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Basic bleed question

Nov 18, 2012 12:30 PM

I'm designing a simple flyer that will be printed (I have little experience in the print world) and it might need to bleed to the edges, though I'm waiting to hear back from the person I'm designing it for.


1. If it does bleed to the edges, do I only need to make sure that the artwork on my artboard touches the edges of my artboard? OR is there something else that needs to be done?



  • Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 18, 2012 1:10 PM   in reply to mediafred

    You artwork should go beyond the edges of your artboard to allow some wiggle room for trimming.


    Like so:


    Screen shot 2012-11-18 at 12.53.35 PM.png


    When saving as a .pdf, go to the Marks and Bleed options. Here you can set the desired bleed measurement (specified by your printer). I've included crop marks to further illustrate the result.


    Screen shot 2012-11-18 at 12.58.41 PM copy.png


    Here I have the document open in Acrobat, so you can see how the file exported. The trim marks line up with the artboard of your original document, so when the flyer is trimmed down your artwork will go all the way to the edge, even if the trim is slightly off.


    Screen shot 2012-11-18 at 12.54.44 PM.png


    For more information, check out this link:


    Forum discussion:


    Good luck!


    (EDIT: I took off one of the links because, after closer inspection, I didn't think the instructions were best practice.)

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 20, 2012 8:59 AM   in reply to mediafred

    Actually it will be trimmed to the rectangle defined by the trim marks at the edge.

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    Nov 26, 2012 1:12 PM   in reply to mediafred

    1 - It should not cause a problem as long as you know the final document size. if you go back to your .ai document and choose save as PDF, you will be able to change the bleed measurement again for the new version.


    2 - Everything beyond the crop marks (pink and purple areas in the image below) is trimmed away, blue and white areas alike.



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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 27, 2012 4:47 AM   in reply to EricaLynneLarson

    Best practice is to offset the crop marks at least the width of the bleed, in the US, .125" bleed is common, so the marks should be offset to .125". The reason for this is to avoid a bit of crop mark on the finished piece if the final cutting is off.

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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Nov 27, 2012 12:42 PM   in reply to Luke Jennings

    0.125" is a common bleed for publishing and small collateral (such as a flyer). But it's always best practice to check with your printer to ensure what bleed they would actually like (especially for larger graphics).


    I work for a printing company and I can't tell you how many times I've been sent 0.125" bleed for large- and grand-format graphics. Too many designers think 0.125" is an all-encompassing "industry standard" when it's anything but.

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