I love getting free samples from paper companies. I never pass up a chance to go to a paper show, and not just for that free food and drink. They are outstanding resources for inspiration. Unisource is a worldwide paper distributor and happens to have a distribution center in my area so I use them often. You can get paper sample books of all the papers they carry. Just call a paper company, ask them to put you on their mailing list and to invite you to their next paper show. Then make sure you attend. These shows are free. You will be able to get tons of free paper sample books with a variety of printing techniques used to show that versatility of the paper stock. Many times I use these books to help me come up with new ideas or to show my clients examples of techniques I can’t simulate. Did you know that you can call a paper company such as Unisource and get samples of paper to mock up your project with? Yep. And if you ask nicely, they will ship it overnight to you. You can usually get 12.5-inch by 19-inch sheets of any paper they carry. I have asked for as many as 30 sheets, and they have obliged. Now you can print your layout on the actual paper stock that the project will be printed on and make a folding mock up. This is particularly impressive if it’s a colored paper stock or perhaps a paper with a fleck or shimmer in it. I’ve mocked up many 11-inch by 17-inch spreads this way. Your client will be able to feel the weight and texture of the final piece. Always keep in mind that specialty paper stock will cost you more. Using the printer’s house stocks can save you up to half on paper. Also, be sure to save the unused samples with the identifying tag that come with them. I find myself using some of the same papers over and over. It’s nice to have them on hand and be able to identify them correctly.
Free paper for your project mock ups
February 11, 2009
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The PsPrint Blog is a resource for graphic designers, freelancers, small business owners and fans of print marketing. You'll find helpful techniques on printing everything there is to print, including business cards, postcards, brochures, stickers, invitations, greeting cards, door hangers, magnets and more. The PsPrint Blog shares creative ways to improve your design and layout skills, and useful tips for marketing your business in any medium. We also like to have a little fun, sharing design inspiration and spotlighting some our favorite customers' printed pieces in our "Hot Off the Press" series.