Archive for November, 2014

Add A Touch Of Seasonal Luxury With Our Gold & Silver Labels

Thursday, November 27th, 2014

We have a range of metallic gold and silver paper labels, suitable for use with laser printers. These labels have a gorgeous semi-gloss textured finish, which adds a shimmering finishing touch to any item you wish to label. They’re a great label to use for the festive season as bright, decorative labels that have that special Christmas holiday feel. They’re great for use as fun, festive gift tags for those all important Christmas gifts, name badges or place holders at Christmas parties, on invitations or envelopes for your Christmas Do, or simply to add a special finish to your Christmas cards.

Companies can use these labels for seasonal promotions or to add a touch of Christmas tradition that makes their company documents, products, and postal items look and feel more like special gifts for special customers at a special time of the year. As an added bonus, the finish on these labels has an opaque or blockout effect, which means that these labels can be added to existing packaging or materials where they will block out any existing print or design work – so there’s no need to have things re-printed!

And the best part is, we’ve just added a new size to our range of gold and silver labels. In addition to the existing eight sizes, we can now offer LP1/199 in both gold and silver. This label measures 199.6mm by 289.1mm, which means it is ideal for adding a large, decorative label to parcels, product boxes, or displays, or – if you’re feeling extra creative – for cutting into bespoke shapes and sizes for that extra special finish.

Yes, You Can Use Our Labels With Standard Inkjet & Laser Printers – But That Doesn’t Mean You Have To…

Tuesday, November 25th, 2014

We spend a lot of our time advising customers on the best labels for their laser or inkjet printer, how to get the best print results, and a whole host of Frequently Asked Questions about labels and printers and printers and labels.

But, it just so happens that our labels can be extremely useful all on their own…

…Presenting Label Planet’s List Of Ways To Use Your Labels, Without A Printer!

Handwritten Labels
It’s an old tradition but it’s a good one; instead of using a printer, take the more personal route and handwrite your address labels. Obviously, this works best for smaller quantities (unless you’ve got some willing volunteers to help you out) but taking the time to handwrite your address labels adds a truly personal touch to your letters and parcels. All of our paper labels can be written on with ease and can be used to create a lovely bespoke finish for all kinds of items.

Colour Coding Labels
This one applies to our ranges of coloured and fluorescent labels, which can be used to organise pretty much anything. Whether you’re at home and you need to get the family calendar organised; you’ve got stock to rotate, count, or promote; you’ve got office schedules and deadlines to plan; or you’re moving to a new home or office, these labels are an easy visual tool for getting things planned and organised – and you’ve got the choice of cool pastel shades or funky fluorescent colours. They can be used blank or you can add notes to help keep track of what (or who!) goes where, when, and why.

Children’s Activity Labels
Blank paper labels can be used for all sorts of children’s activities, whether they’re intended for educational purposes, just a bit of fun, or something to keep them occupied when you need a few minutes of peace and quiet. Our labels can be stuck onto homework, reward charts, exercise books, clothing, or project and activity materials and they can be written on with just about any kind of writing implement, from pens and pencils to crayons and glitter sticks. The list of uses is endless and the only limit is what you and your children can imagine!

Gift Tags/Packaging Seals
Whether you’re wrapping up presents for friends and family or looking for a simple, decorative way to seal your product packaging, our labels are an excellent finishing touch. You can opt for one of our colourful labels to add a fun, bright finishing touch or select from one of our transparent labels for a professional, subtle finish.

Reminders & Post-Its
Our removable labels are ideal for adding reminders and temporary notes to your diary, planner, calendar, the office noticeboard, or the fridge. You can scribble a quick note, leave it up for yourself or someone else to see, and then remove it when the job has been done, without doing any damage or leaving any adhesive residue behind.

Revision & Study Aids
Removable labels are also a great way to mark important passages or pages in books, to add your own notes to revision guides and source materials, or to create study cards that can be used to revise for exams. You can stick these notes in books, onto revision notes, or even around the house to help you learn key points throughout the day. Then, once an exam or piece of coursework is over, they can be removed without doing any damage.

Transparent White Boards
Our gloss clear polyester labels (material code GCP) can be used as transparent white boards; simply use a whiteboard marker to write or draw on one of these labels, then wipe it clean and start all over again. These labels are a great tool for use in offices, schools, or at home.

Name Labels & Badges
Our labels can be used as simple name badges and name labels for both personal and professional occasions. At home, our labels can be used as name badges at parties (where guests can have some fun creating their own designs) or to add name labels to children’s belongings (so there’s no confusion – or arguments – about which items belong to which child). They can also be used to create personal name badges for meetings and events held by businesses and organisations, whether it’s a company gathering or a charity fundraiser.

Of course, these are just a few of our suggestions and we know our creative customers have come up with all sorts of ways to use their labels without going anywhere near a printer – so why not give it try and see if a blank label is just the thing you need.

FAQ – Common Issues & Questions When Printing Labels: Part 2 Templates

Friday, November 21st, 2014

Welcome to the second part of our two part special about common problems that arise when printing labels; this blog is all about templates!

All I need to do is set up a template, add my design, and press print. Right?
Wrong. Unfortunately, while some people may find that everything works perfectly the first time, it is always best practice to get your template set up and do a test print first. Print your template onto a sheet of blank paper and hold this up against a sheet of your labels to check if the alignment is correct. This way, you have the chance to correct any misalignment and make suitable adjustments before you print on your actual labels.

All of my labels are printing too high / low / left / right.
While you could go back to your template and adjust your design for each of the labels on your sheet, it is far easier to force the labels into place by increasing or decreasing the page margins.

The alignment is getting progressively worse down or across the page. What do I do?
This usually happens when your template or printer uses a page setting that is something other than A4. You should check the page size that is set for BOTH your template AND your printer; you will likely find that one of these has shifted to a “default” setting that is US letter size rather than A4 size.

Some of my labels are printing okay, but the rest get worse and worse.
This tends to happen with the PDF templates and is caused by document/printer settings that involve scaling or magnification. The template should be printed at its actual size; if any scaling is applied to the design you will find that your printer attempts to print the design onto a paper size that is bigger or smaller than A4.
We have also found that certain graphics packages can cause issues with alignment if you try to print directly from within that program. To avoid these issues, try opening your PDF template with the program, adding your design, saving your design, shutting down the program, and then opening the PDF file and printing directly from the file itself.

This Word template doesn’t show circles / ovals?
Word is a word processor, which means it’s great with editing text, but less accomplished when it comes to graphic design. The best compromise is to use a grid of squares/rectangles that your circular/oval labels will fit inside (with the outermost points touching the four sides of the square/rectangle).

Why can’t I edit this PDF file?
Unless you open a PDF in a graphics package you will not be able to edit its contents. Most computers have a PDF reader that allows you to open PDF files to view and read them but, unless you also have a graphics package, you will not be able to edit them.

My Word template keeps jumping onto the next page when I add my design. What do I do?
This is usually the result of Word trying to be helpful by expanding the cells in a grid or table around the content that you add. Unfortunately, this will ruin the alignment of your template. You should ensure that your content (whether it’s text, images, or both) doesn’t exceed the size of your labels, and double check that you aren’t accidentally pasting text or images into the blank columns and rows that represent the spaces between the labels.

Do I have to set up my design once for each label on the sheet?
No! Get your design right in the top left label and then copy and paste this into the other labels. This way you know that every single label has been set up in the same way, which should help prevent variations in the alignment of your template.

I can’t see any gridlines on my Word template.
This is because you have gridlines turned off. (Not so) Helpfully, Word has two types of gridlines, which can be confusing. One applies gridlines to the entire page; this setting is usually found under the “View” tab. The second type (and the one you actually need) is under “Table Tools”. In recent versions of Word, you will need to click inside the grid to bring up the Table Tools tab at the top of the page, after which you need to select the “Layout” tab and “View Gridlines”.

I’m trying to move an image in Word but it keeps jumping about.
Try changing the format settings of the image. You can find these by left clicking on the image and selecting the “Picture Tools Format” tab from the top of the page or by right clicking on the image and selecting “Format Picture” from the list. You should try changing the “Wrap Text” settings; usually this defaults to “In Line With Text”, which means that Word will align the image with the font settings applied to a cell, instead of letting you position the image wherever you want to. Try choosing the “Tight” or “In Front Of Text” settings for greater control over image positioning.

Hopefully we’ve answered your questions but if you’ve got an issue that hasn’t been resolved by these tips, then please get in touch so we can offer bespoke advice.

FAQ – Common Issues & Questions When Printing Labels: Part 1 Printers

Thursday, November 20th, 2014

We’re doing a two part special on the most common problems that arise when printing labels, starting with printer issues.

Can I print on ANY of your labels with my desktop laser / inkjet printer?
NO. Some of our ranges are designed to be used with laser or inkjet printers ONLY.
You CANNOT print onto inkjet labels with a laser printer or onto laser labels with an inkjet printer. The materials are designed to work with one of the two printing processes and you will find that they will not work well (or at all) with the other.

What’s the difference between laser and inkjet printers / printing processes?
Laser printers use heat and pressure to bond toner (a dry powder) onto the surface of the medium being printed, while inkjet printers disperse ink (a liquid) onto the medium being printed where it dries to form the final print with some or all of the ink being absorbed into the top layer of the labels.

I have a laser printer but I’m having problems with the print coming off my labels. What’s happening?
There are a couple of things that could be causing this. The most common reason for print scratching off is that not enough heat and/or pressure has been applied during the printing process. To correct this, you should check your printer’s settings and ensure that the media type or weight is set to either a “Labels” setting (if your printer has one) or a “Heavy Paper” setting. This causes the printer to slow down and increase the heat applied during printing. Alternatively, the problem may be with the material you are printing. As the laser printing process requires heat, many papers designed specifically for use in laser printers will contain moisture to help the toner bond in place; if your labels have been stored incorrectly they may have dried out, which causes the toner to rub off after printing. This can also occur if you try to feed the same sheet of labels through a laser printer twice; paper labels lose some of their moisture as they are printed, which means that there may not be enough moisture to print them properly if you attempt to put them through the printer for a second time.

I have an inkjet printer but I’m having problems with the print smearing. What’s happening?
As with laser printers, there are a few potential causes for this problem. Firstly, you should check if your sheet of labels has come into contact with water or other liquids. Inkjet inks are water based, which means that if they come into contact with liquids they will run or smudge. Secondly, your printer may be dispersing too much ink or the top coating of your labels may be oversaturated with ink; in either case, the ink isn’t dry properly, which leads to smearing. This can occur in designs that include a lot of different colours or large blocks of colour (you can work around this by reducing the amount of colour in your design or purchasing coloured labels). The best way to solve this issue is to alter two of your printer’s settings, “Print Quality” and “Paper Type”. The print quality settings allow you to prioritise either the print quality or the print speed. A “Best” or “Photo” print quality setting makes the printer operate more slowly but with the dispersal of more ink to create a higher quality of print, so you may wish to try the “Normal” or “Draft” settings. The paper type setting will also adjust how the printer runs in order to create the best possible print results for the type of paper being printed onto (such as coated, uncoated, photo paper, or gloss paper). You may also want to consider removing the labels from your printer as soon as they are printed so you can place them on a flat surface while the ink dries properly. A final possibility is that there is an incompatibility between the label material and the printer/inks you are using; inks have slightly different compositions, which can produce a large variety in the print quality. Try using a different printer/inks to see if you get better results.

I’m trying to print a coloured background but I’m getting a white border down one or more of the edges.
Unless you buy a printer with edge to edge printing, you’re probably running into an issue with printable and unprintable areas. Most printers cannot print to the very edge of an A4 sheet, which means there is an area that they can print (the printable area) and an area around the edge of the sheet that they cannot print (the unprintable area). Unfortunately, there is little you can do if your labels fall outside the printable area of the sheet. You may need to take your labels to a printer or get hold of a printer that is capable of edge to edge printing, choose a different size or layout of label (so that all of the labels fall within the printable area), remove your coloured background, or use coloured labels.

My printer isn’t accepting my labels / my labels are jamming in the printer.
The most common cause for this is unclean printers. Over time excess ink or toner builds up in your printer, along with dust and grime, which can cause printers to stop functioning properly. You should use an alcohol based cleaner on a regular basis to help avoid this problem; you may want to set a regular schedule for cleaning your printer or simply give it a quick clean each time you replace the ink or toner cartridges. The build-up can affect all parts of your printer, including the print head (in inkjet printers), the fuser unit and image drum (in laser printers), and the rollers. This can cause a multitude of problems including poor quality print, sheets jamming in the printer, or sheets not being accepted into the printer to begin with.
Other causes of sheets jamming include using the standard paper tray instead of the media bypass tray (which is designed specifically for thicker materials), using materials that are incompatible with your particular printer (some printers can only accept materials up to a certain thickness, while others may only be able to process paper), or feeding the labels into the printer in the wrong orientation (the fibres in paper lie in one common direction; this is the “grain” and if you feed labels into your printer against the grain they will jam or even start peeling off the backing sheet while they are in the printer). If you have a laser printer, you may also want to check for issues with your fuser unit; when fuser units start to fail they are more likely to overheat, which causes the adhesive in the labels to spread and the sheets will jam. If you find that the labels or your printer are unusually hot, or if standard paper feels hot to the touch after printing, then you may need to replace your fuser unit.

I want to produce waterproof labels, can I use my inkjet printer?
NO. Inkjet printers use water based inks, which means that if the print comes into contact with water or other liquids it will run or smudge. Laser printers, however, use heat and pressure to bond toner (a dry powder) into place, which means the print is fully waterproof.

My design is printing out skewed. What’s happening?
When your labels are printed, they are pulled through your printer by a set or sets of rollers. As each sheet passes through these rollers there is a slight chance that the sheet might rotate very slightly. To prevent the risk of this happening, you should use the media bypass tray; this tray is usually located just above or below the standard paper tray, which creates a straighter path through the printer (with fewer sets of rollers).

I’ve printed my template on two different printers; why is the alignment different for each one?
Simply put, all printers are slightly different, which means the accuracy of the alignment can vary by a few millimetres. If you are intending to use different printers, you will need to do a test print for BOTH printers, and you may need to make adjustments for each one.

I’m looking to buy a new printer, can you help?
While we don’t supply printers ourselves, we do have a few hints and tips to get you started:

Laser or Inkjet: inkjet printers used to be more popular because they were capable of cheaper, high quality print in vivid colour, but nowadays laser printers are available that can produce excellent quality colour print at similar prices. You should consider the types of documents and items you need to print and remember – if you want to create waterproof labels you will need a laser printer.

Costs: when working out your budget, you need to factor in both the cost of the printer AND the long term costs of replacing the consumables that go with it. While toner cartridges for laser printers are more expensive than inkjet cartridges, you need to remember that toner cartridges are bigger than inkjet cartridges, so you’ll need to replace your inkjet cartridges much more often. For either type of printer, you should also check if the printer will accept compatible (and often cheaper) cartridges from third party manufacturers/suppliers. If you are purchasing an inkjet printer, you also need to check if you will need to buy two cartridges (one black and one colour) or four cartridges (one black, one magenta, one cyan, and one yellow).

All in One versus Standard Printers: all in one printers (which do multiple functions such as faxing, copying, and scanning documents) often seem like a good, cheap alternative to a standard printer but it’s worth considering this choice carefully. While they may save you money and space, they are often designed to do a multitude of functions to a reasonable standard, rather than performing a specific function to a high standard – so if print quality is an important factor, you may wish to avoid the all in one models.

Printer Specifications: it is always worth checking through and comparing the specifications of the models you are looking at. You should ensure that the duty cycle of the printer (the number of pages a printer should be able to print in a certain time frame while maintaining a consistent quality of print and standard of operation) exceeds the amount of printing you will need to do, and – if labels are a definite requirement – you should ensure that the printer has a media bypass tray and check the manual to see what materials/thicknesses the printer is able to handle.

Printer Models: from our own experience, we’ve found that OKI printers have a high duty cycle, produce a high quality print on a range of label materials, and have short paths through the printer to improve accuracy of alignment. HP printers are also capable of printing labels to a high standard.

Part two of this special post will be available on our blog tomorrow.

Last Posting Dates For Christmas 2014 (!)

Thursday, November 13th, 2014

Yes, yes, we know – not another company harping on about ordering stuff in time for Christmas!
However, we hope you’ll forgive us when we point out that:

  1. We just want to make sure all of our lovely customers receive their labels safely and swiftly despite the chaos of Christmas!
  2. Christmas Day is just six weeks away!

If you haven’t already, many of our customers will soon be looking to purchase labels for items that absolutely HAVE to arrive in time for Christmas – whether you need them for letters, cards, or gifts for family and friends or you’re a company and want to provide a seasonal Santa-like service and ensure that all of your customers’ orders are delivered in time for Christmas.

Labels often become a bit of an after-thought that gets left to the last minute, but it’s important to remember that whenever you order labels you need to allow time for the labels to arrive, to design your template, to print your labels, and to apply your labels – all of which soon adds up. If you then need to send your labelled items to family, friends, or customers, you also have to leave time for the items themselves to arrive safely before Christmas.

Therefore, at this time of the year we strongly advise customers to take advantage of one of our next working day shipping options, just to make absolutely sure that your labels arrive securely and with plenty of time to spare. If you need to send your labels on for printing or if you have despatch and delivery schedules of your own to keep to, it’s vital that you make sure you order your labels as early as possible.

So, here are those all important dates:

ROYAL MAIL’S INTERNATIONAL STANDARD/TRACKED SERVICES – Saturday 13th December
ROYAL MAIL’S FIRST CLASS/FIRST CLASS SIGNED FOR SERVICES – Saturday 20th December
ROYAL MAIL’S GUARANTEED NEXT DAY DELIVERY SERVICE – Tuesday 23rd December

Of course, we only process and despatch orders during the working week (Monday to Friday) so if you need to receive your labels in time for Christmas (i.e. – you DON’T need the labels for items that are to be despatched to someone else), your last ordering dates for labels from Label Planet are as follows:

ROYAL MAIL’S INTERNATIONAL STANDARD/TRACKED SERVICES – Friday 12th December
ROYAL MAIL’S FIRST CLASS/FIRST CLASS SIGNED FOR SERVICES – Friday 19th December
ROYAL MAIL’S GUARANTEED NEXT DAY DELIVERY SERVICE – Tuesday 23rd December

BUT REMEMBER: if you need labels for items that you are sending out that MUST arrive before Christmas, you need to order your labels well BEFORE these last posting dates – and adding a guaranteed delivery service to your order is a very, very good idea!!!

Be Dazzled By Our Expanded Range Of Fluorescent Labels

Wednesday, November 12th, 2014

Yes, we love them so much, we’ve decided to expand our range of stocked fluorescent labels, so that more of these amazing colours are available to our customers in smaller quantities, ready for same day despatch.

Previously, only five of our fluorescent label sizes were available from stock in packs of 25 sheets, but now we can offer a choice of eight label sizes. We’ve also brought in more stock of our mesmerising magenta, so we can now offer seven sizes in a smaller box of 100 sheets in this brilliant colour.

We’ve revamped our fluorescent range page to make it easier to see exactly which products are available and the minimum order quantity for each product. All of our stocked fluorescents (25 sheet minimum) are listed in the top section, while the unstocked items that are available to order are listed in either our 100 sheet or 500 sheet minimum order sections.

[Please note that despatch times for orders of our 100 and 500 sheet minimum order products will vary according to available stock. Where an item is in stock, the order will be despatched the same day via a next day carrier service. Where an item is out of stock or a larger quantity is required, the product(s) will be made to order, which can take up to five working days for despatch. If you need to confirm a despatch estimate, please get in touch.]

Fluorescent labels are a great way to add a burst of colour to all sorts of applications. These labels are great for creative projects at home or in school (or even in the office!); they’re an excellent way to add a bright, decorative finish to products or marketing materials; and they’re an absolutely brilliant tool for getting organised, whether you’re labelling files, setting out important dates and deadlines on a calendar, or whether you’ve got stock taking to do – these fluorescent colours mean colour coding is a lot more fun and, more importantly, extremely effective when you have such bright, eye catching colours to use.

A Guide To Minimum Order Quantities From Label Planet

Thursday, November 6th, 2014

At Label Planet we supply our labels in packs of 25 sheets or boxes of 500 sheets (with some items available in a “small box” of 100 sheets).

All of our stocked items have a minimum order quantity of 25 sheets, while our unstocked items have a minimum order quantity of 500 (or 100!) sheets.

So why the different minimum order quantities?
Well, as you may have guessed, it’s all to do with costs.

Our minimum order quantities are determined by the quantities that allow us to supply our products in the most cost effective way, so that we can offer our customers the best possible prices.

The sizes and material combinations that we keep in stock are those that are most often requested and purchased by our customers. As these labels are requested so often, they are manufactured regularly in (very) large quantities. In comparison, our unstocked items tend to be products that are requested by far fewer customers, often as one-off or infrequent orders. These items are made either in smaller quantities on an infrequent basis or as “made to order” items whereby the labels are made in the exact quantities that are required as and when a particular product is requested. This means that unstocked items involve the production of a relatively small number of items while also incurring the set up costs involved in preparing the presses to produce that particular item. Therefore, in order to offer these label products to our customers at reasonable and affordable prices, they have to be ordered in larger quantities to justify the production costs involved.

Each of our products is labelled with the minimum order quantity that applies to that particular item. This is displayed both on the range page that a product appears on (as the top line of text underneath the image of the product) and on each individual product page (where the minimum order quantity is both the top and the default option that is selected in the list of quantities and their prices). If you have any questions about the quantities we supply or need any advice with regards to placing an order, please get in touch and we’ll answer any queries that you may have.

FAQ – Ordering Labels For Delivery To Ireland

Tuesday, November 4th, 2014

We despatch and deliver labels to both Northern Ireland and Southern Ireland, and this blog post contains all the important information you need to know if you’re ordering labels for delivery to either of these destinations.

ORDERING/DELIVERY INFORMATION FOR NORTHERN IRELAND:
Orders can be placed online or over the phone.

– ORDERS OF 25 SHEET PACKS
Standard delivery (first class Royal Mail) is included in the prices on our website. 90% arrives the next day.
Next day delivery is offered in the checkout as you place your order or can be requested via phone.
Same day despatch for orders placed before 4:30pm (Mon to Fri).

– ORDERS OF 500 SHEET BOXES
2-3 day carrier delivery with additional shipping charges. Please call for price.
Same day despatch for orders of standard permanent matt white paper label products placed before 3:00pm (Mon to Fri).
Up to five working days for despatch of other materials and colours. Please call to check on your delivery estimate.

ORDERING/DELIVERY INFORMATION FOR SOUTHERN IRELAND:
Orders must be placed by phone so that we can arrange the best possible shipping option for the products (and quantities) that you require. If you are VAT registered, please quote your VAT number so we can remove VAT from your order total.

– ORDERS OF 25 SHEET PACKS
Standard delivery is Royal Mail’s international signed for service. The shipping cost will be calculated according to the overall quantity of packs included in your order. Please call to request a price; alternatively, the shipping cost will be calculated and quoted to you when you place your order by phone.
Same day despatch for orders placed before 4:30pm (Mon to Fri).

– ORDERS OF 500 SHEET BOXES
2-3 day carrier delivery with additional shipping charges. Please call for price.
Same day despatch for orders of standard permanent matt white paper label products placed before 3:00pm (Mon to Fri).
Up to five working days for despatch of other materials and colours. Please call to check on your delivery estimate.

Full delivery information for ALL destinations can be found on our website.