Artwork adjustments for Perfect bound job

One area of significant confusion is how to make the correct artwork adjustments for Perfect or PUR bound jobs when there are images or text that cross over from the left hand page, across the spine, to the right hand page. Once you appreciate that the book cannot be opened flat (without irreparably breaking the spine and pages becoming loose) it is a short step to understand that part of the page is lost within the valley the spine creates. To create the illusion of an image or text that is continuous across the spine, some adjustment is necessary.

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Binding and Folding Illustrations

The binding and folding illustrations below are not exhaustive but give a good starting point (click on an image to enlarge) to gaining an understanding of the different types of available binding methods and folding schemes.

There is a single illustration for Perfect Binding but included within this category is PUR Binding and Thread Sewing. An earlier blog post considers the merits of PUR vs Perfect Binding because they are similar in method and operation. A Thread Sewn book has one major advantage over the other two; it can be opened and it will lie flat. It is also a significantly more expensive method of binding.

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Printing Jargon: What does it mean?

This is a list of the more common terms.


Term to describe the digital representation of the customer’s piece of marketing collateral. This digital representation can be put together in many software packages including Indesign and QuarkXpress.


A substance that will decompose as the result of action by bacteria and other living organisms.


The part of a printed page that extends beyond the trim size or finished size of the printed piece.

Blind emboss

A logo, text or design which has been relief stamped into a sheet of paper, onto which no printing ink has been added.

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Paper Sizes

There are a number of paper sizing standards. The three series shown in the table below are the most commonplace for publishing and printing and are: ‘A’ sizes, ‘B’ sizes and ‘SRA’ sizes.

The international paper size standard, ISO 216, defines the ‘A’ sizes and is based on the German DIN 476 standard for paper sizes. ISO paper sizes are all based on a single aspect ratio of square root of 2, or approximately 1:1.4142. The base A0 size of paper is defined to have an area of one m². Rounded to millimetres the A0 paper size is 841 by 1,189 millimetres (33.1 × 46.8 in).

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PUR Binding or Perfect Binding?

Our customers regularly ask us to consider and explain the merits of PUR binding over Perfect binding. These considerations are often made against a backdrop of performance and ever increasingly, price constraints. With this in mind, let’s consider the differences between PUR and perfect binding and try to contextualise when it is appropriate to PUR bind or perfect bind.

The fundamental difference between the two types of binding is the adhesive used in the process. Perfect binding uses ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) adhesives whereas PUR uses polyurethane reactive (PUR) adhesives. Put simply, the binding really only differs by way of the type of glue used. It is the properties of each type of adhesive, however, which is important in determining which is suitable.

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The Beginning

110 years of history is something special.

The partnership of Wood Mitchell was formed in 1901, the dawn of the twentieth century was a time of change. The funeral of Queen Victoria took place in London and King Edward VII opened his first parliament, oil was discovered in Texas and William McKinley began his second term as US President as Theodore Roosevelt was sworn in as Vice President.

The founding partners were James Wood, who had been a salesman for another Stoke-on-Trent printers, John Brunt, Henry Brunt and Herbert Mitchell, a headmaster. The business was started at Oriel Works, Park Street, Hanley as Lithographic, Letterpress and Bookbinding Printers. These premises, built in 1886, were sold to the new partnership in 1901 by a branch of Bemrose and Sons of Derby and London.

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