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What are Bleeds?

Bleed is a printing or design term used when the ink goes to or through the edge of the sheet after trimming. The bleed is the extra design space in a document that gives the printer that small amount of room for trimming and to compensate for a small amount of registration shifting during the print process. Printed pieces that have a white border or white around the edges, DO NOT bleed. If you have images or backgrounds that you want to print (bleed) off the edge of the paper, then you must design your job larger than the final CUT SIZE. We create a finished piece with bleeds by actually cutting through the enlarged or extra image/background.

How to Create Bleeds:

To create bleeds, make your document larger than the final CUT SIZE (finished size of the document you are requesting). We require that you make your document 0.125" larger on all four sides, therefore, the size with bleeds will be 0.25"; larger than the final cut size in both dimensions. For example, if you are printing a postcard with a final cut size of 4" x 6";, then the size with bleeds (BLEED SIZE) will be 4.25" x 6.25".

When designing with bleeds make use of visual guides found in most graphics arts programs. Start by making your document design size equal to the BLEED SIZE (for a 4" x 6" postcard, make it 4.25" x 6.25"). Now place guides 0.125" in from these edges, all the way around. These guides are where the document/card will be cut (CUT EDGE). Anything you want to bleed off the edge of the card must extend past your guides out to the BLEED EDGE. If photos and backgrounds do not extend past these guides, (if they do not bleed), white may show around the edges when we cut the cards, due to slight movement during the cutting process.

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