Guest blog: Guide to smooth printing



Have an important print job in the pipeline? Mark Naylor from the St Austell Printing Company offers his guide to smooth printing.


Getting the details of your estimate right is key to ensure you get the job you want at the right price.

The print industry is full of jargon – gsm, microns, process colours and Reflex Blue are just a few – but getting these details correct means we can get your price right. Remember, we’re here to help you get around the jargon.

You can also ask for samples of work (we’ve got thousands), so that can also help when making up your mind.


In order to take the design from your computer to our printers the next step is to send us the artwork.

Here comes some more jargon: we need your artwork supplied as a ‘Print Ready PDF’ (you find this when you save your file or export it); at the correct size (we can give you the measurements); it needs to be in CMYK (not RGB please); with a 3mm bleed and trim marks (this gives us space to cut your print work so that it looks amazing).

So, that might be a bit technical, but we’re here to help.

We can work with files supplied from InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, Quark Express, Word or Publisher and make sure the artwork is in the right format.

Just to let you know that you may need to pay a bit extra for that, but our talented team are worth it.

Placing your order

So, the estimate is done and agreed and the artwork has been sent across. Now it’s time to place the order.

We need to know: contacts details – company name, phone number and email address; invoice and delivery address; and to help keep thing simple for the accounts department (ours and yours), we always love to get a purchase order number or reference.


Probably the most important part of any print job – making sure everything is correct including things like phone numbers and email addresses.

We always recommend getting someone who has not been involved with the project to check, as it’s easy to read what you think it should say, not what it actually does say.

We can send proofs as a PDF via email, a hard copy laser proof (but it’s not colour accurate), or even a certified colour calibrated proof.

Proof Approved!

Hooray! You waded through the jargon, produced the specification, confirmed the pricing and signed off the artwork.

Your job is now winging its way around our BREEAM Excellent building, visiting many experienced members of staff who are checking and double-checking to make sure your job pops out the other end just as you expect it.


And remember, we’re always here to help.

Come and talk to us

If you want something printed, then the easiest thing to do is to come and talk to us.

We’ve got over 30 years’ experience of printing everything from business cards to books, banners to brochures and flyers to folders.

During that time we’ve worked with one-man bands to large companies, as well design and marketing agencies across Cornwall, the South West and the UK.

We have the kit and know-how in place, we just need to take some time with you to sketch out what you need.

About the author:

Mark Naylor has been at St Austell Printing Company for 11 years and covers marketing, IT infrastructure and product development.

During this time with SAPC, Mark has covered all aspects of the print industry including prepress, artwork, estimating and print production.