Print Coatings & Tactile Print Processes
Use coatings to avoid fingerprinting, scuffing, smudging or cracking on glossy paper stock. Some coatings deepen the ink color they cover, yellow with age and/or may discolor white paper. You cannot glue or foil stamp over some coatings.
Aqueous Coating: Like its name suggests, aqueous coating is water-based. Aqueous coating is more environmentally friendly than other coatings and is used for an overall coating for large areas of flat colour that might rub off.
Lamination: The ultimate in protection, film lamination forms a strong, protective layer of plastic to the printed sheet. Usually available in gloss and matte finishes.
Varnish: Varnish is essentially ink without pigment/color. It is applied as another ink color on the press.
Emboss: Many people incorrectly use the term “emboss” when speaking about letterpress printing. “Emboss” actually refers to a raised area accomplished by use of a two part die with a form and a counter form. Embossing on one side, causes an indentation on the opposite side.
Letterpress: printing with heavy impression is closer to a “deboss.” A deboss pushes down into the paper. (remember “d” for down = deboss) Letterpress plates can use ink but embossing and debossing dies do not use ink. They must be used blind, registered to preprinted artwork or used with foil stamping / blocking. Letterpress does not necessarily cause an "outdent" on the opposite side.
Dyecutting: Sharp specially shaped blades are used in die cutting. The blade is bent into the desired shape and mounted to a strong backing. The result is known as a die. The material being cut is placed on a flat surface with a supportive backing, and the die is pressed onto the material to cut it.
Paper (or card) die cutting can also incorporate fold lines, by compressing the paper/card but not cutting through, this is usually done in the same process as the initial cuts and is how many free standing card or paper display stands/promotional material is produced (for example the large displays seen in a movie theater).
Foiling: Foil stamping uses heat and metallic film in a specialty printing process that print Gold, Silver and Florescent colours as a separate print run. Foil stamping, also called hot stamping, dry stamping, foil imprinting, or leaf stamping, can be combined with dimensional embossing to make letters and images on business cards, book covers and folders. Foiling works effectively on paper, vinyl, textiles, wood, hard plastic and leather.