What is Foil Block Printing?

Foil Block Printing has been around for a long time

Societies throughout the world have been using gold leaf as decoration and design for as long as they have been beautifying their tools, homes, and other items. It originated as an artisan craft, which was accomplished completely by hand. It was a skill that was very finely honed, and was well respected within societies. The ancient Egyptians used to beat down gold into thin gold leaf, and apply it to a variety of goods, including vases, clothing, and manuscripts. In medieval Europe, skilled artisans would spend hours upon hours, days upon days painstakingly detailed illuminated manuscripts, beating the gold to a miniscule flatness, and adding it to the volume. Thankfully for them, literacy was at a low at that time, and the desire for books was minimal. This process of placing gold leaf onto books and other manuscripts was known as free leaf stamping. Every aspect of the creation of these manuscripts was done by hand, from the sizing of the book covers, to the beating and placing of the gold leafing onto the books. Gold leaf was often used, but so were bronze and other pliable materials. The entire process of the creating foil block printing was extremely tedious and time consuming, especially when considering how much faster today’s process is. Rather than beating down each gold leafing into a small, thin layer, we have machines that can help us achieve the same beauty and elegance.Crane-Stationery-Foil-Stamping-Gold-Foil-Die-Cut

Modern Foil Block Printing

Modern foil block printing is also known as hot foiling. It has its basis in traditional hand printing. It is still considered a skilled artisan craft, due to the perfection and skill required to make a beautiful product. The first step is to create the metal plate, or metal stamp, and engrave it with your design. That design can be as simple or as elegant as you like, from emblems to landscapes to names. This metal plate is then warmed up and heated, not too hot so that it burns the paper or card, but warm enough to cement the foil onto the paper. The plate is pressed strongly onto the card or paper with a sheet of your foil sitting between the plate and the sheet. When the plate is removed, the paper is decorated with a gorgeous metallic foil block print.

While many printing companies claim to be able to print foil block printing, they are not all equal. Foil block printing is an artisan craft that requires skill and patience, and not every company is willing to put that time and effort in. One company that is exceptionally qualified is Ashley Print and Design. Whether you need foil block printing for wedding invitation, graduation announcements, party invitations, or any other need you may have, Ashley Print and Design can fulfill and exceed your expectations. Ashley Print and Design can created foil emboss, deep sinking embosses, and foil prints for all of your printing needs. To learn more about Ashley Print and Design, click here.