Ignition Creative believes a tactile experience is important. We know that choice of stock and embellishments is an integral part of the design process. These elements determine the tone of the project, and have a big impact on the end user.

It is important to know that while your visual design may communicate your message perfectly, the choice of your stock or embellishment may compromise it. At Ignition, we ensure all elements of a project work together to communicate its message effectively.

Don’t know where to start? We’ve put together a few tips to help you understand the options available:


The Basics

Uncoated vs Coated

One of the first things to think of when choosing what stock to print with is whether it will be coated or uncoated. In a nutshell — coated stock is glossy, while uncoated stock is matte. Uncoated stocks are generally seen as “environmentally friendly” which may work to your advantage. Coated stock tends to be best for glossy, promotional items. The stock reflects the light and catches the viewers eye.

Stock Weight

Paper comes in all shapes and sizes. The “weight” or “gsm” of a stock refers to its thickness (or “paper density”). A light stock (eg. copy paper at 90gsm) will give an entirely different feeling to your job than a heavy card (eg. 400gsm board). Things to consider when choosing stock include tone of the project as well as how durable it needs to be. Ignition Creative will advise you as to what stock will be best for your job.


There are a number of embellishments to consider when planning a project. It is important to decide on embellishments early, as your project will benefit from being designed to accommodate these from the start. Some of the embellishments available at Ignition are:


  • Spot-UV: Spot-UV is one of the most common and most cost-effective embellishment techniques. A thin layer of gloss is applied to a designated area of the design, leaving the rest untouched. It is cured with a UV light and is immediately dry to the touch. This technique is used commonly in business card design. It is most effective on a matte stock.
  • Foil: Foils are available when a luxe printed item is required. A custom metal block is created for the foiled area, the item is printed, and the foil is applied.
  • Emboss/Deboss: Embossing raises the surface of the paper by pressing a metal plate of the desired shape and texture directly on to the stock. Plates are generally custom made. It is a subtle but luxurious addition to a printed project.
  • Die Cut: this is a great way to cut away from your competition. This involves creating a custom dieblock in a specific shape. The die is used to cut through the paper to create a custom shape. This can be used across a variety of printed material such as business cards and presentation folders. The biggest cost of the project is the initial dieblock creation, so it can be useful to create a plate of something that you can use in a future project eg. your logo.

The Final Stages

Printing is one of the final stages of a project, and there are a variety of options to choose. At Ignition, we will advise printing choices with your project’s goals in mind. What is chosen will depend on quantity of print required, the colours used, and the project’s purpose. Printing techniques available include digital, offset, and screen-printing.

Useful Resources + Tidbits

There are of course environmental considerations when choosing stock. If carbon footprints are your immediate priority, there are options such as recycled paper, or even tree-free paper made from stone (find out more at the Repap website)

If you have any questions about a project you have in mind, contact us and we can walk you through your stock options and organise a quote today.

Have any questions about a print job? Contact us today.