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How To Design And Print A Logo On Just About Anything

Andy just launched a new business. How exciting, right? He sells bespoke designer shoes exclusively for hikers. He is very excited to make his brand the ultimate choice for every explorer and adventure-seeker out there.

After months of design, experimentation, and prototyping, Andy is ready to promote his business, and the branding is just about to begin.

He wants to connect with the adventurer in everyone and position his brand as a lifestyle, not just a product line. 

For this, he plans to launch extensive marketing campaigns both online and offline, complete with unique packaging designs and merchandise. 

Andy conveys this to his design and marketing team so that they can plan the creatives accordingly. This is where things get a little tricky, starting with how to design and print a logo.

Logo and Visual Identity 

While a logo is only a part of your brand and visual identity, it is a major part. The logo features prominently on every marketing material of your brand. And it is an instrumental part of establishing brand recognition and recall.

Keeping all this significance in mind, you’ll want your logo to be displayed prominently across your marketing channels. This means on the web, on your packaging, and posters, and merchandise as well. And you want it to look high-quality and sharp, no matter where it shows up.

But, despite the best intentions it doesn’t always happen that way. So, what should you do to avoid mismatches in your online and offline brand identities?

Well, start with understanding why these mismatches can happen. And what your design team needs to be able to create a consistent brand identity for you.

For starters, let us see how to design logos that can work wherever you want them to. 

Getting Started with Logo Designs that work everywhere 

To ensure that your logo looks amazing no matter where it’s placed, start at the beginning. That is with the logo design process itself. Designing a logo is a crucial process and a somewhat complicated one.

But it is well worth the time and investment.

Your logo will be the face of your brand. And you have to ensure it reflects well on your products, values, customer base, and overall vibe of your brand. And keep in mind, it will form the baseline of your visual identity for years to come. 

But what are the specific aspects of the design process that influence how good your logo will look once printed? Well, there are many, and we will detail them in the coming sections.

So, let’s dive right in.

What do you need to know before finalizing a Logo design? 

Your designer can help you navigate the intricacies of creating a logo that works well on the web and print. But understanding the basic terms yourself will make the whole process easier.

When designing a logo here are some terms that it’s helpful for you to know: 

Color Models

In our blog on color models, we spoke of the three color models that designers employ to perfect their designs. When you sit down with your design team to finalize the color palette for your logo, you will likely hear these terms:

1) RGB

The primary color model where all the colors come from “Red, Green, and Blue”. Designers adopt this color model for screen-based usages such as websites, social media, and digital ads. 

The RGB color model forms different colors by adding different degrees of Red, Green, and blue to the black screen. It is not ideal for print designs. So, what do you do if you want to print your logo? Here, the designer chooses the CMYK model.

2) CMYK :

The CMYK (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Key{Black}) model works better for print-friendly designs. This model relies on the ink’s reflective properties to achieve the right shade, which can result in some inconsistencies. This can be solved with sampling and proofing. But designers have one more color at their disposal – Pantone.

3) Pantone 

In the Pantone color model, every color has a unique code that printers and designers can reference to ensure consistency across different mediums. 

This makes their work easy, and you also do not have to worry about any mismatches. This color model is ideal if you are going to print flyers or merchandise using different printing companies. 

File Types

Images usually come as raster or vector images. The number of pixels in a raster image remain fixed so that the image becomes blurry when you try to enlarge it. On the contrary, a vector image retains its scale even during resizing.

Raster images are the default in Photoshop, but designers can convert them into vector images or use Adobe Illustrator so that you can print in the size you want to. 

Common file types used for logo designs that end up in printing are AI, SVG, PNG, JPG, PDF, or EPS. 

Kimp Tip: If you’ll work with the same printer or printers on a recurring basis, find out what format they’d prefer your logo in. If you won’t be working with the same printer, err on the safe side and ask your designer to provide your logo files in all of the formats compatible with print and web designs.

Resolution 

The resolution of an image is in PPI (pixels per inch) or DPI (dots per inch). Resolution describes the number of pixels or dots present in a square inch of your image.

Now, to get the best results in your prints, you need a high-resolution so that each square inch holds as much information about the image as it can. This will translate into a clear and high-quality print.

The requirement can vary from printer to printer and also based on the quality of the material being printed on. Check with your printer to get all the information you can so that you can provide your designer with a clear brief on your design requirements. 

Selection of Design

Now, logo design cannot be a one-size-fits-all solution. The logo design and format you choose for your social media profile or website may not work perfectly on your packaging, labels, merchandise, or other marketing prints. 

Usually, our design team creates four versions of your logo – The whole logo, the logo with only a symbol for places with space constraint, an inverted color logo, and a transparent background logo. 

This ensures that wherever you need the printed logo, you can easily access it without having to edit it each time. But if you have additional use cases, be sure to let your designer know!


Kimp Tip: With a Kimp subscription you can get unlimited revisions and iteration of a design. So you can get your logo in as many different formats as you’d like, for a flat fee.

Proofing

The resolution you need to get a high-quality print depends on the paper quality and printing machine.

While most software programs have presets for the most popular options, it is good to do a trial run and proof your prints. This way you can ask the designers to tweak your designs if needed before you print the whole batch.

Logo design variations for a client by Kimp.

With this knowledge in mind you now know what it takes to get a logo ready for print. 

But, you will not print the design on just one material, will you? As a business owner, you have varied needs, and understanding how the logo will behave in different scenarios helps you plan your merchandise accordingly.

So, let’s look at some of the most popular logo print use cases and best practices for each case.

Common Logo Print Use Cases  

The world is becoming increasingly digital. Down to the way businesses interact with their customers. But the necessity for a strong offline brand presence is still very much present. And in fact, it is these offline marketing campaigns that usually bring a significant number of customers to a business’ website or social media profile.

So brands have to make real strides in building a strong visual identity and an offline community so that brand awareness spreads faster. One way to do that is by using branded merchandise. 

Some of the popular examples of such branded merchandise include stationery sets, T-shirts, labels, packaging, and other miscellaneous items like pens, mugs, and so on. In all these cases, businesses start by printing logos on the items they plan to distribute. 

However, each of these items has a different base material, making it important to note that the printing processes and requirements are also going to be different. 

Here is a rundown of some of the most popular Logo printing examples and what you must remember when you try these out for your business.

Design and Print A Logo on Stationery 

Do you use stationery that could be customer-facing such as notepads, letterheads, envelopes, business cards, or presentation folders? Then you should really consider printing your logo prominently on these to create brand awareness.

The challenge with this category is that each of these items can be made up of different materials. So the printing method and file requirements would vary accordingly too. 

Some of the common methods for printing logo on stationery include: 

  1. Screen Printing
  2. Digital Printing
  3. Block printing
  4. Flexo
  5. Pad printing
  6. Intaglio
  7. Letterpress 
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A stationery set designed by Kimp.

Kimp Tip: Paper usually comes in varying thickness, texture, and glossiness. These factors affect the final print output to a great extent. Plan a mockup in all the different paper types you wish to use before finalizing the design. 

For glossy and matte-finish prints, you may have to instruct your design team to dial up or down the colors to achieve the effect you want.

Design and Print A Logo on Clothing 

How cool is it when people from the same company all have matching T-shirts with the company logo on them? Or when customers love your brand so much they want to win and wear your swag? Just think about how often you see a giveaway for branded products.  

Now everyone wearing these items are walking, talking, and real-life advertisements for your brand. But, nothing ruins that vibe more than a faulty print or a design that loses its shape once the garment stretches or shrinks.

To avoid these issues, you must: 
  1. Choose the fabric you want to print the logo on keeping wear and tear in mind. The design finalization and the printing process depend on it!
  2. Do a mockup to check how it looks on the actual clothing and adjust the margins/text accordingly. 
  3. Finalize the printing process 

Some of the most common logo printing processes for clothing are embroidery, screen printing, or transfers. 

Embroidery works well for thick fabrics such as caps, jackets, and polo shirts, while screen printing is the usual method for printing logos on T-shirts and hoodies. 

If you are looking for something temporary for a particular event only, you can opt for the transfer method where printers transfer the design sticker on the fabric using a hot press. 

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Logo variations for a t-shirt design by Kimp.

Kimp Tips: 

  • Remember that fabric changes with a wash, bleach, and other such processes. Plan for it and do a trial run. Choose a design that will stay the same even after some expansion. 
  • If you are going to print on colored fabric, choose an inverted logo (Black/white) or an opaque form so that the logo does not get lost in between the colors. 
  • Center the logo and leave margins from the edge for proper visibility. 
Design and Print a Logo on Packaging 

Going back to the shoe business example, the product box is probably one of the most important branding materials for Andy. All his customers are going to get one. His storefront is going to be full of these boxes, not to mention the advertisements. 

So, it becomes essential that the logo print comes off near perfect. Otherwise, attaining a consistent branding identity and enabling brand recall is going to be a huge challenge. 

Packaging comes in varied materials, right from recycled cardboard to rigid fabrics or plastic. The packaging design, such as size, pattern, and style, will also affect the logo placement and print. 

Popular methods of printing packaging include screen printing, laser printing, and pad printing. Depending on the process and logo design you choose, you may need an EPS vector file or a PNG file. 

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A package design for Tranzfuse by Kimp.

Kimp Tips: 

  • Choose a plain background for a colored logo to avoid a busy look. If the packaging and label itself contain patterns, use a transparent logo for best results. 
  • Adjust the color and style of the logo to suit the material. 
  • If you choose fabric as the packaging, ensure that the color system you choose works well for that medium, as some fabrics have issues with color bleeds. 
Design and Print a Logo on Merchandise 

Now, from a marketing and advertising point of view, the logo print here is crucial. Your merchandise plays a vital role in brand awareness, and you have to get it right. 

The trick with merchandise is understanding what fits well in your brand image, beyond the traditional mugs, pens, and caps. 

For an athletic shoe company (referencing Andy again), a sports water bottle is a good bet. So, is a backpack. The possibilities with merchandise are endless once you tap into your brand identity. 

Which just so happens to make it harder to standardize logo print requirements. 

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Branded merch designs for York University’s YSpace by Kimp.

Based on what you eventually choose as merchandise, you may have to resize, revamp, and change the colors on your logo. The logo on a pen will be of a different size than a backpack. So we recommend using a vector file that allows you to manipulate the image without losing the scale. 

So, choose the merchandise and then redesign your logo for it. 

Even for colors, understand the underlying medium before choosing a transparent logo, a B/W version, or a full-color one. The smallest of things can make a difference. 

Get Kimp for Print-ready Logo designs 

Either this blog left you overwhelmed or really excited to get started. We hope it was the latter! But either way, you now know that to design and print a logo is a crucial part of your branding. And you need all hands on deck. 

That’s why you need someone – or maybe a team 😉 –  that has a lot of knowledge of the different print mediums and how to change the design to bring out the best in each print. 

That’s why you need Kimp.

Kimp is a team of talented and passionate designers who have delivered exceptional results for businesses worldwide.

Don’t take our word for it. See what our clients say about us, or sign up for the free trial to check us out for yourself. 

And for more on logos, check out our blogs on logo design and visual identity.