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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

A Handy Guide to UK Paper Sizes

A Handy Guide to UK Paper Sizes

Paper sizes are something even seasoned print veterans find themselves looking up occasionally. While some paper sizes are used on a daily basis at printers and design studios, there are others that are only used a handful of times a year. Those tend to be the sizes most easily forgotten, so we’ve come up with this handy reference guide that can be referred to any time, 365 days of the year. Don’t forget to bookmark it!

The following is not an exhaustive list of paper sizes, but it should cover the most commonly used sizes used by designers and printers around the UK. For the sake of brevity, we’ll leave out the more rarefied ‘legacy’ sizes that we simply tend not to encounter any more.

ISO Paper Sizes:

You may not have heard of ‘ISO’ paper sizes, but you will have used sizes like A4 and A3 perhaps on a weekly basis. A4, A3, A5, A2, B4 and B5 are probably the most easily recognisable examples of ISO ‘A’ and ISO ‘B’ paper sizes.

ISO 'A' paper sizesISO sizes have several neat, and very handy, mathematical properties about them:

  • The ratio of their sides is always 1 to 1.414 (the square root of 2, by the way).
  • To mentally compute the dimensions from one ISO paper size to the next, you simply keep the longest side and double the shortest. So A4 (210mm x 297mm) becomes A3 (297mm x 420mm). We simply doubled the shortest side (210mm) to get that new 420mm dimension, but kept the existing 267mm dimension — easy!
  • Note that the physical paper size at each step up is DOUBLE the paper area. So A4 is half the size of A3 (fold A3 in half and you end up with A4 again). A3 is in turn half the physical size of A2 and so on.
  • You can alternatively enlarge to the next ISO size (e.g. from A4 to A3) by enlarging the original 1.414 times. So, on a photocopier, for example, you would set the magnification to 141.4%.
  • Most ingeniously, the ISO ‘A’ sizes are designed to allow printers to easily compute the weight of a printed stack of papers simply by counting the sheets. It’s based on the fact that the size A0 is exactly 1 square metre in area. So, if you know you have paper that’s, say, 150gsm in weight (paper is specified in grams per square metre; gsm), you know that a stack of one hundred A0 sheets will be 100 x 150gsm, which is 15000grams (i.e. 1.5kg in weight). If your stack happened to be A1, then you simply need to divide that by two (because, as we learned above, the next A size down is half the size). For A2 you halve it again and so on.

ISO ‘A’ sizes:

The ISO ‘A’ series of paper sizes is most widely used for printing and design in the UK; most people will use A4 paper, for example, on a daily basis. As we mentioned above, each ‘step’ down from one A size to the next is exactly half the size, as you can see in the diagram above/right. Here are the main A sizes:

  • A0 = 841mm x H1189mm
  • A1 = 594mm x 841mm
  • A2 = 420mm x 594mm
  • A3 = 297mm x 420mm
  • A4 = 210mm x 297mm
  • A5 = 148mm x 210mm
  • A6 = 105mm x 148mm
  • A7 = 74mm x 105mm
  • A8 = 52mm x 74mm
  • A9 = 37mm x 52mm

If you want to go larger than A0, the next size up is called “2A0” (1189 x 1682mm). Use the maths trick above to go up from there to 3A0, 4A0 and beyond.

ISO ‘B’ paper sizes:

Exactly as with the ‘A’ sizes, each ‘B’ paper size can be Read more

An A-Z of Printing Terms

A-Z of printing terms

If you’re involved in buying printing but are not a designer or printer yourself, you’ll probably have come across some printing jargon that, at some point, has left you a little confused. ‘CMYK’, ‘bleed’ and ‘outlining fonts’ are possible examples. Such terminology often crops up at the worst possible time too — in print quotes or just when you are in a hurry to finalise artwork. Fear not, though, as we’re here to help you make sense of it all. Here is our handy A to Z of common printing terms:

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.

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

Thermographic Printing at Southside Print, London Bridge

Thermographic printing in London Bridge

Thermographic printing, or ‘thermo’ printing as it’s also known in the trade, is a useful technique to embellish your printing and make it stand out – figuratively as well as literally speaking to some degree. Here we’ll take a look at the process and how it can be used here at Southside Print in London SE1.

The thermo process

Thermography is, to some extent, more of ‘finishing’ process as it’s completed after the coloured inks have already been printed on the paper or card. While the inks are still wet, a thermographic powder is applied to the paper and it sticks to the wet ink. Any excess is quickly removed and then the dusted sheets are passed through a heating process. This melts the themographic powder into its final form. Once melted, set and cooled, it forms an attractive coating to just the printed parts of the sheet.

Thermographic printing is great for brochuresThe effect of thermo printing

The new thermo coating is like a spot printed glossy varnish that actually has a thickness to it. This is why thermographically printed elements on the paper feel raised if you run your finger over them. While it’s not as crisp as embossing or UV varnishing, it is an interesting and slightly organic effect and one that is quite different to embossing in reality. As well as being raised, it makes the printed areas glossy, allowing the them to catch the light at certain angles. It’s also useful to note that thermo printing is a significantly cheaper alternative to spot UV varnishing.

Thermo printing is a significantly cheaper alternative to spot UV varnishing

Uses

Thermo printing is quite a well-established, traditional process but, when used well by talented graphic designers, can look incredibly attractive and contemporary. The thermographic powder/seal is transparent, so it lets the colour of the underlying printing ink show through. Because of that, it actually looks like the thermographically printing itself is coloured. So, for example, if your logo on a letterhead consists of black type for the company name and a big red square for the logo symbol, it’ll look like those two coloured elements are thermographically ‘printed’ and each of them will be glossy and slightly raised. Thermo printing also has a slightly organic feel about it as mentioned above, by which we mean that it has a slightly mottled, in-exact outer edge and the glossy ‘seal’ feels hard and glassy — almost jewel-like. This can really contrast well against the matt paper it is printed onto. Thermographic printing works well on anything from business cards, letterheads and invitations to 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