Etsy is a wonderful marketplace. I sell on Etsy, so it is not that I have anything against Etsy. I also offer printing services for those that buy designs off Etsy for their save the dates and invitations. But as an Etsy seller and print shop there are some warnings I want to share.
1) Designs using copyrighted images- anything with a cartoon character or their likeness is illegal. I am sure you are thinking “but that stuff is all over Etsy!” Yes, it is but that doesn’t change the fact that it is illegal. Etsy is shutting down shops for posting illegal items. But what does this mean for you? If you buy a design that is illegal you will not be able to get it printed by a business. FedEx, UPS, Office Depot, Staples, Blue Bonsai, your local print shop- none of these places will print illegal designs because printing an illegal document is also illegal. No business will risk the repercussions of printing an illegal document. I have had so many people contact me asking if I would print a design with copyrighted material that they bought off Etsy. I hate to hear the frustration in their voice when they realize they have no options of getting them printed commercially.
2) Printables not set up for printing- if you buy a file on Etsy and the file is not set up properly it makes it hard or impossible to print, for you or a print shop. If a design is supposed to go all the way to the edge of the file will need to have a bleed on the design. If it doesn’t the design is not able to be printed to the edge. If the designer can’t define a “bleed” you should be wary. The other problem is resolution. A low-resolution file will look horrible when printed. If the file is set up low, you can’t do anything about it. The owner of the file (the Etsy seller) would need to fix it. They may not even know they care creating a low-resolution file which means they won’t be able to fix it.
3) Be wary of “editable” files- these are usually PDFs that have specific fields that you can change. But you have the fonts on your computer or it won’t work. You also can’t edit them on a mobile device typically. It is much easier for you to get a file that the designer changes for you and sends to you as a completed PDF so all you have to do is print.
If you choose to get a design off Etsy I hope I have given you some tips for saving yourself some headaches!!!
Keywords: wedding, wedding invitation, save the dates, Etsy