Cooking-up a Recipe Book with MagCloud

It’s that time of the year, which means it’s time to start thinking about gifts…

I used to spend 3 days making dozens of batches of home-made biscotti to give to the neighbors and friends who unexpectedly drop by during the holiday season.

But this year? Well, let’s face it–I’m too busy to spend 3 days baking, packaging and crafting these little masterpieces.

Instead, I have decided (Sorry friends, your surprise is ruined!) to give my loved ones and neighbors a custom cookbook, filled with our family favorites, printed by MagCloud.

Today I will share with you a template that I have made in InDesign and a few tricks for customizing it for your own use.

GETTING STARTED:

You can start with my custom-designed template that is already formatted for MagCloud settings, or create one of your own. MagCloud’s InDesign document settings and a blank template are available at magcloud.com/help/indesign

Download my InDesign Template.
Preview my cookbook on MagCloud.

CUSTOMIZING YOUR TEMPLATE:
Transforming this template into something of your own is pretty simple using style sheets. Before you start entering your own information, I suggest your go through the template and adjust the colors and fonts to your choosing.

Change your Spot Color
1. Open the Swatches Panel
In CS6 or higher click Window > Color > Swatches
2. Double Click on the color named “sweet red”
3. Adjusting the C,M,Y and K values will change the “pop of color” on all of the pages where it is used in the template.

Adjusting Paragraph Style Sheets
Open the Paragraph Style Panel.
In CS6 or higher click Window > Styles > Paragraph Styles.

Once you have the Paragraph Styles Panel open, you can then go through the document and change your fonts and colors. You will notice that the style sheets are divided into subcategories based on where they are in the document.  (Tip: by opening up all of these sub-tabs you can easily see what style affects each block of text you select on the page)

To adjust the settings of your paragraph styles:
1. Select the text you want to change
2. Identify which Paragraph Style you are selecting within the Paragraph Styles Panel
3. “Right Click” or “Ctrl + Click” on the highlighted style in the Paragraph Styles Panel
4. Using the Paragraph Style Options Dialog box, adjust the font details

Add Your Own Photos and Personal Touches
Change the title, insert photos, recipes and update the intro letter to reflect your own personal style. You can even include a photo of the person who gave you the recipe or a special quote from them.

(Tip: to include more recipes select a “spread”–2 side-by-side pages–within the Pages Panel, and [ctrl + “click”] or [“Right Click”] on the highlighted pages within the panel. Select “Duplicate Spread,” this will insert a set of identical pages in your document.)

**Note that you will want to have a page count that is an increment of 4 pages to print with MagCloud… such as 16… 20… 24… 28… You get the idea!

SAVE AND EXPORT A PDF:
Want a quick easy way to be sure your export settings are correct?

DOWNLOAD the MagCloud PDF Export Job Options file

*If you are on a Mac: double click on the file, it will open in an Adobe application and add it to your presets. You can then close that application and return to InDesign.

*If you are on a PC, within InDesign go to File > Adobe PDF Presets > Define > Load
Find and Select the file you downloaded called “MagCloud_PDF_Export” > Click Done

To use these imported settings, with your file open in InDesign,
Select File > PDF Presets > “Adobe PDF Preset for MagCloud”

Name and Save your PDF and you are ready to publish!

Other Fun Ideas for Your Cookbook:
– make your cookbook themed with all family classics or recipes from a particular family member like “Granny’s Favorite Recipes”
– make a genre themed cookbook, like “Sweets,” “Holiday Dishes,” or “Brunch”
– make a cookbook for a school fundraiser and call it “Bake Sale”
– Ask friends to contribute recipes and do a collaborative cookbook

A Recipe for a Successful Cookbook

In the United States, the arrival of June brings with it National Barbeque Month. Primarily, it means three things: warm weather, fun festivals, and great grilling.

As the days get longer and you begin gathering around the outdoor barbeque, you also get a chance to show off your best recipes. If you’re a cook yourself, you know that presentation is as important as the flavor itself. So why not present your culinary chops in the best way possible?

You can put your favorite recipes to work for you and your guests, or collaborate with your friends and family for a cookbook worth keeping – and, despite the temperature, you don’t even have to break a sweat.

With our Microsoft Word Templates, you can customize colors, fonts and more just by following our Word template tips. If you select “US Letter Borderless” as the paper type in your page set-up, your cookbook will be ready to print via MagCloud.

If Word isn’t included in your summer style, you can also try your hand at our cookbook templates for Adobe InDesign and Apple Pages for designing your own barbecue cookbook.

zestIn the rare event that you haven’t already found yourself surrounded by appetizing inspiration, we might suggest browsing our selections from other grill-savvy MagCloud publishers, like ZEST: Food, Drinks & Entertaining.

 

Recommended reading:

Create a Beautiful Recipe Book with iWork Pages

Easy Custom Cookbooks with Microsoft Word

Cooking-up a Recipe Book with MagCloud

Free the Cookbook

How to make a cookbook—a delicious gift for everyone

DIY Gift Ideas

From cookbooks, to calendars, to a poster of your favorite Instagram photos, use MagCloud to get a jump-start on your holiday gift giving by creating your own masterpiece.

cookbook_templateCookbooks

Recipe collections are a popular MagCloud publication type, serving the purpose of business promotionscommunity fundraisers, and wedding favors. With options for ordering print copies and downloading onto mobile devices like the iPad, MagCloud cookbooks are easy to keep close at hand in the kitchen. To help you get started on your own cookbook, check out our prior blog posts with templates and instructions for Adobe InDesigniWork Pages, and Microsoft Word.

Calendars

calendar_templateCalendars are a great way to relive the special moments of the past year, memorialize a one-of-a-kind summer vacation, highlight business accomplishments, serve as a collectible fundraising idea, or show-off your dog Kai’s greatest moments. Whatever your inspiration is, we’ve made it easy to get started. Select from one of our pre-designed templates or read our recent calendar blog post to design one yourself. And with a 28-page Standard format calendar costing only $5.60, it’s an affordable gift idea as well.

Posters

poster_templatesGive your child’s artwork, favorite New Year’s resolutions, new product offerings or your best-of wedding photos the rock star treatment with our Poster format. MagCloud’s full-color Posters are printed to order so there are no minimum order requirements – you can order copies of your poster as you need them, and come back to order more when you run out.  And if you want to make your poster gift extra special, read our blog post and watch our video for tips on framing MagCloud posters.

Share your DIY printed gift ideas in our comments section below.

5 Ways to Boost Your Small Business this Summer

Business growth red graphic relaunched with a trampolineIt’s National Small Business week! While summer can be seen as a time to unwind, take vacation and spend more time with family, it’s also prime time for businesses to re-focus and refresh their company’s strategy and/or marketing plan. Here are 5 ways you can give your small business a little boost this summer.

Refresh your marketing collateral

Need marketing collateral but don’t have budget to hire a designer? With the wealth of free templates for flyers and brochures today, small business owners can create marketing material without having to enlist the help of agencies and freelancers.

Get creative with your summer sales

As many businesses hold sales throughout the summer, stand out by trying new things with your sales promotions. Get creative and think of how you can take giveaways and discounts to the next level (without breaking the bank). Instead of holding a typical giveaway or discount, you can surprise potential customers on social media with freebies or discounts. You never know, they may turn into loyal customers and big brand advocates!

Monitor trends

When was the last time you monitored current trends? With a smaller bandwidth, small businesses often focus more on day-to-day operations during the year, that typically makes following trends and issues that impact overall business strategies a second priority. Take advantage of longer summer days to catch up on current events and industry trends that may impact your business. It may transform or inform your business goals and strategy.

Network, network, network

With a high number of conferences, webinars, speaking and network events, summer is prime time to take advantage of networking opportunities. Meet with potential business partners and people who can provide new information to help you improve your business. Keep your company at the forefront of peoples’ minds by giving them engaging company brochures or eye-catching one-pagers.

Plan ahead, re-evaluate, set forth

Take advantage of summer business lulls to work on long-term business planning including re-evaluating your company’s strategy, goals and objectives. Are they still in-line with current trends and customer needs? Identify what’s working and what’s not to re-focus your business strategy so that you can gain an edge in your industry. After you have an idea of what your small business needs to stay ahead, set forth! Summer is the best time to make sure your company is on track to meet its goals for the rest of the year.

What else can SMB’s do to boost business this summer? Share your ideas with us in the comments section below!

Celebrating Dads and Grads

With Father’s Day this Sunday and the school year coming to a close, today we’re going to highlight some ways to use MagCloud to do some last minute shopping for Dad, and also how recent graduates can use MagCloud as they commemorate the past and look toward their future.

MagCloud Gifts for Dad

18 Month Photo Calendar

DadCalendarThe mid-year timing of Father’s Day is a perfect opportunity to create a custom photo calendar that your dad can enjoy through the end of 2014. We’ve modified our 2013 calendar templates to go from July 2013 to December 2014 in our Standard (8.25″ x 10.75″) and Small Square (8″ x 8″) formats for InDesign CS4 and newer, and Apple Pages. Just download the template for the size of calendar you want to create in your software of choice, add your photos and use the included instructions to export a PDF for uploading to the MagCloud website. With MagCloud you can order just a single print copy for your dad, or order additional copies for other family members.

InDesign CS4 and newer: Standard template  |  Small Square template

Apple Pages: Standard template  |  Small Square template

If creating your own calendar file in InDesign or Pages isn’t for you, check out our partner PoyomiPoyomi lets you create a calendar just by uploading your photos from your computer, SmugMug, Picasa, or Facebook, and then you can have it uploaded automatically to your MagCloud account.

Custom BBQ Recipe Book

If your dad loves to grill, pull together his go-to recipes into a custom recipe book. Click here to check out our recent post on National Barbecue Month for templates and tips.

Print and Digital MagCloud Publications

No matter what your dad is into, from cars or technology, to sports, cooking, or travel, chances are good you can find a MagCloud publication about it. Print copies always make a great gift for reading on the beach this summer, or if he has an iPad, get Dad an iTunes gift card that he can use to purchase digital versions of the publications he likes.

CarHeader

MagCloud Uses for Grads

Photobooks for Friends

PhotobookBefore you and your friends head off in various directions after graduation, commemorate the fun times you had together in a photobook. MagCloud’s 8.25″ x 5.25″ Digest product is a great size for displaying full color photographs in a nice compact format, and only costs $0.16 per page to print. Check out our blog posts about creating photobooks with Adobe Photoshop or Apple Aperture, or see our Getting Started page for instructions in a variety of other programs. You can also use our partner Poyomi to quickly turn your photos from Facebook or Instagram into a photobook without having to lay them out yourself.

Custom Thank You Notes

ThankYouNow that you’ve received all those generous graduation gifts, show your appreciation with customized thank you notes. MagCloud’s single sheet Flyers in our smaller Digest size are printed on a heavier cover stock that make them ideal for using as flat notecards, and the size fits perfectly into A9 envelopes. All you have to do is use the program of your choice to create a PDF that is either 8.5″ x 5.5″ for portrait notecards or 5.5″ x 8.5″ for landscape notecards, and upload that PDF to MagCloud. Then you can order as few or as many thank you cards as you need, for just $0.32 each (or $0.24 each if you order 20 or more). For instructions to create your PDF, check out the Software-Specific Instruction Packages on our Getting Started page.

Print and Digital Portfolio

Children's Sports Photography PortfolioFor those of you heading into the work world as artists, photographers, designers, architects, or writers, MagCloud is a great option for publishing your portfolio. MagCloud’s print-on-demand features allow you to order commercial-quality printed portfolios at an affordable price, across a range of sizes and binding options, in as few or as many copies as you need. You can even have copies of your portfolio shipped directly to an address list of potential employers using our Ship to Group feature. In addition to having high quality print versions of your portfolio available on demand, you can also make your portfolio available digitally for viewing in the MagCloud Web Viewer, and as a downloadable PDF, using the same PDF you upload for printing.

MagCloud wishes a hearty congratulations to all the graduates out there, and a happy Father’s Day to all the dads!

DIY Wedding Ideas using MagCloud

Maybe its a side effect of Pinterest, and all of the beautiful weddings we keep seeing pop up, but with June being one of the busiest months of wedding season, we couldn’t help but get into the spirit and explore some DIY wedding ideas using MagCloud products.

invites

Custom Party Invites

It all started last month when I created some fun custom bachelorette invitations for a getaway weekend for my friend who is a bride-to-be. Using MagCloud’s digest pamphlet product I designed a fun little invitation that fit into the top 5.25″ of the template. When the prints arrived (each cost just $0.64) I took a quick snip with my scissors and popped them into coordinating 5.75″ x 5.75″ square envelopes that I found at Paper Source.

Then the idea of creating custom stationary using our digest product got me thinking:

How else could you use MagCloud products for wedding DIYs?

programs

Wedding Programs

Whether you have 12 bridesmaids or 2, having a nice wedding program helps keep guests informed of the order of the ceremony, and who you’ve cast in the important roles for you big day. The four-page digest pamphlet–or if you have a lot going on and want to include songs, readings and hymns–a digest-sized 8-page booklet are classically styled and beautiful printed. We also tried using the square pamphlet for a more modern feel. Depending on the form factor you choose, and the quantity you need, a 4-page digest or square pamphlet could cost somewhere between $0.48 and $0.80 a piece, perfect for the bride on a budget.

Like our modern design? You can download the template for Adobe InDesign below:

Wedding Menus

menus

Using our flyer product to create a sleek menu was really simple too. By dividing the page lengthwise (basically creating a 0.5″ gutter right down the middle of the page) we were able to print two menus per flyer and simply cut them in half with a paper cutter when they arrive.

Because our flyers cost just $0.40 print (or buy at least 20 and the price drops to $0.30/print), printing two per page makes them$0.15-0.20 per menu. That means you could print 200 menus for just $30.00 + shipping.

*Note: Flyer publication orders are subject to an 8 quantity minimum in multiples of 4.

Wedding Poster

posterscompared

The wedding poster seems to have surpassed traditional guestbooks in recent years as the popular way to commemorate one’s wedding day. Rather than being stuffed into a box and never looked at again, the wedding poster allows newly-wed couples to enjoy the love notes and encouragement given to them by family and friends for years to come.

MagCloud’s 12″ x 18″ poster costs just $2, leaving you plenty to spare for a fancy frame. We recommend having your loved ones sign a mat (like this one available from Amazon) rather than directly onto the poster (UV coating which protects the poster, also makes some inks smudge). But if you really want to let folks sign right onto your print, we found that you can do so with Sharpie Metallic Fine Point Permanent Markers.

Get started creating your own! For more design guidelines for our poster product, visit our Getting Started page.

Banners and Pennants

With the “Rustic Chic” style of weddings still ever-popular– pennant or flag signs have become a wedding or shower must-have. We’ve seen every variation from “she said yes” to the classic “Bride” and “Groom” signs on the backs of chairs, and found that the MagCloud standard pamphlet is a great tool for creating your own. With two letters per pamphlet we were able to create this sign for just $6.40. Using fishing line, twine or a narrow strip of ribbon and a glue stick, we simply cut out the pennants, lined the ribbon up in the fold of the paper, and glued the two sides together around it. The 100# cover stock used in our pamphlet product helped the banner hold up in a nice afternoon breeze.

banner

pennant-guideTo create your own banner, each pair of letters will need to be designed as it’s own 4-page pamphlet. We used the standard size, 8.25 x 10.75 publication so that we could get 4″ x 8″ pennants. In order to be sure the pennants look great from all sides, we set the full inside “spread” of the document to be a matching color to the outsides (this hides trimming/gluing errors) and to add a little bit of fun, we added a pattern, like stripes or polka dots, to the back sides for when the banner is blowing in a breeze. For the space between words, we used a heart symbol, so the banner would read “FROM❤MS.❤TO❤MRS.” or “SHE♥SAID♥YES.”

Try it and Save

Interested in creating your own event DIY with MagCloud?
Use promo code MCDIY when you publish and save 15%. Valid through June 30, 2013

More Wedding Reading on MagCloud

Now that you’re in the wedding mood, check out some of our favorite publications in the Brides & Weddings Section of the MagCloud Shop.

SmittenSD Wedding StyleDIY Weddings