Choosing the Right Paper Stock for Your Print Project

There are many factors when choosing a paper stock for your print project. Do you prefer a light or heavy weight stock, uncoated or coated, white or colored stock options, recycled content, etc.?

A good place to start is deciding between text weight or cover. Text weight (also known as book) is a lighter stock while cover weight (also known as cardstock) is heavier. Text weight papers are usually used for letterhead, envelopes, copy paper and flyers. Cover weight stock is usually used for greeting cards, invitations and postcards.

Once you have the basics of text or cover stock locked in, you will need to choose a paper finish option. Basically, do you prefer uncoated paper or paper with a finish such as gloss or satin? Choosing between uncoated versus glossy stock is completely a personal aesthetic choice with no right or wrong answers. Most people know right away when looking at the paper, which they prefer.

One thing to keep in mind: if you choose an uncoated stock but your design is completely covering the paper stock with ink (full coverage), the piece will still feel like it has a semi glossy finish. Our toner has a slightly satin finish therefore anywhere the toner is laid down will have a slightly glossy appearance.

Texture is another thing to consider. Papers range from very smooth to heavily textured. We do not offer textured stock here at Rhino, due to the inconsistency textured stocks leave in the print. Texture gives the paper ripples and grooves which make it hard for the toner to get into those little areas, impacting print quality. Our papers all have a smooth finished, which provides the best outcome.

Paper color can affect the print job as well. Here at Rhino our house paper stocks are all different brightness’s of white except for two stocks. We offer a creamy/natural stock (cougar natural) as well as a brown paper bag colored stock (Neenah Environmental desert storm). If you have a specialty color or stock in mind, which is not one of our house stocks, just let us know which stock and we will let you know if it is compatible with our digital machines.

Lastly, you may want to factor recycled content of the paper stocks. All of our house stocks are highly eco friendly ranging from 100% post consumer recycled content down to 30%. Let us know when ordering if you need an environmentally-friendly paper stock.

Sometimes it helps to stop in the shop and get a “feel” for our papers to see which will be best for you and your project. Stop by anytime and check out our house stock options.

Rhino Digital Printing