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Premium Paper: Choose the best paper for your print project

Paper is one of the fundamental things you should consider when embarking on any print project. The quality of the paper is as important as your content, typeface, layout and ink – it is after all the bit you touch, so make the most of it.

We work with G.F Smith and many other premium paper manufacturers to provide our customers with highly original, bespoke marketing materials. Using good quality paper stock helps to deliver unusual and sometimes (when required) a touch of luxury to a print campaign.

Colour: Ebony

Range: Colorplan, Finish: Plain

Colour: Bagdad Brown

Range: Colorplan, Finish: Plain

Premium Paper Origami Apes

Why use premium paper in the first place?

A premium paper stock will offer your reader an enhanced visual and tactile experience. These attributes create an immediate connection with the reader, hopefully with the jaw-dropping “oooh” factor, that a standard 200gsm silk paper will never achieve.

“Physical material is more “real” to the brain.  It has a meaning, and a place. It is better connected to memory because it engages with its spatial memory networks.”

The use of premium papers is increasing rapidly as clients strive to make their printed communications better considered and more engaging. With the prevalence of screens in our daily lives, more tactile substrates are being used in printed communication which accentuate the tangible aspect of print. These tactile substrates are being used in conjunction with foil, letterpress, and embossing processes to give the recipient a memorable piece of print. With the advances in digital print, small quantities are possible without reducing quality, meaning that better papers and boards can be used without a huge cost issue. Beautiful print on beautiful paper is more alive today than ever before!


Matt Ford, G F Smith

Colour: Marble White

Range: Marl Marque

Colour: Agean Blue

Range: Marl Marque

Premium Paper Origami Sharks

What types of premium paper are available?

In order to demonstrate the cornucopia of specialist paper G.F Smith is able to supply, we thought we’d set the design team a little project to show you some of the more unusual materials available to the more experimental designer.

The quality and finish of the paper is difficult to show in flat samples, so the team got busy folding origami animals to help illustrate how these gorgeous materials can be used in a more creative way.

Premium Paper Origami Dinosaurs

Colour: Corinthian Green

Range: Marl Marque

Colour: Gardeners Green

Range: Peregrina Majestic

Premium Paper Origami Bulls

Colour: Casino Gold

Range: Peregrina Majestic

Colour: Claret

Range: Colourplan, Finish: Plain

Using premium paper effectively

When you design anything in print, think about how it is going to be used and how you can make it stand out.

Example 1:

Another piece of branded junk mail floating through your letterbox will not excite your customer or get them to act right there and then. Consider this – if a bright green or sparkly, maybe a transparent or gold coloured envelope dropped on the doormat amongst the other bland offerings, wouldn’t you be inclined to open that before anything else?

Printed communication is often considered more formal, official, and believable, and this is where using a quality paper can work to your advantage or, at least get you over the first hurdle of immediate engagement – now the sale can begin!

Example 2:

Your triplexed business card with embossed logo will stand out amongst your competitors next to your portfolio or pitch document once you’ve left the meeting – Being different makes a difference when it comes to paper choice.

Graphic design shows off your company’s artistic abilities, 
but your choice of paper shows off the next level of thinking – creativity!

When using premium paper for your marketing (brochures, letterheads or packaging), it is key to balance the function and quality. Spot colour inks or special finishes, such as die-cutting, embossing, foiling or spot UV will complement and enhance specialist papers. And, as always, working with an experienced designer can help you deliver the best use of materials at a cost you can afford.

Premium paper case study

Over the years, Proactive have had their fair share of unusual requests and designing a range of luxury brochures for a european property developer was no exception.

This customer required the highest spec possible for their 16pp ‘Luxury Villa’ brochure. The piece combined three different paper stocks with a host of special finishes to create a memorable brochure.

  • 270gsm Colorplan Pristine White Embossed (New Leather) printed in full colour for the cover
  • 270gsm Colorplan Pristine White Embossed (New Leather) printed in full colour for a bespoke oversized A4 envelope
  • 190gsm Soperset Uncoated for the main text pages
  • 82gsm Curious Clear printed full colour and used as an overlay to uniquely illustrate the exterior and interior of the villas.
  • Plus, gold foil design on the cover and throughout the printed pages
Premium Paper Bespoke Brochure

The result was certainly opulent and definitely had a luxury feel. This was a testament to how correct paper and colour choice in this instance, helped to convey the customer’s idea of luxury.

Use premium paper to enhance any print project – simple business cards, stationery, brochures, folders and flyers or fun projects at work!

To create a high quality look and feel for your next business project call Proactive for a no obligations consultation. Our experienced designers can help you choose the most effective stock to help you create a highly memorable design.

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