Our Different Printer Paper Stocks and When to Use Them

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Offering in house printing services is something that was really important to us from the get-go to ensure that we made the framing process as easy as possible for our clients. Being able to bring images from digital to physical on-site makes it easier for you and faster for both of us.

To make this possible, we have an Epson large format Inkjet printer, enabling us to print high quality, archival prints up to A1 in standard sizes, and 600mm x 1500mm at a maximum. Want to print bigger? Let us handle the outsourcing so you don’t have to run all over town. We work with the best in Auckland to ensure the quality is up to our standards. 

What does Archival mean in terms of printing? Well, Epson and other high-end inkjet providers use archival ink for printing, which is lightfast. What does that mean for you? No more worrying about pictures fading in the harsh NZ sun. Epson claims their ink lasts 100 years.

Even better than all that, we have many different paper stocks to help achieve whatever look you are after. From soft uncoated matte paper, to the glossy photographic, we should be able to achieve any look you want for your print.

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Lustre is our standard photographic stock. It is 260gsm and is close in finish to a semi-gloss. 60% of what we print for customers is on Lustre stock.

Best used in photographic prints, especially where colour richness is important as the coated stock means no ink is absorbed into the paper. Things with intense blacks or very vibrant colours won't look as punchy on an uncoated stock (like the Matte or Watercolour paper below).

Also best when you’re planning on framing to the edge of the image or matting to the edge of the image. If you want white showing around the edge, photographic paper will be a very stark white due to the coating, so this will limit your mat board and frame options. All white mat and frame options will look cream in comparison and will look unintentional and unbalanced.

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Our matte paper stock is a 260gsm uncoated stock, and accounts for maybe 35% of our day to day printing.

Matte paper is perfect if you are wanting to print something to make it a bit softer or to make it look more like an art print. Because it is an uncoated stock, the blacks don’t come out as richly as on a coated photographic stock (like the Lustre), meaning it is not ideal for everything. If the richness in colour is important, a coated stock is needed to execute that look. 

This is best used when the white of the paper is going to be exposed during framing. The white of coated stocks (like the Lustre) is so stark that is can detract from the piece, whereas this is a bit softer and more flattering. 

It also works perfectly on softer images, pictures of babies and children or anything else that does not require intensity in the blacks. 



Watercolour paper is an uncoated 260gm art paper, and accounts for around 5% of our day to day printing. It is textured like a watercolour paper you would paint on, giving everything printed on it a softer more artistic flare. 

Like the Matte stock, it is uncoated, meaning if richness in the colours is important to your image this is not the paper stock for you, but it is a beautiful option to make things a bit more special when the image is right for it.

We have used it a lot in the past for wedding images that are more landscape-oriented to make it look a bit like a landscape painting with the couple in the piece, but can also be used really easily for digital illustration prints or photographic art prints that you want to have a bit more of a textured finish to. 

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So those are all the options in our current offering!

If you have a specific look you’re after that we don’t do, do not fret! We can still organise the printing for you. We have suppliers we work with regularly who are dedicated printers, and can outsource this on your behalf so you don’t have to worry at all.

If you have any questions at all about printing or what we can do to help you out, feel free to get in touch any time! Click the button below to head off to the contact page.