How heavy is my paper? (the only time it is appropriate to ask for weight)
You read it, write it or fold it every day, and if you’re a fan of “The Office” I’m sure you’ve thought “Gee, if all these interesting characters are working at Dunder Mifflin Paper Company, then paper must be really exciting!” Well let me tell you, paper is definitely more than meets the eye. I am here to give you the inside scoop on the different types of paper and how to understand and convert paper weight.
First off, what is paper weight and what does that mean?
Paper weight refers to the thickness and sturdiness of the paper, not the actual weight of the sheet. Often times you may find the same “weight” paper may be referred to as two different things. For example, regular copy paper can be referred as a “20 lb bond” or sometimes “50 lb. text weight.” Confusing, right? In the paper business, measurements need to be exact, and this is why we use GSM (grams per square meter) as it’s a definite and universal measure of paper: the actual weight of the sheet.
By using GSM as the standard measurement of paper, we are able to communicate the product specifications to our suppliers in China with consistent accuracy. Our supplier relationships were built over many years of successful cooperation, mutual respect and customer satisfaction. Working with only the best printers and suppliers in China, we are able to reduce the turnaround time for our clients to deliver the best product, for the best price, in the shortest time possible.
Here’s the math to quickly convert lb to gsm:
1lb. of Text paper = 1.48 gsm (1 x 1.48)
1lb of Cover paper = 2.708 gsm (1 x 2.708)
Here’s a more detailed conversion table for you to keep handy:
Wait a second, what’s Text paper and Cover paper?
These, along with writing/bond paper, are the three types of papers most commonly used for the following purposes:
- Text: These are the thinner, lightweight papers most often used in publications, sell sheets, stationery items like: post it notes, journals, day planners and letterheads.
- Bond/Writing: These are the typical office printer papers most compatible with copy machines and laser printers.
- Cover: Cover stocks are more heavily weighted, rigid and not easily folded. They’re typically used for publication covers, business cards, postcards, greeting cards, booklet covers, posters, and photo albums.
Wow, I had no idea. Please tell me more!
Gladly, I like keeners like you. The proper unification of design, thickness, texture and finishes can truly make or break a product. Want a super unique journal to carry around? Use a matte finish on a thick stock, add some gold foil on the edges of your journal page and gloss your custom logo on the cover to make it really stand out. That’s just one example, the combinations of different finishes and textures like satin, matte, holographic, and linen creates an endless amalgamation of unique concepts that allows true creative freedom for your next product. In addition to this, you can add other treatments to paper to make it pop even more! If you can think it, we can make it.