Make a Spotwhite Layer

If you are using a clear, metallic, or dark opaque material like Kraft paper, you'll need a spotwhite layer built into your artwork. Our prepress team can help with this step, but there may be additional charges for the time for this service. To save time and expense, we've made a quick guide showing you how it's done.

The spotwhite layer tells us which areas of your label you want to be opaque and which areas you want to have the desired clear or metallic effect. Read the instructions below and follow along with our step-by-step video to learn how to make your spotwhite layer.

  1. Duplicate your artwork layer and rename it “spotwhite.” This layer should be at the top of the list in your Layers window. 
  2. Create a new swatch in the Swatches window. Name the swatch “spotwhite” and change the color type from process color to spot color. Set the ink to only 100% magenta.
  3. Elements that need white ink printed, whether to be white or to be opaque, must be set at 100% spotwhite. Elements with no white ink printed (either clear/metallic/other) must be set at 0% spotwhite. Every element on the spotwhite layer must have the spotwhite swatch, either at 100% or 0%.
  4. After spotwhite is applied to all elements, use select all to select everything on the layer. Open the Attributes window and check that Overprint Fill is checked on everything. If the option for Overprint Stroke is available, be sure to check that option also.
  5. To check that the Overprint attributes and spotwhite are correct, go to the View menu and select Overprint Preview. You should be able to see your artwork through the spotwhite layer. Check to make sure everything is lining up well.

Note: The instructions above are specifically for files built in Adobe Illustrator. If you’re using Photoshop, check out our step-by-step video for spotwhite creation using that particular program. 

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