Learning how to print and frame vintage postcards is an easy way to make unique wall decor without breaking the bank.
This spring I released my first few free vintage postcard collections for St. Patrick’s Day, Easter, and birthdays. I’m getting ready to start releasing a whole lot more vintage postcard collections. I’ll have additional collections for holidays and other special occasions. Most of my postcard sets will be for specific locations, such as Yellowstone National Park, Washington D.C., and the Wisconsin Dells. I’m so excited about these vintage postcard collections and look forward to seeing how readers display them in their homes.
For each vintage postcard collection, I’m making the postcards available in multiple sizes. For every postcard collection, you’ll see some combination of the following four sizes: Original size, 4×6 (original size with slight white border), 8×10 with slight white border, and 8×10 with large white border.
While many readers may have a specific size in mind and know exactly what they need to download, I think many readers will need a little more explanation. I’m providing a comprehensive overview of the postcard sizes I offer to help you choose the best downloads for your given frames and the aesthetic you’re striving to achieve.
Please note that I have made the following sizes available based on my own experience framing my vintage postcard prints. It has taken a bit of trial and error to determine that these are the best options. However, if you are ever in need of different sizing or have questions about the sizes I provide, don’t hesitate to ask. I’m happy to help in any way that I can.
The vintage postcards I share are standard size, which is 3.5″ x 5.5.” I always make my postcards available in original size. Having the original size allows you to frame vintage postcards in the exact size they were originally printed. If you’re planning to use the postcards for creative purposes (i.e., decoupage, ATC, greeting cards), original size provides you the most creative control to crop and format the designs as you like for specific projects.
3.5″ x 5.5″ postcards are ideal for matted 4×6 picture frames. The biggest downside to the 3.5″ x 5.5″ size is that virtually no standard printing service offers this size. Of course, you can always print the postcards on any size paper on your home printer and trim them to size. If you are printing one or two postcards, printing at home is a great, affordable option. It quickly gets costly to make multiple prints, especially on an ink-jet printer.
If you want to use a printing service, I have a couple of preferred workarounds for the non-standard size issue, which are as follows.
Hands down, the best option I’ve found for original size vintage postcard prints is OddPrints. They did not sponsor this post or provide any other sort of compensation. At OddPrints, you can enter the exact dimensions you need, and they’ll print them for you. It really is that simple. For the ease of the service and the quality of the prints, you absolutely can’t beat the price.
OddPrints prints on the closest standard size paper available. Then you trim your prints as needed. It’s partly how they keep their prices so low. If you’ll be framing prints in frames with mats, having a slight white border isn’t a problem whatsoever. If you want your prints cut exactly, it’s very easy to do so with a paper cutter.
My second workaround is to use my 4×6 format postcards, which I describe in the next section.
If you want original size prints and prefer to use a standard printing service, I recommend the 4×6 format. All I’ve done is add a 0.5″ white border on all sides of the image to give you 4″ x 6″ dimensions. Every company that offers photo printing services has a 4×6 format.
Again, if you’re framing prints in frames with mats, having this white border isn’t a problem at all. Once in the frame, you won’t see the border. If you don’t want that border, use a paper cutter to trim your prints to size.
8×10 with slight white border
I also make my vintage postcard prints available in 8×10 format, as I know that numerous readers arrive at my vintage postcard collections looking for printable wall art in 8×10 format. Obviously, the original ratio of the postcards isn’t 8×10. Even when formatted to 8×10, I found that it worked best to add at least a slight white border on all sizes to ensure the text below and above the images is visible in the frame, even with no mat or a standard mat.
8×10 with large white border
I’m sure that it seems crazy to have a second 8×10 format option. I’ll be honest, it is a little crazy. I know that the slight white border option works just fine for most people. However, personally, I prefer to have a little more space around the postcard prints for this size. So I created a second option. It’s completely up to you which one you’d like to use for your 8×10-opening frames.
You’re welcome to use any frames that you like for your vintage postcard prints. All of the frames I’m using for my vintage postcard prints in this post are Michaels Belmont frames. Michaels didn’t sponsor this post or provide the frames. I have dozens of Belmont frames in my house and can’t recommend them enough. They are high-quality and come in beautiful colors and finishes. You’ll be hard-pressed to find other frames this nice and at this price point.
Michaels runs ridiculously good sales on Belmont frames all the time. Watch for 2-for-1 and even 3-for-1 deals on these frames. You can also always use their 20% off everything coupons on Belmont frames.
I hope that this resource helps you select the best format for your vintage postcard prints. If you have any questions or are interested in additional format options, please don’t hesitate to ask!
[Disclaimer: There are a few affiliate links in this post. Thanks for your support!]
I’d love to see your framed vintage postcard prints!
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Free printable vintage postcard collections:
Please check the free printables section often, as I will be adding lots more free printable vintage postcard sets over the coming months.