creation tool did not offer a layout with one image spanning the page. Some of my pages were two-page spreads that needed to span the middle. Since the Blurb creation tool could not accommodate that, I needed to switch platforms.

I used Scrapping with Liz templates on every one of my pages. I worked mostly with


For kits, I used Allison Pennington's For The Love Of 2017 and For the Love of 2018 collections, which have very similar color palettes. I had a ton of papers and elements to choose from.

Because I used a full bleed cover, I was a little worried about parts of the image cutting off or folding around the edge. Shutterfly was giving me a little yellow caution sign about it. I tried out several different versions of the cover, with the graphics shrunk down various amounts. The cover turned out fine, and the preview I saw online matches exactly how my cover turned out.

Most of my pages were single page designs, and I could work with each page by itself. However, I quickly realized that when I made the pages, I did not pay close attention to text/photos near the edges. I had to adjust (and re-upload) several pages, and that was a pain. I wished I had been thinking ahead when I created the pages.


This page was originally two single pages, with the blue chicken "cut off" in the middle. That looked fine when I uploaded to galleries, but for the book, I realized I needed to re-design the page as an actual 2-page spread.

Several of my pages I created right from the start as 2-page spreads with images spanning the middle. This was why I needed the lay-flat pages. It is a beautiful look, but also adds substantial cost to the album. This 47 page album was similar in cost to my full-year 100+ page albums with regular binding. I still think it was worth it, though.

When I scrapbook, I'm not shy about supplementing my pages with images I find on the internet. Since I'm interested in architecture and history, I love to include old pictures (which would be impossible to create myself). I'll even use text from websites to add facts and details about the locations. The images on the left side below are all from the internet.

This spread is about half way through the book. I was getting a little bit fatigued, but I just loved how this page turned out! I was so pleased with it, it gave me a second wind to keep going. I did have to do a bit of tinkering with the far left and right edges before I felt confident about the how much would get trimmed off.

Since my photos at art galleries did not always include the artist's info, I did my best to research online so I could credit the artists for future reference. In fact, I learned so much while making the scrapbook that I want to go back again and appreciate the details I didn't know or notice the first time!

The Focal Point Templates are perfect for scraping statues and monuments!

How was the quality of this Shutterfly book, compared to my Blurb books of the past? I've always thought of Blurb as more "professional" but based on the quality of this book, I think Shutterfly is just as good. The colors are beautiful, the lay flat pages are thick and feel nice to the touch. I'm not sure if they are made with ink or made with a photographic chemical process, but the paged definitely FEEL like photographs. Following are some close ups.

My white background paper had a soft texture to it, and I wondered if that would come through in the book or get washed out. The soft texture looks perfect! For many of my extracted or masked photos, I like to apply a Multiply or Linear Burn setting to the layer so that the background texture comes through the photo.



How does the size of the 12x12 Shutterfly book compare to my Blurb books on the shelf? They are exactly the same size! They fit next to each other perfectly.

After I ordered my book, I got the email that it had shipped in two days. The estimated delivery was 1 week after the day I ordered it, and it actually came a day early! So, I was very pleased with the shipping. In my Shutterfly account I had loaded in a couple of coupon codes - one was for 40% Off, and one was for Free Shipping on orders over $39. They were both automatically applied to my cart, so that was great!

I am extremely happy with this book and will never hesitate ordering Shutterfly for my big albums again, especially if I want lay flat pages.

If you have any travel albums that you're waiting on, I hope this will encourage you to get them scrapped. And Liz has many 20-page album sets to help you!

1 comment:

blurooferika said...

Beautiful souvenir of your trip, Tiff. I use a lot of SWL templates as well and I think they look great in this album. Love the 2 page spreads, esp. the blue hen and the Mt. Vernon. Great job!

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