a person holding a book open to a picture of a family.

How to Make Your First Custom Photo Book

Making a custom photo book can be an incredibly rewarding experience, whether doing it for yourself or as a gift. Here's how to get it right first time.

Custom photo books are in high demand, and as a lifelong photographer, I love the opportunity to play with different photo layouts and finishes.

I’ve put together a guide to teach you how to make a photo book album of your favorite memories.

A photo book is a fresh and fun way to create long-lasting memories and tell a story through beautiful and sentimental images.

Here’s everything you need to know about creating custom photo books to share with family and friends.

9 Tips to Make Your First Custom Photo Book

Personalized photo albums are a great investment, especially with modern photo book makers at your fingertips.

If you want to turn your own photos into a stylish photo book, Printique is worth checking out.

Known for lay-flat pages and premium photo book options, Printique offers a convenient way to create photo books right from your phone.

Follow these simple steps to make a beautiful photo album book with Printique.

1. Organize your pictures

a woman sitting on a bed with a laptop and a cup of coffee.

Before you can make your first photo book, you should organize photos on your phone or computer.

If you have pictures scattered across different devices and social media platforms, now’s the time to sort them into albums so you can pick your favorites.

For large photo albums with lots of pages, try categorizing images by date, subject, or occasion.

The more organized you are, the easier and faster it will be to make the best photo books.

2. Choose your photo book cover

a book sitting on top of a stack of books.

With your favorite images ready to go, now you need to decide which type of photo book you want to create.

Printique uses archival photo paper for every personalized photo book. You can pick from hard or softcover books with a luster, glossy, deep matte, linen, or pebble paper type.

Traditional hardcover photo books are tough to beat, but softcover has become very popular for young kids and families.

Fabric photo books are a happy medium, and then there’s custom leather for an ultra-luxurious finish.

When designing your own photo books, remember that leather, fabric, and hardcover finishes cost more than softcover albums.

3. Consider photo book shape and size

When creating a photo book online, selecting the right page shape and size is important.

Portrait, landscape, and square photo books are all great for displaying treasured memories.

Take your pick of the following sizes: 6 x 7.5, 6 x 9, 8 x 10, 8 x 12, or 10 x 12.5 inches.

Keep in mind that Printique pricing is based on a standard 20-page photo album book.

If you need to add more semi gloss pages to fit in additional photos, there will be an extra charge.

Sometimes it’s worth choosing a larger book size than extra pages, but it’s entirely up to you.

4. Browse photo book styles

a couple of books sitting on top of a wooden table.

Now for the fun part! Printique has so many styles to choose from, and you get creative control to pick your theme.

While you can start from scratch and build your own style, there are dozens of themed templates ready to go.

Browse by special occasions such as wedding, children, family, holiday, and travel. There are beautiful styles for pets, food, education, and photography, too.

Whether you want pages with or without borders, color or black and white, Printique photo book maker has you covered.

After making plenty of photo books myself, I can share with you a few of my favorite Printique styles.

Modern white is a simple classic, while milestone is perfect for making family photo books. I also love midnight for a dramatic, romantic occasion and diamond for family memories.

5. Check spread settings

To create the best photo book of fun times, check the settings before diving in.

On the left-hand side of your screen, you should see a vertical toolbar with photos at the top and settings at the bottom.

When you click on settings, you’ll see the book size, cover, and current number of pages.

You can also switch between different paper types and enable or disable autosave. If you’re coming back to your project throughout the day, try autosave to ensure all your changes are saved.

The studio sample and show grid features should also help as you slot pictures into the perfect spot on one page.

You may also want to toggle between inch or pixel measurements and update the global settings for texts, photos, stickers, and backdrops.

6. Upload the best images

After choosing a photo book style and checking the settings, you’re ready to upload images.

Bring your first custom photo book to life with new pictures of your favorite moments.

Printique supports photo uploads from Google Photos, Flickr, Facebook, Instagram, Dropbox, and Lightroom. Direct uploads from your desktop work too.

You can also make and save Printique galleries in your account to use images throughout multiple photo books.

Depending on how many pages you choose, you may be able to fit 50, 100, or even more images in one book.

Printique has an optional autofill feature to put the book together for you. Otherwise, you can select photos one by one to fill in each page.

7. Create variety with different layouts

With an online photo book maker like Printique, you get to experiment with different layouts.

Whether you want a consistent layout throughout the book or more variety across the pages, you can easily update it with the layout option on the toolbar.

Swap theme, spread, and page layouts based on how many images you want to put on each page.

Just below the layouts button, you’ll see options to update backgrounds and frames, too.

8. Add text and stickers

an open book with pictures of flowers and plants.

Most photo books have at least some text, particularly on the front cover or the first few pages.

Before you print, don’t forget to add a nice title and dedication to your project. Printique has small, medium, and large text options that you can drag from the toolbar to the project spread.

You’ll also be able to add text and stickers to internal pages. I love this feature for family-friendly photo books with a short and sweet message about special memories.

9. Use photo book preview

Last but not least, you can use the photo book preview function to see what the final product should look like.

Printique will pop up with any warnings about your project. Premium photo books require high-quality images, so you should know before printing if any of your images are too low resolution.

This allows you to update images so they print at a higher quality. If there are pages with missing photos, you’ll see a reminder to add more pictures, too.

Lastly, Printique will let you know if objects are in the page trim area. Just double check that no photos or design elements are too close to the edge.

Then you can proceed with the print order and let Printique do all the hard work. Your new photo book should be shipped to your door in just a few business days.

Once you see some of your fondest memories on display in your first photo book, you may be inspired to get more pictures and photo gifts printed.

FAQs on Custom Photo Books

What do I need to make a photo book?

As long as you have chosen photos on your phone or computer, that’s all you really need to capture special moments in a high quality photo book.

Nowadays, you can make a photo book from scratch online using a professional printing service.

It’s as simple as selecting a design, choosing pics from your device, and finalizing the print job.

Which size photo book should I choose?

Photo books come in landscape and portrait styles, typically measuring between 6 and 12.5 inches.

A 20-page photo book is standard, but you can easily add extra pages for a larger and longer book.

Check with your preferred photo book printer, but many have a minimum of 10 pages and a maximum of 100 pages.

What images can I put in photo books?

Photo book printing programs support images from various sources on both phones and PCs.

You may upload photos from Google Photos, Facebook, Instagram, Flickr, Dropbox, and Lightroom.

Organizing your photos into folders and subfolders before uploading will make it easier to create your ideal photo books.

How do I arrange photos in a photo book?

You can pick your preferred layout from premade templates when making a custom photo album.

Most templates have space for 1-4 photos per page, but you can personalize your photo book online and experiment with different layouts.

It helps to organize photos by date or occasion to ensure all your favorite photos are included in the design process.

What is the best program to make a custom photo book?

Many programs let you make your own photo book, but Printique is one of the top choices thanks to a wide selection of styles.

Printique is a photo printing website and app with softcover and hardcover options. You can pick how many photo book pages you want, with fabric and leather covers also available.

What photo book finish is best?

Semi gloss styles are super popular for photo books and Amazon prints, thanks to the polished finish and slight shine.

However, you can’t go wrong with either a matte finish or a satin finish for photo book pages.

As long as you go with a high-quality printer specializing in photo books, the final printed product should turn out great.

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Content Manager

As the Content Manager of Shotkit, India Mantle brings with her a lifelong love for photography that she developed during her childhood, watching her father document their family moments with his Nikon EM. In her free time, you find her enjoying the awe-inspiring natural beauty of her home, Northern Rivers, Australia.

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