Miles Cowperthwaite from Bel Air, Maryland sends us a letter asking, “You keep talking about bleeds and I’m pretty sure you’re not planning murder. How do I know if I have the bleeds? How do I add them to my documents if I don’t already have them?”
No, Mr. Cowperthwaite, we’re definitely not planning murder! And what a great question! Bleeds are very important in making sure your document gets printed the right way, and we’re happy to walk you through some of the most common ways of adding them.
A bleed is a buffer zone outside the printing area of a document. Bleeds are necessary to allow color or other content to stretch all the way to the edge of your page. The typical bleed is a padding of 0.125” added to all four sides of a document.
If you’re designing a document yourself, you will have to manually set up bleeds. If a graphic designer (like our wonderful team here at Curry Printing) is designing the document for you, they will establish bleeds so you won’t have to worry about it.
Here’s some of the most common ways to establish bleeds on your document: