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5 colours indesign document

Hi Guys,

I'm putting together a document in InDesign and the client has specified that they would like some of the pages in a metallic colour.

I've already designed the brochure - how do I make sure it will print in 5 colour format? I'm not too hot on print and setting up document for anything other than standard 4 colour print. Any pointers or advice please would be greatly received :up:



Active Member
It will need to be set up like a pantone colour I imagine. In the colour 'swatch options' when creating a new swatch 'color type: spot' 'color mode: pantone solid coated' then choose something that repesents it reasonably well.

When exporting to PDF under the advanced tab make sure 'color: leave unchanged'

That way the printers can make a seperate plate.

If unsure I'd just give the printers a call and ask how they'd preffer it supplied.


when you mean metallic colour, is that the paper or does he want metallic foiling on the print job?
well, the metallic sections/bits would have to be in a metallic spot colour, so long as the PDF/PostScript file for litho has the designated spot colour, it'll be fine when the printers produce the plates.

Go to New Colour Swatch on the drop down menu in the Swatches Palette.Choose spot from the colour type menu. Then Choose Pantone Metallic coated from the colour mode drop down menu. Choose your colour and hit ok. The apply the colour from the swatches palette to what ever you want.

After you export to PDF check that the spot colour exported ok by using the Ink Manager (you need Arobat Professional to do this) you should see 4 colour process and 1 spot colour. Hey presto.

Hope this helped.
Thanks Guys. All good advice. I have the 2 pantones (which are going to be a gradient) on each page:

Pantone 7503
Pantone 8005

however I can't find them in the swatch section? There gold colour!

What am I doing wrong?

you can always call the 'spot 1' and 'spot 2' whilst keeping them spot colours and then when you send them to get printed, tell them spot 1 should be PMS7503 and Spot 2 should be PMS8005

but to get both the metallic swatches, create a new swatch "New Color Swatch" from the drop down menu, colour type = spot, colour mode = Pantone Metallic Coated for 8005, and Pantone Solid Coated for 7503.
Okay thanks Nik, can I set it up to show the client visually what the 2 pantones would look like? I can't seem to find them manually going through the different pantone libraries?

apprecaite your help!
yea, just colour them how they might look on screen, but create the colours as spot colours, you should prolly name them PMS 8005 etc too... and when the printers create the plates, they'll know to use the PMS refs that come up if that makes sense? good thing about litho, you can put any colour you like on a plate... when I was working with litho, as an example we'd create black / greyscale artwork for one colour jobs, and when it came to printing, we'd put whatever colour the client wanted on the black plates
You won't be able to show your client exactly how it'll print unless you have a physical swatch book. Metallic inks have tiny specs of iridescent material (probably some kind of metal, I'm sure someone else can expand on this) in them to reflect light and give the appearance of being metallic.

Your monitor obviously makes colour from RGB and your proofing printer from CMYK (and green, red, photocyan etc. if you have a fancy one), so you can't achieve the same iridescent look those spots you've chosen will give.

In the past I just make a nice orange or grey for gold and silver so the client can see it in situ, then also show them a swatch book. The replace said orange or grey with the correct spot before making the PDF.

Also, I'm sure you know this, but metallic inks tend to look much more metallic on glossy stock and can come out surprisingly unmetallic on some uncoated stock.
Hi Steve are you still having trouble getting the doucment setup? Also did you look at using foil blocking instead of metalic ink? it comes out ALOT better finish.

Also, have you got a printer for this job yet? *wink* *wink* :D
Hi Alex,

it's a long ongoing project- I'm currently waiting for imagery until I can progress further. Haven't sorted print yet. By all means if you can send some sample examples over that would be useful?
PM me if you can help ;)