February 18, 2019

The Wide World of Paper Options

When it comes to print projects, you may think all paper is created equal. But from finishes to texture to stock, and even custom design, your options are endless. The wide range of paper you can choose from allows you to create truly crafted, unique projects that will help you reach your audience and goals. Below are a few things to keep in mind for your next print project.

Paper Finishes

Choosing the right paper for your next project is extremely important and the type of paper you choose will depend on what you’re planning on creating. For example, the thickness of your paper will likely differ depending on if you’re creating postcards, business cards, posters, or letterheads.

Once you’ve selected the thickness of your paper you’ll next need to decide on your finish. There are three types of finishes to choose from: uncoated, matte stock, or glossy.

Uncoated Finish

Uncoated paper is your standard office copy paper and is very porous, making text easier to read, but any images used won’t pop off the page as well as they will with matte or glossy paper.

Matte Stock Finish

Matte stock paper is a digital copy paper and the ink sits on top of the page rather than being absorbed like uncoated paper. The lack of absorption allows for both text and pictures to stand out on the piece. Pictures are printed with a semi-gloss, matte finish, making it a great finish choice for brochures.

Glossy Finish

A glossy finish is a perfect choice for a piece that is very image heavy and does not have a large amount of text.


custom business card

Business Card Options

With the variety of paper choices and finishes in the marketplace, business cards have become increasingly more interesting. Before, business cards were largely differentiated by the thickness of the paper. For example, the average business card is printed on 16 point thick paper and many people now choose to use a 32 point thickness to grab their recipient’s attention.

Other methods that can grab attention include painted edges (like painting a red edge on a white business card), using a paper finish that feels like suede, velvet, or silk, or adding metallic foil to differentiate your card. You can also choose to add a die cut, which can turn your card into a unique shape or add a cut out of a fun shape on the actual card like the example you see above.

What’s more, Some people also like to use Spot UV coating to make a specific area of the business card more glossy, and in many cases clients choose to use this finish for their logos. Some PostNet locations have also used a raised Spot UV coating to give projects an embossed look without the added cost.

Finally, think about playing with the shape and size of your business card. Keep in mind that business cards shouldn’t be too big, as they are designed to be placed in wallets and have traditionally been the size of a credit card. Some fun ideas include square business cards, rounded corners, or oval business cards to complement the logo’s design.

Synthetic Paper Applications

Recently there have been incredible advancements in the types of paper being developed. One of the more popular advancements has been the creation of synthetic stock paper. This type of paper is a great option for restaurants and many have started using it to replace their laminated menus where the edges have started to curl.

Synthetic paper comes in varying weights and is waterproof and tear resistant. Due to the durability of the paper, restaurants clean them in the dishwasher to sanitize them and save staff time while also eliminating the need to constantly replace laminated menus.

With so many options for paper, you’ll have no problem making your next print project come to life in a fun, unique way. The expert team at every PostNet can help you determine what type of paper and finish will be the best for your needs and are happy to assist you in your next project.

Visit your nearest PostNet location and let us help you create a beautifully printed piece.


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