ID Badges: How to design and make them?

Designing a template for a fake ID can be achieve in a couple of months. But, are you someone who needs ID badges for either personal or business use? If so, you should try designing your own which will fit all your requirements and preferences. It is a simple task that anyone can accomplish. There are no expert skills necessary, but you should be familiar with the basic procedures.

If you are taking up this task, you might have a couple of questions regarding the process of making a custom ID badge. Making fake IDs is a way different process than making a custom ID badge or design. Don’t worry; this guide will help you through the required steps to achieve your goal.

The basic items needed to design and make a custom ID badge are given below:
⦁ ID card printer
⦁ ID card software

Step #1 – Figure Out What You Really Want

Your requirements will end up deciding your budget to make unique IDs by yourself. Before you go on to buy any of the required items, you need to decide the type of badge you need.

There are many varieties of ID badges. Some only consist of a person’s name, gender, and department, whereas others include photos as an added feature. There are even some ID badges that are designed to store information regarding your position. Some badges can also be designed to have a higher security clearance as compared to others.

These are the types of details you need to figure out by yourself before buying any equipment.  Once you figure out which type of card you want, decide the main theme of your design.

Choose the color and shape along with the function of your ID badge as different badges have different functions. Some are used as general badges, whereas others are used for the verification of employees.

Here are some details you can opt for:

  • You can choose to add photos to your ID badges. You also need to decide on the size of the photo.
  • For some badges, it is normal to have information printed on both sides, with the primary information on one side

and a return address on the other. This configuration is widely used since in the event the ID badge is lost by the owner and found by someone else, they can return it to its rightful owner.

  • You also need to choose the main function of the ID badge.
  • You can design it to be used as a key to unlock doors and lifts or just as a general ID for verification when entering the workplace.

Finalize the design for your unique ID badge and move on to the next step.

Step #2 – Get a Printing System

The basic elements of an ID card printing system include the hardware and the software required to design and print your unique designs. These include:

  1. ID card printer
  2. ID card software
  3. Printer ribbon
  4. ID cards
  5. Camera

ID Card Printer

The printer depends on the type of ID badge you want to design. There are mainly two categories of ID badges:

  • ID badges that consist of text and sometimes photos
  • ID badges that have a function beyond just displaying identifying information

Regular Badges

A regular ID badge has no specific function. It consists of only text and occasionally photos. These types of badges do not have any function other than being used as a nametag. You do not need any high-quality ID card printers or special encoding software to produce such badges.

ID Badges with Functions

If you design an ID badge that has a specific function that has to be coded onto it using special software, you need a high-quality ID card printer. It should be able to produce ID badges that can perform these special functions.

You need a printing setup that can make cards with good color contrast and high details. The equipment you purchase for your ID badge designing setup must be of good quality. It may not seem that a good color contrast will not affect the badge, but it does. If your printer cannot produce the correct contrast for your badges, the primary function of those badges might not work.

If your badge is designed to function as a key to access different areas, you need the correct color contrast printed on the badge to be able to correctly store the necessary information.

The same problem may also arise if the ID card printer does not produce a high detailed badge. Again, if your badge is to be used as an access key, it needs to be clearly readable by scanning machines.

ID Card Software

Such software is the same across almost all platforms with minor differences in pre-installed templates. You can use these templates to design your badge, but if you want something completely tailored for your needs, it is best if you purchase software that provides you with the ability to design your own badge.


A camera is important if you want to add photos to your ID badges. A mid-range professional camera will suffice for this task.

Step #3 – Set Up the System

To initialize the printer, you need to install the printing software as well as the ID card software. Once this is done, you need to test your system by printing any random ID card. You may choose from any of the given templates and do a trial run.

This is to make sure you do not encounter any errors or hurdles when you print your own ID badges. This will also give you an idea of how your final product will look so that you can make your design accordingly. Check and reinstall all the drivers for your printing setup if any errors occur. If you want to add photos to your ID badge, install the necessary drivers for your camera as well.

Step #4 – Print Your ID Card

You should have finalized the design on the software. If you are adding a photo to your badge, take the photo using the camera and import it into the ID card software. Before printing the ID, recheck everything in your design. After you have confirmed your choices and are satisfied with the design, you can go ahead and print it on your card.

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