Print at Home Instructions
Our solid papers, note cards and imprintable invitations are wonderful for printing at home. Below are some helpful tips for how to set up your Word Processing document and how to set up your printer in order to get the best results.
Please know that although we test our products in many printer types there are always variations amongst printers based on model and usage, so we cannot guarantee that all printers will accommodate our paper products. We always recommend test printing to ensure your printer can accommodate the paper weight and card size of your choice before printing large quantities.
Ink Jet Printers vs. Laser Printers
We recommend using ink jet printers with our paper products. Due to their print process and use of toner not all laser printers are compatible with our paper although some do work successfully. Test printing will help you best understand which papers your printer can accommodate.
Top-Feed Printers vs. Bottom-Feed Printers
Our paper products work especially well in top-feed printers where the paper is fed upright through the top of the printer. Bottom-feed printers force the paper through a tightly curved path, which may cause the paper to have a permanent bend.
Text Weight Papers
Our text weight papers are similar to the weights of regular printer paper and are compatible with most printers. If you experience problems printing on our heavier cardstock we recommend printing on our text weight paper, then cutting and mounting the text weight print out to a heavier cardstock.
Cover Weight Papers
Our heavier cover weight papers can also be used in many home printers, but may need to be hand fed sheet by sheet due to the thickness.
Our imprintable invitations are a great paper weight for printing at home and come in a variety of sizes and styles. Imprintable invitations usually have a pre-printed design on the card, so your text will need to be laid out around the design to avoid printing on top of the artwork. Most of our imprintable invitations have a corresponding print template available online to help you print appropriately on each imprintable design.
Most printers can accommodate our larger size card sizes like A7 and A9. Some printers may have difficulty feeding our smaller card sizes like 4 bar. If your printer cannot accommodate smaller card sizes we recommend trying the following:
Solution 1: Attach a 4 bar card to an 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper with a small piece of double stick tape, placing the 4 bar in the upper left corner of the page. Your printer is use to feeding the 8.5 x 11 size and should pull the sheet through along with the small card. Adjust your Word processing document to the 4 bar size (instructions below) and test print to make sure that your text is laid out to print in the 4 bar area. We recommend loading the 8.5 x 11 sheet so the 4 bar side goes into the printer first. This method is also handy for printing shape cards like circles!
Solution 2: Print multiple cards on a larger card size - for example you can print text for two 4 bar cards onto one A7 card. After you print your 2 up template you can cut the A7 in half to create two cards that are almost exactly the same size as our 4 bar cards.
Some printers can accommodate our folded cards, which are great for creating personal stationery. For best results, unfold the folded card before printing and make sure your Word processing document size is set to the dimensions of the unfolded card size.
Some printers can accommodate our envelopes though it will require testing to get your Word Processing document set up correctly. For best results use a top-feed printer and feed the envelope with the flap open and the envelope bottom fed first (so the flat goes through last). If your printer is not able to accommodate our envelopes, try our printer-friendly sheet labels - great for return addresses and envelope seals.
Setting Up Your Word Processing Document
Page Set Up
In your Word Processing program you'll want to set the page/document size to fit the paper or card onto which you are printing. You can usually find Page Set Up under File on your menu bar. Adjust the page dimensions (width and height) to match your card size, and make sure the orientation of your document (portrait or landscape) matches the direction in which you want to print the card and corresponds to the way you have entered in the page dimensions.
For example, to print vertically onto an A7 card, you would set the page dimensions to 5" (width) by 7" (height) with the orientation as Portrait.
Once your page size matches your card size you can adjust the margins inside your document to set the area in which you will type. You can either adjust the margins in Page Set Up under File or using the ruler bar at the top and side of your document.
Decrease your margin size to print on the entire card (though most Word Processing programs will not allow you to print in the outer most 1/4" area), or increase your margins to make a smaller text area (you would do this for cards that have pre-printed designs to avoid printing on top of the artwork).
You may not need to make any adjustments to your printer settings, but if you are having difficulties printing there are a few setting changes you can make. To find Print Properties go to File on your menu bar, then Print-- you should see a Properties section where you can change the paper type and quality settings. Try selecting a heavier weight paper type or adjusting the quality settings to help you achieve the best print results.
Setting Up Your Printer
Prior to printing on our paper, print on a test sheet of regular 8.5 x 11 paper to see which direction the text prints. Most printers print the information from top to bottom, which means the paper should be fed into top-feed printers upside down so the top of the card goes into the printer first. The print direction does not matter for solid color paper, but is important when printing on cards that have pre-printed designs.
We always recommend test printing on regular 8.5 x 11 paper to ensure your text is laid out properly in your Word Processing document prior to printing directly on our paper. There are two good ways to test print:
Option 1: Print your text onto regular 8.5 x 11 paper then put the printed sheet on top of your card matching them up in the upper left corner. Hold both sheets up to the light to see through the pages and ensure that the text has been laid out properly.
Option 2: Cut a regular 8.5 x 11 sheet down to the card size on which you want to print. Test print on the mock card size to see where the text will print on your actual card. For an imprintable invitation you may still need to hold your test printed sheet against your imprintable to make sure the text works within the pre-printed design.
After you have successfully test printed onto a regular sheet of paper, print once onto the actual card prior to printing a large quantity.
Feeding the Printer
When you're ready to print onto our paper remove all regular paper from the printer and put in a small stack of cards. For top-feed printers cards will typically be positioned all the way to the right edge, but this will vary by printer model. Adjust the printer guides if necessary leaving a tiny bit of wiggle room between the cards and the guide (having it too tight will prevent the printer from grabbing the cards). We recommend top-feed printers over bottom-feed printers because the paper flows through more cleanly with fewer twists and turns.
My printer won't feed the paper.
- Make sure your printer is able to feed regular printer paper-- if you're having trouble feeding regular paper then there may be a problem with your printer and we recommend you call your print manufacturer.
- Try feeding one card at a time instead of a stack of cards.
- Make sure the card is positioned correctly in the printer similar to how your regular printer paper is situated.
- Make sure the card is close enough to the printer wheels that it can grab the card-- try giving the card a gentle nudge as the printer wheels attempt to grab the card.
- Try changing the paper quality in your Print Properties to a heavier weight.
My printer is not printing all of the text/the text is cut off in some areas.
- Make sure your Word Processing document size matches your card size.
- Adjust the margins in your Word Processing document to allow your text to print in a different/larger area.
- Try adjusting the font size to reduce the print area.
- Try changing the paper size in the Print Properties section.
The quality of the printed text does not look good.
- For ink jet printers check the ink level or your ink cartridges (refer to your printer manufacturer instructional manual for how to check the ink levels)-- replace inks if necessary.
- Adjust the print quality in the Print Properties-- try using the highest quality setting (using a draft quality setting may produce faded and unclear text).
- Make sure the ink colors you've selected in your Word Processing program are appropriate for printing on the paper color-- darker inks always show best.
- Please note that if using an ink jet printer with our Shimmer or Stardream papers the ink may soak into the metallic finish of the paper causing the text to appear fuzzy-- try a laser printer or a luxe or PS collection solid color paper.