Category Archives: specialty printing
From overprinting to bleeding, grids to slugs, the terms used in the graphic design world can be humorous as well as downright confusing. Here are some design tips to make your printing a little more interesting. AND, most of these design tips can apply to more than just graphics design!
- Look beyond standard size paper. Getting the reader interested is everything! Try square booklets for a more interesting reading experience. Consider portability. Smaller sizes like A5, for example, are much easier for your intended recipient to “pocket.”
- Less is definitely more. Think there’s too much on your page? You are probably right. Define what’s absolutely necessary and remove any “visual noise.”
- Go ahead and bleed! “Bleed” is the small “breathing space” on the sides of your document that provides space for your printer to safely print around paper and design inconsistencies. If you want your image to print to the edge of the paper your artwork must include bleed. 1/8” is the bleed “standard” on all sides (top, bottom, inside and outside). You can always choose “no bleed” but be aware that your image will have a white space at the edge of the paper once it is trimmed.
- Grids are great. Composition grid guidelines to base your design is very helpful. But don’t always go for the standard 3-column setup. Get playful with column overlaps, sidebars, and other variations.
- Become font-friendly. Think about a font as the voice of your piece. You can have a lot of fun with basic, well designed fonts like Helvetica, but consider others that convey a subtle or distinct flavor. Be careful mixing fonts to be sure they work together.
- Consider typography as a visual. A great graphic headline, artfully expressed through typography can be catchy, bold and attention-grabbing. Consider inverting (reversing out the type), running it diagonally, or even bleeding the type off the page.
Here are some quotes/tips from our pre-press department on design:
“White is the new black. Use white, lots of white!”
“If your piece is a sign or something that the reader will quickly look at, use a sans-serif font (you know the fonts that don’t have the curvies at the bottom)!”
“You can almost never go wrong with geometrical shapes.”
“When in doubt, leave it out.”
“Don’t be afraid to take a chance.”
“Design for your audience, not for yourself.”
What is ClingZ? It sounds like a new rock band or dance club, when in actuality; it is a type of substrate/material that is gaining popularity to be printed on. The difference between ClingZ and any other type of substrate is that it is a charged film that can adhere to almost any surface. Amazingly, it uses no glue or adhesives.
“ClingZ can be used to hang on drywall, glass, wood and even brick,” according to ClingZ’s website. When it comes to using this material, advertising ventures are easy. Once printed, it is a cinch to hang because it is charged with a polypropylene film as opposed to other types of substrates that have glue or adhesive on them. This can help with large advertisements because the chances of bubbles or wrinkles are greatly reduced.
Recently, ClingZ was printed on for a mural for a college art show. It was printed in strips and then attached to the wall easily. Another cool way ClingZ was used was for an interactive makeup tutorial that allowed you to remove the directions from the makeup book to attach it to the mirror for ease of use when it came to applying the makeup and looking at the directions. The possibilities are endless. Miles is a certified ClingZ printer and we would be happy to answer any questions or take on your next project!Tweet
It’s pretty obvious that when advertisers want to get consumers attention they look to billboards, magazine ads, and commercials to sell their products. Sometimes, they hit the right buttons with buyers and other times they go overboard and the point gets lost in translation. If you want to try a new direction, our suggestion is to look into shelf talkers.
Often called Shelf Screamers or Shelf Barkers this type of advertising is definitely gaining momentum. Shelf talkers are small signs attached to the edge of shelves at stores that advertise a product, a sale, or whatever else worth accenting. They are even a good idea to help advertise something eco-friendly or healthy. In the grand scheme of advertising, they are very small in looks but they definitely pack a punch when you would like to note something of importance.
They can be printed on many different types of substrates and Miles Printing is more than happy to meet your Shelf Talker needs! Let us know, we would be happy to help!Tweet
Here at Miles Printing we are loving the Soft Touch Aqueous Coating. It seems to be really hot for designers right now!
In case you have not heard of “Soft Touch” coating, it is an aqueous coating that when applied to a printed sheet, it gives the feel of velvet. We have had several clients use this coating on their print projects recently!
The Soft Touch can be applied over the entire sheet (flood coat) or it can be applied to specific graphics on the press sheet (spot coating). An example of spot coating is a book cover that features a large flower with a grassy background….we can apply the soft touch to the flower so the petals feel velvety to the touch!
It also seems to be popular to mix the Soft Touch coating with other coatings such as the High Gloss UV to give a contrast effect!
If you are planning on using Soft Touch or any other special coating on your next project, please make sure you choose a printer who is experienced with coatings……as they can be tricky, especially when appling multiple coatings to the same project!
It should be noted that “Soft Touch™” is a registered trademark of one of the many manufacturers of this product. Other manufacturers are now adopting their own terms for this coating – such as “Soft Feel” or “Liquid Velvet.” Tweet
The answer is: both! Yes, Miles Printing is known to specialize in printing on plastics and all manors of plastic substrates. But we also print on paper – and do lots of this.
In fact, because Miles Printing can provide multiple services, we can streamline your next production process, taking it from concept to quote – and from printing and mailing to fulfillment, if needed. Because we handle the entire process in house, your job is going to be cost-effective.
We hope you will think of Miles Printing as a commercial offset printer who primarily prints with UV inks, because they’re green and earth-friendly, plus they look terrific. And yes, we specialize in printing on all types of unique substrates. We can also provide you with:
- Die cutting
- Folding & gluing
- Saddle stitching
- Print on demand
- CD / DVD replication & packaging
- Variable data services including Purls (Personalized URL’s) and QR codes
- Fulfillment services
Miles Printing is also a WBE, certified in both city and state. We’re happy to help provide any needed documentation for your next WBE-mandated project. And if you need special pricing as a non-profit or have a tight budget, let us know. We can work with you to meet your restrictions.Tweet
Have you checked out myMiles as Miles Printing yet? Many companies put their events on the line with us, giving us several projects at once – event planners, for instance. That’s when we introduce our clients to “myMiles,” a job status tracker. Miles Printing allows event planners and every other customer to check on every aspect of every printing project in real time.
By utilizing sophisticated software technology, myMiles lets you securely tie into the actual systems we use to gather data and track your jobs from start to finish. You get up-to-the-minute job status information. Find out if your job is on press, in the bindery, on the dock or in transit for delivery. You also have access to all your account information including quotes, billing status, job costs, past job information, and more.
Using myMiles helps clients know we are producing, printing and delivering everything precisely, efficiently, and – right on schedule.Tweet
We frequently get requests from clients that require some problem solving on our part. Sometimes clients know what the end product must do or look like, but aren’t quite sure how to get there. That’s when we gather our team and hash out possible solutions.
Miles Printing knows how to ask the right questions, determine how the end-product will function best, and find the best ink, substrate and finishing options such as bindings, die cutting, or hand-finishing.
Sometimes it takes a willingness to try something new from a different perspective – to get to the answer a client needs. Of course, our experience with printing everything from die-cut banners to shelf decals, POP displays to bumper stickers and window clings, is a great reference as well.
If you have an idea for a printing project, but need a little extra help getting the best solution for your budget and your imagination, the Miles Printing team is your best ally.
And don’t hesitate to call us even if your project is just bits and pieces of ideas. That’s the best time to get the creative juices flowing and determine the best way to forge ahead!Tweet
Some commercial printing projects require images that are as close to “real life” as possible. This is especially true for highly detailed catalog printing and upscale magazines.
When real-life quality imagery is important, working with stochastic (pronounced “stow-cast-ick”) technology can be the answer. Miles Printing stochastic technology allows us to print vibrant, near-photographic quality images. Stochastic colors are richer and the textures are sharper than conventional commercial printing. It’s even better than standard printing at the highest resolutions.
It is a highly precise screening process that reduces variation in “dot gain,” “wet trap” and “color contamination.” These terms are used in printing photographs, and refer to variations that occur in commercial printing as red, yellow, cyan and black are ink jetted in a regular pattern of dots, onto the paper. As these colors set, they spread just a little bit before they completely dry and some of the ink is absorbed into the paper. So some sharpness in complex photographic images can be lost this way.
Stochastic printing uses a screening process that intentionally varies the placement of the dots. For darker color, it uses more dots per area, or a higher frequency of dots. Stochastic technology also reduces the chances of halftone screens being just a little off. The results are images with brighter colors and pronounced textures for near-photographic quality.
So, next time you need extremely sharp, detail-printed images, ask Miles about their Stochastic printing process.Tweet
Some marketing materials air for a few seconds – like web, TV and radio ads, and then they are gone. But decals stay put – both in the mind of the consumer AND on the surface upon which they are placed!
Decals are a unique way to bring attention to your products and organization. They can be printed on a countless variety of substrates such as paper, plastic, and static cling and can be designed in different shapes and sizes.
Decals are a little tricky to print, but Miles Printing has mastered the process, printing oversize decals, special cut outs, decals on many different gauges of vinyl and plastic — and in any color of the rainbow thanks to the use of UV inks.
Miles Printing has printed static cling decals for use on mirrors and glass – in reverse, so they can be read correctly. And decals that stay put on plastics, metals, and even mixed surfaces.
Need a way to bring attention to your product or your organization? Are you thinking of something eye-catching for your next mailer? Decals are light, flexible and slim, which means they are very inexpensive to mail.Tweet
If you’re heading to the track this month, you can’t but help bumping into us. That’s because Miles Printing is responsible for printing and consecutively numbering different types of plastic credentials for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Printing plastic credentials for special events is one of Miles Printing’s areas of expertise. These credentials can be differentiated by date, sponsor, event, individual number, bar code, photo ID, and other types of variable data . Miles can add a unique shape by utilizing our in house die cutting capabilities.
Because Miles Printing understands and has experience with printing plastic substrates, we are experts in assuring the credentials won’t warp in intense heat — and stand up to accidental washings, rain, or unintentional folding – all things IMS credentials come in contact with every May. Our UV ink keep the printing from smearing or wearing off, so they stay bright, crisp and will last the entire month without fading.
When you need special event passes printed on plastic to really hold up, Miles Printing has the “credentials” you’re looking for.Tweet