Posted on November 8, 2019 by Michael Boik

Direct Printing DTC Design Options

With the somewhat recent onset of digital printing and advancements in technology and print capabilities, it’s important to understand both the limitations and possibilities that come with direct printing (flexographic). As a general guideline, printing flexo will almost always be lower in cost than digital, and usually as low as half or a third of the cost by comparison. As a company, we are not anti-digital. (Quite the opposite, in fact, as we have our own digital printing website and blog). But we do understand that digital is not the best solution for many, if not most, designs, applications and prints.

We were one of the first companies to print DTC packaging, but even with all of our experience in the industry, we are still amazed at what is now possible with flexographic equipment that might not have been possible ten, five or even a few years ago. The process is always evolving and improving, and even we are amazed at some of the prints we are now doing to help companies across the country achieve that all-important “WOW Factor.”


Low-Cost Color Changes

Sometimes a change in color can be just as eye-catching as a change in design. But the added benefit is that many times color changes add minimal to no cost at all, and do not require new print plates as long as the design is remaining the same.













Screen Prints

Screens are a great and effective way of essentially getting multiple colors for the price of one. The process allows for one color to be printed in a series of small dots that give the appearance of a lighter shade to that same color.














Flood Coats and Overprints

There are many times where printing 2 colors together with one overlapping the other is not a good idea and can not be accomplished with direct printing. However, there are some cases where this can be achieved and the end result is quite beautiful and eye-catching. The key is to always ensure that the top color is darker than the bottom to avoid unwanted bleed through.













Varnishes, Finishes and Coatings

Any time a print involves a heavy amount of ink coverage (flood coats, reverse prints) it is usually a good idea to add a coat of varnish. This usually reduces ink rub-off, especially on white board, and can add an attractive finish to the box as well.


Many of these options are available at our low 1,000 box minimum, although higher minimums may apply, depending on the specifics of the design, mailer size, board color etc. As we like to say, just about anything becomes possible with high volumes. The only way to know for sure if we can achieve the “WOW Factor” for you is to contact us below!



Please Contact Us Today

We’re happy to walk you through an initial consultation and find a custom packaging solution that works for you. As always, if you have any questions, one of our branded packaging advisors is standing by to assist, with decades of experience behind them. Want to know more about custom packaging? Please call us today at 630-551-1700 or contact us via email at


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