100 PERCENT RECYCLED
A growing number of our clients are specifying 100 percent recycled, uncoated paper stocks (100% PCW) for their projects. There is a fairly wide range of brightness levels and price points among the various options. Choices include: Neenah Environment PC 100; Neenah Conservation; Neenah Classic Crest Recycled 100; Mohawk Options 100% PC (in three shades); Mohawk Via (some grades); and Cascades Rolland Enviro 100. Brightness levels range from 88 up to 96.

PRINTING ON THE HIGH SEAS
Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) and Cunard Lines have a most unique work-study program. Students begin their graphic arts studies in Rochester and then have an option for a multi-month stint on board one of Cunard's three ships. Cunard prefers the quality of offset printing; and each of their ships have a fully equipped plant which the students work in. Daily output includes newsletters, programs, menus, forms, etc. And, since the ships list, it can sometimes be challenging to keep the water used within the presses at their proper levels.

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TRANSLUCENT ENVELOPES WITH A TWIST
About a decade ago, a client came to us with an interesting mailing question, which we then presented to U.S. Postal Service officials. The result? We now mail a number of projects in translucent envelopes with the outgoing address on the flap side of the envelope. The primary benefit is that the image (photograph or illustration) and/or teaser copy on the front of the invitation is viewed thru the face of the envelope without any encumbrances. The return address, postage and outgoing address are all on the flap side, leaving the face completely blank. The post office does have a few parameters that they want followed when employing this design. But, they are mostly cool with it and it can only help with response rates.

WHEN IT HAS TO BE STRONGER THAN PAPER
There are projects that occasionally come along that require a substrate stronger than traditional paper. One possible solution is Polyart, a matte coated, synthetic substrate with rather unique physical properties. Polyart is water-resistant, tear-resistant and resistant to grease and many chemicals. It combines the strength of plastic with the printability of paper; and, may be perfect for children’s books, technical manuals, maps and guides, banners and posters, menus and placemats and tags and labels. It is manufactured in weights ranging from 51 lb. (3.8 pt.) thru 193 lb. (13.5 pt.).

CLEARLY SOMETHING DIFFERENT
Are you looking to make a great first impression? Stamping clear leaf foil on booklet covers, presentation folders, announcements and invitations can be the ideal way to achieve a striking first impression. The clear leaf foil creates a gloss sheen, which is especially elegant and dramatic when used on uncoated, textured stocks. Applied by a combination of heat and pressure, the foil adds visually pleasing contrast when laid down over an image or other design element. It can even be used for typography, which works quite well against a dark, solid color (the actual paper stock color or a printed solid). Let us know if you would like to receive samples of clear leaf stamping.

BOOK BINDING NEED NOT ALWAYS BE PERFECT
When it comes to selecting a book binding method for a publication, the two most popular options are Saddle Stitching and Perfect Binding. (We’ll leave mechanical binding—Spiral, Wire-O and GBC—for another time.) Saddle stitching collates and nests folded signatures and then inserts two heavy-gauge staples thru the spine. The page count must always be an increment of four; and, the publication can either be a self-cover (all the same weight paper stock) or a plus-cover (heavier paper stock for the cover). Perfect binding takes the folded signatures and stacks them atop each other. The spine is then notched or ground down, glue is applied and the cover is positioned over the spine and text pages. This creates a square spine, which can be printed on, too. The page count can be an increment of two. While saddle stitching is the least expensive and quickest binding method, it generally has a maximum capacity of approximately 64 pages or .125". Many graphic designers prefer perfect binding as they believe that it creates a more finished and professional-looking product.

HIGH QUALITY DISPLAY OF IMAGES IN IN-DESIGN
Images need not look "foggy" when viewing them in In-Design. First, right-click on the image with the Selection Tool (Control-Click using a single button mouse on the Mac). This will bring up the Contextual Menu and from there you can choose Display Performance > High Quality Display. This works on any kind of image (photograph, illustration, etc.) in an InDesign document, and especially well on Native Illustrator, EPS and PDFs within your document.

CREATING RICH BLACK SOLIDS
As with all other offset printing inks, black, too, is a transaparent color. But when printing in four-color process (CMYK), we have the advantage of creating a "rich" black on press, for denser and darker solid backgrounds. This is accomplished by using percentages of the other process colors—cyan, magenta and yellow—under the black to build the rich black. Typically, this is done with 50% cyan, 40% magenta and 30% yellow printing under 100% black. The result is a very successful lay-down of what appears to the eye as a beautiful solid of only black ink.

BEAUTIFUL HUES INSIDE AND OUT
While a palette of more than 1,100 different Pantone colors are rolling off the presses inside our building, there is no shortage of stunning color on the outside. Adorning both sides of our front entrance is our flower garden; which includes pink and white impatiens, red begonias, green hostas and blue forget-me-nots. We’re doing our part to beautify Long Island City.

A STOCK THAT IS THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS
The folks at the Smart Paper Division of Mohawk Paper put their thinking caps on to create a paper stock that marries two important paper traits: a matte coating to enhance images and produce vibrant colors coupled with a textured, tactile finish. The stock is called KnightKote Matte. The textured finishes include canvas/pebble embossed and vertical lines, in bright white and crème. As an added bonus, this stock has also earned FSC certification. Let us know if you would like to see printed samples of KnightKote.

LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION
Jeff Goldblum and other cast and crew members of "Law & Order Criminal Intent" just completed a day of filming in our parking lot. We suggested that they do a future episode on counterfeiting; and, actually shoot inside our building, specifically in our prepress department and pressroom!

BLEED THE DESIGN, NOT THE BUDGET
Yes, Virginia, you can bleed a project without any additional cost. Bleed is the term used for images or other design elements that extend to the edge of the paper. This often necessitates purchasing and running a larger size press sheet. To accommodate a bleed, .125" (1/8") must be added beyond the final trim size of the piece. For example, an 8.5" x 11" sheet bleeding four sides is set up in a page layout program as 8.75" x 11.25", adding .125" to each side. HOWEVER, slightly scanting the final project size eliminates the need to purchase larger size paper stock. Design a booklet with a final trim size of 8.25" x 10.75" and you can bleed to your heart’s content without any penalty cost to do so.

PROPER PAPER WEIGHT
We recently completed an invitation package for a Hamptons Tea Dance fundraiser. The client needed guidance on the "proper" stock (paper) weight for the six-page, three-panel invitation, itself. As is so often the case, "proper" had to be determined through a combination of aesthetic and practical considerations. Aesthetically, the goal was to select a heavy enough weight to give the invitation some bulk and substance, so that it didn’t feel cheap. Practically speaking, the weight could not be so heavy as to risk possible cracking on the folds, or so heavy that it would increase the postage cost. The winner? The perfect choice was 100# (silk) coated cover.

WHERE DID THEY GO?
While the palette of metallic inks has increased (see entry below), the number of text paper mills has greatly diminished. Those of us who have been in the industry for several decades have witnessed the disappearance of so many mills that manufactured text stocks (linen finish, vellum, felt, laid, etc.). Among the missing-in-action: Hopper Paper; James River Corporation and its Curtis Paper division; Simpson Paper; Fraser Paper; Cross-Pointe Paper; Gilbert Paper; Champion Paper; and more. Some of these have been acquired by other mills, while others we just don’t know.

AND IN THE BEGINNING, THERE WERE THREE
Not so very long ago, metallic ink choices were limited to gold, silver and copper. But, alas, a new age has dawned! By mixing those three metallic ink colors with conventional printing inks, metallics are achievable in a wide assortment of hues . . . from metallic violet to chartreuse to raspberry to robin’s egg blue, etc. The metallic sheen is optimized by printing these inks on coated surfaces; and, often a varnish or other coating is necessary to prevent scuffing. For optimum results, these inks should be mixed shortly before printing.

SHORT-FOLDS DEFINITELY NOT A SHORT CONCEPT
We’ve just completed production of a not-for-profit's annual report with a short-folded outside front cover. A short-fold, in place of a flush fold, can make a printed piece sooooooo much more visually pleasing and interesting. It provides a sneak-preview of what is to come, invites the recipient to look inside. For those who are totally wild and crazy, a brochure/folder can also be designed and produced with a series of short-folds, rather than just a single short-fold.

 

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