The benefit of digital scrapbooking software is it saves you time over traditional paper methods while still allowing for creativity. MyMemories Suite 9 is the best example of that balance among modern scrapbooking programs.
From start to finish, this software helps you create an electronic scrapbook that is truly your own – even if you use a template. Because all of MyMemories’ templates are adjustable and customizable, you can easily change the canvas size, rotate items, add extra embellishments and adjust layer order to fit your project. MyMemories Suite includes hundreds of papers, embellishments and templates, but you can also download additional items from the online design shop.
We lined up the products in our digital scrapbooking software review so our own in-house designers could gauge the quality of full scrapbook kits, digital embellishments and other elements that come with each electronic scrapbooking program. MyMemories designs were well-received. Of course you can edit and rearrange all of the included graphics, and the ones you can buy in MyMemories' associated online marketplace, but having a good design to start with is crucial.
This software offers hundreds of high-quality designs so you do not have to spend hours trying to create just the right look, designing everything by hand in a program like Photoshop. You can start with very good raw digital materials – buttons, picture frames or even whole page layouts – in a style you like and then go from there. You can alter everything on the page. You can copy and replicate design elements like boxes or flourishes, then move them around, rotate and resize them. You can even change the color of template elements to create a whole new look. You can also add paper designs or textures to template items.
This digital scrapbooking software allows you to add text boxes as well as creating text art with its Word Art Designer. The text tool includes many fonts, from the popular Arial and Lucinda Sans to the more obscure Vrinda symbols. The word art tool utilizes the fonts available, but you can also rotate the text, select fill types and opacity, and adjust stroke width. Shadowing and beveling effects can be added and text can be arranged to display in ways other than a straight line, such as in a downward or upward arc shape.
One of our favorite features of this software is the color editing tool. Not only can you simply just pick a color, but you can also adjust HSB and RGB values or use the Color Picker. The Color Picker will display a preview image of your page and you simply select the color you want to match. The gradient tool was especially fun to play with; after you pick your color, you can use it to create customized, gradient color swatches, and you can adjust the point at which the color starts and the direction the color will fade.
This digital scrapbooking software does include some basic photo editing tools as well. With MyMemories Suite, you can resize images, crop images, zoom in and out, and reduce red eye. You can also add image effects such as black and white, sepia, mirroring and embossing. The photo editing tools included with this software are suitable for most basic editing; however, for advanced editing you might want to use a professional photo editing application.
The design shop is where the design fun really begins. The free pages and templates that come with the software really are just a teaser compared to what you can get online. MyMemories Suite offers numerous free downloads, and you can purchase scores of templates, papers and full packages. There are over 50,000 downloadable products. That includes templates, papers, embellishments – some are free and some cost extra. The shop features 177 designers that all have a distinctive style to help create a varied collection for you to choose from. Even if you do not own a copy of MyMemories Suite, you can download and utilize designs from the store.
The most recent version of the program does not offer tools for adding links, audio clips or video to your scrapbooking projects. The lack of multimedia tools may be a drawback if you value those aspects for your final designs, but not everyone does.
This program includes quite a few sharing options. Of course you can print your creations with your printer, but you can also export them as JPG, PNG or PDF files. You can also create photo albums, greeting cards, trading cards and calendars. MyMemories Suite also provides a printing service that can assemble professionally printed and bound photo albums in a variety of sizes. You can choose from hardcover, softcover and leather-bound books. A handy feature is the ability to export shapes in an SVG format. You can then import the SVG image into your electronic cutting machine’s library to cut the shape out of your favorite scrapbooking paper. This feature blends the digital and physical scrapbooking world nicely. The one downside is that this program does not allow you to create slide shows with your completed scrapbooks pages.
As with most software, there is a bit of a learning curve involved when first using this digital scrapbooking software. When testing a few of the features, we had to experiment to find out how to do things like utilize the Word Art Designer. The help pages were extremely useful, easing the learning curve. You can search for any topic to find a list of helpful suggestions. For example, we searched for help with word art and articles like “Adding Word Art” and “Editing Word Art” popped up. The help article then breaks down the process into steps, sometimes including images to assist in comprehension.
Basic functions, like adding images, changing colors or importing and exporting images, are simple and do not require a visit to the help pages. One of the things we liked is that the more we played with the software, the more we found out what it could do. We had zero trouble adding images from the internet, the image files or the computer. We especially enjoyed the functionality of MyMemories Suite’s right-click option. When you right-click on a photo or other object, you will have the option to group separate layers, adjust layer order, edit the image properties and more. Some competitors have a few tools available when you right-click, such as copy and paste, but MyMemories makes the layering tools and other sophisticated tools readily available.
This digital scrapbooking software comes with a PDF user guide and searchable help files, and you can acquire free updates online. You can also read through helpful FAQs posted online or contact the manufacturer by email. MyMemories Suite hosts a blog with featured bloggers, promotional codes and feature highlights. You can also follow the company on Twitter or visit its Facebook page. One of the best help and support resources is MyMemories Suite’s YouTube channel where there are several videos showing step-by-step instructions on the software’s most used features.
MyMemories Suite has everything we were looking for in digital scrapbooking software. The user-friendly layout and intuitive tools mean any level of scrapbooker can create a fantastic final product. You can alter nearly every template and download new pages, kits and embellishments from the design store – the options are plentiful. For virtually any scrapbooking task, the software is easy to use and a pleasure to work with.