Hiring Us Answers
  1. Can we have a face to face meeting?
  2. If we choose to hire Cobaltblue, how do we proceed?
  3. What information do you need before you can give me an accurate quote?
  4. How do I contact Cobaltblue about a design project?

The whole design process can be done remotely by phone and email. However, if you’d like a face to face meeting, just contact us and we’ll arrange a date. Our studio is conveniently located in Nottingham city centre, in the East Midlands. The first consultation meeting is always free if you come to our studio. For customers from local counties, it’s also free if we come to you. For customers that are further afield, we’ll charge a consultation fee at £50 per hour, plus travel costs at 43p per mile, if you’d like us to visit you.

First, we’ll make arrangements to discuss your contract. Areas we’ll need to cover include project outline, design specifications, timescale, sign off stages, payment schedule etc.

We’ll need the following information from you:

  • Your name, the name of your organisation and your job title
  • Your contact details – phone number(s), email address, postal address
  • Project description (e.g. logo design, brochure design and print)
  • Contents description, if applicable (e.g. number of pages in a brochure, details of graphics, text etc that are needed)
  • Time scale – when you’d like the project completed by

Ideally, we’d like this information in writing. You’re also welcome to phone us with the above information – please have it ready when you call.

If you’re not yet sure of the full contents of the package you want, you can ask us for a quote now and upgrade the package later. However, the costs and timescales originally quoted will probably change.

If you’d like an estimate, to arrange a consultation, or have a general enquiry about our services, simply contact us by phone or email. All our contact details are shown on our contact page.

Payment Answers
The questions below provide general information. If you hire us to work for you, we’ll explain our payment policy in full before asking you to sign a contract confirming that you agree to our terms of payment.
  1. What forms of payment do you accept?
  2. Do I need to pay anything upfront?
  3. Do you charge for late payments?
  4. What is your refund policy?

We accept BACS, cheques, credit & debit cards.

  • Larger projects

    We usually need a 50% deposit to start work on a project. If this is the case, we’ll outline this at the start and we’d need you to sign our contract.

  • Small jobs

    For small jobs, we just need a detailed description of the job and an email confirming that you agree to the fee quoted before we proceed. When the job is signed off, we’ll then invoice you in full. The invoice will be payable within 28 days of its issue date.

All invoices are payable within 28 days of receipt, unless otherwise stated on the invoice. If an invoice becomes overdue, a 1.5% service charge will be added to the balance each month until the invoice is paid in full. We reserve the right to withhold delivery and any transfer of ownership of any current work if your account isn’t kept current, or if overdue invoices aren’t paid in full, including any charges or fees that have accrued as a result of late or non-payment.

If for any reason you don’t want to continue at the initial design concepts stage, you can give us notice in writing that you wish to cancel the project. We’ll then refund in full any monies you’ve paid. All the designs will remain the exclusive property of Cobaltblue and you are not permitted to use any of them in any way, shape or form without written permission from Cobaltblue.

Please note that our refund policy doesn’t apply in the following cases:

  • If you’ve already approved the initial design concepts.
  • If revision work has started on one of the initial concepts at your request.
  • If the client company closes, or changes its name, or changes its activity, or decides to change the nature of its business.
  • If the project was cancelled for reason(s) unrelated to the design service.
  • If you don’t communicate with Cobaltblue within 12 working days of the initial design concepts being presented.
  • If other design companies were hired to work on the same project at the same time, or if the client has posted the project in a contest or crowd sourcing website.
The Design Process Answers
  1. How long does the design process take?
  2. If I don’t like the finished design, what can we do?
  3. I love the design, so what’s next?
  4. After we agree on a form of communication, what’s next?

Our typical turnaround times are as follows:

  • Initial design concepts: 3-5 working days
  • Revisions: 1-2 working days
  • Printing time: 3-14 working days depending on stock and special finishes such as lamination, foiling, die-cutting etc
  • Call back request: 1 working day after you contact us by phone, email or by sending us a message on our online client
  • Final file preparation: 1-2 working days after your design is finalised

The turnaround times for other services, such as copywriting, photography and marketing support, will depend on your individual requirements. Once you’ve outlined and agreed these, we can give you a proper time estimate.

In the event that you don’t like the finished design (unlikely as you’ve already approved it!), you have a number of options. Depending on the package you’ve selected, you should be able to ask us to make a set amount of minor changes to the design, free of charge. If you feel the design needs more amendments than your selected package affords, the additional work is chargeable.

We’ll need you to sign off the proof to confirm you’re happy with the design. After this, we’ll send you a final invoice. When this is settled, we’ll provide you with a print copy of the design and a CD of your files.

We’ll ask you to send us by post or email any relevant materials that we need to start work. We’ll then create the initial design concepts for your project and show them to you for your comments. Usually, we’ll make the designs available on a secure section of our website so you can view them online.

File Formats Answers
  1. When I receive the final files at the end of the project, what format will these be in?
  • Logo design projects

    We give you two types of file. The vector files in EPS and AI formats are for use by your printer and any future designers etc. These are the source files of your design. We’ll also give you web files in JPG, PSD and TIFF format which you can use on your website. We can provide extra copies of your files on CD for a small fee.

  • Web design projects

    We’ll provide you with a PSD file of the website design as well as web files in HTML and CSS formats of all the images used on the site.

  • For stationery, brochure and leaflet design projects

    We’ll give you printer ready EPS files for your commercial printer. You won’t be able to open or edit these files unless you have the right kind of software and version. You’ll also receive PDF or JPG files to proof read. You’ll be able to open these files but not edit them unless you have Adobe Acrobat Pro. For letterheads, we can also create a Microsoft Word template so you can type your letters directly on to it and then save and print them on your home or office computer.

Please note that, if you choose to print any files we send you, we don’t provide any support for your home or office printer settings. It would be advisable to seek this support with your printer’s supplier or manufacturer.

Colour Variations Answers
  1. Will your hard copy proofs match what I see on my monitor screen?
  2. Can I print the designs using my home/office printer?

Like printers, computers vary in their colour set-up due to different technologies being used. Most people will see a great colour match between the hard copy proof and what’s on their screen, but due to differences in monitor calibration, some printed colours are hard to match. However, please bear in mind that the inkjet / laser proofs that we provide are useful for judging layout compositions, font size and spacing, and also give you a chance to correct any grammar and spelling errors.

Yes you can but do not expect your colours to match the original design. Home/office printers use completely different technology and inks compared to those of a litho printer. Therefore colours set up to be accurate on the CMYK process can be way out when printed using a domestic inkjet printer. It should also be noted that in the long run, printing stationery on an inkjet printer is a false economy as the ink costs far exceed the cost of having it professionally printed.

Rights and Ownership Answers
  1. Who owns the rights to the design?
  • Final design

    Once payment has been made in full, you’ll retain full rights to the final design for the agreed project. We will retain the right to use the final design for our own promotional use.

  • Earlier designs / initial concepts

    We will retain full rights to all the rejected or unused designs, including early sketches, rough layouts, visualisations or comps. You may not use, share, publish or sell these.

Printing Answers
  1. Can you provide printing services?
  2. Can you provide the final design to my printer/service provider?
  3. My printer is having problems with your design.

We can print out proof copies at our office. For small or large print runs with trim, folding and special finishes we work with trusted local printers to gather quotes, samples and arrange final delivery straight to your door.

Yes, no problem at all. If you’ve already chosen a printer, please give us their contact details before we burn the artwork onto disc. This means we can find out what their specifications are and make sure the copy they receive is print-ready. Please note we can’t be held responsible for any print problems or delays if the printer or service provider used for your project hasn’t been chosen or recommended by Cobaltblue

If this happens, please give the printer our email address and phone number, and vice versa, and we’ll make every effort to resolve the problem as soon as we can.

 

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