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6 Instagram-inspired gift ideas for bringing your images to life

Instagram is an awesome community of people who appreciate art and beauty. It inspires a special type of kinship among those who consider taking photos of food, landscapes, people, and basically anything cool and one-of-a-kind an acceptable way of life. When you’re not finding ways to make a living out of your Instagram feed, why not reward your friends with something that will commemorate the love that you share for the app?

Christmas may be two months away, but it’s never too early to start shopping, right?

1. “Winking” print

What exactly is a winking print, you ask? It’s like a handy hologram created from two pictures. More formally known as a lenticular print, you can think of it as a cool, textured photo that morphs into a different image when you look at it from a different angle. This is a great gift for someone who appreciates unique and creative tokens. You can create one through Instawink by either linking your Instagram feed so you can choose two of your very best (or even pick frames from your Instagram videos) or by uploading them from your computer or mobile phone.

instawink - feed

It looks like only a few of your most recent Instagram photos will be automatically loaded (only 66 photos were loaded for me), so if none of those choices are ones you’d like to turn into a winking print, you can try the good ol’ upload option – just make sure your photos are at least 650 x 650 pixels big with a file size of no more than 6MB. This option is also ideal if you want to use your friends’ snaps and surprise them with a cool gift.

instawink - upload

You can preview your finished product (at least, an approximation of it) before committing to buying it.

instawink - preview

Each Instawink costs $5.99, excluding shipping.

2. Bags and pillows

Stitchtagram began as a business for turning your Instagram photos into a collage imprinted on a throw pillow, but now you’ve got even more options that are perfect for your pal who either loves taking naps or donning artsy arm-wear. Throw pillows, mini pillows, zipper pouches, coin purses, wristlets, and tote bags – seriously, they can print your ‘grams on just about anything cozy.

stitchtagram - products

Every one of these products is handmade, which makes it a bit pricier than your regular pillow and tote bag from Ross. Give it to the right person though and you’ve got a happy and grateful Instagram-o-phile who’ll surely remember you every time they sleep on the couch or pay for a meal. After you connect your Instagram, you can drag and drop the photos you want included in the layout into the pattern grid.

stitchtagram - feed

In order to use your friend’s feed, however, you will need their explicit permission to use their photos, so this may not be a good gift idea if you want it to be a complete surprise (you can try your luck at artful lying).

stitchtagram - friend feed stitchtagram - friend feed 2

3. Postcard set

This might be the one product that can get you or your friends to start using the US Postal Service again … instead of email. 

origrami - retroprint origrami - squareprint

Origrami is a Sydney-based husband and wife team that sells Instagram retroprints or squareprints. Both are printed on quality matte cards. After linking your feed, you can choose 36 from your feed:

origrami - feed

You can buy a set of 36 prints for $20-$22 and you can choose from a variety of available design themes.

origrami - theme

If you’re getting this for yourself, then great … but by the looks of it, there doesn’t seem to be a way to access a friend’s Instagram feed without letting them know you’re getting them this gift. As a solution, you can purchase a virtual gift card, which Origrami offers.

4. Stone coasters

Instagrams. On coasters. Made of stone. That’s all the explanation you’ll need, really. 

coastermatic - sample 1 coastermatic - sample 2

Coastermatic makes these products by digitally printing onto stone, with each set costing $25, not including shipping. Upon linking your Instagram account, you immediately see your photos as they would appear in a round layout.

coastermatic - feed coastermatic - preview

A view of the cart will let you set a quantity for the set you just created or create a new one using a different combination of photos. You also get a table of rates for shipping so you can better plan ahead. Like Stitchtagram, Coastermatic can only use photos from an Instagram account you used to log in, so if you’re getting them from a friend, you may need to tell them.

coastermatic - cart

5. Mini-prints

Printstagr.am actually has a barrage of cute Instagram-related items you can choose from, but our favorites are the ones that they offer in miniature size.

printstagram - products

From left to right, you’ve got Polaroid-style miniprints (48 shots for $12), a tiny book (set of 3 for $10), a minibook ($12, contains 100 shots), and stickers ($10 for a whopping 252 stickers). 

For a tinybook, like the screenshot says, you can either choose 72 photos for three different books or 24 photos for three copies of the same set. Pictures will appear in random order.

printstagram - tinybook feed

You can review the photos you’ve selected before ordering them.

printstagram - tinybook review

The shopping cart entry might be confusing because it just says set of three (pertaining to three copies of one book), but if you selected 72 photos on the feed page, it will assume that you want all three to be different.

printstagram - cart

Oh, and it might be important to note that “shipping remains fixed no matter how many products you have in your cart,” meaning, you should keep shopping.

6. Poster mosaic

Is your Instagram feed purely comprised of beauty and artistry? Are your shots all worth framing? Instead of having them individually printed, you can combine all your Instagrams into one giant photo mosaic, which is Postrgram’s specialty. A minimum of 50 photos is all you need (they will probably be duplicated multiple times, so you might as well select more photos) to create something like this:

postrgram - sample

If you love portraits, consider this is the ultimate selfie.

You start by selecting what poster size you like – you have five to choose from, with prices ranging from $40 to $90 (of course it’s pricey … it’s a huge poster of tiny square pictures!). Then you add it to your cart. The only potential issue here is you have to finalize your order first before gaining access to Postrgram’s poster creator tool, so only those who are dead set on having a photo mosaic made will be able to actually design a poster. They make up for it though by immediately processing orders as soon as possible, using super premium satin photo paper and professional large format printers. They normally ship it the next day and if for any reason you are not happy with the quality of the product you received, Postrgram says they’ll send you a new one, no questions asked.

Right now, it seems like you can only use photos from your own feed, but they are in the process of testing an upload feature that could enable you to send a poster as a gift.