27 February 2015

Fashion Friday and the latest Blurb book offers

A reader has emailed me with a few questions about Blurb books and I thought I'd share my answer here, as others might have the same questions. (Scroll to the bottom for Fashion Friday.)

Leslie emailed, "I'm a desperate woman! I kept albums for my family until about 2005, when I fully transitioned to digital and officially got overwhelmed. I've kept them in files year by year but am now paralyzed by options for a photo book. I envision doing one per year (to catch up for the last decade) and would like uniformity.

"I love the way yours look on Pinterest, but wanted to check in to see whether you still like Blurb. Also, I've looked high and low for a slightly larger format (closer to a standard 8.5 x 11 piece of paper). Could you let me know the format you chose and whether you feel it's large enough? Also, does it lay flat and has it been durable? My other nightmare is that these books quickly fade or the pages start to fall out. I've checked out a dozen photo book websites and am officially stuck!

"Would be very grateful for any advice, updates, warnings or reminders about the perfect being the enemy of the good (enough)!"
Thank you for your email and questions, Leslie! First up, I will start with the comment at the end of your email and reiterate that YES, perfection is the enemy of completion, and that YES, good enough is good enough!

I am so glad I have my photobooks sitting on my shelf, ready to look through at any time, and although they aren't perfect and I sometimes find typos, it really doesn't matter. What matters is that the photos are looked through and enjoyed!

And now to address your other questions and comments.

"I've kept them in files year by year but am now paralyzed by options for a photo book."
Well done, that is awesome! Half the battle is won and once you begin making your books you will get into the groove and you will be surprised at how quickly they come together. Try to set aside a specific amount of time, like an appointment with yourself, each week, for example two hours on a Sunday afternoon to work on them. That way, they will get done bit by bit, and you don't have to worry about them the rest of the time as you know they have their slot and you'll get to it.

"I love the way yours look on Pinterest, but wanted to check in to see whether you still like Blurb."
I still love Blurb, and became a Blurb affiliate because I knew I'd want to keep talking about Blurb books here on my blog. I wholeheartedly endorse the products and company. I've had good experiences with not only the actual books and ordering process, but with customer service too.

"I've looked high and low for a slightly larger format (closer to a standard 8.5 x 11 piece of paper). Could you let me know the format you chose and whether you feel it's large enough?"
I chose the standard portrait hardcover books with imagewrap. I guess I always thought they were 8.5x11 inches, but going to measure mine I see that the finished size of the bound book is 8 inches by 10 inches. Huh ... who knew?

 photo blurb books 01_zpsbregbqmt.jpg

Anyway, I do think it's the perfect size - bit enough to fit everything in but small enough that when laid open it spreads to only 16.5 inches.

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It's small enough to fit on a lap, and for the kids to look through without ripping pages. It's also small enough to fit on a standard bookcase and not take up too much room or stick out. It's small enough to be held up or to put on a table or coffee table without having to clear the table first. It's big enough that you can fit four vertical or six horizontal photos onto each page without the pictures being too small, but small enough that you can do single-photo pages without the image being too huge. As you can tell, I'm pretty happy with the size!

"Also, does it lay flat and has it been durable? My other nightmare is that these books quickly fade or the pages start to fall out."
My books have not faded one bit and they still feel as sturdy as the day I received them. We frequently handle and flip through them and they have held up beautifully. I have full confidence that they will continue to look good through the years. If, however, they begin to fall apart or if one gets damaged, I know I can simply pop onto the Blurb website and reorder a replacement instantly. (Once you have ordered your book it is stored in your account online.)  I do want to mention that I add metal corners to the front covers of mine, but mainly for decorative purposes (you can see them in this post.)

As to whether it lays flat, well, yes and no. By that I mean yes, the covers lay flat, but no, the pages do not - pretty much like a standard hardcover book. Here's a photo to show what I mean:

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As for things I would do differently, well, I've been making Blurb books for a few years now and the one thing I began doing differently has to do with the number of photos per page. In the beginning, you can see that my books were thinner than they are in later years (this is an old photo, which is why they stop at 2012):

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The reason for this is that I was trying to keep costs down and would cram as many photos onto one page as possible. (Before I go any further, please don't judge Blurb book print quality by these photos - the pages are difficult to photograph without glare or colour differences, but in real life they are gorgeous.)

 photo blurb books 04_zpsqaqntdnx.jpg

As you can see above, I managed to fit 12 pictures onto one page - but each picture was less than 2 x 2.5 inches big. I later decided I'd rather spend more and have the photographs bigger on each page. Now I tend to have vertical photos from one on a page (with or without text) ...

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 photo blurb books 12_zps3gmjyvmz.jpg

... to four on a page (with each picture being 3.75 x 4.75 inches big).

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Horizontal photos are from one or two on a page ...

 photo blurb books 05_zps8hhnoiqb.jpg

... to six on a page (with each picture being almost 3.5 x 4 inches big).

 photo blurb books 06_zpshjmq4rpr.jpg

I do sometimes use 9-picture vertical photo spreads, but generally tend to put detail shots onto those, rather than photos of anyone in our family. On a 9-picture spread the photos are each 2.5 x just over 3 inches big.

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For horizontal detail shots I'll put them on an 8-picture spread with each photo 3.75 x 2.5 inches big.

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I also wanted to show you a page with text on - I like to put the date and a little blurb about the photos at the beginning of each spread of photos.

 photo blurb books 11_zpsjrd7mh3o.jpg

I hope that answered your questions, Leslie, and anyone else out there! Please feel free to comment below with any other questions or concerns and I'll answer as soon as possible.

If you'd like to order your own book, here is the latest offer (contains affiliate link):
Valid until 28 February: Save 25% when you purchase three or more books @ Blurb. Code: TAKE3

And now for Fashion Friday - an outfit (from a while ago) that I wore grocery shopping.

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Top: The Warehouse
Jeggings: Asda
Shoes: Tesco kids' department (on sale)
Hoop earrings: dollar store


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2 comments:

  1. Cute pink flats, love the straps. :-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Love the outfit! Those pink shoes make it so happy! : )

    ReplyDelete

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