Card Manufacturing

Printing Methods

Litho Printing (Gift Cards, Loyalty Cards, M6’s, Carriers) $–$$
  • Designed for production runs of 25,000+
  • High quality printing
  • Ability to print using paper, plastic, and other substrates
    Restrictions: Not designed for small runs.

Flexo Printing (Direct Mail, M6 Cards, Merchandise Return Cards, Carriers) $
  • Designed for production runs of 25,000 +
  • High quality printing
  • Ability to print using paper, plastic, and other substrates
    Restrictions: Not efficient for small runs. Harvard utilizes custom designed equipment that mimics flat sheet printing for the highest quality product.

Screen Printing (Pearl, Metallic Pearls, Fluorescent, UV Colors, Scented, Sig Panel) $$$
  • Designed for production runs of 25,000+
  • High quality printing
  • Ability to print using paper, plastic, and other substrates
    Restrictions: Extremely small spot applications may pose registration issues… be mindful of design elements.


CMYK $–$$ Good/Better/Best
  • Also known as 4 color process, stands for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black.

PMS $$–$$$ Better/Best
  • Stands for Pantone Matching Systems. This process is used for exact color matching.

Specialty Inks $$–$$$ Better/Best
  • Pearl, Scented, Metallic, Glitter, Glow in the Dark, Fluorescent inks that are used for unique/special design elements for printing. (Check to ensure proper application and efficient/effective methodologies for which press these inks would be used on).

Substrate / Material

There are multiple options available at your discretion for any products. Substrates below are options for any program.


Styrene $

RPVC (recycled) $$

Paper $–$$$

Recycled Paper $–$$$

Bio PVC $$$

Clear PVC

Foil / Specialty Treatment

Foil Stamp $$–$$$
  • The application of a heated dye stamped onto a foil thus transferring it to the surface area of the substrate it is applied to. Cost is a function of coverage percentage.
  • Tooling must be ordered.

Full Foil $$$
  • A full foil sheet that is printed on to create unique design elements. Multiple varieties of foil exist…iridescent, brushed, metal, glitter, holographic, patterned, etc…
  • Material must be ordered. Allow 2-3 weeks for material to arrive.

Special Inks

Pearl/glitter/Metallic $$–$$$ A treatment above or below other print to enhance design elements with a glistening sparkle.

Writeable Surface $–$$ These are ink coverings or finishes applied to a substrate that a consumer could write on.

Raised Surface $–$$ As the name implies, raised ink provides a noticeable and tangible design component
that appears as 3D.

Glow in the dark $–$$ A phosphorescent coloring that provides a glow affect that is apparent in low light conditions (after exposure to bright light).

Scented $–$$ An application where encapsulated fragrances are released upon scratching surface area of substrate.

Fluorescent $–$$ Pigment added to provide an intense coloration.

Lamination / Finishing

Laminating $–$$$
  • This is the process of applying a thin, clear film over the top of a substrate using heat. One or more substrates can be fused together using this process.


Shiny lamination on both sides of the substrate.


Matte finish lamination on one side and Shiny
lamination on the other side.


Both sides are matte finish lamination.


Both sides are Satin finish lamination.

Embossed Lamination

Creates a stylized surface area…ie…Football, basketball, leather look and feel.

UV Coatings $–$$$
  • Post Lamination Raised UV Coating
    A thin layer of coating is applied to either non laminated products for protecting entire surface area of substrate or strategically as a design element to laminated or non-laminated products to enhance physical elements of a product. Can be either gloss or matte UV and applied pre or post lamination. Restrictions: Fine detail (thin lines) of spot UV will be challenging to achieve particularly in post lamination applications (registration issues).


Male/Female die $$$
  • These dies are very expensive and provide precision cutting for unique/abstract product designs.

Steel rule die $
  • Simply put, steel rule dies work like a cookie cutter. They are made using razor-sharp “steel rule” that is cut, bent, and mounted forming a stamping tool according to the desired shape. Harvard utilizes reinforced steel that delivers Male/Female die quality (Maximum of 28 mil thickness-post lamination).