Glossary of Terms

Like any industry, ours uses a variety of terms. If you want to find out what they mean, you are in the right place! Simply click on a letter to see its list of terms. If the term you are looking for isn't listed in our glossary feel free to contact us so that we may help you as well as add it to our list.

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See typeface.

Face Margin

See trim margin.

Face Material

Materials that can be used as the substrate for pressure sensitive labels (e.g., film, paper, foil, etc.). The face material is attached to a support sheet from which it is peeled when used. Alternative terms: base material; body stock; face stock.

Face Stock

See face material.


The group of typeface variations within a specific design (e.g., Helvetica Regular, Helvetica Italic, Helvetica Bold, Helvetica Bold Italic, etc.)


Paper folding that emulates an accordion or fan, the folds being alternating and parallel.
Alternative Term: Accordion Fold

Fat Face

Type that is quite varied in its use of very thin and very wide strokes.


Is a spread; relates to trapping.


An imprecise, fuzzy, or rough edge on a printed image. Feathering can be caused by non-uniform ink coverage, unsuitable ink, uneven printing plate contact, or too much ink. See also: edge acuity.


A cloth conveyor belt that receives papers from the Fourdrinier wire and delivers it to the drier.

Felt Finish

The smoother side of paper, usually a soft weave pattern used for book papers.

Felt Side

The top of the paper web formed in the papermaking machine. The opposite of the Fourdrinier wire side. The felt side is generally smoother and the preferred side for printing. See also: wire side.


Femto is an SI prefix in the SI system of units denoting 10-15 or one quadrillionth (e.g. one femtosecond, one femtometer).
Adopted in 1964, it comes from the Danish or Norwegian femten, meaning fifteen.
Abbreviation: f

Fiber Puffing

A rough texture on the surface of a coated, groundwood fiber paper created during the drying process.


A collection of text, graphical, image, sound or other information stored and accessed digitally

Filling In

A fault in printing where the ink fills in the fine line or halftone dot areas.

Film Assembly

See film image assembly. See also: imposition; stripping.

Film Coat

Also called wash coat; any thinly coated paper stock.

Film Image Assembly

The process of aligning, mounting, and securing individual films to one carrier sheet in preparation for platemaking. Also known as imposition; stripping.

Film Speed

Film Speed is a number set by the ASA and is the measure of a photographic film stock's sensitivity to light. A stock with relatively lower sensitivity requires a longer exposure and is thus called a slow film, while a stock with relatively higher sensitivity can shoot the same scene with a shorter exposure and is called a fast film. Reference: ASA


The surface quality of paper.

Finish (Paper)

Dull - (low gloss) also matte or matte gloss.


A symbol used in printing to indicate the index; seen as a pointing finger on a hand "+".


The registration of items within a given page.

Flash Point

A term given to the lowest temperature of ignitibility of vapors given off by a substance.


In lithography, the assembly of photographic negatives or positives on vinyl acetate for exposure in vacuum frame in contact with sensitized metal press plate.


A printing method using flexible plates where the areas to be inked are higher than the non-printing areas. The inked areas are then placed in contact with the material to be printed, transferring the ink from the raised areas to the substrate. Rapidly drying inks are normally used with this process. Other term: aniline printing. See also: letterpress; relief plate; relief printing.

Flock Paper

Paper that is patterned by sizing, and than coated with powders of wool or cotton, (flock).

Fluid Ink

Also called liquid ink; ink with a low viscosity.

Flush Cover

A bound book or booklet etc. having the cover trimmed to the same size as the text.

Flush Left

Where all lines of type have been pushed to the far left of a page or column.
See Also: Ragged Right, Left Justification

Flush Right

Where all lines of type have been pushed to the far right of a page or column.
See Also: Ragged Left, Right Justification

Flushed Pigment

The results of combining a wet ink pigment with a varnish and having the wet pigment mix or transfer over to the varnish.

Fogging Back

Lowering density of an image in a specific area usually to make type more legible while still letting image show through.


Papers that have a surface resembling metal.

Fold & Gather

A term in the binding process referring to folding and gathering.

Fold Marks

  1. Markings at top edges that show where folds should occur.
  2. Short, straight (usually broken) lines outside the trim area, indicating the position of the intended folding.

See Also: Folder, Fold & Gather, Trim Marks, Corner Marks


  1. In publishing a folder is a printed sheet that has been folded. e.g. time tables or tourist brochures
  2. In printing and binding a folder is a machine that is used for folding printed sheets.
  3. In computer technology a folder refers to a file program organization method in which individual files and programs are stored within folders, making it easier to keep them organized on a disk.
    • Alternative Term: Directory


In finishing the process of bending over a press sheet once or more until it has the size of a single page.

Folio or Page Number

Number of page at top or bottom either centered, flushed left or flushed right often with running headline.


The characters which make up a complete typeface and size.

Form Rollers

The rollers that come into direct contact with the plate of a printing press.


(old) type matter or type and block with its accompanying spacing material secured in the forme called a chase.


In Binding, the process between folding sheets and casing in, such as rounding and backing, putting on headbands, reinforcing backs, etc.


A machine with a copper wire screen that receives the pulp slurry in the paper making process which will become the final paper sheet.

Free sheet

Any paper that is free from wood pulp impurities.

French Fold(er)

Folder with printing on one side so that when folded once in each direction, the printing on outside of the folds.


A halo that appears around halftone dots.

Fugitive inks

Colors that lose tone and permanency when exposed to light.

Full Bleed

Used when an image is meant to extend completely to all four edges of the finished sheet. Printing the image beyond the trim edge of a sheet to ensure that there is no white space at the edge after the substrate on which the image is printed is trimmed to the finished size.

Full Justification

One of the most common types of justification in print media is full justification, where the spaces between words, and to a lesser extent between glyphs or letters, are stretched or sometimes compressed in order to make the text align on both the left and right sides. When using full justification it is customary to treat the last line of a paragraph separately by simply left or right justifying it, depending on the language direction. A line in which the spaces have been stretched beyond their normal width are called loose lines, while those whose spaces have been compressed are called tight lines.
Full justification can sometimes lead to typographical anomalies. When the spaces between words line up approximately above one another on several loose lines, a distracting visual pattern called a river may appear. Another problem especially prevalent when using full justification in narrow columns, such as in many newspapers, is when an exceptionally large space appears between two words (called a loose line). These may often be solved through the use of hyphenation or by rewriting the text to use smaller words.

Fuming Gloss

See chemical ghosting.


The slurry mixture of fibers, water, chemicals and pigments, that is delivered to the Fourdrinier machine in the paper making process.


A term for the fibers that project from the paper surface.

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