An overlay is a thin piece of material, usually transparent, that is placed over something else in order to protect it, or to add information.
Overlay is a term used in printing to describe the process of adding a thin layer of transparent material to a printed piece in order to protect it from smudging, fingerprints, or other damage. The overlay can also be used to add a glossy or matte finish to the piece, or to change the color of the paper.
Overlays are typically made from polyester or vinyl, and are applied using a laminator. They can be applied to both sides of a printed piece, or just to one side. When applied to both sides, the overlay is usually slightly larger than the piece itself so that the edges of the overlay extend beyond the edges of the paper, providing extra protection.
Overlays are used extensively in printing. They are used to protect the surface of the print from abrasion, to prevent smudging, and to add information such as instructions, warnings, or company logos.
Applying an overlay is a relatively simple process, but it can make a big difference in the overall look and feel of a printed piece. If you want to add an extra level of protection to your printed materials, or if you want to change the appearance of the paper, an overlay may be the right option for you.
Overlay is an important aspect of printing because it allows for a more accurate registration of colors. When colors are not accurately registered, they can appear to be “off” or “fuzzy.” This can be a particular problem when printing on dark colored paper or fabric. Overlay also allows for a more even coating of ink on the substrate, which can result in a more consistent print quality.