If you’re new to the world of print, then you may not understand what full bleed printing is. To prevent your printed product from having unsightly white lines around the border, you must set your document up with bleeds. Bleed refers to an extra 1/8” (.125 in) of image or background color that extends beyond the trim area of your printing piece. The project is printed on an oversized sheet that is then cut down to size with the appearance that the image is “bleeding” off the edge of the paper.
It is best practice to set up your bleeds at the very beginning of your project so you don’t have to adjust at the end. There are a few extra terms you must understand along with bleed are trim, safety, and borders.
Full bleed printing is only possible when the project is printed on larger sheets, then trimmed down to size. Just like you can’t print up to the edge on your home printer, neither can we. Sometimes it’s easier for customers to understand the different terms and concepts associated with bleed if they see the trimming process. In the video below, you will see the trimmer pressing down on the stack of paper, then trimming. The amount of give a stack of paper has during this process adds up to a minute deviation either beyond or within the trim line.
This deviation is very small and is relatively simple to plan for during the designing process. Each design program addresses bleed differently, so we have put together some tips for the main programs we see.
If you’re wanting to double check to see if your bleed is set up correctly, utilize our free downloadable templates to compare your files to.