How to Print Digital Art from Etsy (+ The Best Places to Print)

January 6, 2023

This post may include affiliate links, which means that if you end up buying something, I will earn a commission at no extra cost to you.

SO. We all want a beautiful home. But I also want your home to reflect YOU. With all your unique interests and preferences and your unique style!

When you’re thinking about wall art, one of the best ways to make your home beautiful AND unique to you is with art prints. Instead of buying one of the same 50 signs in your local home decor store, you can find thousands of prints on Etsy with specific colors, images, or quotes that are special to you.

Plus, they’re usually less than $10! Digital prints are seriously revolutionary.

However, if you aren’t super tech-savvy, the word “digital” can be intimidating. So in this article, I’m going to go over the steps of exactly how to download and print Etsy digital downloads. It’s not complicated, but sometimes we just need someone to walk us through it.

Here’s the process we’ll cover so you can easily click around: 

Related: If you love digital art prints as much as I do, you might also be one of those people who love letter boards. If so, check out my most popular post with over 45 funny letter board quotes

1. Choose Digital Art Prints from Etsy

It is WAY too easy to scroll through Etsy for hours, drooling over the handmade decor, fine art prints, custom print art..

Did I say drooling? I meant looking.

But sometimes just figuring out the specifics of a product on Etsy can be confusing. So before you check out with a digital print, make sure you read the description so you actually receive what you’re looking for. 

This can be a little confusing because the term “art print” can be used to refer to digital files OR actual signs on wood or canvas. Make sure you read the description and look at the order options to clarify which one it is.

You can find this on the right side of your screen under the “add to cart” button. There’s a spot that says “Highlights,” which will tell you if the product is a digital file.

Etsy highlights show if the product is an instant digital download
Kitchen letterboard sign printable from Black Door Shop on Etsy

If you are looking at something that is not a product with a digital download, it will say “handmade,” and probably list the material.

You may also want to look at the description and/or the photos to determine the:
 

  • File size: For example, 8 x 10 inches, or this can be listed in pixels. If you aren’t sure if the image will fit the frame or area you want, message the seller.
  • File type: Images are usually JPEG or PNG file, but some digital files can be PDF)
  • Specifications: For example, if you’re looking at a set of prints like the cactus one below, make sure that the product includes all three prints.
Cactus digital art print set of 3 from Etsy
Set of 3 watercolor cactus prints from Black Door Shop on Etsy

In my Etsy shop, all of my prints include three different digital files; 8 x 10 inches, 11 x 14 inches, and 18 x 24 inches. That’s because 8 x 10 inch digital files, when printed, fit 4 x 6 and 5 x 7 frames, while 11 x 14 and 18 x 24 ratios are a bit different.

Making sure that your digital purchase is correct will help you get high quality prints.

Important note: If you’re purchasing digital files that are a different type of digital printables, like planners or greeting cards, the file size you need will be different. Great Etsy sellers will clearly state the size of the files attached, the types of files, and correct print size in the description, so just make sure that you’ll receive the correct item for your needs.

2. Purchase Your Digital Art Prints

I think we all know how to go through an online checkout process… they make it a little too easy, am I right?

One thing I’ve noticed when buying Etsy digital files is that they still ask for your shipping address. Don’t fear, there’s nothing to ship when you buy something digital–that’s just a standard part of the Etsy checkout process.

Etsy prints are available for instant download, which means you can access them within minutes of finishing your order.

Related: See some of my favorite printable abstract art from Etsy–it’s truly amazing what you can get for just a few dollars!

3. Download Your Digital Files

Getting your digital downloads from Etsy is extremely easy, and there are 3 different ways to do it. Here’s a full walkthrough of each way to get your Etsy digital download: 

Keep in mind that my screenshots are taken from a desktop computer, but the Etsy app will have a similar process.

Method #1: View Downloads from Order Confirmation Page

Once you’ve placed your order, you’ll land on a screen that looks like this:

Etsy digital download order confirmation

(Yes I did order a product from my husband’s account to show you this 😂)

Now you can click that button on the right that says “View downloads,” and it will take you here:

Etsy digital downloads on order page

Method #2: Download Files from Your Email

After you check out, Etsy will automatically send you an email that confirms your order and provides a link to your files.

Etsy order confirmation email screenshot with link to digital file and instant digital download

When you click “View your files on Etsy,” it will open up a window with Etsy, and a box will pop up that says “Ready to download” or “Downloads.” Here’s what that window looks like:

Digital downloads page in Etsy from confirmation email

Method #3: From Your Etsy Account (Anytime)

The third method of getting your digital downloads is through the purchases page on your Etsy dashboard. You can do this anytime, even if it’s a year after your purchase.

Just click on your little profile picture in the top right corner (and take the opportunity to remind yourself that you’re a hottie), and then go down to the option that says “purchases.”

Etsy menu screenshot

It’s going to take you to a screen that looks similar to what you’ve seen before. Here you can click “view downloads” to have your files automatically downloaded.

Etsy digital downloads in order page

If you go to the detailed page to view all your orders, it will look like this:

Etsy screenshot of digital files available for digital download

Now you have your files! WOOOOT! Next is the part that might be confusing: getting the files printed.

4. Printing Etsy Digital Downloads

We got this! I’m going to make the process of printing art prints super simple.

There are a whole bunch of different printing options for your wall art (or whatever kind of product you got). But they basically fall into two categories; print digital files using a home printer (or the printer at your work…. You know you do it) OR buy digital prints from a printing service or office supply store.

Let’s discuss both options for printing wall art:

Option #1: Using a Work or Home Printer

If you have a good quality printer that’s designed for printing photos, this method can be quicker than ordering the prints.

However, it seems like most people my age (unashamed Millennial!) don’t own a printer at all.

On the other hand, if you have a printer, but don’t use it very much or aren’t familiar with all of its settings, it will probably be challenging to print high quality art prints.

One reason for that is because images are typically 4×6 inches, 5×7  inches, or 8×10 inches, and printer documents are 8.5 x 11 inches. It is obviously totally possible to figure out, but printing digital downloads of a different size can just be tedious.

Plus, you’re unlikely to get the same quality you’ll get from an online printing service.

With those warnings out of the way, if you are looking for a printer, I have the Epson XP-640. I absolutely LOVE it for documents, and I haven’t used it for printing glossy images, but it has a lot of different capabilities.

Here’s a similar printer from BestBuy, or a similar and more affordable printer from Target.

While I’d love to break down the steps for this one like I normally do, there’s too much range in the way each printer and computer system works. Instead, let’s dive into the printing options I recommend.

Related: Best Inspirational Letter Board Quotes

Method #2 (Recommended): Order from a Professional Print Shop

Using a professional printing service is ideal for your digital art. I know it may seem like an additional cost, but most local printing services are EXTREMELY affordable. In fact, they are likely more affordable than the cost of ink!

For example, printing your digital files through Walgreens photos costs only $.28, and only $12.99 for digital art with sizes up to 24 x 36 inches! Ultimately, buying art prints from Etsy, ordering them from a print shop, and framing them is STILL usually more affordable than buying wall art from a home decor store.

If you have a local print shop, I’d check there first. You can even ask about local printers at the library.

Anyway, choosing the type of print and the print size is the next step that can get a little fuzzy. Let me try to break it down as simply as possible!

Here are the most common types of prints and the sizes they come in:

Photo prints & enlargements: 4 x 6, 5 x 7, 8 x 8, 8 x 10

Posters: 11 x 14, 12 x 18, 16 x 20, 20 x 30, 24 x 36

Document prints: 8.5 x 11 or 8.5 x 14 (less common)

Business/marketing products like flyers

Soooo many other products! (more on this below)

When you’re figuring out where to print digital art from Etsy, start by determining where the art will be going. In the majority of cases, people are ordering regular photos with a typical print size of 4×6, 5×7, or 8×10 inches. These are going to be glossy photos, which are super affordable and can be ready in an hour at Walgreens, Walmart, or CVS.

When I was doing my 18-foot gallery wall, I did many of these “regular” sized prints, but I also needed to get a loooooot of prints at larger sizes–and in weird proportions. I’ll go more into detail about how I did this for affordable prices in a blog post that’s coming soon.

But for now, I’ll tell you that Walgreens is easily my top choice for every type of print.

I’ve used it to print digital downloads many different times and in different ways. It offers 1-hour printing for no extra cost, and my photos are usually ready early. I’ve also NEVER had a problem with the print quality of Etsy digital files from my shop or other shops. And best of all, their prices are amazing! They also offer coupon codes almost constantly for all different products. I almost NEVER order without getting a 40 or 50% discount.

You can see their discounts right on the top of  the Walgreens photo page:

Walgreens online print service screenshot with print sizes

P.S. I get absolutely nothing if you order from Walgreens. I checked. 😂 It is truly just the best and easiest of all the print services I’ve tried.

But if you don’t have a Walgreens near you or you need a different size, here are the other printing services I recommend:

The Best Places to Print Your Photos

  • Walgreens
  • Walmart
  • FedEx (Best for document printing & business materials)
  • UPS (Best for document printing & business materials)
  • Shutterfly (prints are shipped)
  • Snapfish (prints are shipped)
  • Vistaprint (prints are shipped)

This is NOT an inclusive list of places where you can print digital downloads, just a list of the places I have some experience with–whether it was myself or a friend. I also recommend checking the print options from office supply stores. They are more likely to have specialty paper, and may be able to personally walk you through their options to print digital downloads.

5. Frame, Hang, Display Your Print–or Have Fun With It

YAY! Now your prints are printed (I’m tired of typing the word “print.”) and you get to display your unique art from Etsy!

Etsy digital print example with wildflower artwork displayed in a frame
Wildflower print from Black Door Shop

Of course, the easiest and most obvious way to display your art prints is by framing them.

I’m a sucker for simple black frames like this, because they can fit most places. They can also easily turn into mini-gallery walls by just adding more frames, or getting a set of gallery frames! I love that this set even comes with positioning templates.

But you can also spend just a little more money and get much more unique and eye-catching frames like this acrylic frame! It makes a simple print look extra special.

I’ve also used dollar store frames to display things! They absolutely fall apart easily, but if you’re hanging it somewhere where your toddlers or cats can’t get to it–you’re golden. 😛

On the other hand, once you buy art prints on Etsy, you can get them printed on ANYTHING. This literally thrills me. Yes, I’m a nerd.

Like canvas, which is SUPER affordable on Groupon. There are also photo tiles, which seem like a new thing that’s just growing.

But also…. Let’s go crazy. Pillows. Blankets. Stickers. Magnets. Mugs. Calendars. LIONS AND TIGERS AND BEARS OH MY! 

Shutterfly has a fuuull gift section with different products you can print a custom design on. Vistaprint is another one I recommend! They both have like a ridiculous number of different types of products, like wine glasses and pot holders and notebooks… the list goes on…

Shutterfly online service with print options for digital download from Etsy store
Custom print products from Shutterfly

Of course, you cannot sell anything with a print that you bought! But you can print them on whatever item you want and use them as a gift. 

Important note: I always, ALWAYS check Groupon for deals on custom blankets, canvas prints, and calendars. Usually they will have amazing products for like $5. Of course, the shipping is usually way higher than usual, but the total cost is still an incredible deal.

PLUS, along with using affordable online printing services AND getting coupon codes, I think that every single service I mentioned works with Rakuten. Which means that as soon as you go on the site, a little window that will pop up with a discount thing, and all you have to do is click on it.

If you haven’t signed up for it, it’s probably the only plugin/popup thing I will EVER recommend. And if you sign up through my link, we both get $30! Sign up for Rakuten here.

Examples of Etsy Art Prints

Want some examples of how art prints can look in your home? Here are a few from my shop and some of my other favorites!

Wood poop here again sign Etsy printable digital download
“Would Poop Here Again” print from Black Door Shop
Eucalyptus sign from Etsy digital download
Eucalyptus print from TheRiverPrints – I have this one on my gallery wall right now!
Two succulent prints from Etsy digital files
Set of 2 Succulent Prints from Black Door Shop
“If I have to stir it, it’s homemade” print from Black Door Shop
Landscape sunset fine art print from Etsy digital file
Landscape sunset print from MILLAMIX

Check out more of my prints on Etsy in the Black Door Shop. I’m still a brand new shop owner, so more are coming all the time–plus, I take requests! 😉

If you’d rather get physical products, check out my product shop, Black Door Fits. You can even get 20% off your order in either shop with the code 20OFF.

Example custom tshirts and products for DIYers on Etsy
A few of the products available at Black Door Fits

Let me know what other questions you have on Instagram or TikTok. I can’t wait to hear from you 🙂 

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Hi! I’m Kaylee–a mom of 2, business owner, DIY addict, and so much more. You’ll find some fun DIY tutorials, totally honest reviews, and lots of tips for making your home fit YOU. Welcome to Mama and More!

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