Why Careful Colour Consideration is Crucial for Design

Crucial colour considerations for design

When it comes to design, the choice of colour is incredibly important. A colour palette alone can make the difference between a design being attractive — or totally repellent. Even if the underlying styling and layout of any design is superb, its ultimate success can live or die on the colours used. That’s the same whether you’re talking about graphic design for sales and marketing literature, interior design, product design, or any other kind of design. However, the impact of colour goes way deeper than aesthetics, as we’ll see.

Selecting the best colour palette for your graphics

As with design itself, colour is a very subjective thing, so it’s always going to be impossible to please everyone. It’s important to try, though, because the colour palette you use in your design will have a striking affect on how well your sales or marketing piece is received by your target audience. For this reason, it’s well worth spending extra time on carefully considering your colour palette, well before your piece is published or printed. Some market research is also well worth doing, whether that’s full market research with the public or obtaining a rough gauge from others in your office and/or family. Editor’s note: as a qualified designer myself, my choice regarding some colours for printed graphics is still swayed by such feedback, even decades after it was first given.

Colour can literally change the viewer’s mood.

Feel & mood

Feel and mood are, by far, the most overriding sensations instilled in the viewer through the use of colour. Colour deeply affects the whole perception of your printed piece — it can lift the spirit, or repel it. It can catch the eye in a good way when you get it right, or a bad way when you don’t. Colours can excite the onlooker, or relax them. Colour can often literally change the viewer’s mood. When it comes to colour as a communication tool, it can shout your marketing messages or whisper them subconsciously. Colour can associate your product or service with quality if you want it to. It can help to incite a feeling of urgency, or get the audience to experience any number of other feelings. When you think about it, that’s an incredibly powerful tool for designers and marketers.

Colour is an incredibly powerful tool for designers and marketers.

Choosing your colour palette

Choosing your colour paletteA single design and layout can be used in different ways, with different effects, depending on which set of colour combinations are used in the overall colour palette. Graphic designers call those colour palettes ‘colourways’ and there are a few different ways that they can be chosen. As a designer myself, my favourite tips for choosing colourways are:

  • Find a photograph that you like in terms of colours, then sample those colours using the eye-dropper tool in Photoshop or similar (read on for free way to do this online if you don’t have Photoshop). It works very well when any photos in the printed piece share the same colours as surrounding graphics, ensuring that the entire marketing piece is colour-coordinated and attractive.
  • Another great tool for choosing colourway palettes is to look at the colour swatches on ColourLovers.com. The site shows thousands of different colour palettes that have been uploaded by the community over several years. It ranks colour palettes by popularity or by the number of times they have been saved as ‘favourites’ as well as having colour sections for different sectors (branding, websites, interiors etc). It also shows which colourways are trending at any given time. There are some useful tools there, for generating colour palettes and indeed the lavender colourway graphic in the main image above was generated by such a tool on the site.
  • Another, more obvious, way to choose a good colour palette for your design is to simply keep your eyes open, so you can spot, note or save good existing examples from others. This could mean keeping brochures and booklets that you have liked the colours, look and feel of, or bookmarking websites that have nice colourways etc. Most good designers will do this as a matter of course.
  • Pinterest is also a great tool for saving colourway examples, or finding them, and saving them into well-organised segmented areas.
  • One of the most widely used tools for the professional graphic designer is the tried-and-tested Pantone colour swatch book. There are various types available, including ‘spot colour’ swatches, ‘process’ printing colours (a.k.a. ‘CMYK’), pastels, metallics and lots more. Just like with paint charts for home DIY, they allow you to pick out colours and to compare them to each other side by side. Crucially, though, in the case of Pantone swatches, they allow you to specify the final choice of colours in your artwork in such a way that they will reproduce reliably i.e. exactly as envisaged on your final printed piece.
  • Designers should also consider colour psychology and what colour means to certain cultures when appropriate. For example, in China, blue symbolises immortality whereas in other countries it can represent the colour of mourning. So, care needs to be taken.

Check your artwork’s colour mode before you go to print

It should be noted that colours destined to be used for printing will need to be in ‘CMYK’ mode if printing digitally. For litho printing it can be CMYK mode or ‘spot’ colour, as appropriate. Avoid ‘RGB’ colour mode completely if you are going to have your sales or marketing piece commercially printed. See our Printing & Artwork Tips for further information or leave it all to us. Simply ask for a graphic design and/or artwork quotation — they’re free and without pressure or obligation, so there’s nothing to lose. As well as choosing attractive and appropriate colours and generating a great design for your printed job, we would be very happy to print it for you, of course.

We are Southside Print, a digital printer based in London SE1, close to Borough tube and London Bridge station. Call 020 7378 6754 or contact us here and we’ll be very happy to help you with your next printed project.

BREAKING: Revolutionary New Anti-Bacterial Lamination

SafeLam - the revolutionary anti-virus lamination for printed items

Matt antimicrobial laminationIntroducing SafeLam – our antimicrobial lamination

Southside Print are pleased to announce ‘SafeLam’, our new, antimicrobial lamination for printed products. It’s just like standard lamination, except it kills bacteria and viruses on contact. This is obviously very timely and will be a massive boon to those who need printed sales, marketing or informational literature while coronavirus is still at large.

“SafeLam makes sharing printed documents safer”

Southside Print is committed to keeping staff and customers as safe as possible during these unprecedented times. As part of the fight against COVID-19, we have been working hard to find ways to make printed products as safe as possible in view of the pandemic. SafeLam’s antimicrobial coating does exactly that, killing 99% of bacteria and viruses that come into contact with it. It means printed products laminated with SafeLam proactively kill the coronavirus — and that’s a game-changer!

Gloss antimicrobial laminationSafeLam is an ideal safety coating:

  • The antimicrobial laminate is available in a matt or gloss finish.
  • It eliminates 99% of harmful microorganisms that come into contact with it.
  • It has the same, high quality finish as standard lamination.
  • Just like ordinary lamination, SafeLam looks great and protects documents from wear and tear as well as from moisture ingress.
  • No matter how many hands touch the surface, SafeLam’s surface retains its antimicrobial properties.
  • It’s independently tested and approved to ISO 22196, an international benchmark that recognises SafeLam’s antimicrobial properties (more about that below).

SafeLam makes printed documents safer

SafeLam is an ideal finish for printed documents, particularly those used in schools, hospitals, healthcare organisations, restaurants, bars & workplaces. For example, it makes brochures, school books, folders and medical documents much safer to handle and to share. It’s also incredibly useful as a protective, anti-virus coating for things like printed menus in bars and restaurants where multiple people will handle the same printed item. Here are just a few examples of printed items that are safer when laminated with SafeLam antimicrobial laminate — the possible applications are almost endless!

  • Brochures & booklets
  • Annual Reports
  • Medical documents
  • Documents for schools & uni’s
  • Business cards
  • Menus
  • Tent cards
  • Table talkers
  • Posters
  • Folders
  • Manuals & bound documents
  • Catalogues
  • Mailers
  • Postcards
  • Packaging
  • Point of sale graphics
  • Signage & display graphics
  • Exhibition graphics
  • Banners
  • Greetings cards
  • Calendar covers
  • … And much more.

About ISO 22196 accreditation

To quote ISO, the International Organisation for Standardisation:

“ISO 22196:2011 specifies a method of evaluating the antibacterial activity of antibacterial-treated plastics, and other non-porous, surfaces of products”

It’s accepted that the ISO 22196 accreditation confirms the ability of plastics to kill microorganisms and also to inhibit their growth over time. They therefore keep surfaces hygienically clean, safe and sanitary without the need to keep wiping the surfaces with agents and chemicals.

Antimicrobial means that it kills all microbes, including bacteria and viruses. That’s not only hygienic, but also incredibly important for people’s health and wellbeing while coronavirus and COVID-19 are still present within parts the population.

Interested? Get in touch

Please get in touch if you would like further information about this revolutionary new laminating solution. Call 020 7378 6754, contact us here, or use the enquiry form below to send us your enquiry. Southside Print are printers in Borough, near London Bridge, SE1.

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Variable Data Printing Service (London SE1)

Variable data printing services in London SE1

Using ‘variable data printing’ is a way of personalising sales and marketing literature to individual recipients. It’s a great marketing tool too. People are far more likely to notice a mailed flyer, for example, if it addresses them by name, right there in the colour printing, as part of the actual design. You may have received brochures personalised to you, perhaps. They may have mentioned your name here and there throughout, in colour. That is a sure-fire way for a sales or marketing piece to get noticed and taken more seriously. Receiving such tailored communications suggests an existing knowledge of the customer, as an individual. It also comes over as being highly professional and a bit more ‘grown up’ than the usual anonymous approach. It also lends the printed piece an element of gravitas, subconsciously saying ‘this is an important message to you‘.

Personalised text

Personalising the text of a brochure or mailshot to include the recipient’s name is an obvious example of variable data resulting in personalised printing. As well as a name, though, the person’s location could also be included for that extra personal touch. Or there could be mention of a previous purchase, a brand usually ordered, or anything else that’s relevant. This is all possible so long as it’s included within the database being supplied to your commercial printer. All of this extra personalisation can demonstrate a real knowledge of the customer within the sales piece, potentially becoming integral to the sales proposition as part of a strategic, well thought-out approach.

Personalised images

Variable Data printing doesn’t need to end with text though. It can also merge images, diagrams or illustrations into the printed piece. For example, a particular image can be printed in a printed document meant for one recipient, while a different image can be printed for someone else. For example, a mailer used to sell health supplements might include a featured image of something the customer has ordered before, now on special offer perhaps. If they’ve ordered before and are reminded of what they purchased, that’s certain to really catch their eye and generate additional repeat sales from the recipient. That’s just one example of how variable data printing can be used to personalise sales and marketing literature.

How Variable Data printing is achieved

This kind of document personalisation is all made possible using Read more

Packaging Printers & Designers

Packaging printers & designers in London SE1

Printing and production of packaging in London SE1We’re sometimes asked if we design and print packaging. The simple answer is ‘yes’ because, to us, it’s just another natural use of our in-house design and printing capabilities. Southside Print can handle pretty much any type of printing imaginable and packaging is no exception. So, you are not limited to just the standard kind of thing, like brochures, stationery and flyers. We regularly produce high quality printing for packaging items too. These include anything from cartons and swing tickets to wrapping paper and bags. The list of possibilities is almost endless, a few examples being:

  • Printed labels and stickers including wine labels, special offer stickers, pricing labels etc.;
  • Cartons for products;
  • Boxes of various kinds;
  • Printed bags;
  • Wrapping paper;
  • Printed tissue paper;
  • Printed cardboard sleeves, e.g. to wrap around boxed products;
  • Header cards for retail products including ‘Euro’ slots if required;
  • Swing tickets;
  • ‘Pillow’ packs;
  • Packaging ‘inners’ and backing cards e.g. for products in clam packs, blister packs and cello packs;
  • Point of sale (‘POS’) or Point of Purchase (‘POP’) card dispensers;

Printed literature for packaged products

We also routinely produce the kind of printed literature that you find inside product packaging. This includes instruction manuals, assembly instruction sheets, information pamphlets, warranty documents, guarantee registration cards, vouchers for cross-selling, catalogues, price lists, order forms and so on. If it involves printing on paper, card or board, we can print it!

Advanced print finishing techniques to make your packaging stand out

As well as our digital printing facilities, we also have a whole range of in-house ‘print finishing’ options to make your printed packaging really stand out. Options include lamination (matt, gloss etc.), encapsulation, gloss U.V. varnish including spot varnishing, die-cutting to give your packaging non-standard shapes, traditional hot foil stamping and digital foiling. We can also perforate, score, crease, fold, collate, drill holes, add eyelets, ribbons, add and affix glue tabs, and so on. So, please remember that we’re a print finisher as well as being a printer. Read more

Looking for an Eco-Friendly Printer in London SE1?

Looking for an Eco-Friendly Printer near SE1?

At Southside Print, we’re passionate about doing our bit to save the planet. With such extreme weather around the world and record-breaking temperatures becoming the new norm, it’s more important then ever to reduce our carbon footprint and generally be more eco-friendly as a company and as individuals. We’re certainly stepping up to the mark.

Are you looking for a ‘green’ printer near London Bridge?

We hope that being ‘green’ is important to you too. If so, you’ll probably want to find an environmentally-friendly printer, i.e. one who uses eco-friendly practices and chooses sustainable materials wherever possible. That’s where we come in because we genuinely care about the environment and our impact on the planet. So, when you choose Southside as your environmentally-friendly printer, you know you are making a green choice and are also playing your part in the much bigger picture.

How we are environmentally friendly

At Southside Print, there are a number of ways in which we help to minimise waste and reduce our carbon footprint. Just a few examples include the following:

  • All paper, card and board off-cuts are saved for recycling wherever possible. As printers, that’s a no-brainer and results in a huge amount of paper-based material going back into the production of things like … more recycled paper! Speaking of which …
  • While the final decision about paper and card is down to the individual customer, we try wherever possible to suggest the use of sustainable papers. Depending on the job in hand, these might include paper that is 100% or at least partly recycled, made from pulp from sustainable sources, a mixture of the two, or even paper and board that contains nothing from trees at all — for example, paper made from sustainable cotton — this has a lovely crispness about it too. There is a wide variety of eco-friendly paper, card and board available on the market, so it makes total sense to offer such options to customers. Together, we can then help the planet and reverse some of the damage already done.
  • We also endeavour to choose only energy-efficient machinery. These days, this is easier than ever because most modern machines have energy-efficient modes and other eco-friendly options. These save energy, minimise heat loss and can even reduce the amount of wasted material and consumables used during production.
  • At Southside, we often also go the extra mile by using green cycle couriers to deliver to London customers wherever possible. There are not many printers that go to such lengths!
  • It may come as a surprise to some but our website hosting was also carefully chosen; at Southside, only ‘green’ hosting will do! The servers used to display our website are hosted in an energy-efficient environment and one that takes enormous measures to limit heat loss. Such measures help to reduce carbon dioxide building up in the atmosphere — that’s an incredibly important step towards reducing the greenhouse effect that can so badly add to global warming.

Contact SE1’s eco-friendly printer

If you are as passionate as us about the environment and are looking for an eco-friendly printer, please give us a try at Southside Print. Printing need not cost the Earth, so Read more

Opening Times for Christmas 2019 & New Year

Christmas & New Year opening times

A very Happy Christmas to all our customers! We’d also like to pass on every good wish to you for the New Year when it arrives. Thanks to each and every one of you for all the lovely graphic design and printing work that you’ve given us throughout 2019 — it’s been a wonderful year and we really appreciate all the work you have passed our way — Thank you.

Christmas 2019 & New Year Opening Times

We close for the Christmas festivities on Friday 20th December at 5.30pm, remaining closed throughout the Christmas period until January 2nd 2020 when we re-open at 9am — and then it’s all back to normal. In the mean time, if you have anything urgent that simply must be ready in time for Christmas, don’t delay. We’ll need your artwork and order right away please.

However, our online print shop will be available to everyone during the break. So, if you need anything like brochures, posters, letterheads, compliments slips, business cards or leaflets, simply order them online (follow the bold links) and we’ll print and dispatch those for you as soon as possible.

You can also continue to request quotations over the Christmas break and, again, we’ll sort those out for you as quickly as we can so you have prices ready for the New Year. You can also call 020 7378 6754 to speak with us either side of the break.

Thanks again to each and every one of you. We wish you a happy Christmas and all good things for the 2020.

The Southside Print Team, Tabard Street, London SE1.

Winners Announced for the SE1 Charity Prize Draw

SE1 charity Christmas prize draw winners

Many thanks to all the lovely SE1 charities that took part in our Christmas 2019 charity prize draw. £550 worth of printing vouchers were up for grabs, split into four prizes for the lucky winners. Our team at Southside Print came up with the draw as alternative to sending out Christmas cards this year — and we think it’s a very worthwhile idea — and one that should help excellent causes save some money.

The Winners

We can now confirm the lucky winners are as follows:

Hestia in SE1 won the top £250 voucher prizeHestia

In first place was Hestia, who won the top prize of a £250 printing voucher. This SE1 charity, which is based just a stone’s throw away from us in Borough High Street, supports adults and children in crisis across London. This includes those who have suffered domestic abuse, modern slavery, mental health issues and homelessness, to give a few examples. The charity also campaigns and advocates nationally on the issues that affect the people involved. Each year, the organisation helps approximately 9000 adults and children in the London area. We wrote an in-depth blog article about Hestia way back in February 2018 and you can also visit Hestia’s website to learn more about them.

A further three winners, each receiving a £100 printing voucher, were:

Safer London

Safer London is the first of three SE1 charities that each won a £100 printing voucher in the Christmas prize drawer. Based in Union Street, the charity believes that every young person should be given the opportunity to live free from violence and exploitation including exposure to gangs, sexual or other exploitation and crime — and we couldn’t agree more. The charity works around the clock to help this aim become a reality. This is done through mentoring, education, empowerment, access to safe housing and, above all, one-to-one support. Learn more about the excellent work Safer London does on their website.

SE1 charity Bankside Open Spaces Trust won a £100 printing voucherBOST

Bankside Open Spaces Trust (‘BOST’) is another SE1 charity that won a £100 printing voucher. Based just around the corner from Southside Print in Redcross Way, BOST is an award-winning environmental and volunteering charity that aims to create and improve gardens, parks, green spaces and open spaces in and around the Bankside region of London. These include many ‘community gardens’ where sustainable food is grown; food which directly benefits people living in nearby social housing. We have written and published several blog articles about BOST, which can be found here. You can also learn more about the charity on their website.

RSPB

The London office of the RSPB, which is based in Southwark Street, London SE1, also won one of the £100 printing vouchers. We were delighted because we simply love birds here at Southside Print. The RSPB (full name: The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds) is the largest nature conservation charity in the UK. As they say in their Mission Statement, “Our birds and wildlife are increasingly vulnerable in a rapidly-changing world. Together, we can create bigger, better, more joined-up spaces to save our wildlife, and our shared home.” The nature reserves over which the charity is custodian help to improve the situation for species that are too often in decline. Their recovery is nurtured through conservation, research, partnerships and the tackling of threats that so badly affect them. Learn more about the RSPB here.

Congratulations to Read more

Charity Christmas Prize Draw for SE1

Charity Christmas Prize Draw for SE1

If you’re a charity based in London SE1, you could soon be in for an unexpected treat. As an alternative to sending Christmas cards and hampers this year, Southside Print is donating a total of £550 worth of printing services to SE1 charities via a December prize draw.

Win free printing!

Four lucky charities will split the winnings, with a top prize of £250 worth of printing going to one charity, with three other charities each receiving a voucher for printing worth £100. Charities need not be existing customers of Southside Print.

Prize Draw Rules

A few simple terms and conditions apply, the main caveats being:

  • No purchase is necessary;
  • Charities need to be based in London SE1, i.e. have an SE1 postcode in their published office address;
  • Charities must register here by 12th December 2019;
  • The prizes are given as printing vouchers (1 x £250 voucher plus 3 x £100 vouchers in total), and each charity can win a maximum of only one voucher;
  • The winners will be chosen at random on 13th December 2019. A list of winning charities will be published online;
  • Vouchers must be redeemed for printing services no later than 30th June 2020;
  • Vouchers can only be redeemed at Southside Print, Tabard Street, for in-house printing services available on site;
  • The value of each order will be confirmed before commencing production;
  • No cash alternative is available and no change will be given.
  • Vouchers need not be used in a single printing order; we will keep a running tally for each winner;

Submit your entry here


If you are a charity based in London SE1, you have nothing to lose, so register now! Vouchers can pay for the equivalent value of any of our in-house printing services. These include digital printing, large format printing, lamination and digital foiling. Winners can use them for ordering things like Read more

We’re Now Printers in WC1 Too!

Our new print shop in London WC1

We’re pleased to announce that we are now the owners of an additional print shop, WCS Digital Print, based in Mount Pleasant, London WC1. So, if you’re looking for a printer in the Clerkenwell and Farringdon area of London WC1, we can also now help.

WCS Digital has been around since 1985, supplying high quality printing and design to west central London individuals, businesses and organisations for almost 35 years. Southside Print owners Rob Phillips and Sarah Codd have now also taken on WCS Digital Print and aim to bring similar improvements and investments to the WC1 print works, following on from their successes and proven track record at Southside Print. These are likely to include snazzy new printing and finishing equipment as well as cutting edge software that’ll help track the progress of orders and make print quotes fast and incredibly simple.

Printing services in Clerkenwell, Farringdon & London WC1

Like here at Southside, WCS Digital Print is a litho printer, a digital printer, a large format printer and a copy shop. So, as well as offering high quality printing of just about anything, you can also go to WCS Digital for photocopying, document duplication and image/document scanning services. WCS also offers print management services, graphic design, brochure production, booklet making, document binding, bookbinding and direct mail solutions. Just like Southside, it’s a full design and print solution! More details of the Read more