null

Custom Printed Box Art Specs & Requirements

These guidelines serve as an overview of our post-production shipping box printing parameters. We have a real, live human review and proof your artwork prior to production. Look out for your final preproduction proof in the next business day after your order is placed.


Design Templates

Looking for a template for your custom printed box designing needs? Fill out your shipping box details in the form below and we will follow up with a downloadable PDF template and custom printing shipping box details to help you get started. Interested in templates for multiple shipping box styles or sizes? Submit a request for each style and size.

Request Your Shipping Box Design Template

Plate Pricing & Print Coverage

We have a tiered pricing structure for printing plates based on the type and size of your box and the number of panels you intend to print. Plate prices start at $95 for a single panel print, average about $200 for a mid-coverage print, and can be $300-800 for a full coverage print. In addition, each printed color and printed side will require a plate.

We will let you know in the proofing process if we need to change your coverage and plate fee. Contact us at any time for guidance!

Tab Locking, Literature Mailer, One Panel Fold, Tray

Mid Coverage vs Full Coverage

Looking for a multi-panel box print but not sure if your design is a "mid coverage" or "full coverage" print?

What is a Mid Coverage Print?

  • Plate is typically about half of the size of the flat box
  • For an outside box print, it will often be a printed box in which the top panel + front and/or back panel are printed (can also include printing on the left and right flaps that are tucked INTO the box)
  • For an inside box print, it will often include a bottom panel print + back and/or right and left panel

What is a Full Coverage Print?

  • The printing plate is more than half of the size of the flat box
  • It will often include the top panel and the left or right side of the box (and/or the bottom of the box)
  • In many instances, these are full wrap print across an entire box
If Your Longest Dimension Is Single Panel Mid Coverage Full Coverage

10 inches or less

$95

$125

$350

Between 10 and 15 inches

$125

$200

$500

Over 15 inches

$175

$350

$800

Regular Slotted Container, Five Panel Fold

Panel Coverage

Each RSC or FPF box has 4 printable panels. The top or bottom flaps of any given “side” of the box are not considered individual panels.

If Your Longest Dimension Is 1 Panel 2 Panels 3+ Panels

10 inches or less

$95

$175

$500

Between 10 and 15 inches

$150

$300

$1000

Over 15 inches

$300

$500

$1750

Art Orientation Guidelines

Looking for guidance on how to orient your multi-panel box design? Reference these layouts that shows how artwork on our flat boxes needs to be oriented so your design is perfect once folded. Fill out the form above to receive a downloadable PDF template for your specific box style and size.

Tab-Locking

Hover over template to reveal our panel numbering system.

Text This Way ensures text is orientated correctly once box is folded.

Red hidden panels are not visible once the box is folded.

Tape represents carton sealing tape placement once box is sealed.

Literature Mailer

Hover over template to reveal our panel numbering system.

Text This Way ensures text is orientated correctly once box is folded.

Red hidden panels are not visible once the box is folded.

Tape represents carton sealing tape placement once box is sealed.

Regular Slotted Container

Hover over template to reveal our panel numbering system.

Red hidden panels are not visible once the box is folded.

Tape represents carton sealing tape placement once box is sealed.

One Panel Fold

Hover over template to reveal our panel numbering system.

Red hidden panels are not visible once the box is folded.

Tape represents carton sealing tape placement once box is sealed.

Five Panel Fold

Hover over template to reveal our panel numbering system.

Red hidden panels are not visible once the box is folded.

Tape represents carton sealing tape placement once box is sealed.

Art Specification Requirements

Vector Files

Green Vector vs. Raster Icon

To ensure a clear, high-quality print, please send us your artwork in vector format with all fonts outlined and all supporting files embedded. PDF, AI, and EPS are our preferred choices, but we also accept SVG.

We require artwork to be in vector format so that we can scale designs to size without losing any detail. Raster images are typically pixelated and these pixels are visible in the final print.

For additional help, check out Vector vs. Raster Artwork.  

Fonts

Please find our minimum baseline font sizes below.

  • Positive (Sans Serifs): 9 pt. (Helvetica)
  • Positive (Serifs): 10 pt. (Times New Roman)
  • Negative (reversed out): 16 pt. (All fonts)
Sometimes bold lettering increases the risk of test filling in or smudging. To ensure a high-quality print, we recommend using larger font size for any bold text.
 
Ink may fill in spaces less than 1/16th of an inch. Any text smaller than our suggested font sizes is subject to filling in and is highly likely to be illegible.

Stroke Weight & More

For any art element, we require at least a 1 point stroke weight and a 2 point reversed out stroke weight as this is a plate manufacturing requirement. Any art element lower than this minimum may cause the plate to break or not print as intended.

  • Side-to-side alignment tolerance: 1/16”
  • Registration Factor: 1/8” plus or minus
  • Ink may fill in spaces less than 1/16th of an inch (for both fonts and graphics)
  • Bleeds must be greater than 1/8"

Ink & Color

Our boxes are flexographic printed with hydrosoy and algae ink. Choose from 20 colors including black algae ink. Interested in a custom ink color? Contact us to request a quote and receive your ink swatch for review.

Our post-production boxes are printed in 1 or 2 colors. Each color requires it's own printing plate.

Color Matching

To see an accurate representation of a PMS color, we can send you a complimentary physical sample of our stock ink colors or we can create swatches of your custom color on our box material - contact us to get started.

PDF previews may render differently in browser previews and phones. Proof colors will vary from monitor to monitor and are only used as reference. Printing the proof with a digital printer will not give you an accurate representation of color because the conversion from PMS to CMYK is not perfect.

Flood Coating

We are cautious when it comes to flood coating any large surface area. Printing large ink bodies may lead to uneven coverage or speckling where the corrugate shows through the ink. This is especially common with our B-Flute box, where the spacing between the fluting is more pronounced.

We have printed many creative solutions! From a sustainability standpoint, we are mindful of the amount of ink used in all our products, and, where possible, we recommend using less ink to achieve beautiful designs.
 
Check out our Instagram for more examples of creative solutions:

Two-Color Printing

1) We can see up to ⅛” movement in registration per color. We strongly recommend that your box design not require the two colors to interact precisely with each other.

For example, if your design has an “i” in it, we would not recommend that you dot your “i” with a different color because the dot could be up to ⅛” inches off in registration.

2) We recommend that your color scheme not require a light color to be printed on top of a dark color. For example, if your design is black and white, this would be feasible as long as the black design elements were always on top of the white design elements.


3) The layering of the two colors has to be consistent throughout. If you are printing in green and orange and have green layering on top of the orange design component in one spot, the green design components must be on top of the orange throughout.

These recommendations are all driven by the fact that your boxes are printed using flexography, a printing process by which a flexible relief plate is inked and pressed on your custom-cut shipping box. We will create a plate for each color, and each plate will be inked and pressed on your box sequentially. So, in the orange and green letter "I" example above, the plate for the orange design components would be pressed first, and the plate for the green design components would be pressed next (so all of those elements would sit on top of the orange).

Contact us to get started on a two-color printed box order. Include the box style, box dimensions and quantity of boxes you're interested in ordering as well as an art file for your printed boxes.


If you are new to printing or have more questions, don’t worry! Just contact us. We would be happy to review your design with you and share our experience and thoughts on how to make sure you turn it into a great print and opening experience for your customers. And we will then work closely with you during the entire process - from art proof to the delivery of boxes to your door.