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Insider Updates

Can I Edit This File Template in Canva?


In my Etsy shop I get this question a lot for my templates. Given the popularity of Canva it's a reasonable question and many 'would be' customers possibly even expect that of course these will work in Canva.

Unfortunately, that's not at all the case, so if you're a Canva user it's important to understand exactly how their service works, what's possible and what isn't.

Canva operates a closed system. That means files made in Canva can only be edited in Canva and files not made in Canva cannot be edited there (or least very minimally so).

So basically, if you want to work in Canva with templates you have to buy Canva specific templates. 

And because Canva templates can only be edited in Canva, sellers will always have them very clearly labelled as Canva templates.

Designers (like me currently) who do not label their templates as Canva specific therefore, are not designing templates made for use in the Canva program. It's just that simple.

If you have followed that so far, the next question might be, is there nothing I can import into Canva for my design projects? And the answer is: yes, there is!

But elements imported in Canva are currently very restricted in how you can use or edit them so you need to tailor your expectations accordingly. For the most part you should expect that anything you upload into Canva is going to have to be used almost exactly 'as is'.

And here is where there is one possibility with my own templates that could allow you to use them in that somewhat restricted way, but still used in Canva anyway. 

And that's with my stencil style file format. These are saved as PNG files meant to be used in any program and you just stack your design elements underneath it. Like in the example below:

I offer this file format where applicable with all of my templates.

It may not be the most elegant way to design but it does the job and works just fine for simpler projects. 

Templates with a lot more parts to it may not be as easy to work with here, but it also depends on your experience, skill and patience with the program.

happy designing!

7 Things to Consider Before Branding Your Etsy Shop

As an independent retailer, branding plays a crucial role in your business success. A brand is the essence of everything you do as a business owner. It’s the personality, values and aims that you have for your shop. 

A strong brand gives your business credibility and sets you apart from other retailers. An effective brand can give customers a clear idea about what your store stands for and differentiates you from competitors. 

We understand that it may feel like something abstract or intangible but rest assured it has a huge impact on your business success. Moreover, establishing an effective brand is not impossible task to achieve! 

In this blog post, we will discuss 7 essential tips to build your own personal brand as well as the brand of your shop so you can start creating an image that best represents who you are and what you sell.


Why Should You Brand Your Shop?

Branding sets you apart from your competitors and creates a unique identity for your shop. It’s the process of creating a consistent visual identity that appeals to your intended audience. 

As an independent Etsy seller, you likely have plenty of competition both online and offline. Establishing a consistent brand that differentiates you from the rest is your best bet for standing out. 

An effective brand can increase your customer base and, in turn, increase your revenue. A brand can act as a source of inspiration for customers and help them connect to your brand emotionally. Customers that connect with your brand are more likely to purchase from you. 

A strong brand can also help you in the long run. Once you’ve established a strong brand, it makes it easy for customers to recognize you in the future. This can lead to repeat customers and an increase in revenue over time.


Step 1: Know your shop’s ultimate goal

Before you can even start building a brand, you first have to know what your goal is. What do you want to achieve with your business? What are your business goals and objectives? Why are you even opening up a shop in the first place? 

These are crucial questions to ask yourself while branding your shop. If you’re thinking of opening your own store, you need to know what your ultimate goal is. Do you want to become the next big thing amongst all the other online sellers? Do you hope to make enough money to live off of? Or, do you simply want to create a shop for fun and to interact with customers? 

Your ultimate goal can help you decide on what type of brand strategy to go with.


Step 2: Decide on a name for your shop

The first impression of your shop will occur when customers first visit your shop. They will be making a decision whether to stay or leave within seconds of landing on your site. This is where the name of your brand comes into play. 

What you name your store is one of the most crucial aspects of your branding. It can make or break your business success. It will be the first thing that customers will see when visiting your site and is essential that you choose the right name for your shop.


Step 3: Create a logo and visual brand identity

Once you’ve found the perfect name for your shop, it’s time to create a visual brand identity. This is the visual representation of your shop. 

The elements that make up your visual identity include your logo, colour palette, fonts, and imagery. 

Depending on your brand strategy, your logo could be simple and straightforward or have a complex design. Take into consideration what customers will associate your logo with. You can create a logo using various design tools or hiring a professional designer to create one for you.


Step 4: Develop an ad campaign and newsletter

An effective way to get your name out there and build a brand is through advertisements. An ad campaign can help you create awareness and attention for your shop. Whether you choose print, social media, or even TV ads, you have the power to reach a wide audience with your ads. 

This is one of the best ways to build your brand as it gives you the chance to directly communicate with your customers and let them know what your shop stands for. You can use an ad campaign to promote your products and services or simply use it as a branding tool.


Step 5: Select the right colour palette for your shop

Colour plays a huge role in the overall branding of your shop. It can help you to create a specific mood and can even have an effect on your customers’ buying habits. It’s important to choose colours that best represent your brand and shop.


Step 6: Welcome customers with signage and merchandising

What’s the first thing you do when you enter a shop? You look up at the signage to figure out what that shop sells. This is why signage is so important in branding. It’s the first thing that customers will notice when they walk into your shop. You can use signage to create a consistent look and feel throughout your store.


Step 7: Summing it Up

Branding your shop can be a little challenging but it is definitely worth it. A well-branded shop shows customers that you are serious about your business and gives you a competitive edge. It shows customers what your shop is about and helps them connect with your brand. 

Now that you know what branding is and why it’s so important, it’s time to get to work. You can start by brainstorming ideas and sketching out a few different visual identities. Once you’ve nailed down a brand that you love and are excited to start using, it will be easier to attract customers to your shop.



Why is My PDF File Printing Blank


Guaranteed this issue crops up for you right when you're in a hurry or whilst in the middle of a project. Frustrating right?!

This issue of PDFs not printing is common enough that Adobe has been dealing with it for years and there have been many troubleshooter posts written about it. In short, it's a known problem.

I'm going to walk you through the most common steps to resolve this starting with the quick fix so that you can get back to what you were doing as fast as possible.



This is a neat little trick that you can use whenever a PDF isn't printing nicely or at all. You just use your printer options to switch from document printing to picture printing. This is super easy to do.

1. Choose print as normal

2. In the printer dialog box look for a button labeled 'Advanced'

3. In the advanced section tick the option to 'print as image'

Every printer will have a slightly different looking print dialog box so the options may show up in different places depending on the printer brand you have but you should be able to find this somewhere in your print options.

Here is my print dialog box as an example from HP:


To resolve to issue more thoroughly the first step would be to ensure that you are using the most up to date version of acrobat reader. Updates to any software often clear up performance issues and compatibility.

Open acrobat reader and from the top menu choose Help. Then click Check for Updates. 


This is a very overlooked update that doesn't always happen automatically. If you are using a desktop or laptop computer you may need to periodically update printer drivers.

To check if your printer drivers are current you'll need to take note of your printer model and go to the manufacturers website. Once there do a search for 'printer drivers' and look for your model. Download and install the printer driver per the manufacturers instructions.

You'll need to restart your computer once you've done this.

If you are printing from a phone or tablet and have a newer printer model many printer manufacturers now have smart apps to assist you with your printer access.


Sometimes issues simply need to be cleared by re-starting your computer. If it's been on for a while or you've doing a lot of work before the issue cropped up, try a restart to clear the memory and reset things.


Occasionally files do get corrupted during download. Try downloading the file again to see if this clears things up.


Not sure how this works from a technical aspect but saving a copy of a file sometimes works to clear issues. 

Open the PDF in Acrobat Reader and from the File menu click Save As, then give the file a new name (using just letters or numbers).

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