printing on dark paper

Hello Printers,

I have a client that is looking to have postcards printed on black paper with silver ink. For that matter, I had a client that wanted white ink on kraft brown paper. Since I’ve only ever printed on the white/off-white paper range of colors, I’m not sure how to make this happen. What do you think? Suggest an alternative?

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Silver ink on black paper should be fine, as the silver is pretty much opaque (unless run too light or there are coverage problems such as a large solid run on a platen press). The white will be a problem to produce looking pure white, white ink will always allow some show-through, so either you get less-than-opaque white printing, or you print twice in perfect register (perhaps using silver as the first layer to block the paper color); or you go to another process such as foil stamping, thermograving, or screen printing.

To echo Dave, Silver on black is nice, and you can increase the opacity by double and triple striking. I’ve also mixed silver with opaque white and lightened it up quite a bit without taking anything away from its opacity.

About a month ago, I was hell-bent on trying to print white on black, and acheived a very light grey by double striking silver, and triple striking charbonnel white over it, but couldn’t get it very white.

Why don’t you foil stamp them?

because we would have to send it to you for foil stamping??? i won’t print on dark stock cause it never seems to work, i’d only foil stamp light colors on dark stock.

Where can I learn about doing foil stamping? I want in.

if you want to take a ride i’ll show you what i know, i have a windmill and a 5x8 kelsey with foiling units on them, also 4 small table top foil machines. If i remember you are not too far from Alan at Excelsior press, i believehe has a foil unit on a kelsey. Girl with a kluge has forgotten more about foil stamping than i’ll ever know, but she is pretty far away.

Screen Printing is a cheap, easy way to get very, very good coverage on dark stock.

It won’t be mirror shiny like with foil-stamping, although I know people who have had success laying down a layer of glue using a screen and then applying foil to that.


Dick, I am only half an hour away. Just board a plane and I will pick you up at the airport.