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Build-a-Button FAQ

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Does your button making program work with Windows, Mac or any other device?

Build-a-Button works with Windows, Mac, Android and IOS software. For best viewing results, use a tablet sized or larger screen with Google Chrome or a Firefox browser. We do not recommend or support any Microsoft browsers, Chromebook or similar type devices.


Do you offer training or technical support?

Yes, we have posted free in-depth How To video tutorials and these FAQs, which cover all the functionality of the Build-a-Button Online Design Center. For those who wish to have a more personal platform in which to learn, we do offer training and technical support by phone for a fee. You can always post real time design questions and search for answers on our Pinback Button Making Community.


Can Build-a-Button edit photos such as changing brightness, cropping and erasing?

Yes, we offer those editing functions and even more. the whole purpose of bringing Build-a-Button to the marketplace is to offer a powerful button making design program that is easy to use.


Can I print different designs on one page?

Yes! See our file formats and functions section below for more information.    


I cannot open my saved image.

Windows’s default settings do not allow for auto-populating .jpg, png or .pdf file extensions. You can either manually add them to the end of your file name (ex: photo.jpg or photo.pdf) as you are saving your file or you can follow this link to change your default computer settings and allow for auto-population of the file extensions.    


Why does it take so long to save an image?

There can be several reasons for this. As with any graphics design program, complex designs can take longer to process. Standard intermittent slowdowns of traffic across the web, saving large images and using an internet speed slower than DSL. Other speed issues can be if your computer is behind a firewall at a school or place of business.


Why do my printed button designs look grainy and pixilated?

The most common reason for this is using a low quality photo. If you download an image from the internet, it will usually be of low quality like 72dpi or 96dpi. You need at least a 300 DPI photo for it to look good when you print it. Build-a-Button has a built in image analyzer and will provide you with a low resolution warning if you try and upload a low quality image. If you are using a high resolution picture and your images are still printing poorly, make sure your printer is set to the best photo resolution it has and print on the best 24lb paper you can find.

My images are not printing to the correct size.

We recommend saving designs in the PDF format. Make sure your printer settings are set to print at 100% and not “reduce margins”, “scaling” or “fit to size”.  


I work at a school and Build-a-Button does not work for me here.

Your school may be behind a firewall which does not allow access to our high speed servers.  


Why is there a red or blue circle on the screen? They do not print on my button designs.

The red dotted circle shows you the image area of the button and it is automatically deleted when you save a button design to your computer. The solid blue lines are used as taglines and are also not saved.  


I make onsite buttons at craft fairs and tradeshows; can I download the Build-a-Button application?

You cannot download Build-a-Button to your hard drive but you can use it on desktops, laptops and tablets with an internet connection.  


I cannot open a PDF file.

You need to have Adobe Reader installed on your computer to open a PDF file. Click here it download Adobe Reader for free.  


How do I clear my cache and manage cookies?

Click for step-by-step instructions:


Build-a-Button File Formats and Functions

Save to Print – Saves your button design to your computer, tablet or mobile device. File options are JPG, PDF or transparent PNG. Choose the quantity of designs saved per page. Options include Die Cutting Press, which fills the entire page while the Punch Cutter layout allows you to choose how many images of the same design are printed per page.  

Save to Edit - The most exciting part of this option is our special format saves all your images, text and layers perfectly arranged so you can save it for later and pick up again exactly where you left off. This option saves your button design automatically to your computer, tablet or mobile device in a special text format so it can be uploaded and edited at a later date without losing any content or image quality.  

Upload to Edit - Upload your previously saved images for editing. Please note: you must have originally saved your images using the special Save to Edit text option to use this feature.  

Load and Print – Upload multiple images and save them to print on a single page. 1. Upload your previously saved images that were saved in our special text file format. (see Save to Edit instructions) 2. Select to save your images as a JPG, PDF or transparent PNG file. Your images will be uploaded and saved in a punch cutter layout for the specific button size you selected. For example, the 2.25” punch cutter layout will only allow 6 images per page while the 1” layout can fit 24 images on a single page.  


File Types Explained

PDF - Portable Document Format Most customers prefer to save their designs in a PDF format because images are saved in high resolution offering no loss in quality and are very easy to print to the correct button size. The only software needed to view and print the image is Adobe Reader which is usually found on most computers and if not, it is free to download and use.  

JPEG - Joint Photographic Experts Group. A .JPG file extension, (pronounced Jay Peg) is a common image file type found in emails, websites and digital photography. It is a compressed lossy format meaning it loses quality each time it is saved. Graphic software is required to view or print a JPG image. Printing button designs to the correct size can be challenging if you do not have the right software. JPG software is not created equally, that is why most ABM customers prefer saving designs in a PDF format, which alleviates the need for JPG software and its associated printing challenges.  

Transparent PNG: A PNG (Portable Network Graphics) file allows for images to be saved with a transparent background. IE: No white square surrounding the image. Printing issues are similar to printing JPG files where software programs are not created equally. That is why most ABM customers prefer saving designs in a PDF format, which alleviates the need for purchasing additional software and its associated printing challenges.  

CSV: Comma-Separated Values (CSV) files store numbers and text in a plain unformatted text format. Build-a-Button 5.0 is capable of processing CSV formatted lists.  

Text: A text file contains text and binary numbers. Build-a-Button 5.0 is capable of saving complex designs in our special text file format, which allows the user to save a button design that can be uploaded and edited at a later date without losing any content or image quality.Save



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