If you are sending artwork, please send us your file according to the following guidelines. Doing so will ensure your artwork will be printed correctly.
Bleed: .125" on all sides of your artwork (e.g., 4" x 6" card has overall dimensions 4.25" x 6.25")
Safe Area: .125"(e.g., 4" x 6" card has all important information inside an area of 3.75" x 5.75")
Color mode: CMYK (not RGB)
Note: In a great many cases, especially business cards, we can work with bleed and safe are of .0625" instead of .125".
If you prefer this smaller margin/safe area, please ask us before submitting your artwork.
FILE SETUP REQUIREMENTS IN DETAIL
Lets use a 2” x 3.5” business card with a blue background for an example. If you are printing your card at 2” x 3.5” and the paper shifts 1/64” of an inch in any direction during printing, then you will have 1/64” of white on the opposite edge. To avoid this problem, you simply need to extend your background color past the cut edge and "trim area" of your document. When this is done you have enough color so the white is cut off. This extra color that extends past the cut edge of your document is what is known as a bleed in the printing industry.
To illustrate the above point, lets say you are printing the same 2” x 3.5” business cards with a blue background, however this time your card is set up at the size of 2.125” x 3.625”. You have extended your blue color .0625” (1/16") past the edge of your business card. Now when your card shifts 1/64” to the left there is enough bleed on the right to cover the shift. Once the printing is done, we cut your 2.125” x 3.625” business cards down to 2” x 3.5”. The end result is you have a stack of 2” x 3.5” business cards and no white space on any side.
To help hide the fact that the paper has shifted we ask that you keep all of your elements a pre-determined distance away from the fold. The pre-determined distance is what is called "gutter". We ask that customers provide a gutter of .125”. The .125” gutter needs to be on both sides of the fold. It is OK to extend a background image or color across a fold as long as the background image does not start or stop within .125” of the fold. If you have a document to print that has design elements that start and stop on a fold OR are closer than .125” to a fold then it is considered a document with Critical Folds. We will make every effort to maintain your folds as you have requested, however we do not guarantee critical folds.
Enabling Overprint Preview: Mac Instructions - With the PDF open, choose Advanced > Print Production > Overprint Preview. PC Instructions - With the PDF open, choose View > Overprint Preview. See the samples below:
On the first side of first 8.5” x 11” sheet, the front cover, page one, will take up the right 8.5” x 5.5”. The back cover, page 12, will take up the left 8.5” x 5.5” half of the sheet. Note – page 1 and 12 are on the same 8.5 x 11 sheet. On the second side of the first 8.5" x 11" sheet the left side will be page 2 and the right side will be page 11. The second 8.5” x 11” sheet will have page 3 and 10 on one side. Pages 4 and 9 will be on the other. The third 8.5” x 11” sheet will have page 5 and 8 will be on one side. Pages 6 and 7, the centerfold, will be on the other. This is what is known as printer spreads. Each of the three 8.5” x 11” sheets will be folded to 8.5” x 5.5”. Then they will be collated and stitched to make a 12-page booklet.
Now, let's say when you open the cover of your booklet and are looking at pages 2 and 3 you want to see a motorcycle rider taking up both pages. To accomplish this you will need to print the left half, page 2, of the motorcycle rider on the first 8.5” x 11” sheet. You then will need to print the right side of the motorcycle rider, page 3, on the second 8.5” x 11” sheet. So, one image, the motorcycle rider, is being printed on two separate pieces of paper. Those two pieces of paper are then folded and stitched together to make one big image. This is what is known as a Crossover Image. We will make every effort to maintain your Crossover Images as you have requested, however we do not guarantee them.