Tuesday, October 29, 2013

per-page cost breakdown

(NOTE:  This post has been updated.  In October 2014, Club HM was streamlined, and as part of the simplification of the program, wholesale pricing was added.  This actually made prices just a tad better!!!  So the following post reflects prices after the October 2014 Club HM changes were made.)

Whenever I get asked how much a Heritage Makers book costs, it's a really hard question to answer.  First, it depends on the size of the book.  Second, it depends on if you are adding extra pages to the book.  (Extra pages do add to the cost of a book, of course, but extra pages are cheaper per-page than the 21 pages the book comes with since you've essentially already paid for the hardbound cover and metal-stitched library binding.)  Third, it REALLY depends on how you pay for them--wholesale price vs. the Club HM discount. 

I was talking to a gal recently who thought that Heritage Makers books would be out of her price range.  We broke down the per-page cost, and it was pretty eye-opening to her!  So let me tell you what she learned.

Let's just take an average size book, the 8x8 hardbound storybook.  This book comes with 21 pages (as do all storybooks).  We don't even have to talk about the retail price since nobody pays that.  If you have a Heritage Makers account (which is free), you automatically get the wholesale price, which is $43.75.  That's 30% off retail price.  That's the most you could pay for the book.

But how about the LEAST you could pay for the book?!?  You should definitely join Club HM to get the very best price.  Club HM is free to join, and it's just a savings program where you buy a certain amount of wholesale-priced Publishing Points (credits) to use for the purchase of your items when you publish them.  See my Club HM tab at the top for all the details, but the summarized version is that depending on how many Publishing Points you purchase at a time, you can save AN ADDITIONAL 15-25% off the wholesale price you're already getting! 

Here's the price-per page breakdown for an average size book (8x8) on the Bronze or Silver levels of Club HM (15% off at checkout).

First, $43.75 discounted by 15% is $37.19.  So if you are on Bronze or Silver Club (remember Club HM is free to join!), your price for an 8x8 storybook is $37.19.  These books come with 21 pages, so that's $1.77 per page.  I think of it this way (having been a traditional paper-and-scissors scrapbooker in the past).  If you fit 5 pictures on a page, those pictures would have cost you $1.00 to just print up at your local photo processing center.  So then you're paying about 77 cents per page for the library-quality binding and as much digital art as you want to use.  Extra pages for this size book come out to less than 90 cents per page!  That's cheaper than just printing out those 5 photos at your local drugstore! 

The same book with the Gold Club savings would look like this:

This time, $43.75 discounted by 25% is $32.81.  As a Gold Club HM member, that's your price for an 8x8 storybook.  With 21 pages, the price of this book would be $1.56 per page.  The extra pages in this book are even cheaper than in the other example because you get a greater savings on Gold Club.  Pretty amazing price for what you're getting! 

I love how this is very competitive pricing, but high quality products, and the Club HM savings plan lets you deposit a certain amount of publishing points in your account each month so that you can essentially pay for an item over time instead of all at once. 

These examples are with an average size book.  Of course, smaller books cost less (but you can't fit as many photos per page), and larger books cost more (but you can fit more photos per page), but this "average" tally gives you a general idea of the overall price of Heritage Makers books.

Of course, there are individual scrap pages that cost more per page since they are on thicker paper (more like cardstock), and there are wirebound books, too, plus many, many other products.

But sometimes it's just helpful to figure out a per-page price to get a good idea of what a book is really costing you. 

Friday, October 18, 2013

clever Christmas card/letter idea!

I know, it's SO early!!  I saw this idea on Pinterest a few months back and thought what a clever Christmas "card" it would make!  So I created this Annual Report as my Christmas card this year!  And it's only October, I know, but it was pretty easy and fun.  So, yes, I'm done with my Christmas cards... with plenty of time to order them from Heritage Makers.

These are done with Heritage Makers flyers.  A pack of 30 flyers is 20 publishing points (so $13.33-$15.00, depending on the discount you choose).  That's obviously less than 50 cents per "card."  I love how fun this is!
This is actually in the Template Gallery, which means you can put this very item into your account and then personalize it and change it around any way you like.  If you don't already have a (free) Heritage Makers account, go to www.heritagemakers.com/jenniferwise to set one up--just click "login" at the upper right.  You can find this flyer in the Template Gallery by typing 114391 in the search box (that's the project number). 

How fun, right?!

UPDATE:  Here's a video tutorial I made showing how to make impressive Christmas cards or letters that are different from all the usual ones you see floating around.  Enjoy! 

Friday, October 4, 2013

Christmas Countdown wooden blocks {a tutorial}

The last few wooden block tutorials I've posted used blocks cut from 2x4s or 1x4s.  This one is going to be different.  Although it does use one piece cut from a 2x4, it also uses two square blocks!
Cute, right?  Let's get started!!

Just like the other wooden block tutorials I've shown, these are simple and inexpensive.  This project cost me about $6.   

Here's what you need:
  • Heritage Makers template 112267.  This is actually my own template--I created it!  Then I just submitted it to Heritage Makers for them to add to the template gallery.  You can see it at www.heritagemakers.com/jenniferwise.  Just click the "template gallery" link at the upper right, then type 112267 into the search field.  
  • a 7.5" piece of wood cut from a 2x4 (found at home improvement stores)
  • two 3.5"x3.5" blocks of wood (You can sometimes find these at craft stores pre-cut, but they come out cheaper per block if you buy a 4x4 post at a home improvement store.  Some of the ones made for fences are pre-treated and don't take paint very well.  Assuming you use all the blocks you can cut from an 8-foot 4x4 post, each block comes out to be about 50 cents.  If you're only making one set of these, though, then the ones at the craft store might be less money out of pocket.  And, as you might guess if you've read any of my other wooden block tutorials, a 4x4 post actually measures 3.5x3.5".)   
  • a saw (unless you are using pre-cut blocks from a craft store.  If you are using a 4x4 post from a home improvement store, DO YOURSELF A FAVOR and find a nice person who will cut it for you.  The nicest man ever offered to cut my whole 8 feet into 3.5" blocks for me.  It rocked.) 
  • paint (Craft paint or spray paint; I use craft paint.  I'd recommend a cream/off-white/tan/or light brown.  Do whatever you want.)
  • adhesive  (spray adhesive, Xyron, double-sided tape, Mod Podge, or UHU stick)
STEP 1:  create the beautiful part
Unless you want to create your own design from scratch, go in to your Heritage Makers account and place the template 112267 into your account by doing a search for it in the Template Gallery.  Once you find it, click on it.  Then click "personalize."  This template was made from the Premier Art collection, so you'll need Premier Art access.  The easiest way to get that is through Club HM because it's free AND you get the best price on everything you publish with Heritage Makers.  Click here for Club HM information.  Anyway... Once you put this template into your account, you can also change things in my design if you want--background colors, whatever.  This was made on an 11x14 print, which is 5 publishing points (or $5 retail).  I'm in Club HM, which means I get discounted publishing points deposited into my account each month to use however I want, so I'm actually saving 33%.  This print cost me $3.35.  If you've been to the post office, you know shipping isn't cheap--so what I did was save this print until I was ordering other things, and I ordered them at the same time to save on shipping.  I always do that. 

While you wait the 7-10 days for it to come in the mail...

STEP 2:  cut your wooden blocks
Unless you bought the blocks pre-cut or found a nice person at the home improvement store.  In any case, you may still need to cut the 7.5" piece from a 2x4.  

STEP 3:  prepare the wooden blocks
Sand rough edges.  

Paint all sides.  Let dry completely.  (I decided to save a little time and paint this time by not painting the whole blocks.  Most of each side will be covered anyway.)

STEP 4:  cut out the cuteness
Check your "my account" to track your package from Heritage Makers.  Check it 3 times a day like I do, even though you know that doesn't make it come any faster.  (I love getting Heritage Makers packages in the mail!!  It's like Christmas!)  
Then cut out the pieces.  Choose your weapon:  paper cutter or scissors.

STEP 5:  adhere the cuteness to the blocks
The important part here is to follow the directions.  In order to make number combinations like 14 and 27, certain numbers need to go on certain blocks.  Or you will be sad.  Each square block has six sides.  One block should have the numbers 0, 1, 2, 4, 5, 6 on it.  The other block should have the remaining 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9 on it.  

Use spray adhesive, Xyron, double-sided tape, Mod Podge, or UHU to adhere the decor squares to the blocks.  I opted for the Xyron again.

Then stick the pieces on!  (Don't forget to stick the right pieces on the right blocks!)

I SO love it.