The file is supplied as four-colour process CMYK and not RGB colour space. If you are unfamiliar with this terminology don’t worry, we will convert it for you, though some colours may look washed out. The document’s page size is the finished trim size. Fonts are embedded or converted to outlines so no fonts are needed. All scans resolution are 300 dpi at 100% of the final image size. Images are embedded in the file. Files are supplied with 3mm bleed. Any trim, score or fold marks are indicated and outside the live print area. Artwork is at least 5mm from the edge of the page; this is regarded as a safe or quiet area. Black text is 100% black and not a mix of CMYK. White text is not set to overprint. Any multiple-page PDF consists of single pages running from the front cover through to the back cover, including blank pages if needed. If folded, check artwork is setup correctly for these folds.
If you’ve already created your files for print, take a quick look at these guidelines before you place your order. It might save you time - and should help ensure your artwork is in the best possible format for print. 4 Rules for Designing the Perfect Fit: Make sure you've accounted for the 'bleed' in your design, filling this area with any background colours or images. Ensure all important parts of your design are kept within the safe area. (What does this mean?) Where possible designs featuring graphics or text should be submitted as vector based PDFs. To keep your text in vector format, we recommend applications like Adobe Illustrator, Adobe InDesign and more recent versions of Adobe Photoshop. Please note, saving text in JPEG format could result in 'fuzzy' edges. When your design features a mix of photography and text, make sure your placed photographs are 300 dpi, and where possible that your final design is saved as a PDF. Make sure you pre-flight your PDFs using the 'Adobe PDF/X-1a:2001' preset. This option can be found in Adobe Illustrator, Adobe InDesign and more recent versions of Adobe Photoshop.
Design Formats - Graphics and text designs (basically, any non-photographic content) are best submitted as vector based PDFs. This will ensure your lines and text are nice and crisp. If you upload bitmap-based content (JPEGs or PNGs), there may be some fuzziness around your text. You should also make sure that there are no cut or crop lines, all transparencies have been flattened, overprint is switched off and any fonts used are embedded, before saving your designs. For best results, we recommend using the following preset to preflight your designs: Adobe PDF/X-1a:2001.
If you are uploading photography or non-vector artwork (e.g. JPEGs), please make sure they are no less than 96dpi (ideally at 300dpi). If your designs are a mix of photography and design, make sure the embedded photographs used are above the recommended pixel sizes. Remember large, high-quality JPEGs will produce the best results for photography
Whether you’re using a photo or a solid color, you’ll want to make sure that the background of your design extends through and fills the bleed area. This guarantees you that your design reaches all the way to the end of the card when trimmed and will prevent any unwanted white edges.
To keep all of the important stuff on your cards, not the cutting room floor, you’ll need to make sure all essential text and parts of images are kept within the safe area. The safe area is placed far from the trim line, but if something were to sneak outside of the safe area it wouldn’t be protected from the blades of our cutting machines. We also recommend providing a little extra room for your design to breath inside the safe area, just in case.
In general we suggest avoiding borders, as they can come out lopsided or uneven. Although if you want to use a border, we recommend extending it at least 2mm within the safe area. This is to make sure that any inaccuracy during the cutting process is less noticeable.
Think of Gloss as an enhancement to your existing design. Any design element it is printed over will appear shiny. The gloss spot varnish is applied to areas of your already printed artwork as a separate ink. You can also apply spot gloss varnish to a plain background, or part of the artwork where nothing is printed, in order to create a very subtle optical effect.
Whether you are making Spot Gloss or Any colour foil cards two files are required. One for the ink which we call the Design Layer. This is a standard print file that you would use on a standard print and has the same requirements. The second file tells us where to put the Special Finishes you choose. This should be a black and white file, like a chess board. This file must be set to 100% black colour, not greyscale with CMYK values of 0/0/0/100 for the black parts, that will be where the Element will be applied. Please note Gloss Spot Varnish can not be applied to a gloss laminated surface and is best noticeable with matt/velvet laminated surfaces. You can apply foiling finishes in combination with velvet lamination only. If you're going for a lamination without any special finishes on it, there is no need to supply your artwork any different than a normal print ready file.
CMYK stands for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black - the inks we mix together to produce your printed material. RGB stands for Red, Green and Blue - the colours of light a computer screen mixes together to make colours on screen. In other words RGB is used for viewing colours on a computer screen, like this website. All our presses, big and small, use cyan, magenta, yellow and black inks to transform your digital file to printed media. Please ensure your artwork is set up as CMYK. If you use RGB images or colours we will convert these to CMYK for you but the colour of your printed file may appear different when printed.
We prefer high resolution PDF files to be submitted to us. However, if we receive a print file in a different format, we will check it and let you know if anything needs changed on it. We recomend submitting the pages that you need printed in a single 300dpi high resolution PDF. Alternatively if you have the pages saved as separate files, you can send them to us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Once you've added your standard 3mm bleed on each side of the artwork, please add extra 10mm as Safe Area on the side where you need the book to be stitched. If you prefer any part of the sheet perforated, please add minimum 13mm Safe Area from the edge of the document. This will guarantee you that none of your important information would get ripped off in half or hidden by the wire stitches of our machine.
We can also number your NCR books, pads and loose sheets. Please make sure the file that you're attaching shows us the place and number you would prefer the print to start from. Alternatively you can contact us by email or phone and give us your specific instructions.
Please make sure you've added your standard 3mm bleed on each of the edges of the file. Please also add a safe zone on the binding edge no smaller than 15-20mm and also add 10mm on all edges.