This easy-to-follow guide will help you when it’s time to move your file from the computer to the printing press.


Printing presses use the CMYK color space; the four colors within the space (cyan, magenta, yellow and black) produce your entire full-color design.

To set your color space to CMYK, make sure you’ve saved the file for print and have changed the color space in the color panel from RBG to CMYK.


Have you ever had an image turn out fuzzy when printed but it looked crystal clear on the computer? Chances are, the DPI (dots per inch) needed to be increased.

In most cases, DPI is set to 72 on your computer – be sure to set it to 300 DPI when saving.


If you want color to extend to the edge of the paper, it is important to add a bleed to the file. This will eliminate the white box you’ll often see around home printing projects. When you’re setting up your file, create a bleed that is 0.125 inches on all sides.


At Thomson, we prefer high resolution PDFs. If you are unable to format your file to a PDF for any reason, we will happily accept it as-is and make necessary changes to create your custom print piece.


If you don’t have the capacity in-house to design, the creative team at Thomson Printing will develop captivating materials to compliment your project’s needs.

Email us at or call (636)946-3525 to get your project started.

“By working with Thomson Printing/Giant Hat, we were able to get a thorough, yet friendly introduction into eCommerce. Our website now handles almost half of our annual revenue. They gave us a personal and non-intimidating entry into a world in which we now must be capable and adept. They were that reliable and honest friend that has always had our back when we’ve been unsure and unexperienced in new fields of commerce.”

-Mike Marquard, Owner, Blue Print Coffee

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