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November 19, 2012

Not Your Run of the Mill Paper

by fnbrinc

The printing industry has come a long way since Benjamin Franklin was cranking out copies of his “Pennsylvania Gazette” by hand. Back then, your ink color choices were black, black or black to be printed on a shade of white paper. Today, your choices while not limitless are quite extensive.

Often businesses call ready to start a printing project. The two questions we start with is how many ink colors do you want to print and what type of paper. With regards to the ink colors, most of the clients envision using four color printing since most advertising is done in multiple colors. However, besides using color to make a printed piece more attractive, colors can be used to convey psychological messages and drive sales (see “Communicating with Colors” from Feb. 2011). FNBR Printing

When it comes to paper, there are many different choices.

Paper thickness ranges from thin text weight stock up to triple thick cover weight. There are numerous paper finishes to choose from that create a plethora of tactile sensations. The most commonly used finishes are offset, matte, dull, silk and glossy. In addition to being able to choose many different thicknesses and finishes, paper comes in a wide variety of colors. In fact, studies have shown that color has been proven to increase readership, enhance retention and improve comprehension.

Careful consideration should always be given when deciding what paper to use for your printing. Choosing the right paper can dramatically enhance the look-and-feel of your printed piece.

For Example:

Let’s say that you’re inviting people to attend a formal fund raiser. By using a linen stock or perhaps a stock with a pearl finish, you will not only make your invitation stand out, but it will make the recipient feel special by receiving such a quality invitation. You can further add to the elegance of the invitation by printing on a translucent sheet of paper and incorporating it into the invitation design.

Besides the paper, other techniques can be used to enhance your printing. Foil can be used to add an elegant look, or the printed piece can be embossed to add the sensation of touch to the visual appeal of the mailer. Aqueous and UV coatings can be used to protect the printing or they can be used to make specific areas of the printing jump out.

Shapes can also be used to identify your printing. By using custom dies, printed material can be cut to any shape you desire. Imagine sending out a postcard for a shoe store in the shape of a shoe, or a jewelry store mailer in the shape of a diamond.


Investing the time to design and print a piece that uniquely represents your product or service can greatly increase your desired results. Your FNBR representative will gladly take the time to help guide you through all of your printing options.  Call FNBR toll free at 888-988-8148 or via email at

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