Printing company for labels?

I have a client who would like me to get quotes for her. She is looking to get sticker labels printed, and I don’t have a good resource to go to - so I thought I would check here before googling. This is my first time resourcing a company that prints stickers/labels for a client.
These labels will be put on small bottles containing oil, so they must be adhesive on the back and have appropriate lamination.
Labels will be approx 35mmx45mm, qty 250-500 ea (depending on price breaks) of 10 different designs
as well as labels 65mmx85mm in 4 designs.
We are in California, if that makes a difference for shipping.
Digitally printed die cut should do it.

Does anyone have any suggestions, or can point me in the right direction to finding resources like this?

Maybe another good topic would be “how to get started resourcing manufacturers for freelance noobs”

I assume after you have worked in the industry for a while, you end up with go-to companies for different jobs. But, when you’re new it’s a bit overwhelming!
Do I find someone local? Just go somewhere like uprint or other online place where you just upload your design?

I’ll typically pick a local company over an online company when I’m not sure of something. It’s always nice to speak to an actual person, visit the company and see samples of their work.

Label printing is its own beast, and there’s a lot to it. Size of label, does the printer have an existing die that will work, do you need to have a custom die made, the substrate it’s printed on (clear, white, foil, etc.), the type of adhesive, the type of coating, indoor or outdoor application . . .

You said digitally printed and die cut. The printer will use a die for the shape of the label, but labels are typically delivered on rolls (though not always).

My strong suggestion would be to find a local vendor to work with who can help you walk through the steps and offer an education along with the finished, printed product.

Maybe die cut is not the right word. It has a cut line that will tell the plotter where to cut.
I actually used to work in a sign shop that did this sort of thing, but I would not work with them now. I did not work there long, so I am not an expert in substrates and lamination.

You are thinking like a sign shop. Think like a label maker.
What you are looking for may come on rolls one label wide, not flat stock cut on a plotter like car vinyl.

Find a small local place that does pressure sensitive labels. Custom Dies will need to be purchased ($$$) if you don’t want to use a stock rectangle, circle, or oval. Ask them if they have any other special shaped dies though, they might have something similar to what you are looking for so you don’t have to order a custom one.

And just a heads up, those are very low quantities. Some printers will need to use 4x that amount of material just to get the press warmed up, so there probably won’t be any significant price breaks.

Where these sound like custom boutique “oil” labels, and because the quantities are low, maybe someone with a plotter/cutter is appropriate. You don’t want to buy custom dies for those quantities.
However, oil being the product, I’m not sure how any of the printable vinyls will react with that, and it isn’t so much the overlam as the adhesive. I don’t think they use aqueous inks in printer plotters of any production quality, most are eco-solvent so it isn’t about protecting the ink. And there you have another choice to make…is your client’s product “green” and if so, do you want to seek out one of the vegetable based ink printers.

Either way, they will also be more expensive than any online gang printer, but the color quality may be better.

Cheap. Quality. Fast.
Pick two.

I’m not sure if it’s appropriate to post this. But I can do 500 1.5"x2.5" oval labels, full color, with a UV coating. The cost being about $75 per set of 500 (no less in quantity).

Free shipping to most of California.

I figured this might be a low quantity. It is for a small shop and they don’t need many for their handmade products.
They had some of these size labels printed before, but they do not know where it came from unfortunately. Otherwise I’d just contact the same company! I believe the previous designer is now unreachable to ask them as well.

Thanks Biggs, I’ll try to remember that if they need that size and shape in the future.

yes these are definitely boutique labels for a small local shop.
I think this client is interested in quality because they have a loose timeline but isn’t too worried about it, and they didn’t seem to care about cost either (but they wanted to see quotes).

I’ve put out a few inquiries to local print shops so we’ll see what they come back with.

You could try these guys
I’ve used them for 15+years for all kinds of projects. BUT… I’ve never done labels for oil, but I’m sure they have a product that could suit.

1 Like in Burbank, CA.

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