OK, so I’ve seen a few posts out there from people saying they can make a fabric research poster cheaply at Spoonflower. So I thought I would order one and see how easy it was and how well it turned out.
First of all, they only accept a jpg, tif, png or gif file. If you are designing your file in PowerPoint, you can save as any of these file formats. You can save a 72 dpi gif, but gif is only 256 colors (tif is 16.7 million) and that will really change your photos. The other file formats are saved at 64 dpi. We consider 72 dpi as the lowest resolution that will give you a decent looking poster.
Spoonflower requires that things be printed at 150 dpi. That will make your 48×36″ poster 20.5 x 15.4″ in size. I could find no way to print the photo any larger. So you are going to have a poster that’s way smaller. Like pillowcase size.
What could be done, if you have Photoshop, is to save a pdf out of PowerPoint, open it at 150 in Photoshop, and save as a jpg or tif. That can be printed in their system. So I did that, went through the order process, and it shows me only a corner of my file in the preview. I really didn’t know what I was going to get, and I sent them an email asking the question. Their reply- yes the preview is showing you just a corner of the poster, but it will be OK. So I finished my order, and am waiting the 2-3 weeks it will take to see what I get.
At postersession.com, your poster is printed by someone who has the experience of printing thousands of research posters looking your poster over and fixing problems. We fix something in about 75% of the files people send us. We replace the logo you copied from the website with a good hi-rez one, ask you for a better photo, and fix type that collides. That gives you a better poster.
Standard delivery is 8-10 working days at Spoonflower. We ship same day if we have your file by noon. They can do rush service that ships in 3 days for an extra $25. If you have a question, they promise to return your call in 24 hours.
Net result, in my book, is that Spoonflower is for people to make fabric for sewing projects, not for printing a research poster. I’ll let you know what I think of the poster when it arrives.