Friday, 17 May 2013

Prinstagram: Fuss-free Instagram photo printing with love

Ever wish you could print your awesome Instagram photos quickly, reliably and on good quality paper?

Something like...


...This?

I know, it's an incredibly pretty sight - don't drool. Then again, when I first heard of Prinstagram, I probably did.

I'd always felt it was a pity for my Instagram photos to get locked up in that iPhone of mine. Some of them look even better than the ones I take with my Fujifilm X10 (and that's saying something), but they'd never see the light of day in physical form on crappy paper and ink. The day I found Prinstagram (by googling "how to print Instagram photos", no less) I was so excited I almost told my SO, which would have ruined his surprise gift.

This brings me to the main reason why I ordered prints from Prinstagram - to give a gift of cherished memories in photos you can hold. I wanted something to commemorate the times we took silly photos of cats, food and ourselves (in order of frequency). I also wanted it to be waterproof, long-lasting and of good quality as I'm practical like that.

So I went to the Prinstagram website, browsed around, ooh-ed and aah-ed over their different printing services, and bought these:


Prinstagram Square Prints


That's the collage of photos you saw in the first photo. I love these to bits. They're tiny squares of memory and art that I can sift through while sighing nostalgically. They also make great scrapbooking/journal material, as they're printed on good quality paper with a matte finish, the kind that has a comforting weight in the hand. I can think of so many creative ways to use them - maybe I'll do a post about this soon!

You can choose from two sizes - mini squares are 2.5x2.5 inches (set of 48 photos), and squares are 4x4 inches (set of 24 photos). I chose the mini squares I felt it was a more versatile size and I wanted a broader sampling of photos (48 compared to 24). These cost 12 USD per set, so that's 0.25 or 0.50 USD per photo, depending on which size you pick. I bought 2 sets of 48, which makes a total of 96 prints for 24 USD.


Prinstagram Tinybook


These are the most adorable things ever. Three tiny books of Instagram photos that stick to each other and on your fridge because they are magical magnetic! When they say tiny, they really mean tiny - the books only measure 1.7 x 1.5 inches. That's about the size of an eraser or a gerbil, for reference.

Each book has 24 photos, and you can pick 72 photos for 3 completely different books, or 24 photos to get 3 of the same book. The photo quality isn't as good as the square prints, but these make great keepsakes as they're basically portable photo book fridge magnets.

If you're wondering why this picture is missing a book, it's because... you guessed it. It was the surprise gift I gave to my SO, which he adored, by the way! The only gripes I have are that 1) the pages are a little sticky (due to the adhesive) and 2) they are are a little hard to turn as the book spine is rather stiff. These aren't a huge deal though, and for the price of 3 for 10 USD (about 3 USD per book), I can't really complain.


Prinstagram Stickers


Oh the stickers. I can't even begin to describe how lovely they are. I was so glad to see that they printed stickers too, because I'm a sticker collector. I don't know why, but stickers have always fascinated me since I was a kid. I'd bug my parents to buy stickers for me all the time (that was before I got an allowance). The stickers measure 20 x 20mm and come in sets of 252 stickers, which are printed in two booklets. You can stick them anywhere - I swear it's addictive! They're quite small though, so make sure you pick the right photos (pick those that don't have too many details) or they won't make good stickers.

The best thing about the stickers is that they cost 10 USD for 252 stickers so your wallet won't be crying foul when you add this to your cart. Strangely enough the option for sticker printing doesn't seem to be available on the Prinstagram website now, though the page is accessible through a direct link that you can find on Google. Hmm...

Here are another picture of my Prinstagram haul:


I also love how they include a cute little decal with the heart-shaped Prinstagram logo. The cute glass bird is not part of the haul, of course.


Other printing options

Apart from the squares, tinybooks and stickers, Prinstagram also provides

  • Calendars
  • Posters
  • Polaroid-style prints
  • Framed prints
  • Minibooks (like the tinybook, but in a spiral bound notebook form). 

The Prinstagram site has a very easy-to-use and intuitive interface, and I didn't have problems navigating it from start to finish - I'm sure you'll enjoy it too. And if you know some photo-printing crazy friends or family, ahem, you can also get gift cards ranging from 20-100 USD for them to use on Prinstagram.

If you want to print photos outside of Instagram, you can also check out Print Studio, by the same company (Social Print Studio). You can choose from the 2 rectangular and 2 square sizes available. You can then drag and drop photos from your computer, upload them, and leave the printing to them. Or you could order directly from your iPhone as they have an app - brilliant. They also ship anywhere in the world for a flat 6 USD! I'm probably going to try Print Studio next, as the shipping cost is much lower than Prinstagram's 12 USD shipping fee, but the options are also more limited as they only do prints, and not tinybooks/stickers/calendars etc at the moment.


Shipping

Printstagram provides flat-rate shipping at 7 USD (within US) and 12 USD (international) no matter how many items you order. That probably means you should order as many items as you want/can - you can even do a bulk order with others who're interested!

It takes 4-10 days for products to arrive if you live within the US, and may take up to 3-4 weeks if you live elsewhere. It took about 2-3 weeks for my Prinstagram stuff to arrive, and I was really pleased when they finally did.


Other stuff

This isn't even an advertorial, but I need to give props to Social Print Studio for being so innovative. They're the brains behind Prinstagram, Print Studio and the Dblcam iPhone app. They're also a young start up with lots of ideas and a wicked sense of humour. You should check them out on Facebook and take a look at their Youtube videos - you'll see what I mean.


I'm very happy with my order as the process went smoothly and it arrived quickly. As a whole, I'd say that Prinstagram produces high-quality products that are really enjoyable to use and look at.

If you do order from them, remember to take a picture of your buys and tag them on Instagram with #prinstagram - once a week, they refund customers who post their favourite photos. It's for these reasons and more that I really can't help loving these people, and am looking forward to their new projects.

Bottom line: just check them out, you won't regret it!


Rachel loves sharing about the beautiful things in life from different perspectives. She writes on beauty and lifestyle in Cherchez Beauté , and does more abstract stuff on Antelune . When she's not writing, she's playing with her dog Holly, doodling and reading fiction. You can follow her on Facebook , Twitter and Instagram .