Full Colour Palette for Printed Packaging
October 17, 2019


Understanding different printing types can be difficult, particularly as CMYK is one of the most commonly used in everyday printing tasks, but with a wide range of inks as well as different printing types depending on the material, it can get confusing. In this article, we will be looking into the differences between full-colour printing as well as 100% ink.


Full colour is often referred to in the industry as CMYK, which stands for cyan, magenta, yellow and key, or black. You might have seen these colours before, perhaps when buying new ink cartridges for your at home or office printer. These are the colour plates used in a type of printing process. This is one of the most common types of printing and is used in print production.

When your artwork is too complex to be made up of single, solid spot colours, that’s when we would need to print your bags in full colour. This might mean the artwork is a photographic image, has a gradient or visual effect, or if there are just more colours included than we could print as spot colours.

Full colour could refer to printing all over the bag, or it could refer to the complexity of a logo in the middle of a bag; it really comes down to what your artwork contains rather than the coverage of the bag.


When it comes to your bags, 100% ink is quoted if you’re looking for the entire bag to be a certain colour, e.g. red twisted handle bags, or mailing bags that are black. With products like these, we start with a white bag which then has to be completely flooded with ink to achieve that block colour over 100% coverage. On the example of a black mailing bag with a white logo, we would flood a white bag with black ink, leaving your logo ‘cut out’ of the ink with the white of the bag showing through, to achieve the desired effect.

Because this look requires more ink and a slightly more complex process, it comes with a higher cost and often higher minimum order than if you were to print your logo on a standard bag.


When looking into the main differences between the two printing techniques, one of the main differences is the print quality. Though 100% ink is susceptible to cracking, the printing technique provides a vibrant colour that will not bleed into materials. In addition to this, the drying process makes it ideal for printing in batches as well as printing on a wide range of materials.

CMYK printing is perfect for those that are designing as the colour range is extensive. It provides you with an accurate colour range that is highly beneficial when printing on paper. However, this would not be typically used to print on fabrics unless you are looking to use a specific colour on your products. The formulation does not consist of 100% ink as this can lead to a slow drying ink that will bleed into materials causing it to tear. Though this can be used for printed bags and other merchandise, this is often avoided as other printing methods provide you with much better results.

Though both printing methods are beneficial for different products, there is a wide range of different inks that can provide outstanding results for a wide range of different materials. To get your own printed bag or learn more about different printing types, get In touch with the expert team at printed bag shop today!