File Specifications

Document Size: Should be the size of your label.

Bleed: If you want your design to reach the edge of your printed project (no white margin), your file must include a .0625″ bleed margin around the outside trim area that any images or colors must be stretched into. For software that does not include bleed area as part of their document setups, add .125″ to your desired label size to accommodate bleeds. For labels with no bleeding items (a white margin around the whole label), this is not required.
Safety Zone: All non-bleeding items should be kept a minimum of .0625″ inside the trim (finished) size of the label to prevent items from being cut off the finished product.

Raster Image Resolution: 300 to 600 ppi for color or greyscale images at final placed size, 1200 ppi for black and white (1-bit) images. Use caution with images obtained from the web as they are usually low-resolution (72-96 ppi) and will not reproduce well.

Fonts: Fonts used in your document should be included with your submitted files (except for PDFs), or they can alternatively be converted to outlines before file submission. Please note we cannot make any text changes to files that have had their fonts converted to outlines; any text changes will require a new file to be submitted.

Colors: For full-color (also known as 4-color) print jobs, convert all RGB and Pantone spot colors to CMYK color. Pantone (PMS) can be used in addition to CMYK if those specific PMS colors are needed – additional plate and press charges will apply. For 1-, 2- or 3-color jobs, use Pantone colors. For black and white print jobs, use greyscale color mode (not CMYK or RGB).

Transparency: Never use shadows, glows or any other transparency effect (image or vector) over a spot color. Spot colors in those circumstances should be converted to CMYK for transparency effects to render properly when output.

Pagination: Each printed item should be submitted as its own file. Additional charges will apply for creating “one-up” files from artwork ganged into one submitted file.

File Requirements

We prefer vector art vs. raster, especially when working with specialty inks or substrates (white or spot varnish inks or foil papers for example).

File Formats
PDF: High-resolution PDF’s (we especially like PDF /X compliant files) is our preferred file submission format. For best results, use Adobe Illustrator, Adobe lnDesign, Quark Xpress, Adobe Distiller or Adobe PDF printer to create your PDF. Choose either “PDF/ X-1 a” or “Press Quality” presets when creating your PDF when using those applications. Applications that allow you to “Save As” or “Export” to a PDF should be treated with caution. PDF files should have all fonts embedded, raster images resolution resampled to 300 ppi at scaled size, line art resolution to 1200 ppi (these , are chosen automatically when using the above presets).

We do support other file types, meaning we can edit the following file types and prepare them for printing (additional fees may apply):

  • Adobe Illustrator (.ai)
  • Adobe In Design (. indd)
  • Quark Xpress (. qxp) to version 9
  • Vector art files (saved as .eps)

For these file types, please also send us any placed images and fonts used in your project.

Adobe Photoshop: This requires special mention as while we can accept Photoshop files, it is raster image (photo) editing software and thus is limited as a graphic design tool to produce a complete project layout and may yield inferior output results compared to using other software. If this your only option, document resolution should be set to 300 ppi, color space should be CMYK, and you should submit a .psd file with all layers (text layers, etc.) and fonts used in the file.

Microsoft Publisher/Word: These are not recommended for professional print output. Convert these files to PDF before submission.
Not seeing your software here? Don’t panic! Send along your artwork (preferably as a PDF file) and we can assess what your options are and advise accordingly. Please be aware that recreation of artwork will incur additional fees.