Free Vintage Printables And How To Find And Make Your Own Printables For Your Home Decor
I’m going to be honest and let you know that I am a completely technology challenged and I am the farthest thing from an artistic person. How I figured out how to “make” inexpensive art for my home is beyond me and how I created this website is even more confusing.
But I figured it out and it’s not hard…well the art part…not the website part.
And when I say I make art, I really mean I download and print off pretty pictures from the internet.
I “made” this printable in the spring, these printables for my summer mantel that replaced this printable (that I still need to find a new home for). And now that Christmas is coming, I was on the hunt for some cute Christmas prints.
It also occurred to me that I never really showed you how to get the prints from your computer to your walls. It’ so easy. I am sure there are other ways to do it but this is how I do it and it works just fine for me.
Where to find inexpensive art/printables for your home
First, you need to find your art you want to do download. I love the idea of just downloading prints and throwing them in a frame. It’s budget friendly and if you are indecisive like me, you don’t have to feel guilty about changing out your artwork. This is especially fun during Christmas too.
Etsy has an overwhelming selection of art you can purchase for a great price. That is where I found my prints for my mantel. Most of these prints will be scaled for you so all you have to do is download them and send them off to Staples to print (or wherever you like).
I love Jenny’s Print Shop too. Her art is so budget friendly and you can find some unique prints. Again, these will be scaled for you.
Where to find free printable vintage images
If you find art randomly online that you want to print out, you need to resize it yourself so you can print it out bigger. My favorite place to find free art is the New York Public Library Digital Collections
That is where I found my Vintage Floral print that I usually have hung on my wall in the Spring and Summer. It recently got swapped out by this piece for Christmas and will reappear again in the Spring. See, this is why I love decorating my walls this way. I just swap things out whenever I want.
There is an overwhelming amount of items you can download on this website so it might be a good idea if you have an idea of what you are looking for so you can type it in the search button. I typed in Christmas for my most recent search. There are a ton of botanicals if you want to do a gallery wall of botanicals too…I know that is popular right now)
And what you will find in this website will lean on the vintage/old side. These are pages taken out of books or old postcards (etc) so don’t expect a clear, crisp picture but that is what I love about them.
How to resize art you downloaded on your computer
Once you find your picture, download it on your computer. Most of these items are free to use without restrictions but some might have a few restrictions so read the fine print. It’ll tell you by the download button.
(PS, you can skip this step if you found art on Etsy or Jenny’s Print Shop (or a similar website). Those prints will be scaled for you.)
Head over to Canva. It’s free to use and also really easy to use. You will need to create an account if you don’t have one already. Once you are all set up, at the very top on the right is a button that says “Use Custom Dimensions”. Click on that.
Type in your dimensions. I did either 18×24 or 24×36 for my prints. Hit design.
This will be the most challenging part. Once you hit design you will likely get redirected to this screen. You want to grab the layout on the left in the menu under layouts and drag it to the blank design.
Now go to uploads and upload your art you downloaded. Once it gets uploaded, you want to drag your picture over to your design.
And that’s it, you are done. Download your new print to your computer and get ready to print it out.
Affordable ways to print large pictures
I always print my prints out at Staples. I am sure other print shops offer similar services but there is a Staples right by me so that it what I use. I know for my print that I used from Jenny’s Print Shop, I almost considered spending more money to have it printed out on a canvas from Shutterfly.
Just know, there are other options if you want to spend more money to have more of a permanent piece or maybe a piece that looks a tad fancier.
For my purposes, I am completely happy with using Engineering Prints at Staples. With that said, they will be printed on paper. It is nothing fancy but, depending on your size, will only cost anywhere from $3-$10 to print. And if you found a free print online, this is such an affordable way to get large art on your walls.
Head over to Staples.
Scroll down and click “Design Now”. In the next screen choose which blueprints you want (color or black and white). I normally choose color since most of my prints have color in them.
The next screen is where you can add your print that you downloaded from Canva. On the left hand side of that screen is a menu. It’s pretty self explanatory. You can upload your print, pick your size, change orientation etc. Play around with it until you have your print how you like it.
Once you are done, add it to your cart and I always choose the pick up at store option. The prints are usually done the next day, if not sooner.
How to frame your prints
The easiest way to frame your prints is by just throwing them in a frame. I usually get my frames at Michaels when they are having a huge sale. These are my favorite frames. Amazon has great frames too (here).
I also tried something new this year. I had an open frame in my basement from my Christmas printable from last year. I wanted to do something easier than using spray adhesive on a foam board. I purchased a cheap poster frame at Hobby Lobby and put my picture in the cheap frame.
And then I inserted my cheap picture frame right into the open frame. After a few tries, I found that removing the top and bottom parts of the cheap frame and stapling the frame into the open frame with a staple gun was the best way to attach the frame so it won’t fall out of the open frame. Got that?
You can use a more permanent method but I know I will switch things out again and staples are easy to remove. You need to squint and maybe zoom in but you can see one itty bitty staple on the top and bottom (that part is not pictured) of my cheap Hobby Lobby frame.
A little bit about this print. The Christmas Carol is my husband’s favorite Christmas movie/book of all time. Every year around Christmas we are
forced asked to watch every version of the movie. Some of my kids like this tradition, others do not (I fall into this category). But it’s becoming a tradition and when I saw this book in the digital library I had to use it.
And since there might be restrictions on this print, I do not feel comfortable offering it in my resource library but you can find it here. You can just use the steps above to download and print it out. I did crop out just the book page for this print.
I also found some other fun vintage prints that I think used to be post cards. I have everything resized in either 18×24 or 24×36 for you in my resource library. You can get access to my library by signing up below. My resource library is password protected and you will get my password immediately.
If you want to save this for later, you can pin it here:
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