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Foil Printing File Setup

FIRST: Your file must be set up according to our file specs.
THEN you would refer to this page for Foil Setup.

With Akuafoil, you can turn a wide range of CMYK colors, into multi-colored foils. Akuafoil uses a special processed foil system that is applied under 4/c process to create an array of foil colors. It's simple, affordable, and makes your prints stand out from the crowd.

For an Akuafoil job, you must include an Akuafoil/mask file along with your CMYK file. The mask file indicates where the foil will be placed. The file process is the same as spot UV—100% K where foil is placed, 0% where the foil is not placed.

Normal CMYK Print File

Want Akuafoil Here

Akuafoil File

Akuafoil Goes Here


As shown above, the file on the left is the normal CMYK print file. If you want the logo to be Akuafoil, then your Akuafoil mask file should look like the file on the right. The White indicates no foil and 100% K indicates where the Akuafoil will be.

Here are some more things to keep in mind when creating your Akuafoil artwork:

  • - Make sure the mask and CMYK print file are aligned and match up properly.
  • - Akuafoil works best on lighter colors. The darker the CMYK color, the less the Akuafoil look.
  • - White in the CMYK file that is 100% K in the Akuafoil file will appear as plain silver Akuafoil.
  • - Do not use very thin or small text and artwork with Akuafoil... Use san serif fonts above 12 point for best results.

When creating knockouts in the Akuafoil mask or in the CMYK print file, beware there might be a "Halo" of white around the knockout area. Below are two examples... On the left, a file with a CMYK magenta background with a knockout for the Akuafoil text. On the right, a Akuafoil background with a knockout for the CMYK text.

CMYK Knockout w/Akuafoil fill

CMYK print File 

Akuafoil Knockout w/CMYK fill

CMYK print File 
Akuafoil File 
Akuafoil File 

These are the printed results:

CMYK Knockout W/Akuafoil Fill

Akuafoil Knockout w/CMYK fill


You can see the white "Halo" in-between the CMYK ink and the Akuafoil. To prevent this, grow/stroke the Akuafoil area in the mask by 1–2 pixels. This will allow the Akuafoil to bleed into the CMYK area, reducing the white "Halo" effect. You can also fill in the knockout with a color to reduce the effect further.