I've been asked by a few people for some ideas on custom labels. As you know, I am always inspired by vintage finds and love these labels from the collection of Such Pretty Things. I thought it'd be fun to make some vintage inspired bakery labels for my Sister-in-law's birthday. She is a great cook and bakes yummy bread. I made her some fabric labels sewn on bread bags to use for herself and then a sticker version for when she is giving it away.
For this recipe you will need:
• A label shape- draw your own in your editing program or use one found online. Many printers have templates you can download. I also found some [free vector labels] for YouToArt.com You could use them as a starting point for your own designs and change out colors and other items you don't need.
• Sans serif font- I used [District Thin] available for free from Font Squirrel.
• Script font- This is really sort of a handwritten looking font. It's [Saginaw] available for free from Urban Fonts.
• Clip art- I drew my little loaf of bread but if you want to find something pre-made, try looking for clip art fonts or search for free vectors. I found a free clip art font called [WC Sold Out] on DaFont and some [free silhouette vectors] from All Silhouettes.
• Colors- I just used black and white to keep it simple, but look at the inspiration labels– you could use any color combos you like.
The first thing you need to do is decide how you will print your labels. There are a lot of great options for customizing labels. I'll give some recommendations at the end of the post. But just know that if you are getting them professionally printed, you may need to size your labels to fit a template or follow print guidelines from your printer. Once you know your guidelines you can get started on the designing. I used Illustrator and made these labels to fit on an 8.5 x 11 full sheet of sticker paper.
First thing I did was create my label shape. I created my oval then added the scallops. Tip for quick scalloped edge: Created a dotted border, expand the shape, then merge the two shapes together. I made a curvy scalloped border by using the round corners filter to smooth out the inner shapes.
Next, I added a white border line to the inside of the oval shape just below the scallops. Just layering each element on top of the one below. If you are using Photoshop, it'd be good to create each shape on it's own layer to make editing easier.
Then add the text elements and clip art to the inside of the oval. Some tips: look at the inspiration image and notice that some text could be on a path and follow the outline of the label shape, some of the text is larger and some smaller. Varying those things as well as the typefaces will help your label look authentic.
When your design is finished, follow the recommendations of your printer to prep the file. In some cases, you many need to reverse the image, save it as a different file type, or change the image size.
A few great resources to check out for printing your labels:
Avery full sheet sticker paper: This is sticker paper that you can run through your ink jet and then cut out to size.
Avery fabric transfer paper: Use these to iron your design on to fabric.
Instructables: Use this tutorial to print straight from your ink jet to fabric
Spoonflower: This company will print your file onto fabric for you. You could use their swatch size for small orders or go for a whole yard or two on different fabrics.
StickerYou: I was so excited to find this company! I heard about it via Twitter somehow and clicked right over. I've looked into sourcing labels for small business owners in the past and most of the options were so limited usually having you pay a huge upfront set up fee for the die cuts as well as requiring huge minimum orders.
When I found this company, who will print stickers and labels on demand in small quantities, I shouted HOORAY! It's about time! When you click over to their website, you will see that they print high quality vinyl stickers and labels of your own design in quantities as low as one sheet. And the prices are amazing for this type of customization.
Such a cool thing for the small business owner or crafter. You just use their Sticker Maker to upload your design (or use some elements from their own library) on whatever size sticker you want to make– address labels, jar labels, etc. I haven't tried them out yet so I don't know the print quality. But I'm excited to give them a try next time I need labels. They say you can have them printed and shipped to you in about a week. So if you hurry, there is still time to use them to make a unique gift.
StickerYou has generously given Good Look Cookbook readers a 20% discount using the code "HeathersStickers" and has donated a $30 credit for one lucky winner. That's potentially a lot of labels depending on the size you choose.
If you'd like to enter to win the $30 credit from StickerYou, just leave a comment under this post with your favorite use or gift idea for labels. We'll pick a winner next Friday 12/17/10. Happy designing!
P.S. StickerYou or any of the companies listed in this post did not pay for their links. However, StickerYou is providing the giveaway.
I love design, illustration, crafts, & searching for cool vintage things in thrift stores. Find me blogging at The Modern Hive.