spot uv
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spot uvSpot UV refers to a high shiny finish added to an area of printed material, this can be noticed by a very reflective high shine it has when it catches the light.

How Does it work?, How is it Done?

Spot UV can make areas of your design really stand out. You need to have planned for this with your print supplier in the early stages of the design process. Although this is not done at the design stage, it is a print process applied right at the end after the printing, but before a job is folded or guillotined.
As soon as the ink is applied to the material, then the Spot UV is added on top. Almost like another skin of ink, gloss spot UV looks like a layer of cellotape. This process is either done on the end of the printing line, within the same process of the job being printed or is done after on a separate machine, this all depends if your print supplier has this facility added to the end of their printing presses. Its used to be common for a full colour printer outsource this technique, but as it more often these days, most printing companies add Spot UV in house.
Standard ArtworkSpot UV is normally added to a job along with a matt laminate, this is to further enhance the shininess of the Spot UV. Having a matt material which obviously dulls the light helps to bring out the vibrant reflectiveness of the varnish. The ‘Spot’ printing technique is almost as if it’s another ink or separate colour. If you are printing a full colour document, then the spot process is an additional coat on the top of the rest of the CMYK colours used to produce the colour work.
The only downside to Spot UV is its not a cheap process, its more cost effective to be printed on the grid system, where your job will be printed with other customers work therefore sharing the costs, this type of printing is also known as ‘gang printing’. But even this method doesn’t make this cheap.
Widely used on business cards and small high quality leaflets, and company brochures as it normally corporate companies who have the budget for printing this technique. It’s certainly is not to advisable to use it on Posters, the cost would be maybe 3 times as much as the printing costs.
If you are printing a bespoke order, then the cost for SPOT UV depends on its size as a percentage of the overall job, so a small logo with the Spot UV added may only be 10-15% of the overall design, this helps your print supplier estimate the cost.
It does have some other limitations; it does not work very well with fine detail. It cannot cope with fine lines or hairlines or even small fonts. But it’s the larger more solid areas which tend to help with its success, flat square or rounded oval logo work very well and it’s the bigger the area the more it will reflect. You’re best to ask your print supplier if the design you want the area to be added to is possible.

Dean Williams is a design and marketing blogger working for Print-Print Limited, promoting business and building brands through quality print marketing. If you’re interested in small business promotion then please get in touch

About Dean Williams

Dean Williams is a design and marketing blogger working for Print-Print Limited, promoting business and building brands through quality print marketing. If you’re interested in small business promotion then please get in touch

Join the conversation! 33 Comments

  1. Dentistas Barcelona…

    This is a very good article! Thanks for making this information interesting. I enjoyed this article a lot and I share many of your views….

  2. Incredible! This may be just one of the beneficial blogs We have ever get there upon on that topic. Simply Wonderful. I can have an understanding of your effort.

  3. Spot UV has always caused me problems throughout my design career, thanks for the blog post I have used this to pass onto my customers who supply me with spot colour artwork and wants it printing process. This is a great help.

  4. I’ve been surfing online more than 3 hours today, and then I found your interesting article on Spot UV. Personally, if all webmasters and bloggers made good content as you did, the internet will be a lot more useful than before.

  5. certainly like your web site but you have to test the spelling on several of your posts.
    A number of them are rife with spelling problems and I find it very bothersome to tell the
    truth then again I will surely come again again.

  6. Great blog – thanks for the inspiration

  7. Wow, amazing blog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you make blogging look easy. The overall look of your web site is fantastic, as well as the content!. Thanks For Your article about

  8. A simple note to be able to appreciate you for all of the marvelous ideas you are sharing on this website, great for designers and bloggers especially those starting out in business!, Thanks

  9. When I first saw this title What is Spot UV?, on google and bookmarked it. Thanks for that post. I will certainly return.

  10. This blog post is great – thanks.

  11. Muchos Gracias for your article.Thanks Again. Really Cool.

  12. Spot UV is great for large logos or images, just a slight problem with trying to adapt it for small fonts or fine lines.

  13. This is an inspiration , I have few blogs and occasionally run articles like this.Thanks

  14. “putrefaction”

  15. “moving picture”

  16. Hi, I chanced upon your website via a wedding forum. I am pretty interested in having some ‘order of service’ for my guests as well AD photographer service with spot uv, so this was very interesting – thanks!

  17. I love your Spot UV, It makes everything sexy!

  18. Thanks for the insight into SpotUV , Very helpful info specifically the last part, Thank you and good luck.

  19. Spot UV looks fantastic, always wondered how it was achieved. Thanks for the post print-print!

  20. Wow, awesome blog post, very helpful.!

  21. Great post thanks!

  22. Really like this post, its helped explain what SpotUv is all about. Thanks

  23. Love this explanation about spot uv. Thanks for the post.

  24. This is great! I am getting a new logo so it is handy to understand how the design will be reproduced.

  25. This is a nice easy read for our clients. Shared!

  26. Great explanation. Thanks 🙂

  27. This has really cleared it up for me. I’d love to have a specific brand colour but I didn’t get what my designer was talking about! Got it now, ta.

  28. Excellent reference article, thank you 🙂

  29. This looks ace, want this finish on my business cards 🙂

  30. This is ace thanks 🙂

  31. Handy blog, nicely written.

  32. Great article, very helpful explanation for the difference between the two colour types.

  33. Great article, very helpful understanding the differences betwee the two priting methods.

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