Foil stamping is a printing process in which a relief pattern is imprinted in the material with a heated magnesium die. The dies can also be used to emboss and deboss materials which creates a raised or stamped pattern on a surface such as paper, cardstock or leather. Foil stamping has one of the largest profit margins of any printing process but it also has a setup process (a die has to be made for every artwork).

Uses for foil stamping
Foil stamping can be used to make attractive business cards, invitations, photographs, greeting cards, keyrings as well as emboss diaries and books. It is also used in the fashion industry to foil stamp the innersoles of shoes and the patches on denim jeans.

Getting started
The main equipment needed to get started is a foil stamping machine, dies and foil. The dies will be custom made for every job (and has to be charged to the client as a setup cost). While you can keep different foils in stock, you can also wait for an order to come in and order it then from your supplier. Although it is advised to keep at least gold and silver foils in stock.

Foil stamping machine

Foil stamping machine

Foil stamping dies

Foil stamping dies

Foil stamping foil

Foil stamping foil

Foil stamped photograph

Foil stamped photograph

Business model
This is a business that can be run as a one man show but you have to focus on one industry or at least a related industry which will ensure a consistent flow of work. One of the most popular uses of foil stamping is the wedding planning industry which uses it for invitations and related items. This is also a recession proof business as a wedding is often saved for.

Image credit: ZOUM (featured), Print Mania  (variations)


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