Paper Choices

There are many different things to consider when deciding which type of paper to print on. Everything from color brightness and image clarity are affected by the kind of paper you use.

Coated vs. Uncoated

Coated papers provide excellent color, smoothness, opacity and print definition. They are ideal for printing projects such as photographs and brochures. Coated papers come in a variety of finishes, the two most common being glossy and matte. Glossy paper reflects light creating a shiny appearance. Matte paper absorbs light creating a non-reflective surface that is easier to read.

Uncoated papers come in a variety of textures and finishes. They have a more natural look and work great for invitations, stationery and business cards. Uncoated papers can have a smooth finish or one that’s more textural like linen and felt. Choosing the right finish for your printed project is important to give it the best overall look and feel.

It is important to know what the final finished application of your printed project will be when choosing a paper. Ask yourself the following questions:

Will the project be mailed?

If so, you may want to add a coating or a varnish to protect your project from damage in the mail. You may also want to choose a lighter weight substrate that will pass easily through postal sorting machines.

Are there many photos?

If you have bright colored photos in your design. Gloss coated paper is better suited for photos while uncoated or matte coated paper is ideal for readability.

Static Clings & Window Clings Bring Your Brand To Life

Here at Schneider Graphics, We Proudly Print All of Your Window Cling Designs!

When it comes to your business, your storefront is your bread and butter. It’s your most important asset because it’s how your local customers see you – it’s how they learn about your products or services, and it helps them create an idea in their mind about what your brand is all about. Whether it be through advertising and marketing promotions, or for beautiful window displays that showcase the pride you share for your local community, how you decorate your windows is critical toward your brand development.

Here at Schneider Graphics, we proudly print high quality window clings and static clings that you can use to promote your business directly through your storefront or office space.

Learn more about what you can do with our exciting static clings and window clings down below!

Advertise New Products & Services

For your business, getting the word out about new products, services, and promotions is absolutely key. After all, you want your customers and those passing by your storefront to know everything that you have to offer, right? Think of your windows as free billboard space – it’s marketing and advertising real estate.

At Schneider Graphics, we’ve worked with a number of clients over the years to help them create beautiful promotional advertisements and product advertisements that they easily install on their windows. With high quality graphics and beautiful window clings, you can take your in-store promotions to a whole new level.

Define Your Brand

Going back to the idea that your windows are essentially free advertising space, you can take your window displays to a new level and use this free advertising space to define your brand. Save the promotional and product marketing material for inside – instead, get the word out regarding who you are as a brand and what you stand for.

At Schneider Graphics, we’re always proud to work with small businesses to help them define their brand to their intended audience. When you’re a local business, the support you receive from your local community is critical, and with our high quality window clings and static clings, you can show your community that you support them and you’re here for them.

Custom Window Clings

When it comes to custom window clings, Schneider Graphics is always committed to our customers. Nothing puts a bigger smile on our faces than seeing the designs that our customers come up with. Through our high quality printing process, you can count on a durable, bright, and vibrant window cling that makes a statement.

Throughout our time in business, we’ve worked with a number of customers to create entire custom window displays using our window clings, and we’re always looking for a challenge. If you have a unique idea, reach out to our team. We’d be more than happy to work with you to put together a custom order that brings your vision to life.

Pay Us A Visit

Schneider Graphics is a commercial printing company based in the Chicago area. With a wide variety of digitally printed marketing materials available, in addition to custom order capabilities, we’re standing at the ready to connect with our customers.

Come and visit our website to learn more about our products.


If your marketing materials are going out on the town, might as well dress them up with a coating…

Why are coatings used on printing?

Print coatings are used on printed products primarily for protection or to achieve certain visual effects. Coatings can provide protection from moisture, scuffing, scratching and finger prints. They can also be applied to one or both sides of a printed piece to create a glossy or dull finish or can be applied selectively to highlight a certain visual element.

Types of print coatings

·     Aqueous Coating

Aqueous coating is a clear, fast-drying water-based coating that is used to protect printed pieces. It provides a high-gloss, satin or dull surface that deters dirt and fingerprints. Aqueous coating improves the durability of postcards and other mailed pieces as they go through the mail, and protects business cards as they are carried in peoples’ wallets. It also looks beautiful on brochures, catalogs and presentation folders. Aqueous coatings provide more substantial scuff-resistance than varnishes. Aqueous is typically applied to the entire printed piece, usually by the last unit on a printing press. Due to its water base, aqueous coating is more environmentally friendly than varnish or UV coatings.

·      Varnish

Varnish is basically clear ink and can be gloss, satin or dull. A flood varnish covers the entire printed page for protection or sheen. A spot varnish allows you to highlight specific areas of a printed piece and adds shine and depth to specific elements on the page such as a logo or image. Varnishes are also applied on-press, but they are heavier-bodied and can be applied (like inks) to only certain areas (spot varnish). A plate must be created to apply a spot varnish, so artwork is necessary.

·      UV Coating

UV coatings are cured by exposure to ultraviolet light to quickly dry and harden the coating. UV coatings provide the highest gloss versus other coatings but may crack when scored or folded due to the thickness and hardness of the coating. Some find it too shiny for some uses. UV coatings can be applied as a flood (covering the entire printed sheet) or as a spot coating and can be applied on or off press. UV compatible inks must be used on sheets that will be UV coated. UV coated sheets cannot be foil stamped and embossing should be done after the coating.

·      Soft Touch Coating

This coating creates a velvety texture. The paper becomes “soft” to the touch and increases the tactile appeal. It creates a softer look and feel on printed materials than either aqueous or UV coating, while creating a barrier which is fingerprint resistant. It dries fast, is non-yellowing, and is eco-friendly. Luxurious and sophisticated are words often used to describe the effect Soft Touch® coating produces.

When should a print coating be used?

In most instances a coating will help protect and enhance your final printed product. They are a must for any piece being mailed, or recommended for any product printed on coated paper that will get handled, such as business cards, brochures, bookmarks, rack cards, catalogs or presentation folders. Your printer can help you decide what type of coating is right for your project.

When should a print coating not be used?

There are certain times when you do want your paper to go naked. It may be difficult to write on coated paper, especially if it has a glossy coating. If you are ordering greeting or note cards and intend to write inscriptions on the inside make sure to specify no coating on the inside of the card. The same goes for the address side of postcards or other mailing panels unless your printer or mailing house assures you they can print addresses on coated paper. If in doubt ask for some samples and run them through your printer or try writing on them.

Schneider Graphics offers a variety of coatings. Call us if you’d like to learn more or would like us to send you some samples.

The Top 4 Benefits of a Direct Mailing Campaign

The Top 4 Benefits of a Direct Mailing Campaign

Too many times today, companies discount the power and reach of traditional forms of marketing, like sending out direct mailers to clients. Although the internet is far-reaching and effective for many companies, direct mailing campaigns are still one of the most beneficial ways to engage a portion of your customers.

Best of all, direct mailing campaigns are a cost-effective way to maximize your advertising efforts while enhancing your local reach.

Why should you consider direct mail this year? Here are just a few reasons:

  1. Direct Mail is Segmented and Targeted: Direct mail campaigns can be tailored for a specific audience, whether it’s to target a new client or long-time customers. Therefore, you can ensure the recipient is reading/reviewing the exact information they need to make a purchase from you. Additionally, this segmenting means you can personalize each mailer based on the information and demographics of the recipient.
  2. Direct Mail is Tangible: The recipient can’t ignore direct mail – it’s a physical, printed piece of advertising in their mailbox. They can’t just report it as spam and send it to their junk folder. They have to physically hold and look at it. Many times, they’ll put it down on their counter and everyone else in the house will look at it, too. There is something to be said for that.
  3. Direct Mail is Versatile: You can play around with multiple formats when it comes to your direct mailers. There are a wide variety of options, from postcards and brochures, to magazines and other print-outs, which makes it a well-rounded strategy for just about any kind of outreach.
  4. Direct Mail is Simple: If you’re tired of mulling over fancy stats and analytics from your online campaigns, direct mail makes it easy. Simply keep track of how many mailers were sent out, as well as how many people respond. It’s a much easier way to measure the effectiveness of the campaign.

Schneider Graphics

Print advertising and marketing is just as powerful today as it was 100-years ago. We are visual creatures, which means putting marketing physically in front of someone will never go out of style. If you’re considering a direct mailing campaign to announce the re-opening of your company post-COVID-19, we are here to help. Get in contact with our team today.

Are you Ready?

As we get back to business let us help you with your updated print and marketing materials.

Here is a small list of helpful ideas.

Direct Mail

Let your customers know you’re open and ready for business.

Updated Sales Literature

A new look will enhance your visibility.


These could be anything from a new product or a new service.


Business cards, letterhead and envelopes, everyday business essentials.

Marketing Kits

Including pocket folders, brochures and business cards.

Safety Posters / Floor Graphics

Good reminders to social distance.

Did we miss anything? If you need anything on the list or can think of something else let us know. Contact us at 847-550-4310, e-mail us at or visit us at our website

Print Margins

Did you ever have a print project look great until the finishing came back with text nearly cut off or was too close to a drill hole?

Today we’ll talk about print margins or safety zones. Margins are a very important part of the design before print. These are small but important details that often get overlooked.

When starting the layout set up the margins in the print setup dialog. Think about borders, folding, drilling, trimming, binding and die cutting.

For simple projects like a letterhead most people use standard 1 Inch margins for text. If designing business cards 1/8 Inch will work.

But what happens when projects have special binding, folding or drilling. This is where things get important.

When laying out a page that will fold inward such as a six page consider the page that folds in should be 1/8 smaller than the front and back pages allowing for folding accuracy. An example would be a six page that folds to 8 1/2 x 11 should start with the art board 1/8 smaller. Starting with the art board 25 3/8 with print margins will keep text from getting too close to the trim and allow for folding.

When creating a calendar that will be wire or coil bound set your margins to compensate for the punched holes. Consider more than 1/2 inch when planning, keeping text away from the binding and holes will save your project and make it more appealing.

This rule doesn’t have to apply to everything but to keep the printed piece balanced it’s a good idea to follow margin and safe zone rules.

When questions about layout come up feel free to call or e-mail us. Please consider us as a resource. 847-550-4310 or e-mail

Comparing pdf Files for Changes

How often are you checking a corrected pdf?

If the answer is often then you should try this tool in Acrobat.

The compare files tool really works and it’s very easy to use.

Open the new or corrected pdf go to compare files in the tool pallet and it will ask you to open a previous pdf.

From there you can change settings that will look for change to text, images, headers/footers, annotations, formatting and backgrounds. All of these or as many needed.

Compare files will show and report changes that occurred.

Using this tool saves time and accurately finds changes.

Try the link below to view a You Tube demonstration.

Visit our web blog where we have monthly Bright Ideas that include tips to make your day a little easier.

If you have any questions or need help, we’re here to find a customized solution for you. Call or e-mail us any time 847-550-4310.

Reducing the file size of a pdf

Have you ever had a pdf that was too large to send by e-mail?

Sometimes we need to send a pdf for approval or just for viewing the content. Today I will show you how to reduce the file size.

A pdf with a reduced file size should never be used for print. Much of the information embedded in the pdf has been removed.

The first step is to open the pdf in Acrobat. In the tool search type reduce file size. Next double click on reduce file size.

From here you can choose the folder to place the pdf in. The pdf should always be renamed so that it doesn’t overwrite the original.

After reducing the pdf look to the lower right corner. There you will see the reduced new size. In this case the pdf went from 10.10 MB to 268 KB.

Watch the short video below to see how it is done.

This is a very simple and fast way to send files for quick viewing.

Join us each month when we share tips like this to make your day little easier.

Call Schneider Graphics with any questions. We’re here to help. 847-550-4310

Previewing Color Separations

How to Preview Color Separations using the Acrobat Output Preview tool?

Did you ever need to confirm a color in a pdf?  Checking colors is a very important step ensuring the printing will be correct. A pdf sent to a printer should be CMYK. But what happens if the color should be a PMS color?

This month we’re going to show you how to preview colors in Acrobat.

To do this open your pdf in Acrobat. After opening the pdf we need to confirm that the colors are what they need to be.  Next we open output preview by either opening the tools pallet and scrolling down to print production and clicking on the output preview. Another way is to do a search in the search tools. Typing output preview will also bring it up.

From here we can view colors by turning colors on and off individually.

In the pictures below turning off the PMS color reveals that only some of the art is PMS 267. This will need to be converted to the PMS in order to print correctly in one color.

In the updated picture all of the art has been corrected to one PMS color.

Look for more tips every month at the Schneider Graphics website blog, or if you need help give us a call at 847-550-4310.

Paper Finishes

How do you choose which paper to use for your next print project?

With so many weights and finishes available how can you be sure which is best for your design.

Determining which paper to use can be defined by the purpose of the project.

Coated papers have a clay coating added to them sealing the surface. After the coating is applied to the surface, rollers polish the paper giving it a smooth finish. This will restrict the amount of ink absorbed for a crisp defined dot.

Gloss papers are best when used with photographs. The smoother surface allows for sharper and brighter images.

Other finishes are Dull sometimes referred to as Silk, Velvet or Satin. These all have a coating without a gleaming like shine of gloss. These are also ideal with photos but without the surface shine.

Matte paper has a dull coating applied that has a non-shiny smooth finish that is excellent for color contrast and text. Matte paper has a unique combination of smooth texture and for easy readability.

Uncoated paper has a natural look. It doesn’t have an extra coating or paper finishing. Without a coating there isn’t a glare on the surface. This is ideal for writing, text or reading material.

Lately we’ve been seeing a big trend with dulls. People seem to like the way the inks still look vibrant but it’s not overly glossy which makes it easy for reading.

Schneider Graphics uses premium papers to make you look good. We don’t want to just be your printer. We want to be your go to resource!

Got questions or need help. Call us at 847-550-4310 or e-mail