Print Any PDF File into Custom Sizes

header image of a custom size print i did of the book reading tracker that i sell in my etsy shop

Hey there! Welcome, ~! Essentially I’m writing this post so my customers over at my shop have some detailed instructions on how to print any PDF file in custom sizes.

But of course, this knowledge will be free for everyone to enjoy!

It’s one of the things that has substantially made planning and tracking so much easier for me as I’ve switched Passion Planner sizes throughout the years!

It saved my hands from having to constantly recreate my favorite spreads!

And just as a note, printing at custom size will print on regular printer size paper, but scaled down to the size you want it at!

If you’re interested in learning more, just keep on reading.


What you will need

Paper

The paper I use to print out my bullet journal spreads or trackers is a little thicker than regular printer paper. You can use regular printer paper, but with my experience of it, it tears easily or sometimes bleeds if you use markers to color things in.

With this paper, I don’t have that problem. Of course, if you already have a preference in which paper you use, USE THAT!

But for everyone else I recommend: 


A Cutting Tool

If you’re printing at the regular paper size you might not need this, but if you’re like me and print at custom sizes to fit your bullet journal or a Passion Planner medium or small, you’re going to need something to cut the page out of the excess paper.

Quick tidbit, my family and I like to use the excess paper I don’t use and cut them into little sheets like sticky notes and use them for shopping lists or reminders. Or we use them as notes to each other. I know this is a little old school, but we’re not a family that checks our phones all that often… So we still use paper to be like, "This is food for Diana,” etc.

Anyways, back to it, for a cutting tool, you can use scissors but it can get tedious if you’re printing a lot of PDFs to insert into your planner of choice.

I personally recommend using a paper trimmer of some sort. You can pick one up at any stationery store or even Target sells this one:
If you’re looking for something more affordable, obviously Amazon is probably your best bet in that route. Be wary though and always read reviews, watch some YouTube videos of what others recommend. I personally use this one and haven’t had any problems yet:


Program

I know this may be something people are wary about. It may be because you don’t like adding new programs to your computer (like me) or you worry if there will be some sort of catch.

Rest assured, this program is FREE and doesn’t take up much room at all on your computer!

As I mention on my Etsy shop listings, to print custom sizes you do need this program. It’s the Adobe Reader program. You may already have it or you may not, the free version is called Adobe Reader DC if you want to see if your computer has it or not. If not follow the link below to grab it. 
step 1 get adobe reader free

It’s the one highlighted in pink.

Make sure that the checkboxes from McAfee are UNCHECKED. I don’t recommend McAfee. I’ve had problems and viruses from their programs, but if you have it and it works great for you I'm happy for you.

Anywho~

step 1 get adobe reader free

And lastly, this last box is optional. It’s only if you also want a Chrome extension of this. If you’re not using chrome just uncheck it if it comes up on your browser and pay it no mind.

step 1 get adobe reader free

After you download the free version, it will save the program file on your computer. It’s usually in the "Downloads" folder. From there, double click to run it and it will install onto your computer.


A Personal Printer

If you try to print at a store or a printing facility, like Staples, they may refuse you. 

My designs, as well as many others, are made for personal printers and for Personal Use ONLY. 

So please know what you’re getting yourself into ahead of time. It doesn’t have to be a fancy printer. Heck! The printer I use is from the 1990s, maybe even older, but it does the job so I don’t complain. It really doesn’t have to be a fancy printer. If you don’t currently have one look around for any sales for one.

When you choose to print, it will automatically find your printer, and it will be listed like so:

where to find your printer in adobe reader


For the purpose of this tutorial, I’m working on my personal desktop computer, and it doesn’t have any printer attached. That's why mine says “Microsoft Print to PDF” instead of an actual printer. My printer and printing computer are located on an entirely different floor.

Now to get into the good stuff!


Print a Full Page Size (8.5 x 11)

All my PDFs come at the full-page size and correct me if I’m wrong, but I’m pretty sure most PDF files do also. 

This makes printing a PDF file at this size super easy and you can use any program you’d like essentially.

When you’re ready to print make your way over 
  • File > Print
  • The print icon
  • CTRL + P or (Command + P on Mac)

Once the print box pops up under Page Size & Heading find and click, “Fit.”

click Fit if you want to print at full page size

Then you’re ready to print the full document at the full-page size.

By the way, the PDF I’m using for this tutorial can be found on my shop on Etsy & Gumroad!


Print a Custom Page Size

As I mentioned at the beginning and in any of my listings, you can print any of my PDFs into custom sizes. I’ve done it before and it has worked out amazingly for me! Especially when I was in a Passion Planner Small and that’s a size 5.8"x8.3" which is very similar to A5 size.

But even if you don’t own a Passion Planner you can print it to any custom size you wish.

So how do you do that?

Again make your way over to Print and when the print box pops up click on “Properties” which is next to the area where it says your printer's name. 

☆ FYI I ended up having to hop onto my other computer to get these screenshots, so please don’t mind the Polish. Everything will be in the same place as yours, just in English.

click properties to get into custom size printing

Under Paper Options click and choose “Custom.”

choose your custom size it'll still print on regular printer size paper but scaled down to the size you want it at

When the pop-up box opens up, name the size whatever it is you’re making it for. 

input your custom size and a name for it

So I went ahead and named it Passion Planner Small, and as I mentioned above a Passion Planner Small is  5.8"x8.3". I could have definitely done this size, but I went for a 5x7.7 (you don’t have to do this. I sometimes scale it down more because I want extra room for Washi Tape.) 

When you’re done importing the size you want and the name, go ahead and click OK.

Now the next image you will see is that on the right-hand side it says your new dimensions of what you want to print. I also go ahead and make sure to click “Fit” from the purple box to make it fit to me 8.5x11 piece of paper. 

the final product

Now depending on your printer, it may look something like this or it may have extra steps I have found. 

So if this step-by-step guide isn’t working for you or if it looks slightly different for you because of your printer please watch this YouTube video I found.


Print Custom Sizes by Scaling

Printing by scaling is kind of a guessing game and I wouldn’t quite recommend it unless you are either somehow good at doing the math or you don’t mind wasting paper.

You don’t technically need the program to print by scaling since any and every program and browser extension will allow you to scale something to print. 

For example, if I right-click and select Print on any web browser. I can scale it from there just by clicking “More Settings.”

printing by scaling step 1

And a new box, as shown, will appear under it. 

And then under “Scale” Change it from "Default" to "Custom," and from there you can change the % of the scale.

printing by scaling step 2

So for example, going back to the Book Tracker I created, at 100% scale it looks like this.

printing by scaling in adobe reader

And at 50% it looks like this:

printing by scaling in adobe reader

But again, it’s a guessing game for some custom sizes.


Size Guides

Lastly, I wanted to include some size guides for you all, especially my PashFam and Bullet Journal Junkies.

☆ All sizes are listed in inches.
  • Passion Planner
    • Small
      • 5.8 x 8.3
    • Medium
      • 6.9 x 9.8
    • Large
      • 8.3 x 11.7
  • Half Letter
    • 5.5 x 8.5
  • A4
    • 8.3 x 11.7
  • Pocket
    • 3.2 x 4.7
  • Personal
    • 3.75 x 6.75
  • Classic
    • 5.5 x 8.5

If your size isn’t listed here…

Google is a great resource in finding the size you need for your planner. Just type in the name of your planner and then add the word “size” next to it.

I also double-check sizes by using a classic ruler. But I may just be old school. 

Anywho, I hope this helped you! If you bought a bullet journal/planner insert on Etsy from another seller and it’s in any other format than a PDF I’m not sure what to tell you. 

I’ve always used the PDF method and it’s worked well for me!

Be sure to check out my shop!

I will be updating with new listings as often as possible! 

And if you’re not already following me on Instagram, follow my personal account @dreamlikediana and the shop’s @dreamlikeinnovations

If you purchase anything from the store and use it, be sure to take a photo and share it either on your story or feed and tag both accounts as well #dreamlikeinnovations so I can see and share them! 

how to print any pdf file into custom sizes

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