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Custom Labels - Help

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johnp

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I have developed a product, it's bottled, and I have made a few sales. I thought through almost everything except for labels... Well, I did think through label design, just not the production part which seems to be harder than I thought.

Does anybody have any recommendations/pointers for printing clear, waterproof labels myself? The labels will be used on an 8OZ bottle which can get very wet, so it's important that the label will withstand water and not bleed.

My first attempt was a failure. I bought clear labels at staples, printed them with an ink jet printer, then sprayed them with a special water resistant spray. It worked at first, but not under harsher conditions.

The reason why I want to print on my own is because all of these label sites seem to take forever to get printed when using a printer and I need to get labels printed within the next week.

For anybody who has experience with this... can I even use an ink jet printer for water resistant labels? One company has what I need, but they said that I can only use a laser printer.

Also, any recommendations for label printers and/or providers would be great.

And if I'm being really stupid by trying to do this all myself then please let me know... don't hold back.

Thanks!
 

minirich

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Have you tried to laser print? The Lables have to be laser printable or you seal you printer shut with lots of melted plastic. :-(
 
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johnp

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Have you tried to laser printing? The Lables have to be laser printable or you seal you printer shut with lots of melted plastic. :-(
I haven't tried laser printing because I don't own a laser printer. Only inkjet. I don't even know what the difference is.

What do you mean by sealed shut with plastic?
 

MJ DeMarco

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OldFaithful

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Your primary problem is your time-frame. Getting a "special" label in a week is either expensive or darn near impossible. Getting "any old label" in a week is possible, but it might not last under your test conditions.

I've specified inks & labels before in my 9-5 job, and it's always taken more time than you have available. You're going to have to just pick what you have available to you at this point in time and live with the results.

I'd encourage you to contact label manufacturers/printers and ask their recommendation for your application. As MJ suggested, Google is your friend here. Then take the time to go through the sampling process and find something that you like, that actually works.
 

johnp

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ahhhhh no I didn't Google it. Admittedly, I panicked. Sorry about that. Thanks for the link MJ.

@biophase -- good point. Thanks. I didn't expect to get some orders before I had labels... I was kind of thinking MVP the whole time, but forgetting that good labels take some time to put together.

@OldFaithful - Thanks for the advice! Really appreciate it.

I also just remembered that I have a resource from Water Hay, which walks me through this entire process.. I'll be fine now. Thanks everyone.
 

minirich

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I haven't tried laser printing because I don't own a laser printer. Only inkjet. I don't even know what the difference is.

What do you mean by sealed shut with plastic?
Laser printing is like what a photo copier is doing. The characters you want to be printed will be applied with toner and than via laser, hence the name, fixed or burned in.
Versus an Ink-jet is like you are writing with an roller pen or fountain pen on paper, you are applying ink on the paper.

If you have self-adhesive stickers/labels in a whole sheet they have to be laserpritable.
This burning-in process by the laser produces some heat. If the lables are made of some plastic (if they should be transperent they probably have to be made of plastic) and you apply heat to them, they will start to deform and jam the printer, if this cools down and you can't remove it fast enough it will harden and you have to take the printer to service.
 
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mazo

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To much work/time doing them yourself. It's OK if you're just doing short runs but I wouldn't go down that road.
In your giving time frame, the best bet would be Ebay for quickest return
 

Walter Hay

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ahhhhh no I didn't Google it. Admittedly, I panicked. Sorry about that. Thanks for the link MJ.

@biophase -- good point. Thanks. I didn't expect to get some orders before I had labels... I was kind of thinking MVP the whole time, but forgetting that good labels take some time to put together.

@OldFaithful - Thanks for the advice! Really appreciate it.

I also just remembered that I have a resource from Water Hay, which walks me through this entire process.. I'll be fine now. Thanks everyone.
You have found a slight deficiency in my labeling book. 23 different labeling and branding categories were not enough!:eek: There are suppliers of waterproof labels listed in the book but there are none there that supply blanks for you to print. I will have to add a 24th subchapter dealing with DIY label production. I'm glad you found this need before I published the book.

The good news is that there is a company in Colorado that can supply labels that you can print with your inkjet printer and they will be waterproof! I'll PM the link for you now, and I'll add them to my list of suppliers.

Walter
 

johnp

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@Walter Hay - Thanks! I received your comment and just responded with some additional items to include in your book.

BTW - if anybody is doing anything with labels, I highly recommend Walter's book, whenever it comes out. A bad quality label (and no, not talking about design) can completely ruin a quality product... as I have just experienced first hand.
 

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