DCS Guide to Sticker File Types

Great stickers start with great artwork. Without the proper file setup, it’s going to be difficult for us to get you the best finished product we can. Here’s our guide to the best file types so you can get your art dialed without any hiccups.

.AI (Adobe Illustrator)

This the native working file of Adobe Illustrator. When you save an Illustrator file for the first time, it becomes a piece of pure perfection. Pick your colors, convert your fonts to outlines, and you have artwork that is ready to send to us for sticker production. Anything you create in Illustrator (aside from a placed image) will be in crisp, clean vectors. Perfect for colorful graphics or 1-color Die-cuts.

Rule of Thumb: DO NOT place images in Illustrator and send it to us as an .ai file. It doesn’t work that way.

.PSD (Adobe Photoshop)

Adobe Photoshop is great for handling hi-res photos and complex effects. Make sure you start out working with a document that’s set to a minimum 150 dpi resolution or 300 dpi ideally. This means your image will come out looking great, rather than fuzzy or pixelated. Be careful when placing images and make sure the resolution matches up with your document.

Rule of Thumb: Keep your layers organized in case our Production Artists need to dive into the artwork.

.EPS (Illustrator or Photoshop)

“Encapsulated Post Script.” This is next-level. .EPS files are self-contained with graphics, type, and even an image preview. This is everything we need wrapped up with bow.

Rule of Thumb: If you’re a seasoned print specialist, you already know we’ll be happy to receive this file.

.PDF (Adobe Illustrator)

PDF means Portable Document Format and was originally created to pass files easily between different operating systems and platforms. We now use it to send layouts, graphics, and proofs conveniently while also keeping files sizes small. If your PDF was created from vector graphics in Illustrator, congratulations! We’re going to make some great stickers. If not, we may have a hard road ahead of us.

Rule of Thumb: Save under “Smallest File Send” if you’re getting pricing, but make sure you send us the “Press Quality” version before printing.

.JPG (Adobe Photoshop)

Commonly referred to as a JPEG, this is an image file format typically associated with photos and other image files. If you’re saving from Photoshop, make sure this is high-resolution (300 dpi).

Rule of Thumb: Build or make sure your file is at actual size. No matter what.

.GIF (Adobe Photoshop)

Guys, you probably already know this is a low-res image file. Mostly popular in its animated form on the web. If you have artwork in .gif form, please only send for quoting purposes as we will NOT print this as final artwork. It will never look good.

Rule of Thumb: Nope. Just, don’t.

These are the most important File Types to us. If you’re curious about another type or think something is missing, let us know. Reach us directly on Twitter or send an email over to info@diecutstickers.com with questions.

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