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January 2009

Foil stamping and embossing are two commonly paired finishing techniques. The process of embossing, or creating a raised design in a substrate is well complimented by the addition of foil. Foil stamping offers a variety of colors, finishes and textures to enhance the design of your piece.  When your project calls for foil stamping and embossing, keep these pointers in mind as you plan:

  • Bigger is better. For embossing, the larger the reverse out area of your design, the better the die will perform.
  • Paper selection. Paper stock is an important consideration for successful embossing. Soft papers are easier to emboss than laid bond and other hard stocks. Uncoated sheets are best for deep embossing. Embossing and debossing involves both heat and pressure, which smooth out textured stock. While the contrast between the smooth, embossed image and the rest of the page is striking and often desired, be safe and let your customers know in advance that this will happen.
  • Type size matters. A minimum type size of 8-points is recommended for foil stamping, larger for embossing. Type smaller than this can look ragged, especially when either serif fonts or those with very skinny lines are used. Moreover, die creation can be difficult too.
  • Use compatible inks. If your design calls for registered foil to ink, know that some inks are more conducive to a successful a successful outcome than others. Metallic inks, those with high wax content, reflex blue and some soy inks can repel foil adhesion. Contact Feiereisen prior to printing if you have any questions about using a specialty ink.
  • Choose the right foil. Communicate with your finisher to make sure that your metallic, pigment or pastel foil selection will work with the chosen paper stock because some combinations don’t. Also, check the opacity of your foil. Many pigment and pearl translucent foils appear differently after adhesion to ink or colored stocks.

The tips above will help you when you are planning your next project involving embossing and foil stamping. The friendly professionals at Feiereisen will be pleased to help you ensure this dynamic duo is a winning combination for you.

The Feiereisen Advantage

Feiereisen, Inc. is a leading provider of post press and finishing services including foil stamping, embossing, die cutting, scoring and perforation, PUR book binding, folding, gluing, board and litho mounting, film lamination and UV coating and more. Founded in 1933, Feiereisen has locations in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Des Moines, Iowa and Kansas City, Missouri.