Thursday, 28 January 2016

Label Planet: FAQ – Why Does It Matter What Sort Of Printer I Use?

Some people assume that a printer is a printer is a printer and that it makes no difference whether they’ve got an inkjet or a laser printer (with some blissfully unaware that different kinds of printers even exist). Unfortunately, because labels are a very different medium to paper, the printer you use can make a big difference to the process of choosing and printing your labels.

Labels are made up of a number of different layers (meaning they are thicker than paper AND contain an adhesive layer that you need to be aware of) and are made using a variety of materials, which means they need extra care when printing. Furthermore, many label products are made with materials that are compatible with ONE printing process only (in order to create the best possible print quality), which means customers need to think carefully about the products they choose to use with their printer.

What are the differences between laser printers and inkjet printers?
Laser printers use heat and pressure to bond toner (a dry powder) onto the surface of the material being printed. Lasers are used to charge areas of an image drum (or the material itself) to attract or repel the toner so that it is applied to the drum or material in the correct position. A fuser unit then applies heat and pressure to bond the toner in place.
This has the benefit of creating print that is highly durable AND waterproof. 

Inkjet printers, however, disperse droplets of ink from a printhead onto the material below to form the required image; the ink then dries in place with some or all of the ink being absorbed into the surface of the material being printed.
Standard inkjet inks are water based, which means that the print will run or smudge if it comes into contact with water.

What are the differences between the materials used to make laser labels and inkjet labels?
Materials used to make laser labels will have good heat resistance and a consistent, smooth surface that will allow the toner to bond firmly and evenly across the surface to help produce a sharp, clean print. Paper laser labels will also contain moisture to help combat the drying effects of the heat used to bond the toner in place.

Inkjet labels, however, will be made with materials that have a porous surface to allow some of the ink to be absorbed in place; this allows the ink to dry more efficiently and accurately, which improves the quality and resolution of the final print.

Customers should be aware that while choosing a label that is compatible with their printer has the benefit of improving the print quality, it is also a necessity because it is likely that you will not be able to print your labels at all if they are not compatible with your printer. For example, toner may not bond at all with materials designed for inkjet printers, while inks may not dry properly on laser labels, which will result in your print smudging across the surface. 

What other things should I think about when using my own printer?
- Always use the media bypass tray to print labels. The standard paper tray is designed specifically for paper (80-90gsm) while the media bypass tray will accept thicker materials AND provide a straighter path through the printer involving fewer sets of rollers (rollers may cause slight rotation of your sheets as they pass through the printer, which can reduce the accuracy of your print positioning). Some basic printers and “All-In-One” models do not have bypass trays and tend to produce less accurate alignment.

- Always check to see if your printer offers specific settings for printing labels. These settings will automatically select the best combination of print settings for this particular medium. Laser printers, for example, often have a specific “Labels” setting (or “Heavy Paper” setting) that slows the printer down and increases the heat applied during printing – this allows the toner to bond firmly in place even when printing onto the thicker and more varied material types used to make labels.

- Finally, check your printer’s manual for the manufacturer’s recommendations for the types and thicknesses of materials that your printer is able to process. You should NOT exceed or ignore these recommendations as this could cause damage to your printer. Some manufacturers may also supply printing guides for different media, such as labels; if your printer’s manual includes a guide to printing labels, you should take note of the advice provided.

You can find a full list of our label materials and their printer compatibility on our All Label Materials page and view more printing advice and tips by visiting our Advice section.

Stikins ® & Trons ®: Earn Commission For Your School/Nursery/Activity Group With Name Labels

We run a commission scheme that allows organisations to earn commission on sales of name labels placed by customers who have an affiliation with that organisation. While most of our affiliate partners are schools, we also have a number of nurseries and activity groups (including sporting groups, activity clubs, and various members of the Scout and Guide movements) who have signed up with us.

Name labels are a quick and easy way to label clothing and items to prevent these belongings from going missing. The organisations who sign up with us tend to have a large number of attendees or members who spend time in shared spaces, where it is easy for items to get mixed up or go missing.

For example, schools are busy, hectic environments in which hundreds of children share the same classrooms, halls, and corridors and will each be armed with a very similar (if not identical) set of uniform(s) and equipment that they have to move from place to place (as well as between school and home). Likewise, activity groups will likely use similar or identical equipment during their meetings or events, while groups such as Scouts and Guides will require their members to wear the same uniform and – when events such as camping trips are organised – they will often have the same equipment with them as well.

Our commission scheme allows these groups to promote name labels to their pupils or members (or, perhaps more accurately, the parents of their pupils or members) to help prevent issues of Lost Property AND to earn commission on sales of those name labels, which they can then put towards ongoing fundraising projects or funds for future trips and/or events.

We’ve designed our commission scheme to be as simple as possible, with one step registration that results in year round fundraising and requires minimal input (with no initial or ongoing costs). With our scheme, it’s entirely up the school, nursery, or group to decide how much time they want to spend promoting the fundraising opportunity we offer.

Here’s a basic guide to how it works:
- You register your school (PTA)/group and we assign you a unique code.
- You let parents know about the scheme and give them the code they need to quote when they order.
- EVERY order we receive where that code is quoted will earn commission for your school or group.
- We keep track of your commission total and send out a cheque once a year in October.
And that’s pretty much it.

Parents can order from our website, by phone, or by post any time throughout the year; we despatch all orders within three working days (same day in June, July, and August) directly to parents – all you need to do is make sure they know your code to earn commission for your school or group.

Our basic rate of commission is 15%, but you can boost this to 30% by putting a link on your website. This is simple to do and you can explain a bit about the scheme AND include the code that parents need to use – you can also create a link that will automatically enter your code when parents order so the order will always count towards your commission total even if parents forget to add the number. We have a page on our website that explains how to add a link AND includes a Link Registration form so you can let us know that you’ve added a link and you want your 30%!

We also provide a number of free resources to help you promote the scheme and your unique code with minimal effort and fuss, including:
- Fundraising Guide: this explains how the scheme works and has a number of helpful tips to get you up and running.
- Commission Booster Plan: based on our experience of running a commission scheme, this plan provides you with a shortlist of things you can do to boost the amount you earn for your fundraising efforts.
- Parent Leaflets: free leaflets that you can distribute to parents to promote the scheme AND your unique code.
- Example Parent Letters: sending out a letter with the leaflets is a really easy way to explain a bit more about the scheme, about the fundraising projects you are hoping to earn money towards, and to engage parents more efficiently. We’ve set up a few examples to give you a bit of inspiration and get you started.
- Notice Board Poster: free posters that you can put up around the school or the space where you hold meetings.
- PowerPoint Presentation: if you need to bring the commission scheme to the attention of a PTA or Board before you can register, then this presentation is a great source of information about how everything works.

To find out more or to register as a commission partner, simply visit our website and click on the purple "Schools Information" button to access all of our commission scheme resources.

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Label Planet: Adopt An Appropriate Adhesive So All Your Labels Adhere!

From a purely practical point of view, the most important part of a label is the adhesive; if you choose the wrong sort of adhesive for your particular application then you may well find that your labels simply won’t do the job that you need them to do.

Many people don’t realise that there are different types and strengths of adhesive – although for most applications a simple standard permanent adhesive will do the job. The problem is that there are a handful of label applications that require the use of a different kind of adhesive because a standard permanent adhesive simply doesn’t meet the requirements of that application.

These alternative adhesives tend to be designed specifically for a particular kind of label application and will therefore have properties and characteristics that allow them to function efficiently in that application. The most common reasons that you might need to use something other than a standard permanent adhesive are:
  • You Need Temporary Labels
    If you need labels that will stay in place for a fixed (short) time only, you may find that standard permanent adhesives are not a suitable choice. Instead you should look at removable adhesives, which are designed to provide a good adhesive bond while a label is needed before peeling away cleanly from a surface without doing any damage in the process.
  • You Need Labels That Will Survive In More Challenging Environments
    While standard permanent adhesives will function efficiently on a range of surfaces in “normal” or “standard” conditions, you might need labels that can survive in more challenging environments; for example, your application might involve different or fluctuating conditions, such as high or low temperatures or even exposure to water. These conditions will most likely cause a standard adhesive to fail, which means you would need to choose a special adhesive designed to cope with more extreme conditions.
  • You Need Labels That Can Adhere To Unusual Or Curved Surfaces
    Certain materials and surfaces may prove too difficult for standard permanent adhesives to bond with properly, which means that if you want to make sure your labels stay in place you’ll have to choose a stronger permanent adhesive.
So how do I go about choosing the right sort of adhesive?
Adhesives are primarily classified as “Permanent” or “Removable”, so the first choice you need to make is whether you need your labels to be “Permanent” or “Temporary”; choose a permanent adhesive for permanent labels (to make sure they stay firmly in place) and a removable adhesive for temporary labels (to make sure they can be removed without damage when you no longer need them).

Once you’ve narrowed your search to one of these two kinds of adhesive, you need to take into account any environmental factors that might require the use of a more specialised adhesive; try to think of anything in your label application that might cause a problem for a standard adhesive – if you can’t think of anything then you should be okay with a standard adhesive BUT if there are specific requirements that you need your labels to cope with then you should take a look at more specialised adhesives with specific properties that make them better suited to your application.

For example: Choosing The Right Permanent Adhesive
We have twenty two products with permanent adhesives, which can be grouped as follows:
Standard Permanent Labels (STA/MPQ/GWPQ/BRK/C/FC/GW/LG/LS/SG)
Simply choose the label product with the colour and/or finish that you like best.
Durable and/or Waterproof Permanent Labels (MWP/MWPE/GWP/SMP/GCP/GTP/MTP)
Choose one of these if you need your labels to be durable and/or waterproof, especially if you’re looking to create long life tracking labels.
Strong Permanent Labels (For Unusual Surfaces) (Mega Tack/HT/MWP/MWPE)
Choose one of these if you need a label that will stay firmly stuck or you need to label an unusual surface that standard adhesives struggle to bond with.
Freezer Labels (DF)
Choose these labels if you need to label items that are to be stored or used in freezer conditions (for example, food and drink products or medical and research samples).
Outdoor Labels (MWP/MWPE)
Choose one of these if you need a label that can survive in outdoor conditions, particularly if those conditions include exposure to or submersion in water.
Security Labels (SVP and TEV)
Choose one of these if you’re looking for a label product that will improve the security of your items by providing evidence if an attempt is made to tamper with the labels (and therefore your items).

For example: Choosing The Right Removable Adhesive
We have five products with removable adhesives, which can be grouped as follows:
Standard Removable Labels (REM and REMC)
Choose one of these if you need a basic temporary label (in white or colour).
Durable and/or Waterproof Removable Labels (GTR and MWR)
Choose one of these if you need temporary labels that are more durable and waterproof.
Removable Labels For Delicate Surfaces or Long Term Use (GREM)
Choose these labels if you need to label delicate items (e.g. those made of paper or glass) and/or it is absolutely vital that no damage is done when your labels are removed.

To help you work out which adhesive is the best option for you, we’ve created a “Complete List of all our Label Adhesives” page, which lists all of our products according to the type of adhesive they are made with, along with a description of the characteristics of each adhesive. Remember, you can also request a sample of any label products that you are interested in so you can test them to make sure they will work for you before you go ahead and buy. We recommend that you replicate the conditions of your application as closely as possible with your samples so you know for certain that they are the right labels for the job.

Stikins ® & Trons ®: Name Labels For Nursing Homes & Residential Care Homes

Name labels are a small but effective helper if you have a friend or relative who is a resident of or is moving into a nursing or residential care home.

Moving into a home can be a stressful experience, with many residents finding that the familiarity of their belongings is a reassuring and calming factor in a new environment. However, with care homes relying on the use of shared facilities (e.g. shared kitchens and laundries) to provide day to day services for their residents and with residents spending time in communal areas (for example, during mealtimes, when receiving visitors, or when taking part in group activities) it is all too easy for their belongings to be mixed up or to go missing altogether.

The loss of these items (especially personal items that are of significant emotional value) can cause great stress to residents (and their friends and family) and members of staff – who will also end up wasting valuable time trying to reunite items with their rightful owners or trying to locate items that have gone missing; time that would be much better spent looking after the residents themselves, instead of their belongings.

A name label is a simple and effective way to prevent items from going missing or from getting mixed up. We provide two types of name labels that can be used to label the belongings of residents staying in care homes:

STIKINS ® name labels are made with a flexible vinyl that is extremely smooth to the touch (so it won’t cause irritation when applied inside clothing); they can be applied to the wash care label of clothing, bedding, and other fabric items (and will go through both washing machines AND tumble driers), and can also be stuck directly onto personal items that are of significant value to their owner.

TRONS ® name transfers are an iron on name transfer that fuses and bonds with materials to create a completely permanent name label on any fabric item.

Most customers request name labels with their relative or friend’s name on, but you can also request labels with additional information, such as their room number (to make it easier to return their items), allergy or medical information (to act as an additional medical alert), or even a simple message such as “Property Of” or “Please Return To”.

While residents or their friends and family can order name labels from us themselves, we are also happy to accept direct orders from nursing homes and residential care facilities – we also offer a 10% discount to care homes who order name labels from us on behalf of their residents.

Thursday, 21 January 2016

Label Planet: Even More Choices Now In Stock At Label Planet

While we would love to be able to stock every possible combination of label size, material, adhesive, finish, and colour, we simply don’t have the room! However, we also want to make sure that our customers have the best possible range of choices, which is why we try to make sure as many of your most wanted products are available for same day despatch in stock.

With this in mind, we’ve added four sizes to stock in two of our most popular product ranges, Freezer Labels and Coloured Labels, AND added a fantastic new option to our Coloured Label range:

New Stocked Sizes: LP40/45 (45.7 x 25.4mm) and LP84/46 (46 x 11.1mm)
Ideal For: Labelling up food products and packaging or medical and research samples that are to be stored in freezer conditions.
These sizes are ideal for adding important identifying information to your items, such as important dates (for example: Best Before, Use By, Sample Taken etc) or item reference information (for example: Batch Numbers, Sample Numbers etc).

New Stocked Sizes: LP189/25 (25.4 x 10mm), LP216/13R (13mm diameter)
Ideal For: Going absolutely dotty! These small labels are perfect for adding small decorative labels to your items or stationery (including parcels, envelopes, or packaging) OR for organisational purposes, such as stock taking, colour coding filing systems, or for use on calendars and diaries to keep you on schedule.

New Pack Option: Assorted Colour Packs
Ideal For: adding a touch of brightening colour, in four brilliantly decorative colours.
These packs include six (or seven) sheets each of red, yellow, blue, and green labels in one size, so you can mix and match colours to your heart’s delight! These labels are a perfect way to add a decorative touch to all kinds of items or to get a head start on organising all your bits and pieces (whether you’re simply getting organised, doing a stock take, or colour coding everything in sight!).

Stikins ® & Trons ®: Name Labels! What Are They Good For? Absolutely Everything! (Nearly)

Name labels are a very versatile product, which can be used to label all sorts of things in all sorts of situations and environments – in fact, the number of ways you can use them and the number of things you can label with them is often only limited by what you can come up with! So here’s a short guide to the WHO, WHAT, and WHERE of name labels.

STIKINS ®: these labels simply peel off their backing sheet and stick down like any other kind of label, which means they can be applied by pretty much anyone. We would recommend, however, that you don’t allow very young children to handle these labels and that you do supervise children to make sure that they’re sticking the labels down properly (and not simply plastering the walls!).

TRONS ®: these labels are iron-on transfers, which means they require the use of a hot iron, a firm hand, and plenty of patience to follow the application process correctly. As such, children should not be allowed to apply these labels (and some adults might require supervision as well!).

STIKINS ®: these name labels are made from a super flexible vinyl and a super strong adhesive, which allows them to be applied to all kinds of items and surfaces. When applying these labels to garments and fabric items, they should be applied to the wash care label. While they MAY stick perfectly well if applied directly onto the material of an item, there is so much variation in the fabrics used to make clothing and other items that it would be impossible to test (and list) all of the combinations that our Stikins ® will (and will not) work on. However, they have been fully tested on wash care labels, which means that we can say that they will work properly when applied to the wash care label.

Stikins ® can also be used to label a myriad of personal items, including lunch boxes and water bottles, books and bags, P.E. kit and school equipment, and shoes (where they should be applied to the side of the shoe or the tongue – you should NEVER apply them beneath the heel as the print will disintegrate rapidly due to the friction generated during movement).

It should be noted that Stikins ® are not great at sticking to socks; socks tend not to have a wash care label and, because the fabric stretches around the foot, there isn’t a fixed surface area for the adhesive to adhere to. Over time the label will begin to peel up and will eventually fall off entirely.

TRONS ®: these labels use the same materials and technology as the transfers used in the clothing industry to apply designs to garments; this means that they can ONLY be used to label fabric items, where the transfer can bond and fuse with the item to form a permanent name label that is effectively a part of the item itself.

Name labels work best in busy, shared environments, especially where people are sharing equipment or own items that are extremely similar if not identical in appearance. Adding brief details about the owner of an item (e.g. name and contact information) is a really easy way to make sure that these items are easily distinguishable and can be returned to their rightful owner.

Some examples of places where name labels come in really handy are:
Every school has hundreds of people sharing the same set of rooms and corridors, with each of them carting around sets of uniform, coats and bags, equipment, and personal items – many of which will be identical or very similar in appearance. Lost property is a perpetual problem in schools with staff wasting time and resources throughout the school year trying to collect and return items to their rightful owners, while parents will be endlessly frustrated at the time and money that they have to waste on replacing items – many of which will be less than a year old in the first place.

Schools are the ideal place for name labels; the school KNOWS who attends the school so the simple act of adding a name makes it extremely easy to return items to the correct student (or, of course, to summon that child to the Lost Property department to reclaim their belongings themselves). Many schools now include name labels as a “Recommended” item on their list of School Uniform & Equipment, while some have gone a step further and made it a “Required” item.

While they might not share the hustle and bustle of a school, care homes nevertheless involve taking a group of people and their belongings and putting them into shared spaces (such as activity rooms, dining rooms, communal sitting rooms, gardens etc) and shared facilities (such as kitchens and laundry facilities).

The belongings that residents take with them are often of high sentimental value and it can be extremely distressing if any of these items are lost. Likewise staff will have more important tasks to get on with, instead of spending time trying to sort out which items belong to whom and trying to track down belongings that have gone missing. Name labels make it extremely quick and easy to return items.

Name labels can also prevent problems at home; siblings often own similar (or identical) items, which means that there may be tears and tantrums when one of those items goes missing or there’s a disagreement about which item belongs to which child. Adding a name label is a quick and easy way to put an end to such fights before they’ve even had a chance to begin.

Name labels can be used to assign uniform or equipment to a particular employee or to indicate that those items are the property of a particular department within the business to ensure that the items are returned to the correct place. This can prevent mix ups and prevent companies wasting money on replacing items that have gone missing.

Of course, they can also come in handy if you’re just trying to stop other people taking your lunch out of the fridge, using your favourite mug from home for their coffee break, or if you’ve encountered the pesky problem whereby all of your stationery seems to keep magically disappearing from your desk (and reappearing on someone else’s).

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Stikins ® & Trons ®: Name Labels In Time And Space – An FAQ Special

This blog is here to answer all your questions about name labels in time and space! Or, to put it another way, questions like “How long do they last?” and “Where should I store my name labels?”.

How long will my name labels last?
We often find that parents aren’t sure if our name labels will last long enough, with some asking if they will need to replace their labels after so many washes or after a certain period of time.

Our name labels are actually extremely sturdy and will often outlast the items they are used to label. We’ve had many an amazed comment from parents who have found that while their child’s school uniform has disintegrated beyond recognition, their name labels are still firmly in place with the print as bold and legible as ever.

Of course, there are a few things we recommend to help make sure that your labels remain firmly in place, such as:
- AVOID IRONING OVER YOUR NAME LABELS: you should not allow an iron to come into directly contact with your name labels. Stikins ® are made of vinyl, which will shrivel and melt if they come into direct contact with an iron. Trons ®, meanwhile, will not be as dramatically affected BUT – like any other transfer used to add design work onto clothing – if you iron directly over the name transfer the print will start to gradually fade and disintegrate over time.
- AVOID STICKING STIKINS ® DIRECTLY BELOW THE HEEL IN SHOES: the constant friction between the label and the foot will cause the print to disintegrate rapidly. We recommend applying Stikins ® either onto the side of the shoe or beneath the tongue.

Can I remove my labels in the future if I want to pass items along or donate them to charity?
Stikins ®: Yes / Trons ®: No.

While Stikins ® are designed to stick in and stay in (and have an extremely strong adhesive to ensure they achieve this), they can be removed – providing you have an extensive supply of patience, effort, and elbow grease. You may find that when you remove these name labels from your items, there is an element of adhesive residue left behind – as an alternative, you may wish to cut off the wash care labels that you applied the name labels to (providing you are happy to lose the care instructions for future reference).

Trons ®, however, are a completely permanent name label solution; they bond and fuse with the material of an item, which means they effectively become a part of the item itself and so cannot be removed at a later date. You would need to cut out a name transfer to remove it, which would obviously cause damage to the item and would most likely make it unfit for passing along to someone else.

Do I have to use all my name labels up when I buy them?
Not at all!

You can use however many labels you need for the moment and then store the rest away safely for future use.
Please note that we recommend keeping your labels in their original packaging during storage. 

Our Stikins ® retain their quality for the first two years and Trons ® for the first five years.

Where should I store my name labels?
If you do wish to store some of your name labels away for future use, we advise that you keep them in their original packaging and store them somewhere that is out of direct sunlight, dry, and (preferably) that will remain at a steady room temperature (without extremes of cold or hot temperatures).

For more answers to Frequently Asked Questions, please visit our FAQ page.

Label Planet: Request A Sample To Try Your Labels Before You Buy

Here at Label Planet, we are more than familiar with the confusion that can arise when you’ve got a particular label application in mind but you’re not sure which label product is going to be the best one for the job, not to mention the frustration of going ahead and buying a label product that looks like it is going to work PERFECTLY (on paper at least), only to find out that it simply can’t cope with the specific requirements that you need it to meet.

This is why we’ve set up a free sample request service, so that our customers can request a sample of the label product(s) that they think will work best for them, so they can test the labels for themselves and make absolutely sure that they’re going to work properly, before going ahead with an order.

Labels can be influenced by all kinds of variations in the conditions or environment of your label application, including fluctuations in temperature, the surface type and material you need a label to adhere to, any exposure to water and/or other liquids, and even if the label simply looks right or not, which means that even if you pick a label product that is designed for, or is supposed to be suitable for, a particular label application, there may be a factor in your particular application that causes a problem.

By requesting a sample, you can make sure that our labels can cope with the EXACT conditions of your label application. You can also use our sample service to help you choose between a few label options (particularly different colours or finishes), to make sure that your printer is capable of processing those labels, and to have a trial run at designing and printing your own labels.

To get started, you can get in touch with us to let us know what you’re looking for or simply fill in our online Sample Request Form.

If you’re requesting labels online, please fill in the form with as much detail about your label application as possible and be as precise as you can with the samples you want to request. This will allow us to make sure that the labels we send to you are the best possible options for the task at hand and to offer specific tips or advice to help you get the very best results from your samples.

Thursday, 14 January 2016

Stikins ® & Trons ®: FAQ – How Do I Apply My Name Labels?!

While we’ve tried to make our name labels as simple and straightforward as possible to use, it’s always nice to have some instructions to hand to make sure you’ve done everything absolutely right.

We’ve written step by step guides for both our Stikins ® name labels and our Trons ® name transfers; a copy of these instructions is sent out with each pack and they are also available to view or download on our website.

Of course, every little extra helps, so here’s both sets of Instructions For Use in this very blog post, right here!

Instructions For Use: STIKINS ® name labels
  1. Ensure the item is completely dry.
  2. Carefully peel the label from the backing paper, trying to avoid touching the adhesive.
  3. Apply the label onto the wash-care label of the item (clothing/fabric items) or directly onto the item itself.
  4. Using your thumb, smooth the label down for a few seconds to ensure that the adhesive fully bonds with the material.
Instructions For Use: TRONS ® name transfers
  1. Use a hard flat surface (not an ironing board). Turn the clothes inside out. Set the iron to the maximum heat setting.
  2. Cut or tear the silicon sheet. Each piece must be bigger than the labels. Each piece can only be used once.
  3. Put the garment over the edge of the surface. Put a label text up on the very edge of the surface.
  4. Put a piece of silicon paper on top of the label. The silicon must be shiny side down. The silicon should only be used once.
  5. Iron the silicon paper with the tip of the iron but do not use steam. Press down and move the iron from side to side. Iron for 25 seconds.
  6. Remove the silicon paper while still hot. Allow it to cool and check the label is bonded. If the label is not bonded then repeat step 5.
Top Tips For Long-Lasting (Name) Labels
- After applying Stikins ®, leave the item for 24 hours before washing to allow the adhesive to fully strengthen and set. Do not be tempted to test the adhesive by peeling up a corner of the label after washing.

- Apply your labels to items that have been washed at least ONCE before application; some items (especially clothing) may have traces of dust, excess dye, or preservative coatings that can interfere with the adhesive on Stikins ®and with the bonding process when you apply Trons ®.

- Don’t iron directly over your labels once they have been applied; the Stikins ®are made of vinyl that will melt if it is touched by an iron, and the print on your Trons ® transfers may gradually disintegrate over time if you iron directly over the print.

- Remember that Stikins ® MUST be applied onto the wash care label of garments and Trons ® MUST NOT be applied onto the wash care label of items.

- Apply Stikins ® to the side or beneath the tongue of shoes; they must not be applied directly beneath the heel as the constant friction between the label and foot will cause the print to rapidly disintegrate until it is worn away completely.

Label Planet: FAQ – Do You Do Labels That Are…

At Label Planet, we’ve made a deliberate decision to specialise in A4 sheets of blank labels for use with standard inkjet and laser printers. This means that we are able to offer the best possible range of A4 label products at fair and competitive prices. However, it also means that there are certain kinds of labels that we just don’t supply; we hereby present the Label Planet quick fire round called “do you do labels that are…?”

A Bespoke Size
NO: all of the sizes we supply are listed on our website; these sizes are determined by the dimensions of an A4 sheet and the sizes that fit most economically on an A4 sheet with as little wasted material between and around the labels as possible.

If you cannot find the size you want on our website you can; compromise and use the closest compatible size, choose a larger size and cut it down, or contact a supplier/manufacturer who can make that size as a bespoke product.
In some cases, we may be able to supply a quote for bespoke orders, but we will not consider requests for bespoke orders of less than 10,000 sheets. 

Really Big/Small
NO: we cannot do large sizes because these do not fit economically onto an A4 sheet; you would need to contact a label manufacturer to request these sizes as a bespoke order. We do not supply small sizes because these carry a risk of labels peeling off within a printer as the sheet is pulled through (and around) the rollers.

On Rolls
NO: we only supply labels on A4 sheets.

 On A5/A3/SRA3/A2/A1 Sheets
NO: we do not supply labels on any sheet size other than A4.

A Particular Brand
NO: we are not suppliers of any particular brand of label. However, if you are looking to switch from a particular brand, it is likely that we will be able to supply compatible products that are of the same size and layout.

Avery Labels
NO: we do not sell Avery products. Many of our labels, however, ARE Avery compatible, which means that they are made with the same size and layout options provided by Avery so you can design and print these labels using Avery templates (which are often built into software such as Word).

Pantone Reference…
NO: our coloured labels are not manufactured to a specific pantone reference and we do not produce bespoke coloured labels. We are happy to send samples if you need an idea of the colours available (please note that the colours shown on our website are for general illustration purposes only).

NO: all of our labels are supplied blank for customers to print themselves OR to send to a printing service if they do not wish to do the printing themselves.

Completely Permanent
NO: our permanent adhesives are designed to create a strong bond that will keep a label firmly in place BUT if someone is determined enough they would (eventually) be able to remove the label – albeit probably not in one piece and with significant amounts of residue left behind/damage on the surface that was labelled.

Completely “Invisible” Transparent Labels
NO: our transparent labels are all made using an adhesive, which means that it is possible for tiny amounts of dust and air to be trapped between the layers of the label during manufacturing and between the label and a surface during application – the presence of dust and air will prevent the label from having a truly “glass clear” appearance.

If you find that our labels don’t offer the degree of transparency that you require, you may need to consider using “static cling” labels, which uses the generation of static to hold labels in place. This removes the adhesive element, although you will need to take care when applying these labels to ensure that no air or dust is trapped during application.

Integrated Labels
NO: integrated labels are label products whereby the sheet is made up of areas that are standard paper and areas that are labels. These products allow different documentation to be printed onto one sheet and are commonly used in the delivery of products or services so that one sheet can include any combination of the following: address labels, return address labels, invoice or receipt, picking sheet or slip, company information, parcel seals etc.

Our LP3/210 product (which is an A4 sheet divided into three labels) is an ideal compromise if you don’t want to buy integrated labels; these labels can be used to print an invoice or receipt over two of the labels, while the third label becomes the address/shipping label. These labels are compatible with the systems used by Amazon, Ebay, and to allow sellers to print receipts and shipping labels for the items they sell through these online marketplace platforms.

Piggyback Labels
NO: this is a specialised product whereby one label sits on top of another; the top label can be used as a separate label in its own right (e.g. as a return address label), discarded once it has been removed to reveal a code or message beneath, or can be used as a flap to allow twice as much information to be included on packaging within the same space.

Made With Thick Materials
NO: while our labels are made with a range of materials, our products are designed for use with standard desktop printers, which are generally quite limited in the material thicknesses that they can process.

Machine Washable
NO (But Also Yes): while our waterproof products can be immersed in water and even cleaned to a certain extent, the conditions generated in washing machines and dishwashers are simply too harsh for our materials (and the print you add onto them).

However, we also supply two name label products, which are designed specifically for use on clothing and items that will go through the dishwasher – or even the microwave. You can find these at our website:

Please note that these labels are available printed OR blank but you CANNOT print them yourself as they require specialist software and hardware to do so. 

Printed On The Backing Sheet
NO: some customers request labels with printed backing sheets to help them distinguish more easily between the labels and the backing sheet. All of our products have blank backing sheets; we have researched the possibility of using printed backing sheets but, unfortunately, this would result in a higher cost to our customers that we do not think is justified, when simply taking a little extra time and care during printing can accomplish the same result.

Designed Specifically For X Application / Industry / Conditions
NO: while our labels are available in a range of material options designed to make our labels suitable for a variety of applications and environments, they have NOT been manufactured for any one specific application, industry, or environment and, as such, will not meet any stringent guidelines required by that industry or perform efficiently under any extremes of conditions involved in a particular application.

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

Stikins ® & Trons ®: Name Labels 101 - An Introduction To Stikins ® & Trons ®

With the New Year underway, we thought we’d go back to basics and write an introduction (or a re-introduction for existing customers) to our name labels. And, with students across the country preparing for a new semester of coursework deadlines, we thought we’d have a go at an assignment of our own. So, without further ado, we present to you our first (and probably only) assignment piece (or an approximation thereof) on the subject of name labels…

A brief introduction to name labels, including a discussion of what is a name label, why name labels are used, and two case studies on Label Planet’s name label products (Stikins ® name labels and Trons ® name transfers).

Section 1: What Is A Name Label?
In its simplest form, name labels are simply that – labels with a name on them for the purpose of identifying the owner of an item. In the world of name labels, however, the term can be applied to a range of products, all of which identify the owner of the item to which a product has been attached. Examples of name label “types” currently available include stick on name labels, iron on name labels, name transfers, clip on name labels or “name tags”, and the more traditional sew-in name labels (or “tapes”). Each type of name label has its own method of application, along with its own set of benefits and drawbacks.

Section 2: Why Do We Need Name Labels?
Name labels are one solution to the problem of items getting mixed up or lost. They are particularly useful in environments where a group of people with similar or identical sets of belongings share one confined space or set of facilities. The most common example (and perhaps the situation in which name labels are most effective) is schools; hundreds of students attend school armed with similar or identical belongings, all of which must be carried between classrooms (as well as to and from school) and is easily mixed up or misplaced. Adding a name label makes it clear to whom an item belongs (which prevents mix ups occurring) and, should an item go missing, it is easy for the school to notify the correct pupil that their belongings have been found. This means staff don’t have to waste time and money maintaining a “Lost Property” facility within the school and that parents don’t have to waste time and money replacing items that are often quite expensive and usually no more than a year old.

Likewise, name labels can be used to great effect in nursing and residential care homes; whether items are put through shared facilities (e.g. kitchens or laundries) or simply put down and forgotten about, staff will be able to easily identify the owner of an item and return it. This can prevent distress to the resident and save staff valuable time that they can spend on their scheduled tasks. Businesses can also use name labels to keep track of their assets, such as uniform and/or equipment that is assigned to or loaned out to employees. This can prevent them from wasting money on replacing items that have gone missing.

Section 3: A Case Study – STIKINS ® name labels
Stikins ® are stick on name labels; these labels are made with a smooth, flexible vinyl and an advanced adhesive that allow the labels to adhere to a range of surfaces under a variety of conditions. These labels simply peel off their backing sheet and can be applied to all kinds of items; when applied to garments and fabric items they should be applied onto the wash care label, while they can be applied directly onto personal items (such as bags and shoes, lunch boxes and water bottles, books and tablet devices etc). These name labels are either white or silver in colour and are printed with a bold black font to ensure that the text is easy to see and read. Each label measures 30mm wide by 15mm high and this product is available in four pack sizes (30, 60, 90, or 120 labels per pack); each pack comes complete with a set of instructions for use.

This versatile label can be used on almost any item (with the main exception being socks); the flexible label will adhere to a range of surfaces and can be safely put through washing machines, tumble driers, dishwashers, and microwaves. The smooth finish of the vinyl means that the label won’t cause irritation if applied to a wash care label that comes into contact with skin when an item is worn and the print has been thoroughly tested to ensure that it is fully resistant to sun creams and lotions, which means that these labels are useful all year round. They are also extremely easy to apply, which means that they can be applied by adults or by children themselves (although younger children should be supervised).

Section 4: A Case Study – TRONS ® name transfers
Trons ® are iron-on name transfers; they rely on the same techniques and materials used by the clothing industry to add designs to articles of clothing (especially t-shirts). These transfers fuse and bond with the material of an item to create a completely permanent name label. Trons ® name transfers are white in colour and are printed with a bold black font to ensure that the transfer is easy to find (even on dark clothing) and the print remains clear and legible. Each transfer measures 35mm wide by 15mm high and this product is available in four pack sizes (35, 70, 105, or 140 transfers per pack); each pack comes complete with a handy step by step application guide and free silicon sheets for use during application.

While they can only be used on fabric items, name transfers are a very effective name label solution; they may require a more careful application process (adults should not allow children to apply these labels themselves) but once they are applied they cannot be subsequently removed (unless, of course, you get crafty with a pair of scissors).

Name labels are brilliant!

This small product can be a big help, whether they’re used by a parent trying to help their children keep hold of their belongings (and keep their money safe for other things), a school trying to tackle a mountain of Lost Property, a relative or friend helping someone move into a care home, or a business trying to keep track of its assets – simply identifying the owner of an item goes a long way to saving time and money that is wasted when similar or identical items get mixed up or lost in busy shared environments.

Recommended Further Reading:
Stikins ® Information Page
Trons ® Information Page
Instructions For Use Page
Frequently Asked Questions Page

Label Planet: Money Matters – An FAQ Special About Prices & Payment Methods

At a time when every penny counts, most customers are pretty savvy when it comes to making sure they’re getting a good deal for the things they buy. So here’s a few answers to the most common questions we get from customers about how our pricing works and the payment methods we provide:

Where do I find your prices?
Our website lists all of our prices (although you can also contact our customer service team if you want a quote for a range of items and/or shipping options); simply click on the label product and size that you are interested in to view the prices for that product.
All of the products within a product range have the same prices, regardless of the label size or number of labels per sheet. 

What do your prices include?
We like to keep things simple, so our website shows “all inclusive” prices that include both VAT and standard UK delivery.

How do you pick your prices?
Our prices are carefully selected to reflect the quality of materials and customer service extras that we provide.

While our labels are by no means the cheapest available (nor the most expensive), we are proud to offer quality materials AND additional customer services (such as samples, templates, and printing assistance) at a price that is reasonable and affordable for our customers.

Do you offer trade prices?
No. However, our pricing system features “Price Breaks”, which means that the more labels you order, the better the price per unit becomes. The majority of our trade customers order in bulk, which means that they can take full advantage of our price breaks to get a much better price when they order.

Will you price match if I find a better price elsewhere?
No, we do not offer any price matching services.

It is up to you where you order your labels from but we would remind customers that it is also up to you to check if the materials used to make those products are suitable for your requirements and if the company you choose to purchase from offers customer service levels that you are happy with.

Our sister company Madebuy sells a range of genuine Label Planet products in a range of pack sizes via Amazon and Ebay. While our pricing systems are pretty even, you may find that there is a slight difference in the overall price on some items and quantities; if this is the case, it is up to you to choose where you want to buy your labels from – but please note that neither Label Planet nor Madebuy currently offer price matching across the two companies.

I’m buying a variety of packs from a variety of product ranges – can you do anything on the price?
If you need to order a “mixed bag” of items, it may be worth placing your order over the phone as we can offer prorata prices in the following cases:
- If you want to order a variety of products from within ONE product range (particularly if you require a range of coloured labels)
- If you want to order a quantity that falls between the price breaks offered on our website
We cannot offer prorata prices on labels from different product ranges NOR can we split packs and/or boxes into smaller quantities or mix and match different label products within a pack or box. 

Are you running any offers or discounts at the moment?
We currently offer mix and match pricing on all of our coloured and fluorescent coloured labels.

Offers and discounts will be advertised on our social media pages and blogs, and we will also notify customers directly (either by email – where you have agreed to receive these emails from us – or by post).

We are also happy to talk to registered charities who are looking for a label provider and offer them a discount on the orders that they place with us.

Of course, we would also remind customers that, due to our price break system, they may be able to save themselves some money in the long run by ordering larger amounts of labels less frequently than simply buying enough labels as and when they need them.

Do I have to pay for samples?
No. Our sample service is completely free of charge to help you make sure you choose the right labels for the job BEFORE you buy.

Do I have to pay for templates?
No. Our templates are supplied free of charge to help you get your labels printed. We have also created an advice section on our website to give our customers some guidance on getting started and how to troubleshoot common problems that can arise when designing templates and printing labels.

You can also contact our customer service team for one to one advice if you have any particular queries about printing labels.

What might I be charged extra for?
We will only ever charge you more than the prices listed on our website if you require a special delivery option or if you need your labels to be delivered to the Republic of Ireland. The charges we apply to these delivery options are those that we are charged by the Royal Mail and carrier companies themselves – we never add on our own shipping charges.

The amount you pay for upgraded shipping depends on the shipping service you choose and the quantity of labels you require. Smaller orders (less than 500 sheets) can be upgraded to a guaranteed next day delivery option online or by phone – all other quantities will need to be upgraded over the phone to select the best shipping option available for the quantity and specific label products that you want to order. Orders of 250+ sheets (stocked items) and made to order items will be placed on a next working day carrier service as standard – however, if your order is particularly urgent you can call us to see if an upgrade service is available (e.g. AM Delivery).
Please note that made to order items (or stocked items that are temporarily out of stock) will only be despatched via next working day carrier once they have been made; manufacture can take up to five working days, although standard white paper products are often ready much sooner. 

If you need your items delivering to the Republic of Ireland you will need to place your order by phone so we can work out the best shipping option for the label products and quantities that you require. Simply call to let us know which items you are interested in and we can provide a quote for the labels themselves and the shipping charge that will apply.

How do I order from the Republic of Ireland without paying VAT?
If you are VAT registered then all you need to do is place your order over the phone and quote your VAT number, and we’ll remove VAT from the cost of your order.

What payment methods do you offer?
The options available depend on how you order:
Online Orders: credit/debit card or PayPal account
Phone Orders: credit/debit card
Email/Post Orders: request a proforma invoice against which you can make payment via credit/debit card, BACS transfer, or cheque
Please note, we do not accept American Express cards.

Can I open a credit account?
We do not run any credit accounts, which means that all of our orders are fulfilled on a “Payment With Order” basis.

We are able to offer proforma invoices against which payment can be made by credit/debit card, BACS transfer, or cheque. This option is particularly popular with customers who need to submit their orders via a Finance Department.
Please note that you are responsible for making sure that payment is made as we will not despatch your goods until we receive payment. 

I’m ordering from a school – can I get an invoice?
Yes; if you are a Local Education Authority school then we are happy to provide a 30 day School Invoice on the condition that you supply us with an official purchase order for the items you require. Simply fax or email a copy over to us and we will process your order along with a School Invoice for payment.

For more information, please visit our Frequently Asked Questions page.

Thursday, 7 January 2016

Stikins ® & Trons ®: Despatch & Delivery Information For Spring 2016

A quick update on our production levels for those customers who want to know how long it will be before their first order of name labels for the New Year will arrive on their doorstep!

Currently production is running on Tuesdays and Fridays, meaning that all orders are made and despatched within three working days.

Our UK orders are despatched via First Class post as standard, with around 93% of this arriving on the next working day and the remainder taking a few days extra.

Customers can choose to upgrade to a guaranteed next working day delivery option (shipping cost: £5.75) to meet a particular deadline; perhaps you need your labels for a school trip or holiday, you’ve suddenly realised you’ve got new bits of uniform and equipment to label and your previous batch of labels has run out, or perhaps you’re purchasing name labels on behalf of a friend or relative who is moving into a nursing or residential care home.

Simply give us a call to get your order upgraded to a next working day delivery option; where possible, we will always try to ensure that urgent orders are made and despatched same day. 

 We also offer shipping to a limited number of countries outside of the UK; these orders are despatched via Royal Mail’s International Standard delivery service. There is a shipping charge of £1.50 per item, and Royal Mail state that they aim to deliver items sent on this service in 3-5 working days (Western Europe) or 5-7 working days (Rest of the World). 

 Remember, you can always find the most up to date information on our production levels and despatch/delivery estimates by visiting our Despatch & Delivery information page at any point throughout the year.

Label Planet: Despatch & Delivery Information For All Your Label Needs!

Whether you’re ordering a few packs of labels for a small project or you’re ordering box after box for a warehouse full of goods, it’s nice to know how long it will take for your items to be despatched and delivered.

Despatch and delivery estimates depend on the quantity and the specific label products being ordered. While we have a large selection of labels that are available with same day despatch from stock, some of our items (and larger quantities) are made to order, which will take a little longer.

So, whether you just want a rough idea of idea of when to expect your labels or you’ve got a specific deadline in mind, read on for a breakdown of despatch and delivery information for the items you want to order.

 25 or 50 sheets
Availability: Stocked item.
Packaging: Hard backed C4 envelopes.
Despatch: Same day (when ordered before 4:30pm, Mon-Fri).
Delivery: Royal Mail’s First Class service.
Please note: First Class service is NOT a guaranteed next day delivery option; around 93% is delivered on the next working day but the rest can take a few days extra. Orders over £35 will be sent on the Signed For service, which requires a signature on delivery.
Upgraded Delivery: Royal Mail’s Next Day service is available online and by phone. Customers can also phone to request alternative upgraded delivery options, including a Pre-9AM service and a Saturday service.
Please note: Next Day service requires a signature on delivery. 

75 – 200 sheets
Availability: Stocked item.
Packaging: 75-100 sheet orders are packed in small boxes (which will fit through standard letter boxes), while orders over 100 sheets are packed in medium boxes (which may not fit through standard letter boxes).
Despatch: Same day (when ordered before 4:30pm, Mon-Fri).
Please note: some of our coloured labels have a minimum order quantity of 100 sheets, which means that they are kept in stock at our warehouse – while we do our best to ensure that these items remain in stock, there may be times when an item goes temporarily out of stock and despatch will be delayed a few days while the items are made.
Delivery: Royal Mail’s First Class service.
Please note: orders worth over £35 will be sent on the Signed For service, which requires a signature on delivery.
Upgraded Delivery: Royal Mail’s Next Day service is available online and by phone. Customers can also phone to request alternative upgraded delivery options, including a Pre-9AM service and a Saturday service.
Please note: Next Day service requires a signature on delivery. 

200 – 475 sheets
Availability: Stocked item.
Packaging: 200-250 sheet orders are packed in medium boxes, while orders over 250 sheets are packed in large boxes.
Despatch: Same day (when ordered before 4:30pm (less than 250 sheets) or 3:30pm (250+ sheets)).
Please note: some of our coloured labels have a minimum order quantity of 100 sheets, which means that they are kept in stock at our warehouse – while we do our best to ensure that these items remain in stock, there may be times when an item goes temporarily out of stock and despatch will be delayed a few days while the items are made.
Delivery: Orders below 250 sheets are despatched via Royal Mail’s Signed For service, while orders of 250 sheets or more will be despatched via a next day carrier service (UK mainland only).
Please note: Signed For and carrier services will require a signature on delivery.
Upgraded Delivery: Royal Mail’s Next Day service is available online and by phone. Customers can also phone to request alternative upgraded delivery options, including a Pre-9AM service and a Saturday service. Customers ordering more than 250 sheets will need to call us if they need to request an urgent delivery (e.g. AM delivery).

Orders of 500+ sheets
Availability: Stocked item / Made to order item.
Packaging: Large boxes.
Despatch: Up to five working days, although standard white paper products/stocked products are usually despatched much sooner.
Please note: if you order 500 sheets of a “stocked item” (indicated by a minimum order quantity of 25 sheets), then it is likely that your order will be despatched from stock kept at our warehouse. If you order multiple boxes of a stocked item, however, your items may be made to order, which will delay the despatch time slightly. Made to order items are subject to up to five working days for despatch as they are made according to a rotational schedule, although standard paper products will usually be made sooner.
Delivery: Next working day carrier service.
Upgraded Delivery: If you require your labels urgently, please get in touch and we will advise of any available alternative shipping options (e.g. AM Delivery).
Please note: if you need your labels in a hurry, you can always get in touch with us so we can check what stock is available and give you the most up to date despatch and delivery information for those items. 

Additional Information
  • We do not offer same day delivery.
  • Our office hours are 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday, which means that all orders are processed and despatched during these hours only. Large orders must reach us by 3pm to guarantee that they will be placed on the carrier service for that day, while small orders must reach us by 4:30pm to ensure that they can be packed before our post is despatched for the evening.
  • We only offer delivery to the UK (including islands with UK postcodes) and the Republic of Ireland (orders must be placed by phone so we can add the correct shipping option to your order); if you need to order labels from outside of the UK you must either nominate a UK delivery address or you may wish to purchase from our sister company Madebuy (Madebuy sells genuine Label Planet products via Amazon and Ebay).
  • Orders sent to Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland, Islands With UK Postcodes, and UK “Extended Postcode” areas will be sent on a 2-3 working day carrier service and NOT a next day service due to the distance involved.
  • If you need to receive your labels in time for a deadline, the best thing to do is to upgrade your shipping option online or call us to discuss the shipping options available to ensure that your order reaches you in plenty of time.
For our full despatch and delivery information, visit our Delivery Information pages here.

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Label Planet & Stikins ® & Trons ®: A Happy New Year To All From Label Planet!

We hope that all of our customers (and assorted friends and family) have had a wonderful holiday and a fantastic start to the New Year – with many great and wonderful things to come (& perhaps even a new year’s resolution to buy more labels!).

Here at Label Planet, we’ve been working away to process orders and respond to correspondence that we received over the Christmas break. All orders placed over the holidays were processed yesterday (Monday 4th January) as follows:

A4 Sheets of Labels: stocked items were despatched either via Royal Mail’s first class service or next working day carrier service, with non-stocked (made to order) items being processed for manufacture/despatch. New orders are being processed and despatched as usual; for despatch and delivery information, please visit our Delivery Information Pages.

Stikins ® & Trons ® Name Labels: orders were despatch via Royal Mail's first class service. All new orders are being processed according to our current despatch and delivery service level – production runs on Tuesdays and Fridays (up to 3pm), with all orders being made and despatched within three working days.

If you have any concerns or queries about an order you placed during the Christmas holidays (or an order you want to place now), please get in touch and we’ll do our best to help.