How Clear Toner Cured the Munchies


You get off an airplane, hop in a cab, and finally arrive at your hotel. It’s been a long day. All you can do is think about grabbing a snack.

You check into your room and see that fully stocked minibar. Look at all those goodies! Here comes the swan dive.

As you happily devour that salty treat, do you ever notice the packaging? Think about the design of those packaged goodies? You know, the how and why it was designed the way it was.

Tasty Designs
Mike Amrose and Wanda Jones started In-Room Plus, a company in Buffalo, New York, 25 years ago as a market research firm. Today, In-Room Plus caters to the needs of the hotel industry.

(They’re the people to thank for stocking your minibar with those delicious treats.)

One day, a client who specialized in gourmet food, asked about conducting a study on the hotel industry. This is when Mike and Wanda discovered the need for customized packaged goods.

Aaron Niziol, art director and web developer at In-Room Plus, and his staff design all of the packaging. His hotel clients like unique packaging that will entice guests to use the minibar.

Aaron decided that using a spot varnish would be a great way to catch the guests’ attention. His clients loved the creativity of the idea, but had a question.

“So, Aaron. What will the spot varnish look like on the final product?”

He tried simulating the effect using different graphic techniques, such as gradients. Nothing really seemed to capture the “WOW” factor they wanted.

Sweet Serendipity
One day, Aaron ran out of toner for his copier. He stopped by his dealer, United Business Systems, to pick some up. His account manager knew of his work and showed Aaron some print samples that had a spot varnish to it.

Aaron was floored. The samples showed off the Canon imagePRESS C1+’s Clear Toner capabilities.

He knew instantly that this technology would allow him to give that spot varnish effect to his clients. They would be able to see how eye-catching it would make their products, and Aaron knew that would differentiate In-Room Plus from the competition.

What’s even better?  The imagePRESS C1+ has allowed In-Room Plus to increase its customer base by enabling them to accept short run jobs.  This way, they can cater to smaller hotels as well.

“We use our Canon imagePRESS to run small jobs for boutique properties,” says Elizabeth Jones, director of global sales at In-Room Plus. “The clients love the color representation and quality.”

So In-Room Plus now has the ability to cater to a growing list of both large and small clients – the kind of clients who expect great things from their packaging.

And Aaron gets to design packaging with all those amazing clear toner effects.

To any company, its brand is its livelihood; that is why color management is so important. For a designer, getting a branded color to look the same in print as it does on-screen can be troubling.

Canon wants to help manage your color so that you can design like Aaron. That’s why every PaperSpecs reader who registers here before May 30, 2012 will receive a copy of the “Complete Guide to Color Management.”


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