Last year we gave you an overview of the common desktop design terms that could take your project to the next level. This year we’re back with an update for everyone that has fallen in love with desktop design for stickers. Missed part I? Click here to read the first post.
Why do you need desktop design for stickers terms?
As with any hobby or job, the more you know about it, the more effective you can be within it. When it comes to desktop design for stickers, knowing the terms that go into making the most effective projects will elevate your ability to create beautiful work for yourself, friends, and family. In fact, if you are making stickers as a side gig and selling them on places like Etsy, knowing desktop design for stickers terms will give you an edge because you can understand and leverage tools for more experienced makers. By the way, we here at Royal Elements are big fans of all kinds of sticker vinyl projects including heat transfer vinyl, adhesive vinyl, waterslide vinyl, magnetized sheets for vinyl stickers, and more. The terms we will talk about today can be applied to projects across all of these mediums.
Are desktop design for stickers terms universal?
Desktop design terms are used across many types of creative industries; broadly, they can be applied to sticker making as easily as brochure making.
Desktop design for stickers – terms to know
- Default – you’ll come across this term when you are using cutting tools like the CriCut®, or software tools like Avery. It means the base setting as created by the manufacturer. For tools and designing, you’ll hear default used in the following ways: the default color, the default cutter position, the default cursor position, etc.
- Footer – is the value or information on the bottom of the page. Footers are common on text/Word documents, so why would you need them for stickers? If you are using printable sticker vinyl and are printing a large project with multiple components, adding a footer on the bottom of the page (such as the page or sequence number) can help you keep your project straight. This is very useful when making sections of a sticker mural that have to join together. In Word, you can access the footer of a document simply by double clicking the bottommost portion of the page, then accessing the tools on the toolbar that appears to set automatic numbering.
- Centering – You can use your software to center your design on the page, but if making a full sheet of stickers on a label template, did you know you can center each individual sticker on each label too? This makes for a nice, neat sheet (especially great for sales) and also helps ensure you are not going over the bleed mark. As we learned in last year’s desktop design for stickers post, the bleed mark is where the image runs off the page – where the printer will cut it off.
- Graphics – refers to images. These can be illustrations, clip art, logos, photos, symbols – whatever images you are working with as you do your desktop design for stickers projects.
- Menu Bar/Toolbar – refers to the rows of buttons used to customize your design. On Word, the default position of your toolbars are at the top of the page. This will differ across software applications. A variation of the bar is the drop-down menu. Either way, when talking about bars or menus, you are dealing with clickable tools that let you crop, move, center, recolor, etc., your design.
- Scanner – most household printers have a scanner function and this is ideal for those that use paints, pens, or pencils to design. You don’t have to start your desktop design for stickers on your computer. You can paint or sketch your artwork then use a scanner to transform it into a digital file. From there, it’s just a matter of using the toolbar to customize and size it, then print away on high-quality printable vinyl.
- Finish – refers to the sheen (or lack of) on your sticker vinyl. Printable vinyl comes in glossy, matte, and clear, while adhesive vinyl comes in a broad array of metallics, patterns, and levels of shine/gloss. The choice of what kind of finish you want when doing desktop design for stickers comes down to how you want your finished product to look. If you are making vintage photo magnets, matte is a nice antique look. If you are making clip art, glossy gives it that extra pop of excitement.
- Serif – refers to a style of typeface. The serif is a small stroke across the top and/or bottom of lettering. Serif’s are not all that common in sticker designs unless you are going for an older or very formal style of lettering. Serifs are more commonly seen on long documents meant for reading since the serif helps guide the eye along the page. One of the most common examples of serifs in standard typeface is the font Times New Roman.
- Type Size & Type Face – also refers to lettering. The size is the measurement while the face is the style. So, if you were lettering your desktop design for stickers and added a name that was in Arial 12 point, Arial would be the face while 12 would be the size.
- WYSIWYG – stands for what you see is what you get. Although you see an accurate representation of your stickers on your desktop, laptop, or tablet, there can be instances where what you see is not quite what you get. Different software may not be compatible with the font or colors you want to use, resulting in a printout that differs slightly from what you saw on your screen. When you see the WYSIWYG notation on your software program, you know what is on the screen will translate to the printed document.
Desktop design for sticker terms can be used broadly across a variety of projects, whether you are making t-shirts using heat transfer vinyl, tumblers using waterslide vinyl, sheets of clip art stickers, and more. When you know the basic terms, you can better understand what goes into making a successful project, and work with tools designed for more serious crafters. If you are making stickers as a side business, learning desktop design terms is a good idea. The terms in last year’s blog and this year’s update help you design projects that you and your family will love.
Ready to start designing your projects? Royal Elements sells t-shirt transfer vinyl, printable vinyl, and adhesive vinyl, along with transfer tape, laminating sheets, magnetic sheets, and more in our online store – and our blog has plenty of design tips. We love to see the projects you make using Royal Elements products. Post your results online with the hashtag #royalelementsstickers so we can feature your designs on our social networks (Facebook, Instagram, YouTube).