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Put A (letterpress or embossed) Label On It

More and more, designers are thinking creatively about labels. With Australia’s wine industry booming and a growing, boutique local industry for organic skin care and food products, packaging briefs abound.

Over the years designers have approached us to talk about the possibilities of labeling – how to make their designs more special, how they can use embellishment to send powerful messages that achieve cut-through with the consumer so that the product the label is on makes it off the supermarket shelf and into the shopping basket.

We have always been interested in embossed labelling and now with CLIQX technology, it has never been easier. More than just a stationery art form, letterpress is enjoying a resurgence in the world of labelling too. Letterpress printing a small carbon footprint , so it works well for brands who are trying to send an eco-friendly message. It also has a beautiful, rustic look and feel which suits brands with a bit of a history behind them or organic feel about them. It effectively conveys authenticity, legacy and tradition – which are all very compelling messages for different businesses in a range of industries.

Also, keep your fingers crossed for our Watermarx CLIQX job in the Printovation awards this evening, hosted by GASAA.

Posted by watermarx on the 24th of September 2012

The Value of a Good Impression – Designing For Print With L’Atelier Group

Katerina Roth’s clients had a dilemma; their business offered expensive gift certificates but the gift certificates themselves didn’t look expensive enough. In other words the printed certificate failed to convey the value that the giver had invested in, therefore reducing the quality of the experience (nobody wants to be thought of as cheap) and reflecting poorly on the company overall.

They approached her studio, L’Atelier Group, with this job and the task of redesigning their business cards and covernote. Katerina’s solution produced a gift certificate design which utilised gold foil to give the impression of high value (a touch of gold almost always makes printing look special) combined with the texture of letterpress – which was requested from the client. The client had noticed that letterpress printing seems to be popping up everywhere at the moment and felt that it would suit their branding.

We were delighted to work with Katerina because she truly knows her craft and designs in such a way that maximises the capabilities of various print techniques. More designers like that, please! Often we are faced with a job that has not been designed with the embellishment finish being requested, in mind.  Sometimes this is wonderful creative audacity trying to push the envelope of what is possible but more often than not, it’s simply because the designer has not been taught what letterpress can and can’t do well, which stocks work best with which finish, to foil or not to foil.

Edition  2 of Justus Magazine  is a fantastic resource for print designers interested in learning how to design beautifully for letterpress printing. Or click here  to see our list of capabilities on the Watermarx and click on the different links to read our Designer Tips.

Posted by watermarx on the 16th of September 2012


Last Monday night we were invited to the Australian Museum for a talk given to AGDA members by Damian Borchok, CEO of Interbrand Australia and NZ on ‘How To Run A Successful Branding Studio’ the very question that haunts most of you ever-active, creative minds.

We were there as guests of the papermerchants, the BJ Ball Group and AGDA who sponsored the night. BJ Ball launched a cleverly (Interbrand) designed sample swatch kit in the style of the AGDAnew relaunch. Much to our great pleasure, the lovely Anita invited us to collaborate with ADGA /BJ Ball on this project and we printed the swatches giving us the opportunity to showcase how these stocks can be brought to life with various printing techniques.


  • We had the chance to treat the BJ Ball ‘Onyx Embossed 300gsm’ with a ‘true emboss’ (for those of you who don’t know, a true emboss is created with a male and female plate rather than just letterpressed for the impression. This gives deeper dimension… yes, it does sound rude but trust us, it’s lovely.)
  • We used fluoro ink (hot pink) to letterpress and emboss the ‘Cyclus Offset 350gsm’ showcasing what can be achieved with a recycled stock.
  • We also enjoyed letterpressing the ‘Boxboard Pasted 600gsm’ because chunkier, weightier stocks are in vogue at the moment and we love that this stock gives an authentic, crafty or rustic feel, and is an incredibly economical option.

RECYCLED IS THE NEW UNCOATED: Likewise, most designers would overlook ‘Ecostar Uncoated 350gsm’ so it was fun to emboss this swingtag to show off the possibilities of this humble stock, which took to our emboss very well

WERID IS THE NEW WONDERFUL: ‘Plike black 330gsm’ is notoriously tricky to work with but has the most beautiful, velvety texture which seems to lap up foiling.

THANKS TO EVERYONE – Including that nice young man who commented on our new website!

It was a treat to mix it up with the NSW AGDA members and our industry peers including Southern Colour and Konica Minolta. It was a great night and very well done.

Many thanks to Anita from AGDA (who tirelessly strung almost every swatch book together herself, we heard) for bringing us on-board. Big thanks also to BJ Ball whose papers were an honour to play with.

Posted by watermarx on the 12th of September 2012