Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Nifty Thrifty Gifty: Photobooks

First, SPOILER ALERT!  If you are my parent or grandparent, you may not want to read this!!! That means you Nannie :)

My favourite, easiest thrifty gift idea is photobooks.  I made these last year for all the parents and grandparents in our lives (13 in all, seriously!).  I originally saw the idea on tv, to take pictures of kids artwork and have it put into a photobook.  Kids artwork is cute, but with lots of glued on sparkles and macaronis it's often hard to mail and gets wrecked over time.  This way, grand parents can enjoy the kids creations, and they immortalized forever.  I included lots of pictures of the kids too, holding the pictures up, or shots of them working on it.  I called it "works of HEART"

Every single recipient LOVED it.  I had them made in a 6X8 soft cover size, so they fit inside a purse.  It was a great idea for many other reasons.  Yes, I had to spend a bit of time choosing layouts, uploading pictures and putting the book together.  But I only had to do it once!  I had copies of the same book printed and sent to my house.  I wrote a dedication to each grand parent inside the cover, and put them all in envelopes.  Another bonus was that they could be mailed for the cost of just one stamp, instead of the cost of a parcel.  And, at a cost of under $10 each!  What else can I give all the loved ones in my life for $10 that would be meaningful and appreciated?

My theme this year is four seasons of fun, and I am including pictures of all the fun and neat things the kids do throughout the year...gardening, sledding, horse riding, raking leaves, etc etc.

There are lots of photo websites that are great,  Last year I used Black's, but I found their creation program a bit clunky.  Their print quality was awesome, though.  This year I am using Shutterfly.  I'm sure you can look around and choose one you like.

Another bonus free idea:  When you sign up for Shutterfly, you get 50 free 4X6 prints.  I plan to take a family pic and have them sent with the photobooks near Christmas, I'll write a quick message on the back, and VOILA! Christmas cards!  I also got a coupon for a FREE 8X8 hard cover photobook for signing up!  I used it to make an album for my husband made up entirely of pictures of him with the kids hunting and fishing.  That's what he's getting for Christmas this year...FREE!!  For those of you here in town, I also got some coupons for 10% off anything you order, and if you want one, let me know.

A friend of mine fills up a photo album for her grandmother every Christmas with new pictures of her kids.  Everyone loves photos of their grandkids!!


  1. Another great idea is Vistaprint.ca you can get tons of free stuff and is professionally printed. Most of the time I place a huge order and only cover the cost of shipping which is about $20. I had special notepads and pens made up last year with the girls teachers names on them. They loved them!


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