© 2010 photobookgirl

Mixbook Group Photo Book Project – Make Your Own Photo Book with Friends



UPDATE: It’s done! Check out how my Mixbook cookbook yearbook turned out!

My latest project is to make a group photo book for the first time!  This one is going to be a cookbook/yearbook.  Interested in trying something similar?  Read on!

The Project
I love to cook. I enjoy the whole process of it.  Shopping, prepping, cooking and of course eating it!  My husband and I have a great group of friends that we hang out with and several of them love to cook as well, and I thought it would be a fun year end project to do a collective cookbook.  For our friends who don’t cook, I figured that since many of us love to take photos, we would collect our favorite pics from the year, and make it a yearbook as well.  The plan is to have a party at the end of the project after we get our printed photo books.  We can prepare some of the dishes from the cookbook and sign our yearbooks!

Mixbook Collaboration
I picked Mixbook as the photo book company we’d use for this project for a number of reasons:

  • The software is pretty easy and straightforward to use, and since many of my friends have never made a photo book before, ease of use is important;
  • I like the varying photo box shapes like circles that Mixbook allows you place your photos.
  • Mixbook allows for the instant two-page spread so you can stretch a single photo fully across both pages;
  • I think my friends will like the stickers and embellishments that you can choose from to inject a little personality into their layouts;
  • Most importantly Mixbook is known for collaboration.  Each of us can work on the same book from the comfort of our own home.
  • After I had decided to go with Mixbook for this project, the $15 for $50 (70% off) Mixbook Groupon happened to pop up and I was able to share that with the gang.  Several friends bought the deal to use for the project – good timing!  Mixbook also has a buy one get one free photo book deal for new users;
  • For those friends who may not want to buy the book, the software is free to use and there is a share feature, which allows them to participate (but after they see how cute it is, they’re gonna want to buy it!)

How To Make a Collaborative Photo Book

1)    Come up with the concept.  What’s the topic?  Could be a school yearbook, a school sports team photo book, a family reunion, a church group, a club, an event, a group or multi-family vacation, or perhaps a book to sell for a fundraiser;
2)    Invite your friends/team/family to make the book with you – be enthusiastic and get them excited, but understand that they may have reservations if they haven’t made a photo book before;
3)    Put together a list of steps for your contributors so they know what to prepare.  I have about 15 friends participating so coordination is important.

Here’s an excerpt from the actual email I sent to my friends for my cookbook/yearbook project.  This was actually after I got a series of emails back that some friends weren’t so sure about participating since they don’t cook!

Some of you have written that you don’t cook.  That’s why you need this cookbook!

I thought of a couple options for the recipe thing for those who are culinary challenged:

1) Ask a family member or friend for a recipe (if they don’t threaten to disown you for revealing it);

2) Look at one of your favorite recipes from a cookbook – perhaps you’ve altered it or tweaked it to your own taste?  Give us your take on a recipe you’ve tried;

3) For those who do cook and don’t mind sharing more than one recipe, please contribute more than one – maybe 3 or 4 so we can get a good number together.

Other things:

1) Pick 5 to 10 of your favorite photos from the year.

2) Pick an individual “profile” photo of yourself (or I’ll pick one for you!!!!!!!) – we’re going to do some funny/interesting/in-depth questions like:

  • My favorite food related childhood memory is__________________;
  • My favorite alcoholic beverage is___________________;
  • You will never get me to eat______________;
  • If I had to pick my last meal it would be____________________;
  • The restaurant I never get tired of is_______________________;

Doesn’t sound too bad right?  If anyone has other ideas, I welcome them!  It’s collaborative!

4)    Go into the software to start the book template.  Collaborators who are more confident can alter the layout to their taste, but a basic framework is a good idea for those who may be new to photo book making.

Most of all, have fun! Stay tuned to see our progress!  Have you done a group photo book before?  Share your experiences!


The photo above was taken in a cooking class offered by a local culinary school.  I bought the class through Groupon! 🙂




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  1. Posted November 3, 2010 at 10:13 am | #

    I’ve got my recipes ready!

  2. Wayne
    Posted November 7, 2010 at 4:50 pm | #

    Great cookbook idea!!

  3. ali mae
    Posted November 17, 2010 at 10:56 am | #

    Great idea! We already have a family cooking blog–this should be a piece of cake Christmas gift!

    • photobookgirl
      Posted November 17, 2010 at 11:14 am | #

      A family cooking blog? What a great idea – you must have some great cooks in the family. Is it a private blog among family members or is it public? 🙂

  4. ali mae
    Posted November 17, 2010 at 10:56 am | #
  5. April
    Posted November 18, 2010 at 6:26 pm | #

    Super cute! Since I’m all in “wedding mode”, I would love to suggest this to your bridal party as something they could make up for you with the pictures they took throughout the engagement and wedding! Since everyone can contribute, it would be great to see things from their point of view. Then, you can buy the book yourself, or just treasure it online! No worrying about putting the financial burden on n e one!

  6. Sarah N
    Posted November 29, 2010 at 7:52 am | #

    What a great idea to make a collaborative cookbook!

  7. tracy morrison
    Posted February 24, 2011 at 5:52 am | #

    Dear PBG, just a question on how do I type the receipt in mixbook? Seems like I would be able to type the whole thing out at once, but I can only use the “Text” button and have to add it one line at a time, this is not going to work for me as it just takes way to long to do. I am sure there is a faster way. (Hope that there is) Thanks for you help. 🙂

    • photobookgirl
      Posted February 24, 2011 at 10:44 pm | #

      Hi Tracy, You want to add recipes right? Check out this post on how to add text to your photo book – go to the very bottom of the post and I have a step by step on how to do it. You should be able to just copy and paste all the text into a single box – you don’t have to do it a line at a time… Hope that helps!

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