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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.

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:

Southwark Dynamos Score with Southside Print!

Southside Print sponsors Southwark Dynamos Football Club

A new football club, the Southwark Dynamos, recently reached out to Southside Print for a possible sponsorship deal. We were more than happy to help and are now proud to announce that Southside Print is the club’s official sponsor for the next two football seasons. Our contribution will help the new club with expenses for training equipment and football kit and our logo will feature on both home and away kits.

A notice on the club’s website made the announcement:

We are delighted to welcome Southside Print as our Official club sponsor for 2018/ 2019 Football season. Thank you believing in our vision from everyone at the club.

Caroline Nicholson, the Club Secretary of Southwark Dynamos Football Club, also said:

Everyone at Southwark Dynamos Football Club is extremely delighted and welcomes Southside Print as our Official Sponsor.

Southside Print’s Rob Phillips confirmed:

We are delighted to take up the opportunity to become your title sponsor …. it’s great to be involved”.

An early rough of how the new football kit may lookThe Southwark Dynamos

Southwark Dynamos is an exciting new football club based in Rotherhithe, Southwark, and has the London FA as their governing body. Currently, the club is preparing for the new football season in the South East London & Kent League. As the club says on its website, their aim is ‘to develop and train talented young footballers for tomorrow‘. They help young people take their skills to the next level, preparing them for top-level competitions which will see them playing in front of football professionals. Possible opportunities arising from that include scholarships and even semi-professional or professional football contracts.

The club is family run within the Southwark community and encourages young people – both male and female – to develop their football skills as well as to simply enjoy the sport. Training sessions help to build on skills, strength, agility and stamina as well as facilitating the fabulous opportunities mentioned above. Programs are also run with local schools and youth clubs and include summer football camps.

Staff are fully trained and vetted, with all the requisite safeguarding policies in place at the club. Indeed, all training certification is approved by the FA and other local football associations affiliated with the club.

The Southwark Dynamos train just two-and-a-half miles away from Southside Print at Bacons College Sports Ground in Timber Pond Road, London SE16 6AT (nearest railway station: Rotherhithe). Pre-training and development currently takes place every Saturday between 12 noon and 2pm and the next session is on Saturday 9 June at time of writing.

If you are under sixteen and an avid football player, the club is currently looking for additional players to strengthen its U16s squad ahead of the 2018/2019 football season. So, do get in touch with them if this if of interest. You can call them on 07760 955 978, email them or simply go to one of their Saturday training sessions. More details are available at www.southwarkdynamosfc.co.uk.

Southside Print

Southside Print is based in Tabard Street in London SE1, close to Borough and London Bridge stations. We’re commercial digital printers, large format printers and graphic designers and also offer additional print-related services like in-house digital foiling, perfect binding, gloss, matt and soft-touch lamination and, of course, litho printing for those who need spot colour or particularly high volumes of printing.

Southside Print primarily services Read more

Printing for Bikecation, a Cycling Holiday Company in Borough High Street

Digital & large format printing for Bikecation in Borough High Street

Just like the organisation featured in our last post, our latest case study is for a customer based in Borough High Street. This time it’s the turn of a dynamic cycling holiday company, aptly named Bikecation. Located just a stone’s throw from our print works in SE1, it made good sense for them to try the services of a local printer and we were very pleased to help. Print jobs included some eye-catching posters, which were printed on 200gsm ‘photo satin’ stock, along with some promotional business cards, which were printed on 300gsm silk coated stock. Bikecation supplied the design and artwork files and, as you can see, the design is striking and contemporary. Production was turned around very fast, although the customer didn’t really require them for about a week — we just like to get ahead at Southside Print!

Take a look at some of the A1 posters:

Large format poster printed for Bikecation, the one-stop shop for tailor-made cycling trips Printed poster for show offer to customers Digitally printed poster for book signing by Bikecation's Rob Penn Poster for books signed by Bikecation's Rob Penn Poster for Bikecation & bespoke, corporate, charity & custom cycling breaks Poster for Bikecation's affiliate scheme for bike shops & clubs

About Bikecation

Bikecation started life after a conversation between two cycling enthusiasts; Rob Penn, formerly a City lawyer, and Jamie Paterson, a businessman. Both were keen advocates of the simple pleasures of bike riding and enjoyed travelling. Bikecation turned their shared dream of starting a custom cycling holiday company into reality. As well as being a tour guide for the company, Rob has a best-selling book ‘It’s all About the Bike: the Pursuit of Happiness on Two Wheels’ which has been translated into nine languages and has been made into a BBC documentary called ‘Ride of My Life‘.

Bikecation offers a wide range of custom cycling holidays including leisure cycling holidays, road cycling holidays, a more adventurous style of guided cycling trip called Rob Raids (personally guided by Rob Penn), bespoke mini breaks, cycling training camp breaks, cycling sportives and even ‘Watch & Ride’ breaks where you can watch famous bike races like the Tour de France whilst also getting the chance to ride the course yourself before the actual event.

Included amongst the cycling breaks on offer are corporate tours, private guided holidays and even organised charity events. Destinations include a wide range of beautiful locations in the UK as well as Europe and it’s up to you whether or not you’d like to be accompanied by a Bikecation cycling guide on your particular trip. Bikecation also moves your luggage for you, so you are free to enjoy the cycling and the stunning views. So, whether you’re into slow-paced family cycling along gentle routes in Wales, island hopping in Croatia, doing wine and food tours by bike in Bordeaux, or really going hell-for-leather up classic cycling climbs in the Alps, Bikecation has something to suit you. The range of options is outstanding! What’s more, all hotels are checked and pre-vetted to suit cyclists and sports enthusiasts as well as being hand-picked so they’re perfectly located along the very best cycling routes.

As the company says: Read more

Printed Folders, Inserts, Business Cards & Brochures for Recruitment Consultancy

Printed folders, inserts, business cards & brochures for FBR Recruitment Consultancy

Southside Print has been kept beautifully busy recently by FBR Construction Recruitment, a consultancy based in Southampton. So, despite this customer being well outside of London, our printing and design services were cost effective, competitively priced and logistically viable through the use of inexpensive and reliable overnight couriers. All items were designed by Starling Design who, like Southside Print, are based in London SE1. The various jobs included:

  • A5, full colour, landscape brochuresOne hundred 8 page A5 landscape brochures, which were printed in full colour onto 250gsm silk stock for the interior pages and 350gsm matching stock for the covers. The digital printing machine used in production was an HP Indigo press which, although digital, outputs quality so high it’s virtually impossible to tell it apart from full litho quality (litho being the benchmark against which all printing is compared). Using a digital process saves both time and money and also means that low quantities like this are completely viable, whereas such a small quantity would have been cost-prohibitive on a full litho press due to the higher set-up costs and printing plates required. Once printed, the brochures were laminated with ‘soft touch’ laminate. All in all, the result was excellent.
  • Several hundred double-side business cards, printed in full colour, using a 450gsm silk coated card and, again, a soft touch laminate to protect the cards as well as giving them a lovely tactile feel.
  • Oversize A5 printed folders with brochure, inserts & business card holderOne hundred oversize A5 folders which had a 5mm gusset (spine capacity) and a pocket for leaflets etc. The pocket also included slots to hold a business card. The folders were printed in full colour both sides onto 350gsm silk coated card and matt laminated both sides.
  • We also produced various A4 inserts. Some of these were for use in the folders, so were folded down to A5. They were printed onto 140gsm white ‘Arcoset’ paper and were printed both sides in full colour.

About FBR Construction Recruitment

FBR Construction Recruitment is a specialist recruitment consultant which provides temporary and permanent candidates for jobs within the construction industry. FBR started life in 2017 but the team behind the firm has been involved in recruitment for construction for many years prior to the company’s formation. As such, they have a combined experience in excess of 50 years within the industry. They are now the ‘go to’ supplier of trades and labour for residential developers, main contractors and civil engineers across the South East, Home Counties and South coast. FBR Recruitment supplies anything from labourers to directors — and everything in between. Candidates are all proven, pre-vetted and supplied with the minimum of fuss, in the shortest possible time.

FBR Construction Recruitment has three main divisions:

  • a Trades & Labour division which provides carefully selected candidates who are pre-checked for suitability including references, qualifications, certification, experience, immigration status and health/fitness;
  • a Residential Developers division, supplying skilled and experienced Contract, Project and Site Managers, Assistant/Finishing Managers, Quantity Surveyors, Buyers and technical candidates for permanent or contract roles. Managerial and director level roles are also catered for, whether needed on a commercial, construction or technical basis;
  • a Construction & Civil Engineering division which delivers a personalised recruitment service to SMEs and National contractors alike, with roles including quantity surveyors, engineers, project coordinators, site managers, foremen and candidates at senior/Director level.

FBR Construction Recruitment would love to Read more

Perfect Binding & Printing for Power To Change

Perfect binding & printing for Power to Change in London SE1

Perfect bound booklets and reports for SE1 charitable trust, Power to ChangeSouthside Print has recently been working on some high quality printing for Power To Change, who we’ll come onto in a moment. Production included 60 page annual reports, a series of Research Institute Reports in booklet form and a publication called Uncharted Investment in Charities, Social Enterprises and Community Businesses. All of the printing was in perfect bound format, which is like a soft-bound book, using our digital press for high quality, fast turnaround production. The paper used for internal pages was Arcoset 170gsm white stock while that used for covers was white Splendorgel stock with a thicker 340gsm weight. The client supplied their own design and artwork. All in all the publications looked highly professional, nicely designed and well produced.

About Power To Change

Annual reports printed and bound for our London SE1 client Power to ChangePower to Change describes itself as “an independent charitable trust that supports and develops community businesses in England“. It is a ten year initiative, originally funded by The Big Lottery Fund, which aims to accelerate the growth and impact of “community business”. In so doing, they can make a positive economic impact on communities, delivering social, economic and environmental benefits into the future. This in turn will lead to greater cohesion and potential for success for the communities involved.

What exactly is a community business? A community business comes in many forms including shops, farms, pubs, even call centres plus many other types of business. What’s common to all of them is that they are run by local communities, for the benefit of local communities. Often they also become a focal point or hub, for example a local shop that may have been saved by the community business, affordable housing within a deprived or isolated area or a local place to eat, drink and/or trade goods. Power to Change supports these community businesses through empowerment, innovation, grants and other types of funding.

Power to Change’s London office is at The Clarence Centre, 6 St George’s Circus, London SE1 6FE. Visit www.powertochange.org.uk for further details or call 020 3857 7270. Read more

Digital & Litho Printing for London Heating & Plumbing Company

Printing & artwork for The Little Red Heating Company, London

We believe this is the first time we’ve featured a heating and plumbing company on the blog, so welcome to our post all about The Little Red Heating Company. Here we’ll tell you all about them, but first we’ll discuss a few of the design, artwork and printing jobs that we’ve been doing for them in recent times. If you have any similar needs, do get in touch.

Printed NCR pads, labels, postcards & business cards

All design, layout and artwork is supplied by Southside Print London Bridge for this particular client. We supply simple, straight forward ‘business’ type printing for them including:

  • A4 invoice pads, which are printed on NCR (No Carbon Required) stock with white, pink and blue copies automatically being produced when the client writes on the top sheet. They are litho printed in 3 spot colours as well as being sequentially crash numbered then typically made into 4 pads of 50 invoice sets. NCR sets are a very convenient way of generating multi-copy invoices or orders the ‘traditional’ way (with a pen), particularly while out and about visiting customers;
  • business cards which have, until recently, been litho printed onto 400gsm “Extra White” uncoated stock using 3 spot colours. However, our digital printing machines are now so advanced that we may well swap over to digital printing for the business cards for future print runs, without any loss of quality;
  • postcards, which are litho printed litho onto 250gsm Silk card, in the same 3 spot colours. As with the business cards above, we will probably also swap to digitally printing these in future, for the same reason;
  • boiler labels, which represent a convenient reminder to home owners as well as being a great marketing tool for the company concerned. These are digitally printed on “Crack Back” label stock. As the name suggests, this type of label stock has linear cracks in the peel-off backing. These are present too allow the labels to simply be bent a little to expand the crack, thereby making removal of the backing sheet quick and easy.

About The Little Red Heating Company

The Little Red Heating Company, LondonThe Little Red Heating Company is London based and specialises in central heating and hot water system installation, maintenance and repair. Boiler repair or replacement, bathroom design/installation and general plumbing are all part of the service along with upgrades and replacements for pumps, thermostats, timers and valves. The company also supplies landlord certification and, of course, heating engineers are all Corgi registered.

The Little Red Heating Company also offers under floor heating, which is quick and inexpensive to install and provides both a fast method of heating rooms and a real feeling of luxury underfoot. That’s not the only benefit though; those with under floor heating will also experience a significant reduction in dust mites, so this particular heating method is also excellent for asthma sufferers.

Another great service from the company is the supply and installation of solar heating, through the use of solar panels, for the provision of domestic hot water. With temperatures in the UK gradually rising as they are, solar energy is now an extremely viable way to generate a cheap, sustainable energy source for homes. So, long-term savings can be made as well as helping the environment — a true win-win!

It’s refreshing to learn that Read more

Printing for bio-bean, London SE1

Commercial printing for bio-bean

When you’re looking for a printer, it makes perfect sense to find a local print service if you can; it’s much more convenient, saves on delivery costs and speeds up the production process. That’s exactly what bio-bean® did when they chose Southside Print London Bridge, who are just a short distance from their own offices in London SE1.

The Printing

Southside Print London Bridge has produced a whole range of printed items for bio-bean. Items include:

  • business cards, for which several versions were supplied. Some were digitally printed on white 350gsm offset (uncoated) card, others were litho printed both sides, in full colour, onto 450gsm card which was then matt laminated;
  • A5 brochures, which were printed on 200gsm white Essential Silk paper (50 and 100 quantities, so perfect for our digital presses);
  • various health and safety guides, sized A6, which were printed onto white Essential Silk paper (170gsm) then saddle-stitched;
  • stickers — we print lots and lots of stickers and labels for bio-bean;
  • C5 compliments slips which we printed in colour onto brilliant white Conqueror Wove paper (120gsm);
  • A4 printed manuals for baristas;
  • A4 full colour printed ‘welcome’ letters which are supplied to new recruits to bio-bean’s coffee grounds recycling programme.

All artwork was supplied by the client. Here’s how some of the printing looked:

Printing for bio-bean, London SE1

About bio-bean

bio-bean is a pioneering clean technology company based in London SE1 and is the first in the world to recycle waste coffee grounds from places like coffee shops, restaurants and coffee factories, turning them into advanced biofuels and biochemicals. The fuels currently take the form of biomass pellets for use in the heating of buildings and briquettes (“Coffee LogsTM”) which can be used as fuel in wood burners, chimineas and open fires. The company also has plans to turn the coffee grounds into biodiesel fuel in the near future and this will be suitable for powering transport systems — perhaps whole cities one day. The growing company has strategic partnerships with waste management companies, which collect the grounds on its behalf, and after just 3 years has over 40 staff.

“Cities of the future will be powered by a new resource; waste. We are starting with coffee.”

Read more

Letterhead Update for G Worrall & Son, London SE1

Letterhead printing & artwork for G Worralls

Southside Print London Bridge recently undertook a very straight forward letterhead update for G Worrall & Son, the Master Locksmith just a few blocks away in Great Suffolk Street, SE1. The update was needed following the launch of their new website at www.gworralls.com and the idea was simply to update their existing letterhead in order to use the same font on both items – and to re-make the artwork in the process.

About G Worrall & Son

G WorrallsG Worralls are a well-established, highly professional locksmith. Founded way back in 1896, they provide first class lock repair and replacement, key cutting and call-out services throughout London. So, whether you’ve lost your keys and are locked out, need a G Worrall & Son shop, London SE1security update for your property or simply need duplicate keys cut, G Worralls are there to help, whatever type of key or lock you have. They stock all the major brands as well as many specialist varieties including restricted key locks, master key systems, digital locks and code locks. Find out more about their services at www.gworralls.com or call 0207 407 8498 to get through to the friendly team at their SE1 shop.

An in-house artwork service

Going back to the printing, the letterhead for G Worralls is an example of where Southside Print’s in-house artwork department can be very convenient, because the original letterhead artwork was not available in this case. So, we simply replicated the existing letterhead layout, updated a few minor details as requested and, of course, changed the company name at the top so it used the same font family as featured on the new website (the font is Ubuntu, in case you were wondering). Once approved this allowed us to print off 2000 new letterheads, on 100gsm white ‘Navigator’ paper, using our litho printing press — simple!

In-house graphic design services

It goes without saying, of course, that we are also more than happy to supply totally new graphic design. So if you are looking for a complete makeover for your printed graphics, our in-house design team are ready and waiting to help. We can Read more

Design and printing for Art & Motty, London SE1

Litho, digital & large format printing for Art & Motty Litho, Digital and Large Format Printing

Southside Print London Bridge produces design, artwork and many different types of printing for Art & Motty, a local business with an HQ in London SE1 (more about them below). The printing covers all manner of stationery, labels, point of sale displays and more, including:

  • a series of signs in various sizes and some A1 posters. These were printed, quickly and efficiently, on our large format colour printing machine using a 190gsm ‘photo satin’ stock. The signs were then matt encapsulated for additional protection when in use outdoors;
  • double-sided business cards, which were printed in full colour onto 450gsm silk stock with the addition of a ‘soft touch’ lamination to give them additional protection and a lovely feel;
  • letterheads, which were litho printed using specially mixed spot colours and a 120gsm white stock;
  • loyalty cards, which were printed in full colour onto a 300gsm offset stock;
  • various labels, which were printed on white uncoated ‘crack back’ (easy-peel) label stock. These were then used on the actual product packaging.

All design and artwork was generated by Matt Potter, the in-house graphic designer at Southside Print London Bridge. The stationery, sales and marketing collateral was produced via a mixture of digital, litho and large format printing, as appropriate.

About Art & Motty

Art & Motty, founded in 2015 by Peter (‘Art’) Hall and Dermot (‘Motty’) Egan, began as a spin-off from Art’s other business venture, Food Matters. While Food Matters supplies food and event services to corporate and private clients in high profile London venues, Art & Motty’s purpose is to bring delicious, bespoke food products to the street, via market stalls. Within that new, wider audience, Art & Motty has become known, in particular, for their ridiculously delicious chilled range of brownies, ‘Brownie Points’. The unique range was created originally by Motty when working as Head Chef at Food Matters. The brownies use only natural ingredients, have zero additives and no preservatives. They are also available in an increasingly popular gluten-free variant. Here are just a few of the brownie flavours, to whet your appetite:

  • ‘Raspberry & White Chocolate’, which leaves a lovely mellow, bittersweet taste on the tongue.
  • ‘Double Chocolate Chip’ combines luxurious white and milk chocolate chunks with aromatic Madagascan vanilla extract resulting in a ‘sweet, heavenly taste finishing with delicate floral notes’.
  • For nut-lovers like me, Art & Motty provide ‘Pistachio & White Chocolate’ and ‘Macadamia & White Chocolate’ options. Yum!
  • ‘Chilli and Dark Chocolate’ featuring rich dark chocolate infused with a mild dried chilli powder, creating a smooth, velvety warmth on the throat.
  • New seasonal flavours are added to the range all the time and Motty is finalising a version of their ‘Madagascan vanilla-infused sea salted caramel sauce’ and this is now available in sealed glass jars.
  • Motty has been working hard to create the perfect vegan brownie containing delicate flavour combinations of banana and beetroot which have already proven to be a big hit with our customers at Crave Market in Paddington. These are available to purchase from our market stalls or on-line.
  • Check out more flavours on the website and up-coming additions on their blog.

Art & Motty have their production headquarters in Borough, SE1 and, we are pleased to say, often Read more