Kids love stickers. When my daughter was a toddler, we gave her pages and pages of stickers to play with—many of which ended up on the legs of an old table.
You can buy stickers of almost anything, from current movies and books to abstract shapes. But that plethora of options is also somewhat numbing—what’s special about another book of unicorns when you already have four?
So I decided to do something different one Christmas and made stickers of her favorite stuffed animals. It was easy, fun, and a great surprise when she realized that the animals on those stickers looked wonderfully familiar.
To make it happen, I took photos of the stuffies, built a sticker book at Moo.com, and placed the order. Each book has a minimum of 90 stickers, so you could make 90 unique stickers if you want—I uploaded a dozen. The books arrived in time to put them into my daughter’s stocking for Christmas morning.
You can take the photos using any camera, even a phone camera. I chose to set them up against a black background to make them stand out more. The Moo stickers are small, measuring just under an inch square (0.86 inch), and I wanted them to be immediately recognizable.
The lighting was nothing too complicated. I had previously made a homemade macro photo studio with lights on either side for another project. I used paper as the backdrop. As you can see here, I tried doing a white backdrop at first, but found that black ended up looking better for the final result. But of course you don’t need to go to those lengths. Mostly you want the stuffed animal to stand out clearly.
Edit and Prep
After importing the photos into Lightroom, I picked my favorites and applied any touch-ups that were needed. Mostly that was removing dust from the background using the Spot Removal tool, or fixing areas where the edges of the paper were visible (using Spot Removal or the Clone tool).
Since each sticker is a square, you could crop the shots in Lightroom beforehand, but Moo.com’s online tool to build the book is robust enough that I didn’t bother.
Upload and order
Next, I created a new StickerBook order at Moo.com, uploading the images for each sticker. The tool divides the number of total stickers (90) by the number of images you upload. In my case, I uploaded 12 photos, resulting in 7 stickers of each stuffie in the book. (Actually, six of the stuffies got 8 stickers, since 90 divided by 12 is 7.5—there’s one more page of the first six designs than the other page.)
The books cost $9.99, plus shipping. That’s certainly more expensive than the stickers you can get at any toy store, but none of those are stickers of your child’s own toys. When my daughter saw that all of her fuzzy friends were in the stickers, she looked amazed. And that, in turn, was a gift to me.
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