Custom Board Books all about....Your loved One

Thursday, March 20

I've noticed that within the past year the online market has been saturated with photobook companies, some better than others. Sifting through these sites I was disappointed to find that none of them had custom boardbook options. (Great for reading AND chewing) After a little researching, I came across two companies that will do this service for a reasonable price- My Custom Story and Lifetimez.com I've looked over these two companies and weighed their positives and negatives. In the end, it's a toss-up. Neither one has their own software for you to personalize your book- a benefit as you'd find with the larger hardback photobook companies. At this time, they both seem pretty small scale but I'm going to go out on a limb and predict that in a couple years, the options for custom boardbook companies will expand and in turn broaden options, pricing and sizes. I'm hoping that happens because I love the idea of custom boardbooks and be interested in taking advantage of a decent one.

I'll start with Lifetimez. Prices start at $34.95. This company has more size options (up to 8x8), better pre-designed layouts, and higher page limits (up to 40 front and back, 20 pages). However, its biggest downfall (in my creative opinon) is that you must use one of their pre-designed layouts. ALSO, it requires that you "subscribe" to their service. Although they say that starts at 8 cents a day, I could not find any details of the "actual" costs, so that's another negative. But they do have a 10-day free trial option that does not info. See examples below require your credit card:

































The other option, My Custom Story, offers books with prices starting at $27.95. I'm not thrilled about their pre-designed storylines. The photos on their site are not professional and the layouts they use look like they've been made with Microsoft Word. In addition, their page limits top at 6 (12 pages front and back). And they only print one size 4x5. Their one redeeming quality- they allow you to customize your own pages. So if say, you had some upscale editing software like Photoshop or Illustrator you could create your own interesting layouts albeit with the above restrictions.

One more thing, there is an excellent site out there: Good Stock Press & Bindery. The top image is from their site. They will take your photos and turn them into a professionally designed, digitally printed, charming story, bound into a book the old fashioned way - by a skilled pair of hands. Of course, the caveat is their price. For a 7x7 pre-designed board book with complimentary matching spine, their prices start at $375! Wow, what a difference, huh. Not something I can take advantage of but worth mentioning none-the-less. See image to the left.

7 comments:

Tip Junkie said...

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ljb said...

Just wanted to let you know that there is another company that makes custom board books. The website is www.customboardbooks.com
They are just getting started but their product is very professional.

CorieCommunications said...

Thanks for your blog. I'm on the search for the same thing -- custom board books. It's such a great idea. I can't believe the options are so limited! Thanks for your post.

by Grama Linda said...

Just did some research on the topic of board books (custom) and this is what I found out.

MyCustomStory - they simply print the page designs, then laminate them to a blankboardbook that you could buy at Micheal's or any other hobby store. I don't think that is worth the money as it won't look as professional as one that is actually printed ON the board pages.

www.customboardbooks.com appears to print direct ... I'm waiting to here back from them to confirm that.

cagirlintexas said...

I have been trying to order a book from Lifetimez for over a month. They have horrible customer service. They don't return emails and I even got a phone number from them and they don't return phone calls either. I am so disappointed because I wanted this book for my son's birthday and now I will never get it period!

rochelle said...

Lifetimez is horrible!!!!! I joined the service thinking that I was gonna pay 3.00 a month, and they took 30.00 out of my account. I signed in to my account and clicked on the cancel account link and it doesn't do anything. I contacted them through email and they told me that they can cancel my service but not provide me with a refund because it is liscensed by breezy design. That is the biggest crock of s**t that I have ever heard. They are truly scam artists. It is also impossible to find a phone number for them. If you are thinking about joining them don't unless you like to flush money down the toilet.

karenbethjones said...

Try Pint Size Productions. http://www.pintsizeproductions.com
They're $25 a book, though, unless you're doing large runs.

I'm not sure if their online stuff allows you to do a REAL custom book with your own images and layout, but if it doesn't, you can contact them and do it directly with a real person.