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Size DOES matter.

Let me tell you for a moment about one of my biggest pet peeves right now: it's things that are supposed to be a given size, claim to be a given size, but aren't. Like patterned paper. I know, not all paper is precisely 12x12, and that's just the way some companies do things. Like the sheets you tear out of books; they aren't 12x12 because the part on the other side of the perforation (the part they bind) gets torn off. I get that. What I'm talking about is paper that actually claims to be 12x12, but when you measure it (or worse, when you adhere it to a sheet that truly is 12x12), it's only 11-15/16, or 11-7/8. Or even 11-3/4. Though American Crafts brought this issue to a whole new level of irritation for me the other day when I found out that two of their patterns made to go together are not even the same size. What am I supposed to do with that??? I think the least a company could do is make all their paper one size!

Even worse than the patterned paper issue is the problem of 4x6 prints. (You know, the thick stack of doubles you bring home every time you develop a roll or two of film, that is now leaning like the tower of Pisa on your desk because you haven't had time to sort, label, and file them all.) Have you ever noticed not all 4x6 photos are 4x6? A lot of them are actually 4x5-7/8. In my opinion, this is an even bigger problem because you really expect a 4x6 to be 4x6! As usual, I found this out the hard way: imagine making a grid layout using 4x6 photos on two sheets of 12x12 paper (which is really 12x24 since it's 2 pages). The whole thing is sketched out to a T in perfect proportions and you have all your materials gathered. You begin assembling the layout, thinking, this will be so easy... all the hard work (the planning & measuring, etc) is done! Wrong. Because the photos aren't true 4x6, suddenly the grid doesn't line up. So you trim the others - only to discover that the sides aren't perpendicular.

Of course, if you're really lucky, the fact that your photos are missing a couple centimeters here and there won't matter, because your paper isn't really 12x12 anyway.

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