Hot foil printing is a completely separate process to our colour printing, so if your order requires both colour print and foiling, you will need to submit the colour and foil artwork separately, along with a mockup image featuring both colour and foil parts for our reference setting up the job.
If your order requires a printing plate to be manufactured, this section applies to you.
When creating artwork for foil, it's important to remember that it must be created in vector format (not bitmap/raster) as the artwork is output on film at a resolution of more than 1000dpi (generally, high resolution bitmap art is 300dpi).
Using pixel-based bitmap/raster artwork would result in a die with jagged edges, which will cause problems in foiling and make your final product look terrible. Vector art, on the other hand, doesn't have pixels as it's all mathematical lines and curves that can be expanded or reduced without affecting the resolution.
In practicality, this means that your artwork needs to be created in Illustrator or InDesign or another program that creates vector based PDF files.
You can’t make a gradient or do shading in a foil. You can only do black and white. No grays. Plate art needs to be created in black on a white background in a CMYK color space where black is 100% black and all other values are 0% (C0% M0% Y0% K100%).
The foiling plate will be manufactured to the size of the artwork you supply. Please ensure your artwork is exactly the same size you want the foil to be stamped. This is especially important if the foil needs to align with standard print.
We can only foil one colour at a time. For jobs requiring foil in more than one colour, please be aware that each will need stamping separately with it's own plate.
Please consider 1pt to be the minimum thickness achievable. This is especially important if you are intending to use magnesium dies as a raised area this thin will probably disappear after a few hundred impressions.
Try to break up large areas of foil. Solid areas such as a path of 2x3″ are very hard to foil. Those of you who’ve ever tried to put a screen cover on a smartphone or fondleslab will know that trying to get something cleanly on such a large area without having dust or air pockets is near impossible.
Avoid having large areas of foil mixed with fine detail. Large areas require a different release foil and more pressure than fine detail. Mixing the two on the same die means using a medium release foil and trying to adjust it for both the detail and the large blocks of foil. This can add hours of labour, a lot of waste and even making the job impossible to run.
We understand that these requirements can't always be met and if this is the case, please contact us and send what you have and we'll see what we can do.
Below are the basic artwork requirements that we need from your artwork along with some additional ones which are dependent on the software you are using
With the exception of sublimated products such as coasters and mugs, artwork must be created in CMYK mode (not RGB). Please ensure any RGB or Pantone elements are converted to CMYK before saving your print ready file. If you don't, we will do a standard conversion for you, however, our results may vary from what you expect and this is at your own risk.
For the majority of products, artwork must be created at minimum resolution of 300dpi (dots per inch).
Please ensure that any photographs have been taken at the highest setting possible on a quality digital camera, and that scanned images have been scanned at a minimum of 300dpi.
Logos, photographs and images taken from your website should not be used at all as these will only be 72dpi.
Only accepting artwork created at a minimum of 300dpi ensures that the final print looks fantastic.
It's not possible to print all the way to the edge of a sheet of paper/card, so in order to achieve this, it is necessary to print a larger area than needed and then trim the paper/card down to the required size.
Unless stated otherwise on the product page, you must remember to add a 3mm bleed to each edge of the artwork.
For example, the finished size of an A4 Letterhead is 210mm x 297mm. A 3mm bleed needs to be added to each edge of the artwork, which makes the artwork page 216mm x 303mm.
If you're unsure, feel free to get in touch.
Our preferred file type is a press ready PDF. If you have the knowledge and software to save in this format then please do so.
Alternatively, as long as the artwork meets our required design specifications set out above we can also accept JPEG and TIFF files.
You can also use one of the free print templates that we provide which are already set to the correct sizes and bleed.
If supplying artwork as a press ready PDF (preferred), TIFF or JPEG, please ensure that all layers are flattened prior to exporting your print ready file. Make sure you save a copy of the original file first as once flattened you will not be able to easily edit your artwork. For best results do not use any optimisation when saving your file.
If you are supplying artwork as a press ready PDF (preferred) file created in Illustrator or InDesign then please ensure that:
All artwork supplied is treated as print ready. We will of course always do our best to point out any obvious errors such as problems with bleed, however it is your responsibility to ensure the above specifications are met where applicable.