Saturday, June 16, 2012

In which I make a custom printed book

Well I finally did it.

After having the idea percolate for a looong time, I finally made a custom book. I had a lot of fun making it, and it was very well received so the effort was totally worth it.

The working title 'Thank you for the music' (ABBA riff-off) was for a book I imagined for my uncle & aunt who have hosted countless parties and family gatherings. My 21st disco party, I might add, was organized by them too, which probably tells you a lot about the fun-loving Party Central people that they are.

The book took about a week to put together. I spent a few nights organizing photos, letting themes emerge and organizing the pages.

Although I'd started off wanting to use blurb, the iPhoto software turned out to be pretty good too. Price-wise, the Apple option was a little cheaper too based on the size of the book I waned to make. I paid about $60 for printing & delivery. The quality was good, no complaints there. The iPhoto software lets you edit the photos on the spot, so that was very user-friendly.

Seeing as my 10+years worth of photos were largely centered on chinese new year, Christmas, new years and birthday parties, that's the main way I organized the photos. Some considerations: I wanted to make sure everyone was in the book (hurt feelings wouldn't do, oh no), and that included photos of loved ones far away. Inclusiveness - very important for this book.  And I was particularly pleased of this page where I squeezed in lots of photos using an old shot of my aunt's photo wall.

Since food is such an important part of our gatherings, I included a 2-page homage to the lovely food we'e enjoyed over the years.

It took a week for the book to be printed and delivered. And when it arrived, I engineered a dinner at my aunt's and presented it to them after dinner.

For posterity, here's a snippet of conversation:

Uncle: What's this? (Seeing the apple logo on the sleeve) An iPad?
Cousins: No lah!!
Uncle: (Removing the sleeve) A book!
Cousins: OMG you made a book...
Aunt: (After several stunned moments looking at the first few pages, and getting a bit teary) This is better than an iPad...

Awww! Like I said, totally worth it.

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