As I said earlier this week, I have been using Shutterfly for about three and a half years now. I keep all of my photos at Shutterfly so that they are archived (aka backed up) in some place that’s not my home, and they are all in one place, which makes it easier to keep track of what I have archived and what I haven’t gotten to yet.
Most of the time, I have Shutterfly print and mail photos to me, which takes a little bit of time, but is the cheapest option. I love their print quality. Their photo books are also wonderful. I occasionally have their local affiliates like Target and Walgreens print small batches for me when I want something quickly. The print quality from Target and Walgreens has been variable. Sometimes they are excellent, and sometimes the prints aren’t lined up correctly and have a tiny sliver of white showing on one corner. If you have a local Target, Walgreens or CVS where you love the quality of their printing, this may be a good option for you.
There are some other cool things about Shutterfly. Not only do they give you free photo storage, which makes them a great place to archive your photos, but they also have share sites, which makes it easy to share photos with friends and family who can then choose to print photos for themselves from the share sites. They’ve also got a wide variety of items that you can have your photos printed on; from calendars to mugs to greeting cards.
You don’t have to use Shutterfly just because I do, however. There are some other great photo printing services.
Many scrapbookers love to use Snapfish. It’s got unlimited photo storage as well, but to keep it, you need to place at least one order each year. If you scrapbook at all over the course of a year, you should be able to meet that requirement. 😉
My friend Danielle Taylor from Scrapper On the Street swears by their photo quality, and has used them for calendars and greeting cards with great success. Snapfish also has share sites and photo books and other photo printed items, and has print locally options with Walmart, Walgreens, Meljer, and Duane Reade.
Another well recommended printer is Persnickety Prints. They also have free unlimited online storage, and great print quality, and my friend Monica Bradford of Scrap Inspired says they are one of the fastest online shippers out there. They don’t have as much variety when it comes to photo printed items, but they do print 12×12 photos, which is great news for any digi-scrapper who wants to get their digi pages off the screen and into the real world. They are a great place to print your Instagram photos as well, and are also catering to the Project Life crowd. Additionally, they have a lot of digi-freebies for people who sign up for their services. I will definitely be checking them out. I have a lot of digi pages that I’d like to get printed.
There are also a lot of local options. If you’re lucky there’s still a dedicated photography/camera store where you live. That’s usually the best bet when you’re looking for quality prints. However, there are also places like Costco, Walmart, Walgreens, CVS, and Target that will print for you. (Some might even ship to you.) You will have to check out each store to determine whether their print quality is good enough for you. My local Target used to have excellent print quality, but recently has been very disappointing. I would recommend doing a small batch to check quality before ordering every print from the last five years from one of your local big box stores.
If you’ve got any other printer recommendations, please share! And if you haven’t printed anything yet, what are you waiting for? Pick one, and get printing!