Foiling is a great way to make your print material look unique and sophisticated, to add more class and make the product look premium.
Foil printing is a process that uses heat, pressure and foil. Once you have created the design, it is engraved into a foiling die (it is like a rubber stamp, but made of metal). It is then put onto a hot stamping press. A roll of thin foil is placed between the die and your substrate (paper), and the pressure is applied.
The most popular foils are gold and silver, but they also come in many other colours and effects. After foiling, you can apply different finishes to make it stand out even more.
The luxurious feel of foiling comes from the usage of real gold leaves on old manuscripts. The technique is later adapted to be more affordable, but the feeling of luxury that we experience when we see gold and silver is still there.
Foil printing is going to make your product stand out. Studies have shown that the more appealing the product looks, customers are going to pay more attention. Foil is going to make your product hard to put down and ignore. It will make your product look prestigious and will be associated with superior quality.
There are a few different types of foil:
Metallic Foils are mostly used for silver, gold, copper and bronze appearance. But they also come in different colours, such as purple, red, blue, green and others. They can be glossy (shiny), and have a “mirror-like” shine. Satin refers to metallic foils that have “blurry” reflections. Satin provides a more sophisticated look and retains its base colour better than gloss foil. Gloss foil reflects lights stronger and works better for small details.
Pigment Foils provide the non-metallic glossy or matte look. It is usually used for printing on textured or dry paper. A layer of pigment foil will create a solid base and ensure strong and rich colour reproduction on problematic printing surfaces.
Pearl Foils achieve the more subtle, almost transparent shine without added colour. They are commonly used on wedding invitations.
Holographic Foils are making a holographic or rainbow appearance in the presence of light.
Many people are associating foiling only with products like invitations and packaging. But they can also make your custom business stationery look upscale, or your marketing materials look more valuable, and harder to ignore.
How to set-up your print files for foil stamping
Only vector-based shapes and text can be foiled. To avoid the missing fonts problem, make sure the text is outlined. Furthermore, all the artwork elements you want to be foiled need to be 100% black and placed on their own layer. That means your artwork needs to have two separate layers: one layer contains CMYK or Pantone artwork, and a separate layer contains the foil stamp elements.
When submitting the files to your printer, you need to have three separate PDF files:
- A file that contains only the CMYK / Pantone layer.
- A file that contains only the foil stamp layer.
- A file that contains both layers.