Vipul Arora from The Smile Store wrote to me telling me about his venture and since I love seeing my photographs in print, I was intrigued. India desperately needs quality providers of prints. I already am a fan of Canvera but there are smaller things that I would like that Canvera doesn’t do because I would assume their focus is different.

Smile Store Lil Squares Of Happiness Instagram Photo Prints Vipul Arora Photographer Naina.co

The cute square package arrived two days after Vipul had confirmed my order. [ The prints were provided by The Smile Store at no charge for this story. ] I uploaded my digital files to Dropbox and emailed a link to them for download.

Smile Store Lil Squares Of Happiness Instagram Photo Prints Vipul Arora Photographer Naina.co

Smile Store Lil Squares Of Happiness Instagram Photo Prints Vipul Arora Photographer Naina.co

A hand-written note is always appreciated.

Smile Store Lil Squares Of Happiness Instagram Photo Prints Vipul Arora Photographer Naina.co

They definitely put in a lot of effort into the packaging. The paper used was textured and looked like recycled paper.

Smile Store Lil Squares Of Happiness Instagram Photo Prints Vipul Arora Photographer Naina.co

Smile Store Lil Squares Of Happiness Instagram Photo Prints Vipul Arora Photographer Naina.co

The quality of the prints however? Not impressed. This shiny paper. I’m guessing it’s a digital print. There was more than 3 rough edges where the prints had been not cut cleanly and one sticker. [ The Smile Store has large squre prints, mini polaroid prints, stickers, posters and greeting cards. ] I was quite excited about the greeting cards but they didn’t feel like they would last too long.

Smile Store Lil Squares Of Happiness Instagram Photo Prints Vipul Arora Photographer Naina.co

Smile Store Lil Squares Of Happiness Instagram Photo Prints Vipul Arora Photographer Naina.co

Smile Store Lil Squares Of Happiness Instagram Photo Prints Vipul Arora Photographer Naina.co

Above are the mini-prints that are supposed to emulate a Polaroid. Unfortunately, the colors, all across the board were off. The reds were too deep and the prints didn’t feel crisp. I was looking at their offering more from the point of view of a photographer – they don’t fulfill those expectations.

Smile Store Lil Squares Of Happiness Instagram Photo Prints Vipul Arora Photographer Naina.co

Smile Store Lil Squares Of Happiness Instagram Photo Prints Vipul Arora Photographer Naina.co

Vipul manages the entire operations from receiving orders to packaging and the printing is outsourced to a local press. Operations were started in January 2013 in Mumbai, where The Smile Store is based. Vipul is looking at expanding his product offering and I’m hoping there will be a high-end / high quality grade of paper and printing that they will provide.

I love the idea of the Smile Store and how they refer to the prints as “Lil Squares of Happiness”. I also appreciate Vipul’s entrepreneurial spirit and his heart is in the right place. If I had to recommend the products of The Smile Store, I would recommend them for events like birthdays and more intimate, small-scale settings where you don’t expect the prints to last too long. Stickers for personalizing your diary covers maybe and greeting cards – I’d say more note cards – to say “thank you” etc. Or maybe even event invites.

You can find The Smile Store on Twitter @thesmilestore, Facebook and on their Website. They accept payments via NEFT and Cash on Delivery.