Saddle Stitch Binding

So you want to print a booklet but you don’t want to spend the money on a perfect bind. (Binding that is used on soft cover books. See last week’s blog entry) Saddle stitch is one way to save money and still give a professional look.

To saddle stitch, the material is printed in a book format and then folded over in half and stapled twice on the spine. This is a cost-effective way of printing a booklet but it does have limitations that you should consider.

• The maximum number of pages you want to use saddle stitch on before moving to a perfect bind is 80. To get an idea of the things you need to consider when saddle stitching a booklet, take 20 sheets of 8 1/2″x 11″ paper and fold it in half. Now, you have to trim that excess paper to give your booklet a squared off shape. Keep in mind the text margins you need to account for when trimming the excess.
• Once you near 80 pages using saddle stitch, you may want to consider using a lower weight of paper to keep the bulk down.
• If your booklet is over 80 pages, you may want to consider moving to a perfect bind. (see picture) It will not add much to the cost and give your material a more professional look.
• If you’re going to print a 6″ x 9″ booklet, same rules apply to my blog entry last week; consider printing 5 3/8″ x 8 3/8″. Saves lots of money.

These are issues you won’t get addressed by trying to order your work online. It’s always better to talk to your printer and discuss your needs first.