Dear Santa DIY Foil Print + Free Printable. Download this free hand-lettered printable and follow my step-by-step tutorial to foil it at home!
Dear Santa DIY Foil Print + Free Printable
Making foil prints and cards at home is so much fun. It’s a great way to add a special element to a simple print, your lettering, or a handmade card. I’ll walk you through the process step-by-step using my “Dear Santa” lettering.
Getting a great foil result at home involves a good deal of trial and error, so I’ll also share the tips and tricks that I find yield the nicest finished piece.
DIY Foil Print Supplies
- LaserJet Printer. I use the HP LaserJet Pro M281cdw Wireless Color Printer.
- Heidi Swapp Minc Foiling Machine (or a laminator)
- Toner Reactive Foil Sheets (I used this red one)
- Transfer Folder (the Minc comes with one)
- Smooth White 90lb Cardstock (I usually use this Neenah one)
- Dear Santa Print (8×10 PDF File, click the link to download))
Please note: This free print is for personal use only. The hand-lettered “Dear Santa” Design is ©Dawn Nicole Designs. Thank you for respecting my copyright. ?
The Minc has mixed reviews but I’ve been using it for 3 years and love it. I think the negative reviews are from users who haven’t found the combo of tricks that yield a nice foiling result.
Tips for Achieving the Best DIY Foil Print Results
Before we get started with the steps, let’s chat about some general foiling tips and tricks. Through trial and error and various tips I’ve tried online, here are the main things that I find give me the best result.
I still haven’t quite found the magic foiling recipe that gives me a perfect result that I’d feel comfortable selling, but it’s definitely pretty enough for DIYs and gifts! I’m still testing various things and will definitely do a blog post if I find a way to achieve foiling perfection.
- Use cardstock with a weight of at least 90lb. The problem with a paper lighter than that is that the heat from the MINC tends to make the paper ripple with lightweight papers, especially if you run the foil through twice as I often do. The 90lb paper can withstand the high heat without rippling.
- Use a LaserJet Printer. The toner in the ink is what the foil reacts to, so this is a must. I’ve read a monochrome one works best, but having owned both a monochrome LaserJet and Color LaserJet, I can’t say I notice a difference.
- A high dpi tends to yield the best results. The printable in this post is 300dpi.
- Print in Registration Black. I read this tip on several websites and it definitely gives you a more flawless foil.
- Use the highest heat setting on the Minc. I always crank mine up to the highest setting of 5.
- Use quality supplies. Sometimes you can get away with cheaper supplies, foiling is not one of those times. Quality ink, paper, and foil sheets make a HUGE difference in the kind of results you get.
Now, let’s foil!
First, you want to print the printable on your 90lb white cardstock. Then, plug-in your Minc Machine, turn it on and set it to heat level 5. The light will be red as it heats up and turns green when it’s ready. It heats up super fast!
Place your print in the transfer fold, face up. Be sure the print and folder are free of dust and pet hair. Trim a piece of foil to cover the design and place it, color side up, on top of your print. Gently smooth out any wrinkles. Close the transfer folder and run it through the Minc machine. As you put it in the machine, it will grab it and auto feed it for you.
When it’s done, allow to cool briefly and then open up the transfer folder and peel off the foil. Sometimes, I’ll run it through one more time with a small piece of foil to touch up any areas that didn’t take well enough.
That’s it! Peeling the foil off at the end is so fun and satisfying.
More “Dear Santa” Fun
If you haven’t already, grab this design as a free lettering practice sheet trio and SVG Cut File!