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I may decorate my entire house with engineer prints. This is the nickname for the popular, oversized city planning-like city maps. It is a great space filler for blank walls.

The hardest part was finding where to print engineer prints. If you are not familiar with the fancy name just look at the images below. But first, here is what you need to know before you order engineer prints.

But first, let’s talk about this fun and may I say rewarding project that solves

the problem of finding affordable wall art.


what to know before you order engineer prints

After recently updating my boys’ bedrooms, my goal was to add inexpensive artwork.

Engineer prints were a format that matched the industrial, urban theme I wanted to accomplish for their bedrooms/occasional guest rooms.

You know, like when they come home for Thanksgiving and sleep four of the five days they are home.


These oversized prints solve a few problems when decorating for spaces that are not in use everyday, but you still want your kids to have their room when they return home.

  • Fill valuable real estate on a wall
  • Add meaning to the room with the city or state reference
  • Conversation starters for space



I found several options for city and aerial maps at this Etsy shop. I choose two city maps to print- the city my middle child grew up in and the city where he attends college.

The  Etsy images cost a few dollars and the seller-provided multiple sizes and formats in digital format. I ordered my black and white city maps from here to print the engineer prints.



This is the point of the tutorial where I will save you ten minutes of aggravation.

  • To order engineer prints at Staples you have to create an account first.
  • Once an account is created upload your Etsy image on Staples website.
  • You can either pickup or pay to deliver. I paid to ship mine because I knew my prints would get trashed with dogs, kids and unidentified rolling objects.
  • Printing costs around $7.00-$10 depending on print size.
  • Staples print size options:
  • 12″ x 18″, 18″ x 24″, 24″ x 36″ and 36″ x 48″.


While waiting for the prints to ship I purchased poster frames at Michael’s.



I noticed there were big price jumps on poster frame sizes. And not all print sizes have corresponding frames at Michaels.

Knowing this in advance, you can decide if you need a 30″ width frame or if you can be just as happy with a 24″ size frame.

In hindsight, I wish I had upgraded my frames for my first two prints. For my boys, I bought the plastic frame and plastic front.

I upgraded the frame for our daughter’s room.

And, yes she has her own place in downtown Denver, but we still have a room of her own at home.

how to print engineer prints

I love how these engineer prints turned out. The project was fun and added some much-needed character to the kids’ rooms. And, the best part the prints were inexpensive and the aerial maps were relevant to my kids and to us as a family.

Our hearts are now in three cities with our youngest now in college.

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    1. Thank you, Marty, for stopping by! I am getting ready for a round two of new prints! xo laura

  1. thetopcandidate says:

    Brilliant Laura! These are awesome!

    1. It’s such a fun way to decorate the walls! Thanks Heather! laura

  2. Dette Morgan says:

    Recently, my son & I purchased a bi-level townhome in Bella Vista, AR. I have been looking at artwork for the 4 walls in the stairwell, that connect my upper half to his lower half. Nothing seemed to work, until now. AND, I think this would be perfect! We are originally from Louisiana. A Baton Rouge city print for one wall, since we lived there for 35 years. And then, a Bella Vista print for another, since this is now our forever home.
    Thank you for posting this Laura.

    1. Oh what a great idea! Thank you for visiting! xo laura

  3. Hi Laura: You just gave me a great idea! Our oldest son recently bought a new home, what a great gift this would make not only of the state he attended college but also of the state he now resides in! Ikea has nice frames for cheap!

    1. Hi ella,
      Yes I ordred them for my daughter for where she lives now and I did the same for our son when he was in MN for undergrad.

      Thank you! xo laura

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