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What are Specialties?

If you’ve spent more than a little time around the Gold Image Printing website, chances are high that you’ve come across the phrase “specialties” or “specialty printing” on multiple occasions. Perhaps specialties are entirely new to you despite being a long-time Gold Image Printing customer since the nature of some products, such as banners, prevents the addition of certain specialties. For example, foil stamping cannot be applied to a vinyl banner as it will effectively slip off and leave you with a lighter wallet and the same standard product. 

On the other hand, everything from business cardspostcardsinvitationsboxessignsboards, and wedding everything CAN have one or more (or many) different specialties applied to them with ease. Usually, you’ll need to request a custom quote in order to add a specialty, but if you’re lucky, it will already be part of the shopping cart (basically, we do this so that shopping carts aren’t a 50-item list and instead focus on the popular requests). 

Regardless of your familiarity with specialties, we are here to tell you that they are any of a variety of unique and/or dazzling additions to your custom printed products that further your advantage by helping you stand out from and above the rest. Whether it be embossing, a spot UV coating, or simply different types of binding, we have it all! There are two main categories of specialties at Gold Image Printing: 1) Printing Processes that are directly applied to your product, and 2) Printing Services that affect the way your product is handled.

Specialty Printing Processes

These processes are the most common and most used of the lot. Let’s explore some of the options below. You can click on almost any of them to be taken to their respective product pages for more information, or even read a related Gold Image Printing blog post if there is one available! Beyond the regular options found in your standard shopping carts at Gold Image Printing, there are often actually even more! Inquire with a custom quote anytime!


The first of the specialty printing processes which may benefit your printing projects relates to the coating or finish/lamination that is applied to the paper. Oftentimes, your product will have you choosing between semi-gloss and matte, as is the case with Greeting Cards. You may also be able to ask about soft touch lamination, as seen in soft touch business cards, which will leave your product with a silky linen feel. After something more on the leather or velvety side? Choose velvet laminationAs an added bonus, you can learn about the pros and cons of both over at Soft Touch Vs. Velvet! The final specialty coating is our spot UV coating, which will leave your product with a high gloss finish. 

Paper Changes

These tend to be more product-specific, but are helpful all the same. Bound Book Printing can have various types of bindings applied, depending on your budget and the aesthetic you’re after. Duplexing involves permanently gluing two or more other pieces of paper together to form a new, often sturdier, combination. Edge painting can be applied with ease to products that are thick enough, such as ones that have been duplexed, and can result in edge painted wedding invitations that don’t get lost in a stack of papers on someone’s desk.

Shades & Shine

Sometimes regular old black ink or even the spectrum of CMYK printing isn’t enough for the desired aesthetic. Don’t worry, we don’t think that’s too much to ask! It sounds like you would be the perfect candidate for white ink printing! This self-explanatory ink selection lets you have white ink that’s visible and classy on darker backdrops. Need more? We got more! Shimmer and shine with dazzling digital foil printing, which is smoothly applied to a soft touch lamination with a limited color selection, or go all out with luxurious foil stamping (using the full expanse of our foil color chart) and get recessed regions of ultimate elegance on products like Foil Stamp Menus! Need more help deciding? Look at Digital Foil Printing vs. Foil Stamping!

Raise or Lower?

Change up the tactility of your custom printed product with specialty printing processes too! Debossing and letterpress create depressions of varying degrees on your products. This will have recipients running their fingers over the text over and over. In contrast, embossing will leave the same excitement for recipients by lifting the paper or material toward the reader!


Bored of the rectangular shape of Standard Postcards? Invest in round corners to smooth things over for a clean and less-likely-to-accidentally-stab-yourself-with shape. Or, go all out with die-cutting and create an entirely new shape altogether. This is especially helpful for getting those Acrylic Signs in the exact shape of your company logo!

Combinations & Contradictions

Sometimes it is possible to get a 2-in-1 specialty printing product, such as with 

Raised Spot UV Greeting Cards or Raised Foil Roll Labels. You can also inquire about adding multiple types of specialties at a time, such as white ink printing, embossing, foil, and more. With that said, not all specialty printing processes can be applied at one time, as there are overlaps or contradictions. To help you avoid common mistakes, have a look at some restrictions:

  • Cannot use embossing or debossing with any lamination.
  • Cannot put a spot UV coating on uncoated cover stocks.
  • Digital foil printing must be on soft touch lamination or gloss stock.
  • Unless otherwise specified, cannot combine spot UV with embossing/debossing.
  • Cannot combine embossing and edge painting.
  • Cannot use embossing or foil stamping on Large Format Printing or Signs.

In the world of printing, there are many exceptions to the rule and exceptions to the exceptions, so the best way of knowing whether you can order your desired combination of specialty printing processes is by sending us a request for a custom quote!

Specialty Printing Services

Design Help

With your custom printing products ready to ship out, or at the very least selected and ready to design, you can now consider our specialty printing services. First and foremost, if you’re a company of ten-plus employees, you should strongly consider opening a corporate printing account before anything else. This will give you a custom portal through which you can easily restock on past orders, get help from a designer, and set design preferences for the future. 

Speaking of design, why not make use of our design services? With set pricing (and the ability to get a custom quote if you can’t find your desired product), you’ll have access to top-of-the-line design, given your exact preferences. No need to leave the successful design up to chance! We’ve been in the industry for over 25 years, and we know what works and what doesn’t! fulfillment services, graphic installation services, direct mail

Sending It Out

eOur fulfillment services and direct mail go hand-in-hand in providing your customers with your desired products. Rather than order from us, wait, then send out the products or direct mail postcards yourselves and wait again, let us go above and beyond on your behalf! Supply us with the information of how you’d like everything packaged together, or to whom you want to send your direct mail, and we’ll do the rest for you!


We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: Gold Image Printing is happy to help with any specialty printing questions, concerns, or comments and is here to stay by providing you with options that go above and beyond the printing industry norms! Get started today with a product above that strikes your fancy, or request a custom quote and inquire away!