As digital scrappers, we LOVE to make and give personalized calendars as gifts! I started seeing posts in the forums about them in July and I also started thinking about what I wanted to do for my calendars this year, shortly after that. Not to mention, we did talk about it a little bit here during our Christmas in July. I know from years past that if I don't get my calendars totally finished by October, it isn't going to happen! So, today's post will hopefully inspire you, help you assemble your calendars quickly, and even answer some questions. This post will be separated into three areas:
- Calendar Products
- Making a Calendar (with instruction for the calendar above as well as some types to help it go quickly)
- Calendar Printing
I emailed all of our past sponsors and asked them what calendar they have on the market for 2010 (images are linked). Many designers aren't going to be releasing new calendar products until October and I will include those links after the images. :)
Mari Koegelenberg has this template set:
There is also a tutorial for creating this album at The Hybrid Chick:
Wendy has these:
Jacque has this:
Misty just released these babies last Saturday:
Amy Martin has these tops and bottoms which come in both 8.5x11 and A4. Amy is also giving TDD readers an exclusive coupon for these calendars :):
for 8.5x11s additional 25% off coupon code - tddcalcoupon8x11 good one time use only on 8.5x11 until 9/30
forA4.5x11s additional 25% off coupon code - tddcalcouponA4s good one time use only on A4 until 9/30
I have wanted a simple 4x6 calendar that has a spot for a photo AND the calendar on ONE 4x6, so I pleaded with Janet to make me a set of templates. She was so sweet to accomidate my request with these:
Stephanie was equally sweet to doodle up the months and then some so I could perform digi-magic on the doodles and create some papers to match (and they are 40% off) :)
You can also look for new 2010 calendar products coming soon from these designers:
Making a Caledar
In the past, I have created many different types of calendars (I made my first scrapped calendar in 1997). There are a few things I have learned over the years (the hard way, unfortunately) that I thought I would share:
- Only include your family. When I first started making calendars as gifts for grandparents, I spent hours and hours emailing family members begging for photos from them to include their children too. After two years in a row of this, I decided to only include MY children and it made things much easier.
- Do a photoshoot with the people you want to feature in the calendar, dressed in neutral colors. In the past, I tried to find photos taken during the actual month the photo was going to be in the calendar and it took a lot of time to search for a photo that was taken in May AND coordinated with May on the quickpage calendar I was using. We had a family photoshoot with my family before we moved (we did the photos on the beach with our island we lived on in the background). The photographer that I used (and have been using for the last six years) burned all of the photos to a CD for me and I used those as fillers in my calendar when I didn't quickly find a photo for that month. This worked out really well and saved me hours (this years calendar was the quickest to create taking me 3 hours for the digital part and 15 minutes for the assembly)!
- Use one calendar for both sets of grandparents. In the past, I created two different calendars by using photos with each set of grandparents and the kids and it gets quite confusing, not to mention time consuming. Just include your family and that will make all of the receivers happy!
- Plan ahead. During 2010, when you come across a photo you love and know it will work perfectly for a calendar, copy/paste it into a calendar folder and rename it with the month you will want to use it. I have not ever done this yet, but intend to during 2010 and am willing to bet that my calendars will be a snap next year!
- Will the receiver appreciate the gift? Don't go to so much work if the receivers won't appreciate the time it takes and love the gift (this is when gift certificates are best). That's all I will say about that ;)
There are many scrappers out there that decide to give digital a try for the first time by doing a calendar as a gift. If this describes you, then you can learn about how to create the digital part of the calendar using a template by following the links at the end of this post. If you want to create a calendar using a quickpage, then you can follow this tutorial here.
For this calendar, I used the templates by Janet, Months & Months, and Months and Days Handwritten Words. I also used some adhesive, a corner rounder, some Teresa Collins Bracket Shape Covers, Zutter binding wire, and my Zutter Bind-it-all (you do not NEED this, you could use o-rings and a hole punch instead, found at your office supply store).
After assembling the digital part here is what I did:
- I printed on 4x6's with a lustre finish at my favorite place to print (Costco)
- I then punched the bracket covers and my calendar pages
- I rounded the corner of the 4x6 cover
- Then, I glued the cover photo to the outside of the bracket cover.
- Lastly, I bound all of them with the wire and my Zutter
You could dress this up by tying some ribbons on the binding or o-rings, but I wanted my cover to fold all the way to the back, so I left them off.
There are many places and ways to get your calendars printed, depending on the size. As I said above, for this calendar, I just printed on 4x6's at Costco. I prefer to send my printing out because I have found it holds up better and the colors are more rich. You could, however, print at home if you want.
It seems that people have the most difficult time finding a way to print calendars that have custom bottoms as well a tops like Amy's (pictured above). Here are three options I have found:
Mpix - Just bring in your calendar bottom and send theirs to the back, leaving yours as the one that is visible.
MyPicTails - Several different sizes and options including CD calendars
Artscow - a few different sizes and options, great prices, located in Hong Kong so take shipping time into consideration.
Our team agreed that no calendar post would be complete without mentioning the calendars at Something Blue Studios. I haven't done these yet, but the team raved about them!! :)
Hopefully, you are feeling inspired and ready to start working on those calendars. If you have some unique calendars you would like to share or questions that are still not answered, post them in the comments! We love it when our readers share! :)
P.S. If you are a designer and would like the opportunity to be a sponsor at The Daily Digi, please see our "Looking For" page.