Monthly Archives: December 2008

  • The Château Mouton Rothschild Wine Labels

    Rothschild I thought we should end the year with something fun. Château Mouton Rothschild is acknowledged as the world's greatest Bordeaux but what interests me most about them are their labels. Every year they commission a famous artist or sculptor to create an illustration for their wine labels. The painting featured on their 2004 (the latest vintage) was actually done by Prince Charles. Other famous names such as Picasso, Andy Warhol and Salvador Dali have all had their work printed on these wine labels.

    Recently I stumbled across this website that displays the entire collection of labels produced for Château Mouton Rothschild dating back to 1946. It is interesting to see how the styles and colors have changed through the years. Many of these labels have become real collectors items.

    If you are lucky enough to bring in the New Year with a bottle of Château Mouton Rothschild (the 2004 retails for around $300) then 2008 was probably a good year for you.

    Happy New Year.

  • Creating Product Labels in Photoshop

    Photoshop I was catching up on some reading over the Holidays and I came across this interesting tutorial on how to create product labels in Adobe Photoshop. The tutorial gives an example of creating a beer label from scratch using a scanned drawing and various effects within Photoshop. If you use Photoshop regularly you should check out the Photoshop Lady's site. There are hundreds of tutorials and everything is free. As always if you have any questions about how you should prepare your files for printing at Lightning Labels, be sure to check out our Art Specs page.

  • Happy Holidays from Lightning Labels

    IStock_000004826253XSmall On behalf of everyone here at Lightning Labels I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your support in the past year. We wish you a safe and happy Holiday Season and hope you have a relaxing break. Here's to a great 2009. Lightning Labels will be closed on the following days this Holiday Season: Thursday, December 25th Friday, December 26th Thursday, January 1st

  • What Font is That?

    ABCDEF Today, there must be literally millions of fonts in existence. Heck, anyone can create their own font quite easily so the number probably keeps increasing every day. Sometimes you might be browsing online or reading through a magazine and you come across a font that you really like. How do you know what font that is? Anyone involved in graphic design has to deal with unknown fonts on a regular basis. Luckily there are plenty of tools to help you identify unusual fonts. This post features seven such tools. These tools work well with most commercially available fonts and can help you identify fonts that are close to your selected font even if they can't identify it. Thanks to Kathy at Saponifier for the tip. For the record the graphic above is not a real font - it is just an arrangement of M&M's.

  • Pantone Selects Color of the Year for 2009

    Pantone

    Pantone has selected their color of the year for 2009 and it is this yellow-orange color they have dubbed Mimosa. According to the Pantone press release this Mimosa color "exemplifies the warmth and nurturing quality of the sun, properties we as humans are naturally drawn to for reassurance. Mimosa also speaks to enlightenment, as it is a hue that sparks imagination and innovation." They indicate during these difficult times of economic uncertainty yellow expresses hope and reassurance.

    So what does this really mean? Well if you are in the fashion business you could expect Mimosa colored fashion to be prevalent throughout 2009. And you might see this color featured if you visit your local paint store next year. If you want your product labels to reflect the cutting edge of color fashion then be sure to throw in some yellow-orange hues into your label redesign for 2009.

  • Gather All the Printing News at Alltop

    Alltop Sometimes when you are trying to research a topic a google search can get frustrating. You often have to sift through pages of search results before gathering all the information you need. Wouldn't it be better to go to one location and find all the important news that is completely up to date? This is the idea behind Alltop, a new venture by Guy Kawasaki, the serial entrepreneur, venture capatalist and author. Alltop gathers all the latest news from around the world and organizes it by topic, kind of like an online magazine rack. It pulls in news from traditional sources such as newspaper and magazine web sites, but also includes new media such as popular blogs and online forums. If you need to do research on ballroom dancing, woodworking or New Zealand then Alltop has you covered. Best of all it is updated every hour with all the latest news on every topic so you know you are getting only current information. Recently a printing category was added to Alltop. It includes news from the commercial printing industry as well as label printing. So now all the news from our industry is gathered conveniently in one place at printing.alltop.com. And yes, you will find the Lightning Labels blog in there as well.

  • Beautiful New Die-Cut Labels From Villainess

    Villainess

    We printed these beautiful labels recently for Villainess, an online bath and body products company based in Tennessee. They did a number of unique things with these labels, so I thought it would be useful to share it with everyone on the blog. They wanted a label that was really different, that would stand apart from their competitors, so they decided to invest in a new die-cut shape, unique for these perfume oil bottles. They were after a vintage look with a copper texture, and to achieve that they chose our Chrome stock. The design was then created to simulate a well-worn copper plate, and a matte laminate was added to complete the vintage look.

    These bottles are only small, just 5 mil (0.18 fl. oz.), so there was not much room to create a distinctive look. Their graphic designer, Kira Butler, did a wonderful job creating this unique label which was part of a complete re-branding effort undertaken by Villainess earlier this year. With only small quantities required and 37 different scented oils, this was a perfect job for our digital label press. We love doing jobs like these that show off the unique capabilities of our digital label printing technology.

  • A Law Blog About Beverage Labels

    Masthead I stumbled across this interesting blog yesterday. Bevlog is the blog of Lehrman Beverage Law, a law firm specializing in beverage law, specifically alcoholic beverages. According to their web site, there are more than 100,000 applications for wine, beer and spirits labels approved by the TTB (Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau) every year and the people at Lehrman Beverage law review almost all of them. The most interesting labels make it on to the blog. It is necessary for every alcoholic beverage maker to obtain a certificate of label approval (COLA) before they can sell their products. This is all public record - you can search the database here. Somehow this law firm obtains pictures of the labels and includes the most noteworthy ones on their blog together with some commentary about the label or the product. For anyone interested in wine, beer, or spirits labels you really should check it out.

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Material Descriptions

Materials

BIOSTONE

One of our eco-friendly options that is actually made of stone—no trees are used. This material should not laminated.

CAST GLOSS

This is another material specially designed for the wine industry. It is paper-based with a high-gloss white finish. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CHROME (SILVER) BOPP

This material has the same water and oil-resistant properties as our White BOPP and Clear BOPP, but has the "mirror-like" look of shiny chrome.

CLASSIC CREST

Best suited for wine labels, this is a white paper stock with a dull matte finish. It is not suitable for lamination and is therefore not waterproof. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CLEAR BOPP

This is the clear version of the Polypropylene (BOPP) material. It has the same waterproof qualities as the White BOPP. It provides more of a "no label" look and is also suitable for window stickers (where reverse printing of the image allows the label to be applied to the inside of a glass window and be viewed from the outside).

ESTATE #9

This is a great option for wine labels, gourmet foods or applications where a textured finish is desired. Being a paper stock, it's not as water-resistant or durable as BOPP, but its light cream color and textured feel add a touch of the "unusual" to the right product. It features a special adhesive (removable in 100+ degree hot water) and a stronger liner particularly suited to machine application. Not suitable for lamination.

GOLD POLYESTER (METALIZED)

This material will make your labels shine! Suitable for most labeling applications, it has a strong adhesive backing and must be laminated. Choose glossy laminate to make your label designs pop, or matte for a unique, elegant look.

KRAFT (RECYCLED)

This is a recycled 100% post consumer waste material. It is a 55# paper material that is a wonderful option if an “earthy” appearance is desired. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water. It is not suitable for lamination; therefore, it is not water or oil resistant.

REMOVABLE WHITE BOPP

This material is the same as our standard BOPP, but has a special, "less aggressive" adhesive designed to allow the label to be removed or re-positioned after application. Depending on the surface it will be applied to, customer testing is strongly recommended. We can provide samples for this purpose.

SATIN CLOTH

Quite the unique material! Yes, it is woven satin acetate cloth. Think wine or spirit labels! This material will make your product packaging POP. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

SQUEEZABLE

A white, 3mil film that is better suited for squeezable applications. This material has proven to work well in a variety of applications, so you can be confident it will perform well for you.

VELLUM (RECYCLED)

A great “green” choice, this 60# vellum is 100% recycled with 100% post consumer waste material. Cannot be laminated. Is neither water nor oil-resistant. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

WHITE BOPP

This is our most commonly used material and is suitable for most applications. It's a polypropylene material with a permanent adhesive. It is impervious to water and oils, and is particularly suitable for bath and body products, as well as food containers.

WHITE EARTHFIRST PLA

A more environmentally friendly alternative to White BOPP. The PLA stands for Polylactic Acid (a biopolymer made from corn rather than petrochemicals). Similar look and feel to BOPP and suitable for most applications, but should not be used directly on candle containers.

WHITE FLEXIBLE VINYL

This is our most substantial material. The vinyl is thicker than BOPP, and is most suitable for outdoor applications where greater strength and durability are needed, or where lengthy exposure to the elements is an issue.

WINDOW DECAL (CLEAR/ULTRA-REMOVABLE)

We offer this window decal option as an alternative to static cling. The face stock is clear with excellent clarity. The adhesive is an ultra-removable featuring excellent weatherability and UV resistance. It removes cleanly from a wide variety of substrates without staining or ghosting. Why worry about static clings staying on when you can have removable adhesive there to hold it in place?

CAST GLOSS

This is another material specially designed for the wine industry. It is paper-based with a high-gloss white finish. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CHROME (SILVER) BOPP

This material has the same water and oil-resistant properties as our White BOPP and Clear BOPP, but has the "mirror-like" look of shiny chrome.

CLASSIC CREST

Best suited for wine labels, this is a white paper stock with a dull matte finish. It is not suitable for lamination and is therefore not waterproof. Same adhesive and liner as Estate #9.

CLEAR BOPP

This is the clear version of the Polypropylene (BOPP) material. It has the same waterproof qualities as the White BOPP. It provides more of a "no label" look and is also suitable for window stickers (where reverse printing of the image allows the label to be applied to the inside of a glass window and be viewed from the outside).

ESTATE #9

This is a great option for wine labels, gourmet foods or applications where a textured finish is desired. Being a paper stock, it's not as water-resistant or durable as BOPP, but its light cream color and textured feel add a touch of the "unusual" to the right product. It features a special adhesive (removable in 100+ degree hot water) and a stronger liner particularly suited to machine application. Not suitable for lamination.

GOLD POLYESTER (METALIZED)

This material will make your labels shine! Suitable for most labeling applications, it has a strong adhesive backing and must be laminated. Choose glossy laminate to make your label designs pop, or matte for a unique, elegant look.

KRAFT (RECYCLED)

This is a recycled 100% post consumer waste material. It is a 55# paper material that is a wonderful option if an “earthy” appearance is desired. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water. It is not suitable for lamination; therefore, it is not water or oil resistant.

REMOVABLE WHITE BOPP

This material is the same as our standard BOPP, but has a special, "less aggressive" adhesive designed to allow the label to be removed or re-positioned after application. Depending on the surface it will be applied to, customer testing is strongly recommended. We can provide samples for this purpose.

SATIN CLOTH

Quite the unique material! Yes, it is woven satin acetate cloth. Think wine or spirit labels! This material will make your product packaging POP. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

SQUEEZABLE

A white, 3mil film that is better suited for squeezable applications. This material has proven to work well in a variety of applications, so you can be confident it will perform well for you.

VELLUM (RECYCLED)

A great “green” choice, this 60# vellum is 100% recycled with 100% post consumer waste material. Cannot be laminated. Is neither water nor oil-resistant. The stronger liner is well suited for machine application. Depending upon face, substrate, water temperature and dwell time, label may be removed in hot water.

WHITE BOPP

This is our most commonly used material and is suitable for most applications. It's a polypropylene material with a permanent adhesive. It is impervious to water and oils, and is particularly suitable for bath and body products, as well as food containers.

WHITE EARTHFIRST PLA

A more environmentally friendly alternative to White BOPP. The PLA stands for Polylactic Acid (a biopolymer made from corn rather than petrochemicals). Similar look and feel to BOPP and suitable for most applications, but should not be used directly on candle containers.

WHITE FLEXIBLE VINYL

This is our most substantial material. The vinyl is thicker than BOPP, and is most suitable for outdoor applications where greater strength and durability are needed, or where lengthy exposure to the elements is an issue.

WINDOW DECAL (CLEAR/ULTRA-REMOVABLE)

We offer this window decal option as an alternative to static cling. The face stock is clear with excellent clarity. The adhesive is an ultra-removable featuring excellent weatherability and UV resistance. It removes cleanly from a wide variety of substrates without staining or ghosting. Why worry about static clings staying on when you can have removable adhesive there to hold it in place?

Artwork Specifications

Laminates

High Gloss

High gloss is our most popular laminate. It is the least expensive option and provides protection for the label and a high gloss shiny finish.

Matte

The Matte Laminate provides your label with a dull, non-glossy finish. Some customers consider this achieves a more "natural" look.

Thermal Transfer

This is a gloss laminate that is designed to work with most over-printing thermal transfer printers. We do recommend you get samples first to test through your own printer before placing an order with this laminate.

UV Outdoor Gloss

As the name implies this is best used for labels that will be used outdoors. It has a high gloss finish with excellent UV resistance. It is best paired with our vinyl material for the most durable outdoor label.