My Printing at Home Process

white printer on white table
Photo by Evelyn Geissler on Unsplash

At the start of 2020, I started dabbling more with printing my scrapbooking pprojects at home.

Before that, I wasn’t super impressed with the quality of the photos from my local CVS, which was my only option for 1-hour printing in my small town). I hated the waiting of placing a print order online through Shutterfly or Amazon.

The price of printing at home always held me back, but I realized it was worth it to me with how much it helped my creativity flow.

I feel like where you choose to print your photos is a personal decision that you have to figure out based on your scrapbooking process. I do a lot of digital and hybrid scrapbooking so it’s been a gamechanger to have access to my photos right away and be able to print them at any size I want.

Choosing a new printer for printing at home

While the old HP printer I had was doing an okay job, I decided I wanted to treat myself to a new printer. One of the features I was looking for was individual color ink tanks instead of just one color ink cartridge.

I love purple, so I wanted to able to print with that color as much as I wanted and not worry about the cyan and magenta running out way before the yellow.

I also wanted the option for borderless 8.5 x 11 printing. I don’t do any scrapbooking bigger than that size so I didn’t need to invest in a large format printer. I quickly got overwhelmed by the options, and then during the pandemic the printers kept going out of stock.

Photo of Amber Kemp Gerstel from YayDayPaper.com

I ultimately decided to get the Canon PIXMA TS9521C Wireless printer aka the “Rolls Royce of printers” according to Amber Kemp-Gerstel.

Amber runs YayDay Paper Co, which is a digital crafting company. She has a whole page on her website comparing printers. Since her business relies on people printing her products at home, I trusted her opinion.

One issue: the printer kept going out of stock. I signed up for Amber’s emails where she notified people when this magical printer was available.

The major downside of this printer (which Amber even states in her resource list) is that the ink is expensive. I had been using a generic ink from Amazon, but it’s no longer available so I’ll have to look for some other options.

Photo paper for printing at home

Photo by Joshua Fuller on Unsplash

During this process, I quickly learned how important good photo paper is.

My absolute favorite is the Canon semi-gloss. It’s in between glossy and matte. Since my printer is also Canon brand, I can set it to the semi-gloss setting when using that paper.

When it comes to affordability, I like the Canon matte paper. I buy it when it’s on sale for $4.99 for 50 sheets.

For printables where I want the colors to really pop, I use Epson Premium Presentation Paper instead of normal cardstock.

I recommend trying out different papers to figure out what you like best.

Resizing photos

Printing 12×12 Traci Reed digital papers in 4×6 sizes using Canva

I use all Apple products so it’s easy for me to get the photos on my phone to my Macbook.

When it comes to resizing my photos and getting them ready to print. I typically use Photoshop to arrange them on a piece of 8.5×11 paper.

A much easier option–and one I find myself using more and more lately–is Canva. It doesn’t require using layers at all.

Here are some of my most common printing templates I use:

  • 3x4s: This is sized so that each frame is 2.95 x 4 inches to fit in pocket pages. You can print 6 cards or photos on an 8.5×11 paper
  • TN papers: This is sized to print two TN sized papers or photos on one page. I have the TN size at 4.125×25, but you can adjust that size as needed. I also include a 2 inch strip to include another piece of paper just to maximum space. You can delete that if you want.
  • 4x6s: Lately I’ve been loving the 4×6 Everydays Explorers minibooks so I started printing out some of my digital papers in the 4×6 size. In this template you can print three 4×6 papers or photos and then a little 2×4 scrap piece (again you can delete this if it doesn’t work for you). The first page is vertical 4×6 orientations and the second page is 6×4 horizontal orientations.

All you need is a free Canva account to use these templates.

Print at home examples

I’m no expert, but the steps I’ve shared are working out well for me!

Here are some projects I’ve printed at home. You can click on the image to enlarge it:

Additional resources

If you’re interested in printing your projects and photos at home, here are some other great resources:

I hope you’ve found learning a bit about my process helpful.

If you have any questions, let me know! If you have an tips of your own be sure to sure those too.

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Responses

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  1. I print at home, too. I have a Canon Pixma Pro 100. The ink is expensive, but I still think I save money overall because I only print what I need. When I was ordering photos I printed many I didn’t end up using. Plus I defaulted to 4×6 size then, but now I can do any size I want depending on what I need for my layout.

    1. We had a cannon PIXMA pro from 2014 till 2020, it was a beast of a printer! It died just after we put new cartridges in (standard) but we were still able to sell it for parts and we used the heck out of that thing. 🙂 +1 for its awesomeness.

    2. Such a good point about only printing what you need! I used to order like 100 4×6 photos to get a discount. That size is definitely limiting, and I was printing I wasn’t using too.

  2. Juli, I have this printer also, and am just starting to use Canva. Thanks so much for the templates. I will add them to my files and try to use them.