Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Holiday Cards from @Photobucket

by:  Kristina Rust Photography

Last week I wrote about the new holiday card offering from Photobucket.  Yes, Photobucket, the photo hosting site that many of us know and love is now offering a variety of different photo products.  You can now find calendars, canvases, phone cases, holiday cards and more in their new online shop.

I had the opportunity to try out their cards and have to say I am quite impressed.  The card stock is nice and thick, the colors are rich and I really love the finish.  It is not glossy but not matte...I'd call it a satin finish.  These cards are a great value at only 99 cents each (introductory offer).   While the card design selection is not as robust as their competitors, the options they do offer are very cute.  You can see their various designs here.

Here is an example of the card I created to send to my clients.  It's of a photo I took last year while visiting my parents in Illinois (here in Silicon Valley we don't get any snow).  I love the simple design and that the focus is on the photo.

Give them a try and let us know what you think!

Monday, November 24, 2014

Holiday Cards From Minted

By: Kristina Rust Photography

It is that time of year again...time to order your holiday cards.  I am often asked for recommendations on card companies and one of my favorites is Minted.  I love their designs, the quality of their card stock and how easy they make it to help you decide on a card....well maybe not that easy because there are so many beautiful choices!  I also love how Minted is a marketplace of independent artists.  All of their designs are from independent artists, illustrators and painters from all over the world.

So now, let me tell you about my Minted experience......

I ordered my cards earlier this month and love the results.  As I mentioned above, ordering was easy.  Once I decided on the photo I was going to use and uploaded it, I narrowed down the choices by choosing the format and clicking the "number of photos" selection.  I then used the "see more filters" drop down menu to choose a color scheme, which helped me find a design that complimented the outfits my kids were wearing.

I love how the site auto populated the designs with my image so that I could see a preview right away of the cards with my photo.   As you can see, I was able to tell right away what layouts wouldn't work given my photo (I have four kids, not three and the first option cropped out my son).  :)

I ended up choosing a foil pressed design....decided I need a little bling this year, since I was picking a simple format....and I love the results!  Oh and one thing I tried this year that I have not done before, is their FREE offer to address your envelopes (for a limited time)!  All I had to do was upload my spreadsheet and that was it!  SOOO easy.  My beautiful cards arrived and my envelopes are ready to go.  All I need is a stamp!

A little close up shot of the foil shiny and cute!

If you are interested in trying Minted, let me know.  I have a limited number of 20% discount codes.  Just leave a comment with your email address below and I will send you the code (while they last).

Disclaimer:  I was provided holiday cards by Minted in exchange for this review.  The opinions are entirely my own and I truly love this company.  

Friday, November 14, 2014

Holiday Cards from Photobucket

Did you know that Photobucket offers holiday cards?  If you are like me, you probably think of Photobucket as mainly a photo hosting and sharing site but guess what... they now also offer beautiful cards, home decor, and photo gifts.  

And right now they have an amazing deal!  You can get 75% off your 5x7  holiday cards by using the code: F4VODMM, (this includes envelopes and their is no limit).   But you must hurry as this offer expires Saturday, November 15.  

Oh and be sure to check out their canvas prints too.  There is an insider deal going on right now where you can save 70% using the code CANVAS70.  And this offer expires November 15 too!  

So hurry on over and get shopping! 

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Montage Makes Photo Book-Building a Snap

It is estimated that 27,800 photos are uploaded to Instagram every minute.  Another 208,300 are uploaded to Facebook in that same 60 seconds.  That’s over six billion photos per month.  Which means there’s a market out there for photo books (and every type of printed medium you can imagine).   But how many of us actually take the time to sit down and build a photo book filled with our favorite images?  Montage simplifies that whole burdensome process enabling everyone from novice to professional to create wonderful, lay-flat albums.  And get this – in an incredibly easy-to-order process with just three simple FIXED prices.  Wow.
Montage by Mixbook Photo Albums
Beautiful lay-flat books with a lovely eco-leather from Italy
Mixbook released Montage late last year. Consumer Reports rated Mixbook as its number-one rated photo book in 2014 based on their offering of templates, fonts, - and especially budget.  Mixbook’s mobile app, Mosiac, won a 2014 Appy Award and easily maneuvers between your smartphone photos and its super easy app to create gorgeous albums in record time.  Again, the price structure is so simple with no add-on costs like the competitors. 

Montage brings photo book making to a whole new level.  The process and menu selection make book-building a breeze.  First, download between 20-180 photos (currently 180 is the maximum number allowed.)  The hardest decisions you’ll have to make in the entire process are which photos to select. Montage does the rest and upon downloading your images it builds a square album in minutes.  Presto, it’s like magic! 

After your album has been created you can further customize it by selecting and playing around with various designs, add text, titles and adjust page layout. At this time text on the book spine is not an option, but you can add titles to the front cover.
The real treat with Montage is the superb quality.  Forget about flimsy paper albums. Montage delivers beautiful, sturdy lay-flat pages wrapped cover-to-cover in soft eco-friendly leather that is imported from Italy. 

Choose from Small (6-inch), Medium (8.5-inch) to Large (12-inch) albums that are price-fixed at $39, $59 and $119 respectively.  How easy and affordable is that?  No matter how many photos (within the 180 max) or pages, that’s the price.   In less than a week I had my album delivered in an elegant white logo box.  Your Montage photo album is ready to gift in minutes.  Really. 
One element I would love to see in the future is a link to the albums that I can share online or privately with friends and family.   I’m sure that will only cause folks to think about creating one of their own albums.    

Instead of taking another photo that doesn’t get printed, check out Montage.  It’s like having your own private assistant build your album right before your very eyes.  And what busy person or professional photographer doesn’t want that?

Check out:


Full disclosure: I was provided with a free 6x6" album.  All opinions are 100% my own.