Print Cafe of LI, Inc

Print Cafe of LI, Inc
Showing posts with label #take-out menus. Show all posts
Showing posts with label #take-out menus. Show all posts

Tuesday, December 1, 2020


6 Ways to Add Bleed (and How to Choose the Best One)

Missing bleed is one of the most common problems on print files. Bleed is the extension of the artwork on each side to allow for cutter variance, so it’s an essential part of a good print file. Bleed requirements differ among printers but a commonly minimum is 0.125” on each side.

Many of your clients may not know how to add bleed, leaving the task in your hands. There are several different ways to add bleed. Naturally, each has its own advantages and disadvantages.

We’ll cover them in this article so that you can easily choose the best way to add bleed to your clients’ files.

Adding Bleeding to Your Print Files

1. Release or Remove Masks

Sometimes the bleed is just hidden by a mask that’s set around the edge of the trim area. When you release or remove the mask, it appears, so you’re therefore not truly adding bleed; you’re just unmasking it.

before and after removing mask


  • It won’t distort the artwork or change image resolution.
  • The client may have provided the bleed that they wanted underneath.
  • It can be quick and easy if the file is built simply.


  • There may not be any bleed hidden after all.
  • You risk unmasking other elements that were intentionally hidden.
  • Time consuming if the file is complex with multiple masks.

2. Increase Artwork Size

Another way to add bleed is to increase the size of the entire artwork, or part of it (e.g. the background). This method is most suitable when there are no important elements close to the trim edge.

before and after enlarging artwork


  • When enlarging the entire artwork, the ratio won’t get distorted.
  • It’s a fast and easy fix.
  • Most clients won’t be able to tell if their artwork was increased by 1-2%.


  • Elements close to the edge may get cut off (e.g. thin borders).
  • Enlarging raster images will slightly affect their resolution.
  • The client may be able to tell that their artwork was enlarged.

3. Decrease Artwork Size

Similarly, you can shrink the artwork. This leaves a white border. You’re not actually adding bleed, just eliminating the need for one. Alternatively, you may choose to add a color to this border and add bleed to that.

before and after shrinking artwork


  • It’s a fast and easy fix.
  • It actually slightly improves the resolution.
  • None of the artwork will get cut off.


  • There is a very obvious change in the artwork, which may not be wanted.
  • You risk having uneven borders due to both resizing and cutter movement.
  • Small type may become harder to read.

4. Stretch Elements

This technique is most suitable when objects that are missing bleed are rectangular vector elements with no curves, as you can easily stretch them out without distortion or pulling parts too close to the edge.

before and after stretching artwork


  • It will only impact the element that is getting stretched.
  • It can be quick and easy on certain types of artwork.
  • Most clients won’t be able to tell if you stretch an unimportant part of the artwork.


  • Distortion will occur on non-rectangular vector elements and raster images.
  • Parts of the stretched element may get cut off if they’re close to the trim edge.
  • You may also have to delete masks.

5. Add Objects

Adding shapes to the bleed area works best when the artwork at the trim edge is a solid color. It’s still possible if it isn’t, but takes much more time. Ideally, you are purely adding bleed and not touching anything else.

before and after adding elements


  • You are not changing any artwork within the trim area.
  • It can be done using even simple image editing software.
  • If done well on the right type of artwork, clients won’t be able to tell the difference.


  • The added bleed may not perfectly match the edge of the original artwork.
  • It can be time consuming.
  • The difficulty level can be high depending on the artwork.

6. Flip the Artwork

Flipping the artwork at the trim edge to create a reflected mirror image for the bleed is a function available in some programs and plugins. This produces a symmetrical image with the line of symmetry at the trim. There is no hard rule for what works best here, so you may have to test it out to see whether the result visually “makes sense.”

before and after flipping artwork


  • With the right plugin/program tool it can be fast and easy.
  • It won’t distort or change the artwork within the trim area.
  • It matches the same colors and shapes in the artwork.


  • It requires a higher level image editing software/plugin.
  • The results may appear nonsensical and not what the client intended.
  • It won’t work if there’s a thin border or if the artwork doesn’t fully touch the trim edge.

Conclusion: Using Good Judgement

A good bleed makes a big difference, but not all bleed is good bleed. The methods that we shared here produce different results depending on the nature of the artwork, so always exercise your own good judgement in addition to the tips we’ve provided. Sometimes you may even choose not to add bleed.

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Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Sticky & Sour: The Next Step After a Bad First Impression

Sticky & Sour: The Next Step After a Bad First Impression
What are some of your most awkward professional blunders? In a recent social psychology article, Heidi Grant Halvorson shared the story of her friend Gordon and his job interview at a prestigious university:

During his campus visit, Gordon was dining with a senior faculty member named Bob. As they ate, Bob commented on the quality of his lunch. “You know, this is great,” Bob said. “You should try this!” Wary of offending, Gordon cautiously complied, reaching over for a bite. While the interview seemed successful, the job was given to another person. Years later, Gordon found the real reason for the rebuff was this: When Bob said, “You should try this,” he meant, “You should try this sometime,” not, “you should eat off my plate.” Bad manners left a sour taste of lasting consequence.

Knee Jerk Reaction or “Real Jerk” Response?

Humans naturally make snap judgments, and impressions are much harder to undo than to create. “First impressions are very sticky,” says Grant Halvorson, author of “No One Understands You and What To Do About It.”

First impressions are rooted in us and continue growing stronger, influencing future interpretations and causing “confirmation bias” to sway us in the initial direction. Grant gives this example:

“Once we have an understanding of something, we interpret everything that comes after from the vantage point of the knowledge we already have. Let’s say I think you’re a jerk, and the next day you realize ‘Hey, I acted like a jerk,’ so you bring me coffee. That seems unambiguously nice, but that action can be interpreted in a number of ways, and if I think you’re a jerk, I’m most likely to see it as an attempt to manipulate me.”

How to Restart and Rebuild

So what happens if you get off on the wrong foot? Is there any way to overcome awkward introductions? The answering is a conditional yes. We all have graceless moments, but not everyone knows how to repair the damage. Here are a few tips to help you rebuild after a clumsy misstep:

Talk to people individually. Show genuine interest and seek to find common interests. Look for informal opportunities to build facetime, ask questions, and encourage others.

Restart and rebuild. Apologize and move forward by offering evidence of your sincerity. If you’ve been rude, show extra kindness in the next ten conversations. If you’ve been sloppy, make your next twenty projects immaculate. Follow up immediately and consistently, in the opposite spirit of your initial mistake.

Poke fun at your own blunder. Call attention to the big elephant so you can say sorry and laugh! Transparency gives people a chance to empathize and relate rather than judge or criticize.

Offer to help. Figure out what is important to people and use your skills to collaborate or lighten their load. Halvorson says sometimes this takes strategic positioning:

"The best way is to try to create a circumstance in which they need to deal with you, ideally where they need you in order to get what they want . . . It’s not the most awesome sounding advice because what it means is that, if you have a colleague who doesn’t think that highly of you, what you need to do is get your boss to assign you to work together on something, which is not what people want to hear, (but) when you can help them achieve their goals, then suddenly you are worth paying attention to.”
Ready to leap ahead with a fabulous first impression? Consider business cards, unique promotional products, fun hanging tags, and more. Give us a call to talk options!

Monday, November 19, 2018

Keys for Change: Small Businesses Making a Big Impact

            Keys for Change: Small Businesses Making a Big Impact
The winter of 2013 was a hard one for Georgette Carter.

As a single mom raising two young boys while she cared for a father with dementia, money was very tight. Then, she totaled her car and found her resources – and her hope – were nearly gone. That is, until a 1996 blue Ford Contour arrived from the Connor Brother Collisions “Recycled Rides” program.

Conner Brothers of Richmond, VA, overhauls donated cars and awards them to people who have been nominated by community members. Carter said her heart was rehabilitated almost more than the car she received:

“It turned my life around. I can get to my job on time, and I don’t have to maneuver to get my child out of daycare. I’ll never take that for granted again.”

Getting Others Involved

Small businesses like Conner Brothers are creating innovative giving models that not only impact people but strengthen the business and the character of the companies themselves.

Kevin Conner said his company donated its first car and was looking to extend the “Recycled Rides” program to three other locations, but they had some pushback in the process. Some objected to giving away freebies when they were working so hard to earn a living themselves. But Conner says this mentality changed when employees got physically involved because compassion comes from being part of an experience instead of merely giving a donation:

“I got them involved in actually giving the cars away, handing over the keys,” Conner says. “Now the guys at the shop call me and ask, ‘When is our next car?’ It would be easy to give money or a service here or there, but it’s the teamwork behind the program that creates an amazing atmosphere for a successful company.”

The car giveaways have become such a cornerstone for Conner Brothers that the program helps define the type of employees the company wants.

“Giving back is a huge part of our company,” Conner says. “I challenge the guys every day to give back in some way, to give customers more than they expect. People remember that.” 

Giving That “Changes” Lives

Another giving strategy comes from literal pocket change, as givers round up or down for charity.

For example, the ridesharing company Lyft recently launched an initiative allowing customers to round up their fare to the nearest dollar for military appreciation and human rights campaigns. More than 40,000 passengers donated over $100,000 in the first two months!

Grocery stores, mass merchandisers, and retailers have also invited customers to donate change to worthy causes. As technology and digital platforms make such giving easier, small businesses have challenged staff members to round down their net pay to the nearest dollar (or tenth dollar) and give the difference to charity. While painless or even unnoticed, these small donations add up to a collective impact with heartfelt results.

Whether your employees give financially, volunteer together, or embrace a community partnership project, innovative giving helps your business to:

Stand out from competitors or set itself apart in the community

Make matching donations alongside employee giving to multiply impact

Use positive feedback from supported causes to provide content for print and digital marketing

Increase team unity as employees give toward a common cause

While generosity begins in the heart, often innovative giving strategies begin with small business.

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