Hot foil stamping

Precious metal and eye-catcher for your printed matter

Hot foil stamping, also known as foil blocking in British English, uses an stamping die to melt real metal onto paper or cardboard under heat and pressure. In addition to paper, carton and cardboard, many plastics and self-adhesive films can also be imprinted in this way. The surface is additionally smoothed by the heat of the stamping cliché, so the results usually show very good light reflection, right up to a mirror-like effect on homogeneous materials. This is a major process advantage over similar techniques, such as cold foil.

Flat, 3D or micro embossing

Depending on the tool, hot foil stamping can be performed in 3 designs:

  • Flat, at paper level
  • Three-dimensional, formed out of the paper, so-called relief foil stamping
  • Structure foil stamping with finest micro embossing within the metallization. Here, customer's own texts or logos can also be incorporated in the metal.

Gold, silver, bronze and more on printed matter

In addition to metallization, for example in gold, often referred to as gold stamping, silver, metallic chromatic colors or hologram effects, there is also a wide range of non-metallic shades. These are used where conventional printing methods cannot be used for imaging, such as on book covers with linen overlays, substrates with high thickness, dark colored papers, cartons with coarse surface structures and the like.

The term stamping foil is somewhat misleading, since foil is by no means melted. The PET film, which is only 12 µm thick, is merely the carrier medium for the real metal or the color pigments. It is removed again and does not remain on the paper after printing.

Stamping foils in many colors and effects

Take your pick from the full range of embossing foils for your graphic design:

  • Gold metallic in various shades, matte as well as glossy
  • Silver metallic, matte as well as glossy, also in silver gray or platinum
  • Metallic bronze and copper shades
  • Metallic chromatic colors like red, green, blue, turquoise, pink and many more
  • Brushed aluminum
  • Colored non-metallic
  • Mother of pearl
  • Hologram effects iridescent in rainbow colors, silver, gold and chromatic colors
  • Metallic effects, such as rainbow gradients, iridescent oil puddles, or patterns with antique patinas
  • Metallic features for anti-counterfeiting, such as two-dimensional motion sequences with changing viewing angles or micro-texts

Foil stamping on challenging materials

Where conventional printing methods fail, foil stamping can be used for effective lettering and design. Whether 3mm thick gray cardboardbook covers with a linen cover, strongly structured surfacesdarkly colored types of cardboard or even wooden strips, to name a few examples.

Relief embossing silver metallic on anthracite natural cardboard for a jeweller detail view Hot foil stamping 2-colour and deep embossing on book cover Embossing die in a hot foil stamping machine Fully automatic hot foil stamping machine up to sheet size 72x102cm Comparison of embossing techniques with names