Creative Tips



In general, larger text sizes work better than smaller texts; however, copy sizes that are too large present problems on textured stocks. Air entrapment can cause the foil not to adhere to portions of the desired area. Do not track or kern too tightly because typefaces generally appear bolder when foiled. Set type loosely and with more leading than you might ordinarily consider.

Solids and Fine Lines

When designing large solid areas of foil with fine detail, expect to make two passes with the press. For a quality stamp designed with intricate details, be sure the space between the lines is no less than half the thickness of the stock you are using.

Foils and Laser Printers

Careful consideration must be given when producing foil stamped materials intended for laser imprinting. Use caution when selecting dry, textured parchment and recycled stocks because the low adherence properties can cause the foil to release, crack, peel, or dull under the extreme heat. If in doubt, ask your foil stamper for a test sheet for you to run through the printer.


Consult your stamping supplier if a design calls for tight registration of foil to print, foil to foil, or UV coatings and varnishes. Do not use trapping techniques on artwork next to, or inclusive of, foils. Be aware, tight registration may also require additional production charges.

Stock Selection

To mitigate dull foil stamps avoid choosing paper stocks such as 25 percent cotton, 100 percent cotton, vellum, laid stock or other porous papers.

Recycled Stock

The use of recycled stocks has become quite common, but there are some factors to consider. Due to high compression levels of recycled fiber, stamping large solid areas requires more applied pressure by the stamping press. Often a foil will not appear as mirror-like on fine lettering when detail is lost. In addition, due to the fibrous nature of these stocks, die life is shortened often resulting in loss of detail or additional cost.

Dark Colored Stock

Some colors and contrasts of high gloss pigments, translucent pastels and light foils may not be acceptable when applied to dark stocks. Check with your stamping supplier to achieve best results.

Stock and Foil Color

Because many pigment, pastel tint, and pearl foils are translucent, their color can be altered dramatically by the color of the underlying stock.

Effects tips

Foil Stamping

  • Do not stamp on UV coating
  • Inks and coatings must be free of waxes, Teflon and silicone
  • Do not reverse out ink and coating where foil is to be placed


  • Embossing should not be done within one inch of the sheet edge
  • Small characters/lines do not show up well
  • In some cases, foil stamping and embossing can be done in the same press pass

Die cutting

  • All layouts should be furnished as full sheet film positives
  • There should be at least one inch from gripper edge to first rule
  • Different types of rules should be identified such as cut, perforation, score, etc.

UV Coating

  • Available as overall or spot coverage, in gloss or matte
  • Inks and coatings should be dry and free of wax, Teflon and silicone
  • Soy and metallic inks must be tested before running a project
  • Small characters and type do not show up well
  • No screens or halftones should be used with UV film

Remoistenable glue stripping

  • There should be no ink or coating where glue is applied
  • Strip cannot go over a tab or seam
  • Consecutive numbering
  • We provide Roman 1/4, Gothic 1/8, 3/16
  • Guaranteed or non-guaranteed to 6 digits

Scratch-off Foil

  • There should be no varnish in stamped area
  • Screen image to 80 percent to prevent ink from showing through


  • Inks and coatings should be dry and free of wax, Teflon and silicone
  • Soy and metallic inks must be tested before running a project
  • Small characters and type do not show up well
  • Paper must be able to withstand extreme heat

Overprinting of Foil

  • Need to specify if UV or conventional inks will be used & critical registration