Foil stamping is a traditional printing method where metallic foils are transferred to a surface such as cardstock with a steel die at high temperatures. Foil stamping creates a shiny and highly reflective effect. A steel die must be manufactured for each area to be foiled, so this is not an economical approach for prints with variable information such as guest names.
The method has diversified since its rise to prominence in the 19th century to include a variety of processes
such as invitations and packaging.
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Laser cutting is a technology that uses a specialized fine laser to vaporize materials, resulting in a cut edge. While once typically
used for industrial manufacturing applications,
is now used by stationers for stunningly intricate stationery as well!
Letterpress is a traditional technique of
relief printing. Using a large printing press,
a custom created steel die is used to make
a direct impression of an inked, raised surface into various thick, soft cotton stocks. Letterpress inks are matte and not metallic. If you want a more subtle and timeless look, letterpress is stunning!
Thermography is a specialized process that combines offset printing ink with a powdered resin which is baked so that the resin rises to give the ink a raised, textured effect. Heat is then applied
which melts the resin to form a raised text or image. There are several types of powder used in thermography, both matte and metallic colors. Raised thermography colors such as gold and
silver have metallic properties but are not
reflective like metallic foils.
Enhanced raised foil is a cross between traditional foil stamping and thermography; enhanced foil creates a raised effect that is quite shiny and reflective!
It is often less expensive than traditional foil stamping but does have limitations as it can only be done on the very smoothest of stocks.
It is perfect for foiling over images
such as photos!
Die cutting is the general process of using a custom steel die to shear webs of low-strength materials, such as card stock, paper, cloth or fibers and some other low resistance materials. These dies are best for cutting simplistic shapes, unlike laser cutting.
Digital printing is a method of printing from a graphic design software directly to a variety of media, such as card stock and paper. It usually refers to professional printing where small-run jobs (under 5,000) are printed using large-format and high-end laser printers. Digital printing uses non-opaque CMYK toners to achieve beautiful color prints.