When designing a Leather Craftsmen book, please keep the following considerations in mind to ensure the best quality after printing. 

Leaving adequate safe zone

Leather Craftsmen recommends leaving a safe zone of at least 1/2 inch on all layouts, especially layouts that are not full-bleed. Individual images that are not intended to bleed off the edge of the page should be positioned inside the safe zone. 

Note: If you are printing a larger album and intend to make smaller (parent) replicas of it in the future, it is particularly important to leave at least 3/4 - 1 inch of blank safe zone around all images that are not intended to bleed off the edge of the page. As you shrink the original layout, the safe zones will also shrink.

How to check the safe zone

  1. Double-click any spread to enter Designer View.
  2. Reference the green safe zone guide to position your images.

Example 1: Correct

On the left-hand side, the image is full-bleed and extends off the edges of the page without any border/stroke/gap around it. Note that all images are displayed exactly the way they should look in the printed album. 

On the right-hand side, the images are positioned within the safe zone, leaving adequate negative space around the composition. The amount of space between the images and the edge of the page results in a layout that is visually appealing. 

Example 2: Not Correct 

On the right-hand side, the images are positioned too close to the edge of the page. The negative space between the images and the edge of the page is insufficient to create a visually appealing layout. 

Designing for split vs. folded pages

On several album types, Leather Craftsmen offers the option of having split or folded pages. Split pages result when the spread is cut in two, with a black gutter appearing between the resulting two pages. When the book opens up, the black gutter strip is visible in the center. 

Folded pages result when the spread is not cut at all, but instead just folded in half. When the book opens up, it lays flat, and the spread appears continuous. 

Layout considerations

When positioning images around the gutter, if there is a very narrow gap right in the center of the spread, the design is best visualized as a folded page. 

You cannot order to print such a design with split pages, because it is very difficult to cut a spread with such a narrow gap in two exactly down the middle. Furthermore, even if the spread is cut evenly into two pages, the gap is so thin that it begins to look like a white line on either side of the black gutter, making the spread visually unappealing.

If you would like to order the above design with split pages, Leather Craftsmen recommends that you get rid of the middle gap by entering Designer View and moving the images on either side of the gutter up against each other:

If you would like to order split pages, preserving the thin white line on either side, please contact Leather Craftsmen directly to approve your layout. 

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