Design app Paper and Moleskine team up to print your digital creations, at $40 a pop

FiftyThree, the company behind iPad (s AAPL) journaling app Paper, and upscale notebook maker Moleskine are partnering to let Paper users order print versions of their journals straight from the app.

Paper Moleskine

Paper, which Apple chose as its best iPad app of the year for 2012, lets users create multimedia journals with digital watercolors, drawings and paintings. The app itself is free, but users buy additional tools to sketch, color and so on. Paper is often one of the App Store’s top-grossing apps, and FiftyThree raised a $15 million funding round led by Andreessen Horowitz in July.

The Moleskine partnership, called “Book,” lets users order a 15-page, full-color print book from Paper’s app. The pages are arranged accordion-style and match the iPad screen’s 4:3 ratio. Users can create a custom cover or select Moleskine’s traditional black cover.

A few caveats: At $40 a pop, it’s not cheap. (International orders are available but you’ll tack on more for shipping.) And for the best results, you need an iPad with retina display: Paper’s FAQ warns that “Older iPads with lower-resolution screens won’t generate images that are as clear as newer, high-resolution Retina iPads. The printed image quality is still pretty good on Books printed from iPad Minis and older iPads, but for best results, newer iPads will make for the sharpest pages.”

In addition, users need to consider the difference between a shiny iPad screen and the matte paper their books are printed on:

“We are printing onto paper that has a matte finish, so colors will not be as bright as when you look at them on a glossy, backlit screen. Additionally, pure white will not be printed. Instead, the slightly cream colored background will show through, which will affect the tone of your highlights.

If you’re sketching with the intention of creating a Book, using colors that are a little brighter than you’d normally use on a screen will ensure that your colors are still bright when they come off the press.”