speciality printing

Spot Varnishing

What is spot varnishing?

Spot varnishing (or spot uv) is another fantastic way to add an extra element to your printed design. It’s a bonus feature that’s added after the initial print to accentuate key elements of your design. In short, it’s a layer of varnish printed on top of portions of your artwork to make them stand out with a glossy shine.

How should a spot varnish be used?

A spot varnish should be used sparingly. There shouldn’t really be a need to coat an entire surface in this way (and if there is, then you should consider a laminate instead). We think spot varnishing should be used in two ways:

  1. In small amounts to accentuate key elements (such as your logo) and give your printed design a premium edge
  2. Printed in a pattern over a coloured surface to create something visually striking that will stand out compared to your competition

For example, one of our clients recently had some car registration plates printed and requested that their logo was added with a spot varnish applied. This meant that when customers noticed the number plate, it was the logo that (quite literally) shone through.

We’ve also used spot varnishing in our office. Take a look at some of the samples we’ve printed below. These are a great example of using a spot varnish to create an interesting background:

spot varnishing

If you want to go one stage further, we can even double strike or triple strike the artwork to build up a taller layer of varnish; giving your design a point of difference that you can not only see, but feel too. A great example of using this to awesome effect is when one of our clients had a bound document with a golf ball as part of the artwork on the cover and, to accentuate it, they used multiple layers of spot varnishing to make the golf ball feel like a real golf ball when you moved your finger across it!

Can B2B Graphics offer spot varnishing?

Of course we can! And it’s our state-of-the-art Mimaki flatbed printer (the same one we use for printing white ink) that allows us to do this.

And it won’t cost a fortune either. It’s an effect that we can add during the same print run, which cuts our costs compared to printing and applying a separate gloss vinyl.

The best bet with spot varnish is to add it sparingly, but creatively! Take a look on Google Images here and if you need more inspiration, drop us an email or speak to Clint or Mike.

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