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Printing Industry Exchange ( is pleased to have Steven Waxman writing and managing the Printing Industry Blog. As a printing consultant, Steven teaches corporations how to save money buying printing, brokers printing services, and teaches prepress techniques. Steven has been in the printing industry for thirty-three years working as a writer, editor, print buyer, photographer, graphic designer, art director, and production manager.

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Blog Articles for

Archive for April, 2013

Large Format Printing: A Confluence of Developing Technologies

Tuesday, April 30th, 2013

I’ve been reading a number of articles and promotional pieces on large format printing presses. The technology is improving in leaps and bounds, providing options for large format signage, point of purchase displays, fleet and vehicle graphics, window graphics, backlit displays, and packaging. (more…)

Custom Printing: A Sample of the Art of Letterpress

Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013

I picked up a booklet of poetry and illustrations in a thrift store yesterday for fifty cents. It was really more of a pamphlet, like a program for the theater, 6” x 9”. It caught my eye for several reasons. (more…)

Envelope Printing: Window Options for Envelopes

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

I’ve been receiving a lot of direct mail custom envelopes with large windows recently, and I’m intrigued. The windows run almost from one side of the envelope to the other. Compared to the small address windows I’m used to, these look like plate-glass windows. (more…)

Custom Printing: Polybagging Case-Study Redux

Thursday, April 18th, 2013

In an earlier blog posting, I noted that a client of mine who had produced a directory of non-profit educational organizations was having problems with the polybagging material in which the print books sent to subscribers had been wrapped. (more…)

Book Printing: Web Presses Offer Economical Option

Monday, April 15th, 2013

In most cases, you have two options for printing multi-signature publications and books. The first is sheetfed offset custom printing. In this case, sheets of printing paper are fed one at a time into a small to mid-sized press. In most cases, you print one side of the sheet (sending it through four or more ink units) and then air dry the sheets. Once the ink has dried, you re-feed the press sheets into the press to print the opposite side of the paper. (In some cases, on “perfecting” presses, you can print both sides of the sheet in one pass, but this is not always an option.) (more…)

Custom Packaging Printing: Blister Packs and Clamshell Packaging

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

I learned a new phrase yesterday: “clamshell packaging.” So I did some research, and I checked out the online photos. I saw a vast expanse of commercial printing opportunities within the arena of packaging, including medical supplies like gauze pads in blister packs with printed peel-off lids, and pharmaceutical samples in fold-over blister packs that allow you to push a pill out of the packaging through the printed foil cover. I saw hardware supplies (screws, for instance) in plastic clamshell packages with fold-over lids. I even saw hamburgers in printed cardboard or cellulose clamshell packages. (more…)

Brochure Printing: Scrutinize Specs for Recurring Jobs

Thursday, April 4th, 2013

“The specs will be the same as last year’s job.”

As a printing broker, I love recurring publications, anything from book printing to brochure printing jobs. However, I don’t like to make assumptions. So when I read these words recently in an email from a client, I carefully reviewed the specs from last year’s job. (more…)

Postcard Printing: Analysis of a Sample Postcard

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013

I just received a postcard today from a local printer. I happen to know that this commercial printing vendor specializes in multichannel marketing: i.e., helping clients increase their ROI (return on investment) by coordinating multiple channels of information, from offset and digital printing to email blasts and PURLs. They provide solutions. They don’t just put ink on paper. (more…)


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