Read later

Editor's note: Cover story

This special front cover of L&L is our first to feature foiling applied by hot stamping on synthetic material. The latter was supplied by Cosmo Films; the foil by Foilco.

Some things only work in print. This special front cover of L&L issue 1 is a case in point: our first to feature foiling applied by hot stamping on synthetic material. The latter was supplied by Cosmo Films; the foil by Foilco.

The story began when head designer Adam Evans created the cover graphic – a striking whisky label which we personalized to reference this issue’s beverage labeling article. 

‘We have a superb design team at L&L, and when I saw the proofs for the beverage article I knew that it would make a fantastic front cover, especially if it was foiled,’ says production and design manager James Wenman. ‘But mindful that we were printing on a synthetic I simply wasn’t sure if it could be done. Some designs cry out for special finishes to bring them alive, but high temperatures and synthetics aren’t natural bed fellows.’

Blackmore, L&L’s printer based in Dorset, UK, took up the challenge. ‘Conventional printing on synthetic stocks can be problematic as the ink doesn’t absorb and therefore can take a long time to dry,’ says sales manager Peter Thompson. ‘But we have a KBA press with UV LED curing, so the ink dries on impact and sits on the surface of the paper – perfect for printing on uncoated papers or specialist stocks.’

Blackmore had not previously printed on Cosmo’s synthetic material. ‘We were confident we could print on this stock, but foil blocking onto a synthetic is not something we had done before,’ says Thompson. ‘The fear was that the foiling process could melt the synthetic stock. But our local foil block company Duraseal ran trials with two different foils on printed sheets, to check the foil would adhere to the printed surface, not just the surface of the stock.’

Kapil Anand, global head, Speciality Labels & Industrial Films at Cosmo Films, says: ‘We are delighted to provide our both-side coated synthetic paper for L&L’s cover. I am sure the results will be impressive due to the quality of our synthetic paper, which finds a wide range of applications in book covers, tags and labels, retail and packaging, identification and credential documents.’

Matt Hornby, sales director at Foilco, says: ‘We are delighted to be involved in this decoration project with L&L. It highlights the growing number of publications wishing to increase their visual appeal, and we are now seeing this gradual shift in the label and packaging sectors. It’s great to witness. Foilco offers the widest range of stamping foil variations in the industry, from color range and effects to application specific grades. As Foilco continues to grow its number of international agents, it is a great time to further push our global presence with L&L.’

‘As a printed magazine, we have an opportunity to put different materials and finishes directly into the hands of the people who’ll be using them on their products,’ says Wenman. ‘I find it rewarding to think that we may inspire or stimulate new ideas.’


James Quirk is outgoing editor of Labels & Labeling.

See author’s profile »