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How to host a no-limit Texas Hold'em poker tournament in your home

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Custom Poker Chip Labels

Why pay hundreds of dollars to have customized poker chips manufactured when can simply add labels to your existing poker chips! You can print poker labels on a laser (preferred) or ink-jet printer or purchase pre-made custom poker chip labels from an online seller. You can stick labels on poker chips that were purchased months or years ago or you can purchase cheap composite chips with the intention of sticking labels on them. If you keep an eye out for good deals, you can buy a set of 500 composite chips (with recessed centers and edge spots!) for about 25� each. Add $40 for pre-printed labels and you now have 500 poker chips with custom labels and nice edge spots for $165 or about 33� per chip! That compares with about $1 per chip and a couple months wait for customized clay or ceramic chips.

You can buy blank labels at most local or online office supply stores. Click here to see a sheet of blank 1" labels from As you can see, blank labels are not cheap at $38.95 for 100 sheets of 63 paper labels or $49.95 for longer-lasting weatherproof labels. Hint - rather than spend $50 on blank labels and then end up messing them up while trying to print ... use one of the professional personalized label printers that are listed at the bottom of this page, it will cost you about the same amount of money in the end!

The weatherproof labels are easier to peel off than the paper labels but there is some debate as to whether or not they are any better than the paper labels. Many of the professional label printers swear by the paper labels. It is recommended that you do not use Avery labels commonly available at many office supply stores.

Many poker chips can accommodate a 1" label but some chips require a smaller label. The chip that you use for your homemade poker labels must have a recessed (sunken) center area where you can place the label. If the center is not recessed, the label will increase the thickness of each chip, meaning that your chips might not fit in the same racks that they fit in before.

Several blank poker chips are known to have recessed centers and are good choices for sticking on your own labels. The NexGen poker chips are probably the most popular chip for this at this time. The 13 Gram chips and Texas Hold'em chips are also good candidates. Many of the 'Dice' and 'Suited' style chips also have recessed centers.

Poker chip Poker chip Poker chip
NexGenTexas Hold'em13 Gram Casino

It will take you quite some time to stick the labels on both sides of your 500 or 1,000 poker chip set. The most time consuming task will be centering the label on the chip. It wouldn't be too bad if you could just peel and stick on the label real quick ... but you will find that it takes a good eye, a steady hand, and plenty of time to properly center and label your chips. If you also want to align your labels so that your edge spots are at the 2, 6, and 10 o'clock positions, it will take even longer!

Labels will change the 'feel' of your chip. When you rub your fingers across your chips, you will feel the label rather than the composite plastic. This may give your chips a 'papery' feel, or a slicker 'vinyl' feel, depending on the type of label used. Keep in mind that paper is generally not as slippery as plastic so your chips might feel a little stickier when sliding on a poker table. Fibers from the poker table felt or cloth will rub against the label, even if recessed, and cause more friction when sliding your chips on the table.

If you do not protect your labels, you will have to replace them after a certain amount of play. The labels will accumulate dirt and eventually begin to stick together. They will tear and rip and players will pick at them with their fingernails. Your labels might last you a couple years if you play infrequently but might last only a tournament or two if you have rough-surfaced tables. You can use a protective spray such as Krylon Satin Fix on your labels to make sure that they don't fade or scratch. You can also use Final Fixatives sprays found at arts or crafts stores. Apply the spray before you place the labels on your chips. Your labels will be water resistant and will last much longer when protected.

If you use your own printer to print labels make sure that you use the 'Labels' paper setting on your laser printer. This will produce a much better and glossier finish. Some people have luck with using ink-jet printers but laser printers are much preferred. Ink-jet print has a tendency to smudge much easier than laser toner.

If you cannot print your own labels, you can send your artwork, by email, to one of the sellers listed below. They will print your labels and mail them to you in an envelope. Some vendors will even assist you in creating your artwork for the label. The cost for 1,000 labels (500 chips) is about $30-$50. sells a complete do-it-yourself kit to create customized poker chip labels. The kit includes Windows graphics software to help design your label and a 'jig' to assist you in affixing your newly designed label to your chip. The kit also includes 500 blank composite poker chips that are suitable for labels. The kit does nothing that you couldn't do on your own but is a simple one-stop solution for labeling poker chips. I expect to receive a ChipCustomizer for review on this website in a month or two (May 2008).

Poker Chip Label Sellers

Custom Poker Chip Labels
Online Labels
Poker Chips Labels
World Label

Designing Your Poker Chip Label

Copyrighted or trademarked material cannot be placed on a poker chip label. Check with your specific manufacturer for more information. Some sellers, such as HomePokerChips, have access to online clipart collections such as

These programs will help you design your poker chip labels. Most of these files are templates to be used with Adobe Photoshop. You can download a free 30-day trial version of Photoshop here. You might also be able to use Jasc's Paint Shop Pro. Be warned that these are fairly complicated software applications and there is a rather steep learning curve before you can use them ... and of course, I will not assist you in any way! Use 300dpi and CMYK colors.  (Photoshop file courtesy of TobascoJRC) (Forum thread)
Chip Factory Sample different chip and edge spot colors on different molds  (Photoshop file courtesy of Dapper Dan) (Forum thread)
SureThing Office Labeler  (Free trial, Photoshop not required. Design labels, business cards, etc.)


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