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Glossary

Your Encyclopedia for Labels!

In label printing, there are a large number of technical terms that may not always be immediately understandable. Below you will find a collection of these terms together with explanations. For example, terms relating to the structure of print data and the production sequence of your labels are explained in detail.

Good adhesion is the key when it comes to labelling your products. We do offer different types of adhesion:

Permanent
Hight tack
Peelable
Removable

In case you have doubts or questions, you can reach us by phone between 9.00 a.m. and 5.00 p.m. on 0203 588 1080, or by email at info@label.co.uk.

Adhesive labels are self-adhesive labels on rolls. Adhesive (roll) labels are suitable for various applications in almost all branches of industry, whether it be the beverage, food or cosmetics industry.  Adhesive labels are universally applicable and can be easily processed.

Alternating means that front and back labels are printed alternately or consecutively on the roll in one job. This method is particularly suitable if your products are processed mechanically, that is if front and back labels are applied simultaneously in one pass.

The backing material carries the adhesive and face material of the label. The backing protects the adhesive and supports the face material during the die cutting process, storage, and the printing process. We offer materials with:

Glassine paper
Kraft paper
PET

The black mark is a black marking on a label, which is classically printed on the backing material of the reverse side. With this mark, the finishing or labelling machine recognises when a label begins and ends. Mostly used where clear labels are used.

The bleed is a margin, usually 2.5 mm, which extends beyond the final format. This safety zone compensates for tolerances during trimming and ensures that your motif can be printed right up to the edge of the image. If no bleed is provided in the print document, it can happen that white stripes are visible at the edges.

Blind embossing uses heat and custom die tools to give a distinctive appearance to a label (3D) without using ink or foil.

Euroscale is the short form for the European colour scale for offset printing. The CMYK colour model forms the basis for four-colour printing. Cyan, magenta and yellow form the three colour components, supported by the “key plate” black. For more information click here.

Is a modern method of printing metallic foil on a substrate in order to enhance the aesthetic of the final product.

With the conventional method, a die cut plate is applied to a magnetic cylinder. This rotates and cut the individually desired label shape out of the material.

The die-cutting line marks the final size/outermost edge of the label. The cutting line must be created as a spot colour and named “cutting-line”. It must also be set for overprinting, as this line is only a technical aid that is not printed.

To achieve a pure black in digital printing, we recommend applying the following colour values:

C:0% M:0% Y:0% B:100%.

Barcodes should be in form of vectors in colour 100%K (100% black) to prevent code scanning problems.

Digital printing is a printing system based on technologies that allow digital files to be sent from a personal computer or other electronic devices to the printer. Digital printing guarantees optimal output in terms of both high definition and colour thanks to print management systems that allow the image to maintain the same appearance regardless of the substrate on which it is reproduced.

Doublehit means to apply the colours black or white twice during the printing process to increase opacity. In this way you can achieve a particularly brilliant white or deep black.

Please note: All fields that are 100% black will receive a double colour application.  All fields that are laid out in 100% opaque white are printed twice.  White must be named HPI White and must be a solid colour.

DPI stands for “dots per inch” and describes the resolution in print. During the printing process, printed images are converted into small dots (rasterised). In order for us to be able to print the printing image in the best possible quality, your print file should meet some minimum requirements with regard to resolution:

Minimum resolution: 250 dpi
Standard resolution for images: 300 dpi
Standard resolution for line graphics: 1,200 dpi

With fluorescent inks (invisible ink) as an eye-catcher, you create a very unusual effect that is not visible at first glance. Only in combination with so-called black light does the label become an eye-catcher: the special UV inks reflect the black light due to their chemical composition and start to glow.

The FSC® label certifies that the wood used comes from FSC®-certified forests and thus from sustainable and environmentally friendly forest management.

Hot foil stamping turns your label into something very special.  In hot foil stamping, a foil is pressed onto your label using heat and a special tool.  The resulting gloss is unique and definitely sets the label apart from the competition.  This noble finishing is used particularly often for high-quality drinks, such as wines or spirits.  Hot foil is available in various colours such as bronze, silver, gold or even mint green or pink.  You can see how the hot foil works in our free sample book.

At label.co.uk we print with HP Indigo digital printing machines.  These machines offer perfect quality with the greatest possible flexibility: for example, there is no need to make printing plates.  On the Indigo machines, the “electronic” special ink is applied directly to the printing medium.  Although the machines can thus roughly be classified as “digital printing”, the printing image produced by HP Indigo machines is far superior to conventional digital or inkjet presses.  The first-class printing quality was the main incentive for us to include the machines in our park.  Compared to conventional machines, the HP machines also have many other advantages.  For example, each label can be printed differently, which can be used for barcodes, numbering or individual addresses.  This is not possible with classic machines.  If you would like to learn more about our printing machines or have any questions, please contact us.  If you would like to see the printing quality of the Indigo machines for yourself, please ask for our free sample book with sample labels.

Opaque white serves as a primer on your label to make your colours look brighter and more vibrant. The opaque white colour must be created in your print file as an extra colour channel called HPI-White and set to overprint.  This is especially useful with the following types of paper:

Grasspaper
Metallic
Transparent

Is the distance between two labels on the web. The gap is individual from customer to customer.  As standard, we produce the gap of 5mm. If you would like a different one, please let us know in a separate email.  A minimum interspace of 3mm is possible. For alternating labels, the gap must be defined by the customer in the print file.

In the photo sector, the JPG standard has been an indispensable standard since 1992.  The format is widely compatible and easy to use. For photos this is no problem.  It becomes difficult, however, when complete labels are to be printed in this format.  In a JPG file, each pixel is stored flat as a fixed pixel element. This means that individual sub-areas can only be changed infrequently and with difficulty. Furthermore, the quality of the print, especially with fonts and fine lines, may not be optimal.

For these reasons we ask you to send us print data in standardised formats whenever possible.  As a rule, the PDF format is the ideal option here. We have also compiled all information on data delivery for you again under “Data delivery“.

In so-called wet lamination, a liquid adhesive is applied to the protective film. Under pressure and heat, the solvent then evaporates and the film bonds to the label. Film lamination is available in gloss or matt and creates a particularly strong effect that varnishes cannot replicate. Both provide a slightly more premium feel to labels too, due to the added thickness they give the material. Although not sold as a “protective” finish, a lamination will protect the printed label against abrasion as well as water, oil and light chemicals.

Laser punching uses a laser beam that cuts the material precisely. With this method, no cutting dies are required and every conceivable shape can be punched out, as the laser beam can be set individually and completely automatically.

In conventional offset printing, so-called printing plates are used.  The offset is called planographic printing and works indirectly.  The printing plates and substrate do not come into contact with each other, but the printing ink is transferred to a rubber blanket.  This rubber blanket then transfers the ink to the substrate, usually paper or film. Incidentally, there is no difference in quality between digital offset printing via HP Indigo and conventional offset printing.

Opaque self-adhesive labels are 100% opaque and permanently adhesive. The back of the sticker used for over labelling is coated with a special dark colour so that no content can show through. These labels are suitable for pasting over colourful backgrounds, pictures and texts.

PDF (Portable Document Format) is a universal file format. It can contain both images and text and can be opened independently from any operating system or terminal device. The format is mainly used in the printing industry and was created by Adobe in 1993.

The print data is the be-all and end-all of a label production. All subsequent steps are based on it and for a smooth production flow it is important that this data is correctly created. Therefore we ask you to deliver the print file in PDF format.

Plus materials have a PET reinforcement between the adhesive layer and face material. This then minimises the risk of wrinkling and improves performance in wet conditions. Which makes them ideal for wine & spirit bottlesdelicacieshealth products and other items that are chilled or to be presented in ice buckets.

To create professional printing data, it is best to use graphics programs such as Adobe Illustrator, InDesign or ArtPro. You will find detailed instructions on how best to create your printing data on our data delivery information sheet. Or simply use our artwork services. What does that mean? We check your printing data for technical errors – depending on the correction package selected – and correct them if necessary. So you can be sure that you will receive a satisfactory printing result.

Protective varnish – whether in matt or glossy – primarily ensures that your label is protected against ink abrasion. The protective varnish protects against ordinary abrasion. If your products are packaged in such a way that they rub against each other, for example, or if you want 100% protection against ink abrasion, then we recommend film lamination in any case.

Relief embossing combines blind embossing and hot foil stamping. This means that the material is formed multi-dimensionally at the desired position using an embossing tool and then additionally finished with a hot foil.

Would you like us to base the printing of your order on a previous order? No problem!  In order for us to be able to match the colours as accurately as possible when printing, we need a colour sample of the old order. If we do not have a sample, we will print according to standard and without further colour corrections. Therefore, colour deviations can occur from job to job.

RGB is an additive colour space represented by the primary colours red, green and blue. The RGB colour space is mainly used for screens and TV sets. The counterpart to RGB is CMYK, the colour space for four-colour printing. For more information click here.

At label.co.uk you can specify the desired diameter for the roll core in the calculator:

The values of 1″ / 25 mm, 2″ / 40 mm and 3″ / 76 mm (standard), which are usual for labelling systems, are available to you as roll core diameters. With the right core, you avoid machine downtimes and ensure ideal labelling speed for your products.

The roll diameter indicates how large the rolls are in diameter (with labels). You can specify this value individually during the ordering process when configuring the roll. If a specific roll size is to be maintained, the number of labels per roll must be specified.

The maximum roll diameter indicates the maximum size of the rolls. However, this does not mean that the rolls may not also be smaller.

As the name suggests, roll-fed labels are labels that are wound onto a roll. The labels can be designed freely and individually according to your specifications and wishes. Roll labels are particularly suitable for machine processing. If you apply your labels to the product by hand, we recommend our labels on A4 sheets.

The safety margin is the distance to the element that is printed first. For printing reasons, the safety margin should be at least 2 mm. If the safety distance is not maintained, some elements can be punched in or out.

Sandwich printing called this because multiple layers are printed on the same side of a transparent film. This type of label consists of three layers. First, the graphics visible from the adhesive side are printed invertedly onto the material. In the next step, an even layer of opaque white is applied to cover the front side of the label. Finally the third layer with what is to be seen from the outside in printed on the label. These labels are not completely opaque, so the effect will be better if the graphics have the same contrast on both sides.

In silver printing, the CMYK colour model is supplemented by the so-called Silverink, a silver colour. If you are searching for an outstanding label this is the perfect detail! This ink is only available upon request. Please contact our customer service.

Spot varnish is a clear varnish that can be applied to your printing project in specific areas giving a 3D effect.

A test print is a proof of your labels under original production conditions. It serves to test the quality of the colours and the material. So you can be sure that your labels will look as planned.

Redundant bits of surrounding areas of face material and adhesive that are created when labels are cut. These areas are not used and are either removed during the manufacturing process or left in place on the backing sheet.

When die-cutting labels, a rest of the material remains around the die-cut shape. Remove this residue from the backing material is called weeding. Especially if the labels are further processed by machine, prior weeding is necessary. At label.co.uk, labels are weeded by default when the rolls are ordered for use in a machine.

For the machine processing of your labels it is important that you know which winding direction your machine requires. A distinction is made between inner and outer winding and how your labels are positioned on the roll, i.e. foot first, head first, word start first or word end first. An illustrated overview can be found here.