The best approach to combining digital printing and foil stamping
Foil stamping is a very versatile print finishing option which can be used on various papers from silk or laminated board to kraft, metallic stock and even 100% cotton. A common request from our clients is to combine digital printing and foil stamping on an uncoated card stock. When digitally printing on uncoated stock there is nothing to protect the ink on the surface of the card. After printing, the job is guillotined or die cut which can cause the ink to flake along the edges. It is most prevalent on the bottom edge, when a job is cut down and can be controlled to some degree by adjusting the guillotine settings, however, the best way to prevent this is to laminate the surface with matt or soft touch lamination. This thin laminate film protects the ink on the surface and prevents the ink from flaking/cracking on the edges when the job is cut down. In addition, foil stamping on laminate gives the foil a much more shiny and metallic appearance than foil stamping on uncoated card. Foil stamping on uncoated papers and cards can create more of a muted metallic finish.
Preventing ink from cracking or flaking on the edges
Whenever a job combines digital printing and foil stamping, we always recommend printing on a silk board and then laminating. Silk board ensures good results with digital printing, laminates well, the ink doesn't crack or flake on the edges and it foils really well with an extra metallic ‘pop,’ compared to uncoated stocks.
Combining uncoated card with printing and foiling
If you do have your heart set on using an uncoated card stock there are a couple of options we recommend. First, is to avoid making your digital printing full bleed, this means that the printed artwork elements do not go to the card edges which removes any ink flaking/cracking issues. Second (and our personal favourite,) is to work with a coloured card stock such as Colorplan, Senses, Sirio or Woodstock. Coloured card stocks are dyed which means all the fibres in the paper have been dyed a specific colour. Not only can you duplex and triplex these stocks for beautiful duotone edges and coloured cores, but there are absolutely no flaking/cracking issues on the edges. Coloured card stocks can be printed with white ink, printed with full colour designs using a white underpin, foil stamped, embossed, debossed and foil embossed. You can also print colour on colour for some subtle spot UV effects. We’ve also worked on several projects where coloured card stocks have been laminated and then foil stamped. To learn more, check out our 8 Benefits of Coloured Card for printing blog post.
If you have any questions or want to tap into our years of experience for guidance, you can reach out to a friendly AHC team member to discuss your project or find out the best way to bring your vision to life!