Cheap customized folders?
November 8, 2011 12:52 PM   Subscribe

Need to produce a professional-looking folder for a nonprofit with next to zero money for it. This would be used to make simple donor kits (fact sheets, press clippings inside). Looks like printing a color cover on a standard folder is nearly a buck/per. Anyone have ideas on using bulk blank folders and doing something clever with stickers or something (though it sounds ugly just thinking of it)? Other ways to make a kit?
posted by _sirmissalot_ to Media & Arts (12 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Can you be more specific about what you mean by "folder"?

I'd suggest "just throw hundreds of them in the tray of a colour office printer", but maybe you're talking about ring-binders? Plastic project covers?
posted by -harlequin- at 12:57 PM on November 8, 2011

Response by poster: Pocket folder.
posted by _sirmissalot_ at 12:57 PM on November 8, 2011

At my shoestring-budget former employer we did, in fact, use stickers, and it looked fine.

Two key things: 1) get the smoothest folders you can. Very smooth, matte finish folders (not glossy, not the kinda-pebble-grain that you get for .09 each). White is best. 2) Use a small, round sticker in the lower right-hand corner with your logo on it. Don't try to cover the entire front. Keep it very, very simple.
posted by anastasiav at 1:03 PM on November 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

How much is black and white printing on a folder? Or maybe print on an 11x17 inch sheet and fold it over the front on the top and bottom of the folder and glue it.

Or, keep it blank and just paperclip a business card to the front.
posted by MadMadam at 1:04 PM on November 8, 2011

^totally agree. I've seen nice things done with pocket folders (matte) in a color that compliments your logo + Avery stickers with your logo on it.
posted by oneear at 1:06 PM on November 8, 2011

You want these. I would also spend the extra money and have the printing done professionally.
posted by anastasiav at 1:06 PM on November 8, 2011

You might also want to include some mention in the copy about the cost savings of the materials. I know that receiving big glossies from a charity (potential or one I've already donated to) pisses me off: I gave them money to further their mission, not to blow on something that'll hit the recycling bin 5 minutes after it crosses my doorstep in an attempt to blow smoke up my ass.

I tend to be more likely to donate to organizations that use black and white materials to direct me to online resources.
posted by straw at 1:39 PM on November 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

Staples print shop does our folders with a 1 color logo and the quality is ok. We have to fold them ourselves. Otherwise consider buying shiny blanks and having nice labels printed up.

This is the main staples number you need to call, not your local store.
posted by bq at 1:40 PM on November 8, 2011

We get stickers professionally printed (they were designed in-house) and stick them on shiny, color-coordinated folders. The stickers cost something like $50 for 500 (just call your local printshop for these - you can probably score some kind of nonprofit discount).
posted by jrichards at 2:26 PM on November 8, 2011

Response by poster: Thanks guys. I'll try out the round stickers, that's a good idea. Maybe try a natural/recycled folder, if there are decent cheap ones in bulk.
posted by _sirmissalot_ at 4:07 PM on November 8, 2011

The Sticker on a blank folder almost always look cheap and unprofessional. You can print a simple one or two color job on a heavy wt stock and then apply stick-on pockets on the inside . That's fairly cheap. I've also done a "sleeve" where the contents slide in and out but nothing "opens". usually cheaper to print than a folder.
posted by pmaxwell at 10:33 PM on November 8, 2011

My small company purchased a A3 colour inkjet printer.

We print out on both sides of A3 high quality heavy weight "brochure" paper to make folders which look fantastic. Inside "stick-on pockets" I hadn't thought of ... but will consider now.
posted by jannw at 2:49 AM on November 9, 2011

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