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How should I set up a design for digital printing onto paperboard cartons?

There are a couple of industry-standard recommendations for paperboard cartons:

  • Choose a font that is 6 points or larger to ensure high-quality display (too small and the words may appear fuzzy).
  • Choose a thicker or bolder font over a skinny one so that no type gets lost in the printing process.
  • Place type at least 1/8-inch (.125") away from all edges and folds so that it isn't distorted or cut off when the box is assembled.
  • If you are using light or white fonts on a dark background, embolden the font. Inks bleed a bit and the optical illusion of the dark background both make the text appear smaller and can make it "disappear." The same goes for any intricate line art or fine detailing.
  • Ensure that all line art is a minimum of 1 pt thickness for best printed results.


For more info, see our Artwork Guidelines. If you are a more advanced designer who is interested in using a 2D dieline template for your artwork layout, consult our Advanced Artwork Guidelines for more help.


If you're worried your design might not turn out quite right, let us know before you make an order and we'll review and advise on any possible issues.


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