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A Little Bit Of History

Thursday, 15 May 2014  |  Chris

Take a quick look around where you are. How many labels do you see? Labels are found everywhere on a day to day basis, from food labels to clothing and medicines to price tags, labels are a common occurrence through our daily life. Self adhesive lables have been something we have used since before any of us can remember, in childhood, at school and throughout adulthood we have used labels (or stickers) a great deal. So I thought for this month's blog it might be interesting to do a bit of research into the history of labels, to find out where they originate from and how they came to be as fascinating and extravagant as they are today.

Labels were introduced in early 1880s as part of an art called lithography and the purpose of labels was the same back then as it is today, to grab the attention of the customer. Orchard owners were the first to use labels when the market became competitive. Using gum they stuck their eyecatching labels to the crates of fruit, vegetables and cigars at the markets to entice customers to buy their products.

R. Stanton Avery manufactured the first self-adhesive label in the early 1930s. the label comprised of a plain paper surface with a self adhesive coating on the reverse, much like the ones we use today. These were known as pressure sensitive labels.

Since the invention of inkjet printers in the 1980s, the art of label printing has soared. There are now many different printers and techniques for printing labels, including lazer, thermal transfer, direct thermal and digital printers which allows labels to have such a large commercial impact on our lives and why almost anything and everything we use, buy or sell comes complete with a label or labels of some kind. The cost of printing labels has also decreased greatly throughout the years which is why at Rapid Address Labels we are able to offer great quality, durable, personalised labels at such competitive prices.

So there we have it. A little bit about the history of labels, where they originate from, who created the first label and how this has impacted on the label industry between then and now.