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Quick Chat Print – Special T

Special T

Corey London from Special T Print joins us to discuss starting a printery during challenging times, and the importance of staying true to your core values.

Special T Print

Based close to the M5 in Kingsgrove, South West Sydney, Special T Print focusses on service (the ‘T’ is for Treatment). Having recently printed the 2024 Ball & Doggett Calendar featuring student work from across Australasia (see article on page 50), we decided to have a chat with Corey London, Managing Director at Special T, to talk about what they do. Here is what Corey had to say;

GSM: How did you create this niche market of specialised printing—was it serendipitous or planned?

Corey: We started Special T in 2009 following a bit of a ‘Jerry Maguire’ moment, to be honest. We had a vision: to give clients the best service. We had a plan. Now, we just needed to make it work. However, the continuing fallout from the 2007—2008 Global Financial Crisis meant overcoming extra hurdles. Many businesses faced issues during this time, being a start-up was particularly challenging. But we stuck to our plan of giving clients what they wanted, which turned into repeat business, and we grew from there.

GSM: What type of work do you do at Special T?

Corey: Our business offers a wide range of products, whether a short run of business cards, five thousand flyers, or a limited edition art book. If a client needs our help, we will do what we can to make it happen. Much of our work is for business-to-business customers from the property, financial, medical, and retail sectors. Many of our clients lean on our expertise to get the best results.

GSM: What makes Special T different from other printers?

Corey: There are many fantastic printers in Australia, and at a fundamental level, we are very similar in what we offer. We focus on adding value to the project and client relationship through providing expert advice. At Special T, we pride ourselves on doing a great job. If the project is something we don’t do, we try to steer the client in the right direction, even if it means doing it with someone else!

GSM: Tell us about the changes in the print industry

Corey: Technology has dramatically changed the print industry and continues to do so. The challenge is that it is impossible to invest in every new technology. Being lucky enough to work in companies that have always bought the latest and greatest, I have seen successful investments and heartbreaking failures. So, we focus on specialising in doing a great job rather than trying to have everything under one roof. We invest in what we are good at, and the tools to do a great job. We also work with fantastic partners who are experts in their respective fields, which means collaborating to produce the best result.

GSM: What do you feel has stayed the same?

Corey: One thing that has stayed the same is the craft. While technology has undoubtedly changed, it still comes down to how you put ink on paper, how you attend to your clients, and if you back up what you claim to do as a business. One thing print has continually done is add value to a company’s offering. So, the most important aspect for us is adding value to the client!

GSM: Special T recently printed the Ball & Doggett calendar featuring artwork from our Student Design Contest winners. When working with graphic designers new to the industry, are there any tips you can offer them when supplying artwork for print?

Corey: We have been fortunate enough to work with some of the best graphic designers from Australia and overseas. One common denominator is how these designers discuss the project with us in advance. So my advice is to bring the printer onboard as early as possible. Understanding the project is critical—the timings, expectations, and the budget. It all helps to ensure a project runs smoothly and hits the mark.

Extra Special Results

A couple of print projects printed by Special T;

Special TPackaging for Australian skincare brand Leif features work by artist Bobby Clark. Printed in CMYK, Spot colour and gold foil—the design also features a textured emboss, outsourced to Tafeda Paper Embossing Specialists in South Nowra, NSW. The stock is Ball & Doggett Barry Bleach Board.

This annual report, designed by 3C Creative (Sydney) for Platinum Asset Management, was printed in CMYK plus Spot colour on Ball & Doggett Sovereign Offset.

Special TCorey London (back), along with Rob Horrod, Head of Print, casts a careful eye over the 2023 Ball & Doggett calendar as running sheets come off the press.

For more information on Special T Print—go to: //

This article was originally published in GSM22. To read this and other great articles purchase this issue here.