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PDF (Portable Document Format)

Combination of vector and raster images. A universal format, files render as they were created. Vector images are rendered as such as and be scaled and extracted. Fonts are embedded within a file and are rendered as type, not flattened as an image element. Raster images, will appear as intended at 100 percent but will start to lose quality if they are over-enlarged.

EPS (Encapsulated PostScript files)

Self-contained files that are the same mathematically as vector files, though they can be created from raster images as well. One of the most compatible and portable because they are supported by almost all graphics software. They are an alternative to using vector files when the native formats are not available.

AI (Adobe Illustrator)

AI is a file extension for a vector graphics file format used in Adobe Illustrator. A popular vector graphics-based drawing program. The AI format is a strictly limited, highly simplified subset of EPS.

PSD (Photoshop Document)

A PSD file is a layered image file the default format that Photoshop uses for saving data. PSD is a proprietary file that allows the user to work with the images’ individual layers even after the file has been saved.

TIFF (Tag Image File Format)

A common format for exchanging raster graphics (bitmap) images between application programs. One of the most common graphic image formats, TIFF files are commonly used in desktop publishing and imaging apps.

JPEG (Joint Photographic Experts Group)

A standard method of compressing images. JPEG/JFIF is mostly used for storing and transmitting images on the Web, not suited for drawings, textual or iconic graphics, its compression method performs badly on these types of images.



It may seem obvious to many but it's a common mistake we see, receiving a file supplied at the wrong size. When designing your artwork, ensure you make it to the exact size that you want it printed too, that is your trim size, the size it be cut too. For example, if your final trim size is 60mm x 100mm, then ensure your document size is set up at 60 x 100mm. We tend to measure in millimetres not centimetres. Do not simply place the artwork on a larger page. There is no need to impose your artwork – we take care of that for you!

If the actual size does not match your order your file will be rejected.


Bleed is used for all objects overlapping the edge of your document. Any photo, graphic or background colour that goes right up to the edge of the page, must be extended by at least 3mm on all sides. Adding bleed helps when cutting, otherwise you run the risk of having a white border printed around the edge of your document which can effect the required look to your design.

If we cannot manually add bleed to your file it will be rejected.


Convert all colours to CMYK, NO RGB, SPOT COLOURS or LAB colours.  The colour on your computer screen can look completely different to colours once printed. Computer monitors emit colour as RGB light. CMYK colour documents should be defined as “process” Colour Type with a “CMYK” Colour Mode.

Avoid using 4 colour black which is 100% of cyan, maganta, yellow and black ink. For a rich black we recommend using CYAN 20%, MAGENTA 20%, YELLOW 20%, BLACK 100%. Avoid using tints lighter than 10%. If you are concerned about the colour of you document, it is recommended to request a hard copy proof prior to going to print (charge may apply).

We automatically convert all files to CMYK, this may effect the colour you expected, it is your responsibility to convert to CMYK process before uploading your file.



Ensure any raster images used in your design are at least 300dpi (dots per inch). You may think your images look ok on your computer screen, but when printed the difference in resolution will be visible. Low resolution files  (72dpi for example) will appear blurry or pixelated when printed. Also, ensure that your images are at the correct physical size for the artwork and still at 300dpi quality. Remember, if you enlarge an image the resolution decreases, lowering the quality of the image. 

Your files will be rejected if they have low resolution images (we generally reject anything under 250dpi)


Check that the fonts you may use for your artwork, is correctly embedded in the file, or that all text is converted to outlines. There are so many different versions of the same fonts that it would be impossible for us to substitute any font that may be missing from your document. 

We reject fonts that are not embedded or converted to outlines.


Files we accept are high quality PDFs, Adobe Illustrator files, EPS's, Jpegs, Tiffs and Photoshop files. If your file is made of layers they must be must be flattened. Always remember to embed or outline your fonts. Choose the highest available quality setting whatever format you are using, it is often referred to as “High Quality Print” or “Press Quality”.

If we have issues with your artwork we will reject the order and always give you clear instructions as to why your file has been rejected and inform you as to what you need to do to make the file PRINT READY. If you have any questions or require help before uploading your artwork don't hesitate to get in touch
Please note, these tips are intended as a guide only and are based on Labels By Design printing specifications.