Artwork Guidelines

If you’d like to supply your own artwork we kindly request that it’s sent over in .PDF format. We can accept other formats, but .PDF is the best option to maintain fonts and color consistency.

We understand that supplying artwork for a commercial printers can be a bit of a minefield (there’s way too much jargon and technical terminology!) so here at CEC Print Solutions we try to keep things as simple as possible.

When you’ve placed an order simply send your artwork though to us via email Once we’ve received your artwork we’ll do a comprehensive check over it, fix any potential problems and email through a print ready .PDF for you to sign off before printing starts. 

If you’re a design whiz and would like to supply us with a print ready .PDF file please read on to see our technical specifications (please note that these aren’t requirements, although it’ll certainly speed up the process as you wont need to sign off your design)

  • PDF X/1a Format
  • .125in bleeds complete with crop marks
  • .125in safe area (keep text at least .125in away from the edge)
  • Text converted to curves/outlines (you can alternatively embed the fonts if you prefer!)
  • At least 300dpi for all non vector graphics 
  • CMYK colour format
  • Transparencies, drop shadows and complex gradients flattened where possible 

We’ve listed some tips below to help you get it right, if you need any assistance please don’t hesitate to contact us.     

Tips on providing great artwork …


We cut the bleed area off your cards to avoid white strips on the edge. Make sure any images or colours fill this area.

This is where we aim to cut your cards.

Make sure any text doesn’t go outside the safe area as it may be cut off. 

Tip 1

Please ensure all artwork is provided in CMYK format.  Files provided in RGB format will be converted into CMYK before print and may result in significant colour differences from what you see on your monitor.

Tip 2

Ensure your artwork has a ‘safe area‘.  Keep text at least .125in away from the edge of the document, any text outside the safe area may be cut off.

Tip 3

Ensure all fonts are ‘embedded‘.  If your fonts aren’t embedded our system may substitute the font for a different one – we wouldn’t want that would we?!

Tip 4

Ensure all images and graphics are above ‘300dpi‘. If your images look ‘pixelated’ on screen then the chances are it’s not quite good enough quality for professional printing.  For best results use vector based graphics.

Tip 5

Sadly the use of borders near edges can result in lopsided cards, and we wouldn’t want that, so avoid them where possible.

 Tip 6

Ensure your artwork has a .125in bleed on all edges.  If your artwork doesn’t have a bleed the artwork may have white edges.

Tip 7

Ensure graphics and images go right to the edge of the artwork – if your images/graphics don’t it may result in a strip of the background colour showing through on the edge.