We make custom name plates and name badges at Tempe Trophy, but it always surprises me when people confuse the two things. Here’s a guide to picking which one is most appropriate for your application.

Name plates go on a desk or on a wall and usually just have a name on them. Standard sizes are 8×2, 10×2, and 12×2. The first number being the length and the units being inches. At Tempe Trophy we offer plastic or metal plates that slide into metal holders. Desk holders prop up on a person’s desk, usually displaying their name and door holders can be mounted to walls or doors, usually displaying either the name of the room, or the person whose office it is. 

Holders come in rose gold, silver, and black, and typically come as a single holder. There are also special order holders that have multiple brackets which allows a title to go with the name. Name plates can come in black with white letters, white with black letters, silver with black letters, or gold with black letters. There are a few special order colors as well, but these are the most common. Name plates can also be fancier than just a piece of plastic in a metal holder. Some of our vendors carry glass name plates that slide into glass holders, or metal plates that adhere to wooden bases. 

Name badges, on the other hand, are meant to be worn instead of placed in a stationary location. Name badges are customizable in material, size and attachment method. They can be made of metal, or plastic. 3×1 and 3×2 are the most common sizes. 3×1 name badges consist of a person’s name and sometimes a company name. The 3×2 name badges often have a logo, the person’s name, and a title or position below the name. They come with either a set of pins on the back or a magnet. Magnets are the most popular choice due to the safety and convenience of not dealing with sharp pin backings. 

Name plates and name badges can both be rotary engraved, laser engraved, or UV color printed. Rotary engraving allows for clean block fonts with rounded edges to be engraved into our two toned plastic. Laser engraving allows for a logo to be engraved and can be done in two toned plastic or in two toned metal. Engraving with the laser also allows the use of more fonts and sharp edges on the letters and logos. UV color printing is very similar to the way gel nail polish works in the sense that the ink cures under a UV lamp after printing to set. This is the only way to have multiple colors on the name plates. Name badges have another option called sublimation where the surface of the metal or plastic is heated up allowing the ink to be pushed into it. UV printing causes a raised surface, whereas sublimation is flush with the surface it is on.