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15 simple print buzzwords you need to know

15 simple print buzzwords you need to know

There is a lot of printing jargon out there.

We should know. We use it daily without realising it. It is like a second language to us!

Of course, we are always happy to explain any jargon we use when speaking about print and design projects. However, we thought it would be useful to provide you with a helpful guide to some of the commonly used words that we hear daily in the world of print.

(Don’t forget to bookmark this for later!)

1. Binding

This term is used for the type of finish that holds paper together such as within a brochure or book.

2. Bleed

Bleed is the extra space just around the edge of your artwork that is cut off during production. It is essential in printing as without it, you could have thin white lines around the edges.

3. Crop marks

These are lines that are put onto the artwork to show where the artwork needs to be trimmed. Combined with bleed and your artwork is set up perfectly for print.

4. Creep

This refers to movement that can happen to the margins in a document when pages are folded during the finishing process.

5. Die-cut

Die-cutting is the process of cutting out multiple shapes from a printed sheet using a tool (or die). A good example of a die-cut printed product would be a presentation folder.

6. Digital printing

Digital printing is great for short runs as no printing plates are needed, making it a cost-effective option if you only need a few leaflets, posters and booklets.

7. Dye-Sublimation

Commonly used to decorate fabric-based material, this type of print involves heat transfer ink to apply images to fabrics.

8. Embossing

This is the process of adding an impression onto paper that has a raised effort. This is opposite to debossing where the design would be indented.

9. GSM

This stands for ‘grams per square metre’ and is the weight of the paper. The bigger the number, the thicker the paper will be.

10. Litho printing

Regarded as the ‘traditional’ method of printing, this process is typically used for high-quality image printing and larger print runs. The artwork would be placed on plates, inked and then printed onto the paper.

11. Ream

This is simply a term for 500 sheets of paper.

12. Self-cover

This refers to a booklet cover that uses the same paper as the inside pages.

13. Spot colour

This is where a single ink for each colour is used to make the colour extremely precise. This is usually based on Pantone Matching System (PMS) colours, rather than using the CMYK process to achieve a colour e.g., mixing cyan, magenta, yellow and black.

14. Transparency

This is where an image or font isn’t 100% opaque in the artwork. This can sometimes cause issues in printing so make sure it is flattened and converted to CMYK before printing.

15. Wet proof

This is a fully made-up printed proof using the machines and materials that will be used for the full run. This is typically only recommended for large runs or unique projects as the set-up costs can be quite expensive.

If there is a printing term you don’t see listed and are still confused about, simply give us a call on 01522 300222 or drop us an email and our team of creative and print experts would be happy to help. You can also tweet us @Visua1print!

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