A Beginners Guide: Making Printables

Have you ever thought about making your own printables? If you have but aren’t quite sure where to start, you might just want to stick around for the rest of this post.

I love printables! How about you? Perhaps you’ve downloaded printables that you found on Pinterest. Maybe you’re already making some printables of your own. If you are, keep going!

Printables are a great way to personalize, organize, and increase productivity. They also provide a creative outlet for those that make them and are quickly becoming a source of passive income for many people.

Maybe you’re asking “What is a printable?” A printable, quite simply, is a graphic design that is made to be downloaded. Once downloaded, you can print it on your home printer.

making printables menu planners

What Kinds of Printables Can I Make?

There are many kinds of printable to fill your favorite niche. You may want to think about things that you need for your home and family when designing your printables.

This post contains links to some of my favorite programs and apps as well as Affiliate links. “As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.” When you make a qualifying purchase through the use of these links, it helps me to continue offering products and information to help you create for your home and family.

Maybe you don’t need a really complex day planner, so you design something simple that works for you.

Perhaps you want to make coloring pages for your kids. I’ve designed a number of those and you can find them on my Free Printables Page.

Some people even create short e-books with specific topics of interest to their blog readers.

Would you like to open an Etsy shop? Think about the type of printables you would like to offer. What would fill the needs of your customers.?

While this isn’t an entire list, these are some of the printables that you could consider for your design work.

Making your own printables is not a difficult task once you learn to use the tools that are available for creating them. They can be a rewarding way to plan your menu, keep track of your goals, personalize your special day, or even decorate your home.

making printables gift tags

What programs can you use to design printables?

Using what you already have for programs and apps is one of the best ways to get started. I made some of my first printables on PowerPoint. I was already familiar with using it which made it an obvious first choice.

Another thing to think about when considering what to use for programs and apps is cost. If you are just getting started, a free program might be your best bet. Canva has free and paid versions. It intuitive, easy to use and there are many customizable templates available.

Adobe Creative Cloud is more expensive and can take some time to learn. If you are up the the challenge, the sky is the limit as far as what you can create.

Here are some common programs and apps for making printable. Explore and find what works best for you.

  • Canva
  • PowerPoint
  • Word
  • Adobe Illustrator
  • Silhouette Studio
  • Google Docs

One of the most recent ways I’ve been learning to create printables is with Adobe Illustrator, and more recently Adobe InDesign.

Each program or app has it’s own learning curve, but don’t let that scare you away. You can start with something simple, and work into more complex designs as you learn how to use the tools in your workspace.

making printables coloring pages

Graphics for Your Printables

There are many wonderful fonts and graphics available for using with your printables. Some of my favorites are:

You can find everything from household icons to colorful florals and even cartoons to use for your projects.

Creating Your Own Graphics

As you continue to learn new skills and gain the confidence you may consider making your own graphics. This is certainly possible in programs like Silhouette Studio Business Edition. Watch the sales at Swing Design and you can often get the Business Edition to upgrade for half price.

With Silhouette, you can export your designs in PNG format for use on your projects. If you create a printable in Silhouette Studio you can save as a PDF for later use.

Another very versatile app that I recently started to use is Auto Desk SketchBook. This FREE app is a wonderful choice if you want to create painted or hand-drawn graphics for your projects.

While not totally proficient at it’s use, I’ve been able to learn many of the tools by just trying out the tool bars in the program.

Using my Wacom Intuos, I started sketching out a number of little “concept” flowers. I’m sharing a couple of my initial creations below. Meanwhile I’ve created a Daily Plan worksheet and used one of these little flowers. You can grab it by clicking on the button below the printable photo. This is a very light, feminine themed planner page that I created in Adobe InDesign.

a picture of a flower
hand-drawn flower photo

Believe me when I say that I’m not really very artistic, but the tools in Auto Desk SketchBook make it easy to create designs to use for printables or create your own portfolio of design work.

What kind of printables would you like to create?

I hope this post was helpful in giving you some resources for getting started in creating your own printables. It is by no means an exhaustive list, but maybe it will get your creative gears turning.

Think about what types of worksheets, planners, infographics and other printables you might want to make. Do you have specific colors in mind? What types of font styles do you like? Is there a specific niche you want to fill? Do you want to make them for yourself, use them to build an email list, or open an Etsy Shop? So many possibilities!

I’d love to hear your questions and comments! Be sure to grab my latest printable below. Thanks for stopping by today and have a wonderful day.

signature of author
photo link to printable planner page


Pinterest Resources for Creating Printables

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