Finding art that you love can be challenging – it typically isn’t something you search for 5-10 minutes and find exactly what you like. It requires time (sometimes years) to find art you enjoy so much that you’re willing to hang it on your walls and stare at it every single day. And let’s be honest, original art can be pricey (unless it’s thrifted, of course).
I have commitment issues when it comes to art – I have no idea how long it’ll be until I’m sick of it and therefore, I don’t like to spend a lot of money on it. Maybe I just haven’t found a piece that I adore so much that I want to keep on my walls for longer than 7 minutes?
Since we’re talking about being budget-friendly, we’re going to have to get creative. I specifically go to 3 separate places to complete this whole process, but the outcome is well worth it. It’s just like going the extra mile to find something you need on sale.
FIRST STOP: ETSY.
My biggest tip for finding budget-friendly art is heading straight to Etsy. It’s filled with thousands of digital art files that are sold at a lower price because you’re paying for an artist’s PDF file. You’re still buying an artist’s work, but you’re in charge of printing that file, so it’s cheaper for you.
Finding art on Etsy may require some time, and you likely won’t find what you want on the first page. I’ve found some of my favorites on page 17 of the search results.
Search keywords that describe what you’re looking for, and if you don’t know what you’re looking for, start with searching “printable art.”
I love abstracts, so a few keywords I use are:
x printable abstract art
x printable art
x set of abstract prints
Make sure you check the size of the files before you buy. If you find an art file that you like and it’s not offered in the size you want on your wall (sizes are listed in the description), most Etsy shop owners will provide you with a resized file at no additional cost if you reach out and ask. But you want to make sure the printed file fits the frame size and doesn’t look pixelated.
SECOND STOP: PRINTING
You can print art a few different ways depending on the size. For smaller sized art (8×10 – 11×17), I’ll just print the files at home using thicker paper. But for larger sized art, you can get it printed for a low cost at Staples, or online at Vistaprint.
My local Staples charges $14.99 for an 18×24 to print a file on thick, matte poster paper.
Here’s the step-by-step Staples process for printing large, poster-sized art.
You’ll want to upload the file you purchased from Etsy, so choose “upload your design.”
Choose the size and orientation.
Upload your file…
Approve your design and checkout! Usually, you can pick the print up within a few hours.
THIRD STOP: FRAMING
If I don’t already have a frame in the size I need, I’ll head to Michaels or JoAnn for a frame (whichever has a better coupon at the time, ha)! I have purchased from this Etsy shop too, and reallllly love their frames!
Here’s an example of art that I’ve found on Etsy AND printed/framed in my home for less than $100:
That frame next to our bed was purchased from that Etsy shop I mentioned earlier and the art was also purchased from Etsy and printed at staples. Total cost: less than $70
Staples Printing: $60
Frames: $22/ea (JoAnn)
The total cost of this art: less than $100. I used the same print for both frames but flipped one upside down…seewhatIdidthere.jpg
TL;DR (too long, didn’t read):
x Search for printable art files on Etsy
x Print them at home or at your local printing center (I prefer Staples)
x Purchase frames at Michaels/JoAnn/Etsy
x Enjoy art
Shop my favorite art from Etsy below:
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