Editor’s Note: We are excited to have Tami Mayberry guest posting with us today! This is the first in a three-part series where Tami will be sharing with us about one of her favorite products.
Back in December I received the new Epson Expression XP-850 Small-in-One Printer for review. After a month or so of playing with this new toy, I started thinking about all of the exciting paper crafts that can be created with the aid of a good printer. I am excited to be able to share not only a review of this new printer but also some fun projects that can be created.
The Epson Expression XP-850 is termed a “Small-in-One” printer due to the compact size. I recently replaced my older Epson printer with it and, to my delight, it is noticeably smaller. Here is a picture of it sitting on the shelf in my craft/laundry room.
To the left is a stack of Core’dinations cardstock pads and my Big Shot. You’ll notice the depth is about the same as the Big Shot and at 15 inches wide, the width is little more than a 12 x 12-inch paper pad. With copy/scan/print/fax ability, this printer is definitely small in size but big on features.
Notice I said the photo above is in my laundry room? For once, that wasn’t a typo. This printer is wireless, which means I can put it anywhere in the house and print from my computer, my laptop and even my iPod touch. All of the features were easy to set up and worked perfectly with my Windows 7 operating system.
This printer will also print directly from the printer using the touch screen. Here is a list of things you can do without a computer (taken directly from the Epson website):
- Auto Photo Correction
- Select and print photos
- Crop, rotate and enlarge
- View and print by date
- Print your own picture packages
- Print passport and photo ID
- Select multiple photos to print on a single page
- Print your own college-ruled, wide-ruled and graph paper
- Make personalized notepaper using your own photos
- Photo index sheet
- Photo greeting cards
- Coloring book pages
This printer has three means of loading paper which is extremely useful when paper crafting. In the past if I wanted to go from printing on copy paper to printing photos I would have to go to the printer and switch out the paper. With the XP-850 I can keep photo paper loaded in the top tray and regular printer paper loaded in the bottom tray. When printing it’s simply a matter of choosing the tray I would like to print from. The third slot in the printer allows for printing on items such as envelopes and cardstock. I have had printers in the past that I could not print on cardstock with because it would always jam. Now, that is not an issue. The photos are all smudge, scratch and water resistant with an estimated 200-year storage life.
This printer even provides a fun way to save those photos! In addition to printing on a variety or sizes and types of paper, this printer will print directly onto printable CDs. I like this idea for making customized photo or music disks to give as gifts. It’s also great for photo storage disks. I saw a post on Pinterest recently where someone stored a photo CD with their Project Life album. They would back up photos each month and include it with that month’s pages. I loved the idea. That not only makes the images easier to find when reprints are needed or there are too many photos to use but also encourages backing up images each month in case of computer failure. With the CD printing, each disk can have a customized image printed on it to allow for easy and attractive identification.
As mentioned previously, the printer works with my iPod touch. I am a huge fan of that on-the-go convenience. Using the Epson Connect™ feature I am able to print and scan from anywhere. I can even send something to the printer at home when I am out and about. The printer supports both Apple® AirPrint™ and Google Cloud Print™5. This feature works wonderfully when printing Instagram photos and other fun on-the-go shots. I am able to select my printer settings, see my ink levels and crop and edit directly from my iPod and send it to the printer.
So, now you are a little more familiar with the printer I am using for my projects. When I began I mentioned all of the projects that can be made with a printer. Have you really thought about the capabilities of a printer when crafting? I have heard more than once “I want to craft—I don’t want to use my computer.” I challenge you to step back and look at the many things that can be accomplished with the combination of a printer and paper-craft supplies. It is amazing the number of things that can be done to add special touches to cards and other paper crafts with the aid of computers.
I began making a list of just a few.
- Print photos in any size which can be used on cards, scrapbooks, Smash books, projects and more.
- Print greetings for insides and outsides of cards which is great for when you love an image but don’t have the right sentiment.
- Print journaling for scrapbooking and Project Life albums
- Print digital images in any size to color for cards
- Print images on CDs for personalized gifts
- Print free patterned papers and digital images found online
And the list keeps growing. Be sure to check back for my next installment where I will show you some of these fun ideas put to use.