Frequently Asked Questions

Artwork

Why do I need to look at a proof if I've already given you everything I need to have done?

If final press ready artwork is not supplied, we want to make 100% sure that we have matched your vision. It benefits everyone if errors are caught in the proofing process rather than after the job is completed and delivered.

What is CMYK & RGB?

CMYK stands for Cyan Magenta Yellow Black. The CMYK colour model is based on printing and ink absorbing into paper. To gain the greatest number of printable colours, from the fewest number of inks, CMYK colour printing is used. By using varying amounts of Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black, a great number of colours can be printed. Most full colour printed materials, magazines, posters, packaging, are printed using just the 4 CMYK inks.
RGB stands for Red Green Blue and are the colours used to create colours on your PC monitors. Each screen will represent the colour slightly differently as well so just keep the in mind – the blue you are see may be a shade lighter or darker.

Artwork Checklist

Before submitting artwork, please follow this checklist:

BLEED AREA For stickers please add 2mm excess bleed on each side of your artwork past the trim edge of your design. ie: A 51 x 102mm sticker canvas should be 55 x 106mm including bleed (For cutting purposes).

If no bleed is allocated, stickers will be printed with a small white border.

What software should I use?

This is really up to you. We recommend using a vector based software like Adobe Illustrator. If your software can export to PDF/EPS (fonts converted to curves) or TIFF this is fine. It is recommended that you work in CMYK colours as the colours may change slightly when we convert to this.

Do you charge extra for artwork?

Artwork including photos can be designed for you by our expert Art Department. Please ask for a quote for this service.

What is a proof?

A proof is a way of ensuring that we have provided you with exactly what YOU want. If we receive press ready artwork from you, a proof is usually not necessary, but we can email you a proof upon your request.

What is Bleed?

Bleed is where an object overlaps the trim of a page by a specified amount. A standard amount is typically 3mm. Since the bleed area will be trimmed off during finishing, you should keep text and other important information at least 6mm from the trim.

Bleed requirements If you require full bleed printing to the edge of the page, then your artwork needs to be correctly and professionally prepared with bleed for commercial printing. Incorrectly supplied artwork may incur additional charges.

Please note there can be a trimming / skew variance of plus or minus 2 millimetres due to automated cutting systems – allow for this when setting up artwork. All artwork must have 3mm external bleed all round as well as an internal bleed of 3mm.

In the case of stickers, booklets and magnets – 6mm bleed is required all round and keep important information 6mm in from trim lines (6mm internal bleed).

If artwork is supplied without bleed or bleed less than 3mm internal and 3mm external bleed, a 5mm white border will automatically be placed around your artwork for printing.

Questions? Please Contact Us.

Why is the bleed important?

Bleeds enable you to print right to the edge of the paper. To create your own bleed template make your work area 3mm bigger around the outside and draw a border, this is where the guillotine will chop your job.
Always force your design over the bleed area if you want to print to the edge.

Balloon

Are latex balloons eco-friendly?

We are all about being green (even if you want your balloons to be purple) so we only use latex balloons. Latex is a naturally occurring product, and so latex balloons are 100% bio-degradable and environmentally friendly.

Do the balloons come in different sizes?

They sure do! Our basic balloon size is 30cm or 12 inches in diameter, but we also carry 40cm (16 inch) varieties, and can even print 3 foot balloons for your special event. We also have GIANT balloons at 6 foot indoors or 10 foot outdoors which can display your message & logo in a major way.

Our range includes:

  • Standard Balloons: available in a variety of bright opaque colours.
  • Crystal Balloons: available in a variety of colours but are more transparent or see-through.
  • Pearl Balloons: solid, translucent colours, available in lighter colours only, with a sheen similar to a pearl.
  • Metallic Balloons: solid translucent colours, available in the bolder shades. They will add a touch of sparkle to your party or promotion.

What balloon colours are available?

View our extensive range of balloon colours and PMS colour chart:

  • Standard Balloons
  • Decorator Balloons
  • Crystal Balloons
  • Metallic Balloons (part 1)
  • Metallic Balloons (part 2)
  • PMS Colour Chart

Are the balloons of helium quality?

All of our balloons are made of top quality latex and are can be inflated with helium for that extra lift.

How long will a helium balloon float when inflated with helium?

You can expect a good eight to ten hours out of your helium-inflated balloon. It will also depend on where you stick them – balloons displayed outdoors or in the sun may not last as long.

How long will a latex balloon remain inflated when inflated with air?

A balloon can remain inflated with air for months if placed away from heat and direct sunlight, giving you extra mileage for your campaign.

Is there a minimum print order?

We do have minimums, but they aren’t very big

· 50 balloons printed in one colour ink, single side of the balloon
· 100 balloons printed in either two colours of ink on single side, or one color ink on either side.

Does the cost of balloons become more economical the more I order?

You will definitely get more bang for your buck! The more balloons you order at one time with the same artwork, the lower the cost of production, making balloons far more economical in larger orders.

How long can I store printed balloons?

Keep them clean, dry and away from light and you should be able to store balloons un-inflated for at least 12 months.

What does ink transfer mean?

When printing dark or red ink onto a light coloured balloon there may be some tiny ink spatters and marks from the printing process. This is called ink transfer. Don’t worry though, once the balloon is fully inflated, you won’t be able to see any marks at all.

What method do you use to print onto the balloons?

Our balloons are printed with a high quality screen printing method. Over the past 10 years, we have also developed our own inks which are still mixed in our factory.

What is screen printing?

This process is a very high quality printing finish with solid ink coverage and a good bold text appearance on the inflated balloon. The text should be easily read from a distance.

Can I expect any distortion of print?

A balloon is inflated before printing, creating a curved surface so you may find that particular shapes (square, rectangle and circle) will distort on a fully inflated balloon. As each individual balloon inflates differently the distortion from one balloon to another may occur in different places. For example, the top right of a square may distort on one balloon and then the top left of a square may distort on another.
We try to keep this to a minimum and ask for your artwork within a 16cm square to try to eliminate this problem.

Can I have a photo printed onto my balloons?

Yes. A clear, high quality photograph can be reproduced on to a balloon in mono tone, just like you would see in the black and white pages of a newspaper. This is achieved by using a technique called Stipple. There is a minimum artwork charge for converting your photo into a printable form.

What is stipple?

This is using different thickness of dots to either create the illusion or tones, shades and graduated fills or to differentiate between a dark colour and a light colour within a design if we can only print it as a one-colour print.

Should I have my balloons printed with the neck down or the neck up?

The choice is easy:

  • Neck Down is for floating helium filled balloons or for air inflated balloons that are going on sticks and cups or to be handed out to be self inflated.
  • Neck up is for air inflated balloons that will be hung from the ceiling or displayed hanging in bunches.

How should I provide my balloon logo or artwork?

We want your balloons to look bang on! In order to get them looking great, we ask our customers to send us their artwork in the highest resolution available. If the resolution is too low, the end result will be saw-toothed and pixelated.

Format: An EPS is best for us, but you can also send us a tif, jpeg or pdf. Resolution: We require your image in 600 dpi (dots per inch) or higher to insure a top quality print. Size: Your artwork needs to be within a 16cm square.

Should your artwork required redrawing or touch ups, please check if this will incur extra fees.

Can I have artwork designed for me?

Absolutely! Plain text can be designed for your balloons free of charge. Just send us an email with what you would like your balloons to say. Remember, websites can be long so if you want us to print them try and get ALL the text within the 12 cm requirement. If the text is too low on the balloon (outside the 16 cm) it won’t stretch as much when inflated and it won’t create as much impact!

Artwork including photos can be designed for you by our expert Art Department. Please ask for a quote for this service.

How many colours can my artwork be printed in, can I print on both sides of the balloon?

We can print your balloons with a number of printing options:

  • One colour printed on one or both sides
  • Two colours on one side, or one colour ink on one side and a different colour printed on the other side.
  • Two colours on both sides.
  • Two colours one side and one colour on the other side.
  • Three colours one side of the balloons.
  • Three colours one side and one colour on the second side.
  • Four spot colours on one side.
  • One colour on four sides. Printed on the top of the balloon if required as well.

Artwork requirement for a two colour print

All artwork must have a 3-5mm gap between ink colours when multi-colour screen printing. This is due to movement that occurs between each ink colour printing. The balloons are inflated when printing, it prints the first colour and moves to another position to print the second colour – due to the movement that occurs when changing positions this second colour may move up, down, left or right of up to 5mm. This will cause gapping and/ or overlapping when it is not required.

Artwork proofs

After receiving your balloon specifications and artwork, we will email (or fax if no email is available) you an Artwork Proof and Tax Invoice for your perusal.

When you are happy that everything is as you would want it, you simply sign the proof, including your payment details, and return it to us by email or fax.

Production on your balloons can now commence.

Pre-production samples

Pre-production samples can be printed for you. Charges and freight expenses plus GST do apply. 5 to 10 samples will be provided, and if no changes are made to the artwork, these charges except for the freight, will be deducted.

Can I have my balloons packed into any size bags or quantity?

Normally balloons are packed into bags of 250. We can organize for your balloons to be packed according to your specifications. These can be packed into bags of separate or mixed colours. This will incur a special packaging charge, so please ask for a quote.

Turnaround time

We try our very best to dispatch your balloons within five working days after artwork approval.
We are more than happy to help if time is of the essence though. Please let us know if you have a tight deadline, and we will pull out all stops to help you meet your promotion date.

Do I require ribbons and clips?

If you are inflating your balloons with helium ribbons and clips will help. The balloon clip is fitted to the neck of the balloon to hold the air in and the ribbon is attached to hold onto or tie together. The pre-tied ribbon and clip is sold as a unit and come in bundles of 100. They are available in a number of attractive colours.

Do I require sticks and cups?

If you are inflating your balloons with air you might need sticks and cups. The balloon cup fits on to the neck of the balloon to hold it upright, the stick is inserted into the cup and the balloon looks like a lollipop on a stick.

Sticks and cups are an economical way of displaying your printed balloon effectively, without the added cost of helium. Sticks and cups are sold in joint bundles of 100 sticks and 100 cups.

How are balloons made?

Balloons are made from a natural latex fibre, which originates from the sap of rubber trees. With the addition of curing agents and stabilisers the latex can be fashioned into the traditional uninflated balloon shape on a light-bulb shaped die called a “form.”

Colouring of balloons is called “tinting” and is produced by pigments in the selected dye, which is added to the raw latex state before forming. Also, to allow the latex to adhere properly to the “form” it is dipped into a coagulant before being dipped into the latex.

The “form” then passes through a further series of automated production processes: revolving brushes, a hot water wash, oven curing and finally to high-pressure water or air blasting to remove the finished balloon from its “form.” After that, the balloon is ready for packaging. Specialty balloon manufacturers use this process to produce millions of units per day.

How are balloons printed?

There are two methods of personalised printing on balloons: offset balloon printing and silkscreen balloon printing.

“Offset” is a drum, or roll, balloon printing process whereby ink is transferred through the drum to a series of plates (a separate plate for each colour in the job is required) that impress the image onto the balloon. “Offset” style is used in everyday printing: newspapers, magazines, brochures, leaflets, etc.

Silkscreen balloon printing is done by placing the “screens” (fine mesh frames with an etched image of what is to be printed) over an inflated balloon and forcing ink through the mesh of the “screen” onto the surface of the balloon.

Custom balloons are inflated to approximately 75% of their capacity on special machines and then deflated almost immediately upon impression of the image. Special inks are used to ensure fast drying and image integrity when inflated by the end-user.

At Specialty Balloons, customised balloon printing is available for corporate, commercial and private customers in many configurations: one colour printed on one or both sides; two colours on one side, or one colour ink on one side and a different colour printed on the other side; two colours on both sides; two colours one side and one colour on the other side; three colours one side of the balloons; three colours one side and one colour on the second side; four spot colours on one side; one colour on four sides. Printing can also be done on top of the balloon.

Are all balloons are eco-friendly, not just the green ones?

Latex balloons are 100% natural. And, as such, they break down organically in sunlight and water. Latex should not be confused with or referred to as a plastic.

Research has shown that a latex balloon will break down at roughly the same rate as a leaf from an oak tree.

And, whether in rain forests or plantations, the rubber trees that provide the source of the latex are crucial components of the ecological systems in the countries where they grow. Some 16 million rubber trees are harvested annually to support the balloon industry alone; the regrowth and biology of the tress help extract huge amounts of CO2 from our atmosphere – helping to protect the ozone layer and our environment as a whole.

What happens to balloons that float off into space?

After helium filled balloons escape, or are released, they rise up into the atmosphere at around two metres per second. They will rise to about 28,000 feet (8.5 kilometres) in about 90 minutes. The pressure and temperature both drop as the altitude increases; the temperature at this height is a very cool minus 40°C.

By now the balloon has reached its elastic limits and, at about 700% of its original un-inflated size, it bursts. The shatter that happens in these conditions is referred to as a “brittle fracture.” This shattering effect is similar to the smashing of glass, and the balloon splinters into many tiny pieces, about the size of a 5- or 10-cent piece, and then floats back to the ground, spreading over a large area.

Organic break down of these “shattered” balloons happens at a much faster rate than a whole latex balloon, especially one that has been thrown into the rubbish and disposed of as landfill.

General

Method of payment

We appreciate payment before dispatch of your balloons. This can be by:

  1. EFT with a Remittance of Payment emailed or faxed to us prior to dispatch
  2. CHEQUE received before dispatch.
  3. CREDIT CARD DETAILS BY PHONE which will be actioned prior to dispatch.
  4. Or by simply filling in and signing the payment details on your artwork proof.

How can I send you my files?

You can upload documents via the quote form on the Get A Quote page. There is a limit to the size of file less than 10MB. If you have any trouble doing this, please email Specialty Balloons from the Contact Us page. You can also put the files on a CD and mail it to us.

What is the proof and when should we receive this?

A proof is a sample of what your printing will look like. Based on this you give us the go-ahead on a job. A proof is usually e-mailed to you.

How do I approve the proof?

Simply email the signed proof along with your payment details or if you wish you can FAX the proof if you wish to use this method for approval for printing. We must have a signed copy or we are unable to commence.

Do you charge extra for artwork?

Artwork including photos can be designed for you by our expert Art Department. Please ask for a quote for this service.

How should I provide my logo or artwork?

We want your business cards and stationary to look superb! In order to get them looking great, we ask our customers to send us their artwork in the highest resolution available.

If the resolution is too low, the end result will be saw-toothed and pixilated.

Format: An EPS is best for us, but you can also send us a tif, jpeg or pdf.

Resolution: We require your image in 600 dpi (dots per inch) or higher to ensure a top quality print.

What are your business hours?

We are open Monday – Friday, 8:30am – 5:30pm.

Will my details be given to anyone else?

No. We understand that protection of privacy is a large concern for today’s Internet society. That is why we would like to assure you that any information given to Specialty Balloon Printers is strictly confidential. The information will only be used by Specialty Balloon Printers and will not be given to any other company or association.

Ordering

How long does it take for you to complete my order?

We work as hard and as fast as we can but it really depends on the job. Some jobs can be produced in minutes and some jobs may take several days. Please let us know your deadlines and we will bend over backwards and do our best to meet them.

Do you deliver?

Yes we do. Someone must be at a business delivery address 9.00am – 5.00pm Monday to Friday to sign for your delivery. If this is not possible, perhaps you have friends or family with a business address who could receive the printing on your behalf. We cannot vary these conditions. Delivery to a PO Box is not possible.

How do I complete an order in your Online Store?

  1. After browsing our site and finding a product that you wish to purchase you will then need to click on the ‘Add to Cart’ button at the bottom of the product information (it should appear after the summary). You will then be forwarded to the Shopping Cart screen where you can view the content of your cart.
  2. Once you have finished adding products to your cart, you can proceed by clicking on the ‘Checkout’ button. On the Checkout screen you will be asked if you are an existing or new customer.
  3. If you are a new customer, enter your information on the ‘New Account’ link. You will then be required to fill in some Account, Billing and Delivery information. Once you have entered the required information you will need to click on the ‘Create new account!’ button. You will then have an existing customer account created with us, which means purchasing in the future will be faster and more efficient.
  4. Now all you will be required to do is enter your payment details, and click ‘Pay Now’.
  5. Refer to our Ordering, Payment & Delivery FAQ

If you have any further problems ordering please do not hesitate to call us on 1300 720 230 or contact us online.

What payment methods do you accept?

  • Credit cards
  • American Express (add surcharge fee of 2.5%) VISA MasterCard
  • Personal / business cheque (Please allow up to 7 days to clear)
  • Direct deposit
  • Cash (Only if paying in person, do not send through mail)

Which is the best payment method?

The fastest way to pay and receive your order is to pay by ordering online or a direct deposit or credit card over the phone.

When do I pay?

We will ask for payment after artwork has been approved. An email will be sent to you with payment options and details.

When am I charged for my purchase?

Specialty Balloon Printers charges your credit card for the products after your order is confirmed in our system the order is then picked or produced & shipped to the destination on the order. There are only a few special cases when an order is charged after it is shipped. You will be notified beforehand if this is going to happen.

Is it safe to purchase from your site?

Yes, it is completely safe for you to purchase from Specialty Balloon Printers website. Any transactions completed on our site are kept secure by SSL (Secure Sockets Layer technology). By having SSL integrated into our website it allows you to shop in a safe and secure environment. Over the years SSL has become an industry standard for eCommerce.

Will you keep my credit card details online?

No. All customer credit card details are stored offline in a safe and secure environment.

How do I receive my printing?

Your order will be delivered to your door by courier. Please inform us if nobody will be available to sign for your order on arrival.

Delivery: Someone must be at a business delivery address 9.00am – 5pm Monday to Friday to sign for your delivery. If this is not possible, perhaps you have friends or family with a business address who could receive the printing on your behalf. We cannot vary these conditions.

Delivery to a PO Box is not possible.

I don't live in Australia, can you ship overseas?

Yes, we are happy to ship anywhere in the world. Please ask for a shipping quote.

How long before I receive my order?

Generally 5-7 working days from your artwork approval. Sometime it may be sooner, but if you are in a hurry please let us know and we will try to accommodate the request.

Stickers

What is CMYK & RGB?

CMYK stands for Cyan Magenta Yellow Black. The CMYK colour model is based on printing and ink absorbing into paper. To gain the greatest number of printable colours, from the fewest number of inks, CMYK colour printing is used. By using varying amounts of Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black, a great number of colours can be printed. Most full colour printed materials, magazines, posters, packaging, are printed using just the 4 CMYK inks.
RGB stands for Red Green Blue and are the colours used to create colours on your PC monitors. Each screen will represent the colour slightly differently as well so just keep the in mind – the blue you are see may be a shade lighter or darker.

Do you charge extra for more colours?

No, all our stickers are full-colour.

Why is the colour of the product I received slightly different from the email proof?

The colour mode on a computer is RGB (Red, Green, Blue), and is different from the colour mode in printing CMYK (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Black). You may prefer to print the artwork and check the real colour before confirming your order. You may specify your colour by using Pantone colour system and then we can make sure the colour is 100% accurate.

What if I want a custom size or shape?

We print full colour in any size, shape or quantity that you want (although our minimum quantity is 100 stickers, and additional charges apply for die-cut shapes).
If you need a sticker and you have a custom shape, please ask us for a quote.

What's your minimum quantity of stickers?

The minimum quantity is 100 stickers.

T-Shirts

How much does t-shirt screen printing cost?

Pricing for screen printing is based on 4 variables.

  1. The number of colours to be printed
  2. The number of prints on the tee i.e. Front only or front and back etc
  3. The number of garments to be printed
  4. The size of the image – Large or Small ( Large is A4 or larger)

So to give you a solid price we need to know these three variables. We will always advise you on how you can reduce your costs by adjusting these variables.

Why do more colours cost more?

The way screen printing works we have to set a screen up for every colour in every print. The more screens the higher the set up costs. It also takes longer to print four colours as we need to make four separate print passes on each tee.

Do you only print t-shirts?

No. We do a range of printing as well as banners, stickers and balloons. We also supply all types of offset printing and also short run digital printing. Our aim is to provide you with great pricing on all services so you only have to deal with a single company for your printing needs.

What is the maximum amount of colours you can print?

We can print up to six spot colours and of course full process colour.

Is there a minimum order?

We have no minimum. We are happy to supply one off tees. You must understand they will be priced accordingly though. We will screen print a single colour on to a tee but when it comes to multi colours on one off tees it is far more cost effective for the customer to use digital processes.

Can I supply my own tees?

Yes you can supply your own tees. But often times it is a lot more cost effective for us to supply them for you. You save on postage to us and because we have great relationships with our suppliers we are able to provide you with low wholesale pricing. We can also supply you with a huge range of styles…whatever you want we can do our best to source it for you.

Will I need to pay set-up again if I get a re-print?

We will keep your screens for a period of time. Usually there is no set-up charges for re-prints within three months of the original order, as long as the order is over 30 tees. If the quantity is under this then we charge a small run set up fee of $20 + GST. We don’t like to keep the screens too long as over time the mesh on the screen relaxes and when it comes time to re-print the registration on multi colour images can be out. So even though this can mean an added cost to the client, they will be getting better quality prints.

The Balloon Blog

About Specialty Balloon Printers

For everything balloons… what can we say, it’s our specialty!

It’s as simple as that: whether you’re after custom printed balloons, custom shaped balloons, balloon or party accessories, it’s our specialty. We’ve been busy for almost 20 years making sure our customers have the best in everything balloons. Service. Quality. And value for money. Read more

Fanastic service. Needed some balloons printed for a local school fundraiser. Was running out of time...not only did they do a fanastic job they printed them quickly and i was able to collect them early. Would highly recommend themread more
Nadine Eisemann
Nadine Eisemann
2017-08-04T01:13:31+0000
Professional customer service and quality products! Really quick turnaround times as well! Will definitely use them again!
Yini Qin
Yini Qin
2017-07-04T03:15:27+0000
Very easy to deal with and supplies excellent quality balloons and prints! Made my aunt's 50th birthday even more spectacular with the metallic balloons and beautifully designed label we ordered �read more
Jerahmeel De Pano
Jerahmeel De Pano
2017-06-08T11:25:26+0000
Fabulous fabulous product and service !! exceptional quality and exactly what I asked for no fuss at all and quick as well !! Highly recommended indeedread more
Robyn Royb McCarthy
Robyn Royb McCarthy
2017-06-07T06:26:13+0000
We ordered 2000 balloons for a promotion we are running and couldnt be happier with final product. We shopped around for a week to get best price as we had a budget. They were first to email us back and also had cheapest price. Would recommend this company to anyone looking for custom printed balloons. Great service also.read more
Kyle Uptown
Kyle Uptown
2017-01-18T08:27:03+0000
Great customer service .... Fantastic work ... Exactly what I was after and not to mention Fast delivery .. Highly recommended.... Thank you so much ...read more
Maria Palermo Dima
Maria Palermo Dima
2015-03-20T05:26:11+0000
I recently purchased some balloons for a special occasion. I only processed my order just before 5pm on a Wednesday and the balloons arrived on the Friday morning. I needed them for a function that Friday night and was worried they wouldn't arrive on time so called to let them know the urgency and ask if they'd arrive in time. I was so happy with their service and help (even with my tiny order), will definitely be ordering from Specialty Balloons again. Thanks :)read more
Lisa Eichholz
Lisa Eichholz
2015-02-10T12:39:18+0000

Need Assistance? Call 1300 720 230 or email [email protected]