How to Print a Sticker on a Home Printer

Printing your own stickers at home not only saves you the cost of buying stickers, it gives you the ability to customize your own designs while printing out exactly how many you need.
Image Credit: Maskot/Maskot/GettyImages

Printing your own stickers at home not only saves you the cost of buying stickers, it gives you the ability to customize your own designs while printing out exactly how many you need. You won't need a special sticker printer since a regular inkjet printer will work, but you'll want to do some planning to avoid wasting ink or inkjet sticker paper. If you plan to print several hundred stickers on an inkjet printer, check your printer's documentation to see how many cartridges it will take, since the cost of ink may make this more expensive than buying stickers online instead of a savings.

Purchase Sticker Paper

Get some quality inkjet sticker paper to print regular stickers. You can find this paper online or at most office supply stores. These are letter-sized sheets, usually sold in packs of 50. As an alternative, you can consider special sticker paper for printing vinyl stickers at home.

Design Your Sticker

Design your sticker on whichever app you are most familiar with. You can use a photo editing app like Photoshop or GIMP, a word processor like Microsoft Word, or any other software that lets you write text and add images, like Microsoft PowerPoint. Use a standard letter-sized document size. If you want to make several stickers, maximize your use of paper by arranging them on a single page, while ensuring there is enough space between each sticker to cut each one out.

Sticker templates are also available online from sticker paper manufacturers.

Be Mindful of Sticker Colors

Examine the colors used in your sticker design. Heavy use of colors can take a toll on an inkjet printer's ink supply. If your design is mostly blue, for example, the blue ink may run out if you are printing dozens of stickers.

Print a Test Page First

Print a test page using a plain piece of paper to ensure your printer gives you the quality you want. Inkjet sticker paper can cost around 20 cents per sheet, so it's a good idea to use inexpensive plain paper until you are certain your design comes out like you want it to. If you're not certain which side is up and which is down, make a mark on one side of the paper before inserting it into the printer. When it comes out, look at the mark and you'll know which way to put the sticker paper in.

Insert the Sticker Paper

Insert a single sheet of sticker paper into the printer. If your printer has a separate single-page feeder, use that, otherwise place one sheet in its regular paper feed. Because it's thicker than regular paper, sticker paper may get stuck in the printer if you try to feed more than one sheet at a time.

Make sure the sticker paper is completely flat without any bends or wrinkles. A bent corner on a piece of sticker paper can cause it to get stuck in the printer's rollers.

Let the Stickers Dry

Remove the printed page from the printer without touching any ink on its surface. Set it on a flat surface to dry. Unlike printing text documents, the heavy concentration of ink used in graphics can take several minutes to dry.

Cut the Stickers Out

Cut the stickers out using a paper cutter if you have access to one; otherwise, use a pair of sharp scissors. When you're ready to attach a sticker to something, peel the backing from the corner just as you would with a store-bought sticker.

references & resources