Phase 5:Design Finalization and Preproduction

Getting the final approved packaging design ready for production is the next step, and the designer or the design firm may be responsible for preparing the final production files. This task is made easier if all of the design files have been organized throughout the process so that they can be easily identified and readily accessed. The job is now ready to be passed along to a production professional and, ultimately, submitted to the printer.

The designer's last responsibility will likely be to attend the first press check. A press check is where the designer meets with the printer on-site to review the specifications (specs) of the job and to oversee the first print run in order to establish quality standards or ensure that the print run meets previously established quality standards.


The following must be provided to the printer:

  • Digital mechanical files
  • All fonts
  • Color proofs
  • All high-resolution image files
  • Identification of layer separations, color channels, etc.
  • Color specifications (i.e., four-color process, spot color, etc.)
  • Specifications for finishing techniques (i.e., coatings)
  • Specifications for die cuts and/or windows

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