What is Foil Stamping?

by Brock on September 22, 2008

foil stamping

Simple and Elegant

When your presentation folders need an elegant, non-tarnishing metallic finish to be applied, it’s easily accomplished using a process referred to as foil stamping. The reproduction of graphics requiring a high quality reflective image can be effectively achieved by using foil films rather than metallic inks. Metallic inks, similar to standard printing inks, provide a subdued metallic appearance. The natural tendency of the ink to be absorbed into the paper stock contributes to a duller looking effect.

The foil stamping process begins with a die being mounted to a platen and heated. Foil is then placed between the die stamp (engraved image) and the paper stock. When the die presses against the foil, the heat releases the coloring layer from the foil and binds it to the folder. Foil stamping is also referred to as flat stamping, hot stamping, gold stamping, blocking, and leafing.

Foil stamping does not produce a raised or lowered image. This can only be achieved through embossing or debossing; when combined this becomes foil embossed, foil debossed, or combination work. Foil stamping is the only printing process capable of applying bright, non-tarnishable metallic effects to folder paper. Foils are available in a wide variety of colors, finishes, and effects.

Different foils have different characteristics. These include durability, scratch resistance, fade resistance, chemical resistance, brittleness, opacity, and adherence; along with color and surface characteristics. Foil characteristics combined with the qualities of the selected paper stock and the depth and complexity of the artwork and dies; are all variables that will influence the viability of your project.

Holographic patterned foils, three-dimensional holograms, multiple plan holograms, stereograms, refractive engraving, foil over foil, stamp and bump are a few of the foil stamping options you may encounter. If you are considering an embossed design without adding a colored foil, you may want to look into glazing, gloss emboss, tint leaf combination, or textured emboss.

Foils can be used for logos or accents surrounding logos, borders or highlights surrounding images, and elegant accents for distinctive symbols, images, graphics, or lines on your custom presentation folders.

Ink, foil, paper stock, and die are all key elements in the success of a foil stamped pocket folder. Given the number of variables, it is best to get your printing company involved at the design level. An experienced commercial printing company will be able to guide you in your decisions so that your custom folders are stunning and not mediocre. These things can only be learned through experience, something The Folder Store has plenty of.

Image Credit: good stock

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

hot stamping December 24, 2008 at 10:28 am

foil stamping has such a gorgeous look to it, really adds that extra something.

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