The Trouble with Templates

Flexible Packaging Design Tips for Our Templates

The Trouble with Templates

Flexible packaging design tip

Templates are extremely important for communicating the setup of a pouch to your designer or design team. This blog post is aimed to shed a light on how our templates are different from our competitors, why we set them up in that way, & what are our intended usage guidelines.

How are our templates different?

We provide both an Illustrator and PDF file. The Illustrator file uses layers that separate all available features, enabling the designer to turn on the features required for your pouch. Upon opening the .ai file, only the specifications layer will be visible: pouch dimensions, side seals, bleeds, and panel placement. The PDF’s layers are set to visible, so anyone can open this file with Adobe PDF Reader or Adobe Acrobat to view all layers. Do note that you will need to turn on the features layers you need, as in the Illustrator version. This can be nice to have for someone without access to Adobe Illustrator.

Why do we set them up this way?

It’s for efficiency on our end and any capacity gained translates back to more time to engage with you, our customers. We build our templates so they can be used multiple times, by multiple users with a variety of use cases. For example, Customer A and B require the same sized pouch; Customer A needs a Round Hanger Hole and No Closure, while Customer B requires a Child Resistant Closure and Tear Notch. With all available features accessible in each template, we can provide the same template to Customers A and B rather than creating and housing multiple templates of the same dimensions, but with varying features. This flexible approach lends itself to a simplified template and process for us and you. 

What are our intended use guidelines?

We’ve set up two layers for our clients’ designers to add elements for printing. The white layer is for white ink information, whether flood coat or spot coat. This information is integral for creating packaging with clear or metallic films. We suggest filling your white elements using our “Standard White” spot color already within the illustrator template. The Artwork layer is intended for your CMYK design and information. Any information outside of the artwork and white layers will not be printed!

Features:Tear Slit

The tear slit is unique to the Standard Press-to-Close closure. The slit is lined up with a laser-scored flange within the closure structure, allowing for an easy consistent directional tear.

Features:Tear Notch

Our tear notch is available for all closures except the Standard Press-to-Close closure as noted above. The tear notch is ideal if the top of your pouch will be sealed, allowing a cleaner tear upon first opening.

Features:Hanger Hole

A hanger hole is ideal for smaller pouches that will be hung on a pegboard. Three-side-seal and two-side-seal pouches have been our most popular pouch style for this feature.


We’ve decided that one layer will encapsulate available closure types to avoid an overwhelming number of layers. The measurement from the top of the pouch to the center of the seal area represents the location of the main seal.


The specs layer shows the basic measurements for the panel dimensions, seal dimensions, bottom seal type, and safety zones. Because this layer is so integral to every design, it is on by default.

White Layer

This layer is intended for your overprinting white ink information. Add where you would like the white ink to print using our “Standard White” spot color already included within your template and set it to “Overprint” using the Attributes panel.


This is where you place your main design for your CMYK information. For this area, I’d defer to our artwork guidelines for the most up-to-date information on setting up for this area.

About the author

Graphic Designer for AccuFlex Packaging |