7 Print Jargon Terms You Need to Know


Whether you are printing brochures or leaflets, banners or business cards, it is helpful to know a little of the jargon associated with the printing process. It helps you make the best decisions about your printing needs, and allows you to work more effectively with printing companies to produce the best finished results.

  1. Print Sizes

Familiarise yourself with the print paper sizes that printing services work with. If you are printing large posters then an A0 size is a good idea, otherwise if you are leaflet printing then A6 is perfect.

  1. DPI

This means “dots per inch” and it is the way printing companies describe printed products’ resolution. The higher the DPI, the more detail you get in print. It is useful to have high DPI in brochure printing, for example, while for business card printing it is not so essential.

  1. CMYK

This means cyan, magenta, yellow, and key (which means black). It is a way of referring to the most common type of combination in colour printing. It is important that you design your materials in CMYK in order to get the highest quality finish to the print.

  1. RGB

This means red, green, and blue. You can use this as a blend in order to create other colours in your design. But steer clear of RGB in printed products as the finish will not be satisfactory.

  1. Trim Size

When you are printing materials you don’t want items to get mistakenly cut off when the content is trimmed. You need to leave space for the trimming to happen without losing any detail. When it comes to brochure printing you also need to make sure that you do not lose information or images in the centre of the fold.

  1. Bleed

This is a similar concept, where you want the background or the main colour on a page to go to the edge of the product. You therefore leave an overlap, or bleed, on the image or artwork in order to lose the risk of getting a white line around the image.

  1. Saddle Stitching

When you are designing brochures and leaflets you use saddle stitching to bind the pages together inside each other, and then fix them with staples along the fold. You need to ensure you leave space between the fold and the edge of the text so people can read it.