Perfect Bound Brochures

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PERFECT BOUND BROCHURES: A STRONGER, CLASSIER LOOK

This style of binding is probably the most popular around, and for good reason. Perfect binding gives that wonderful high-class magazine quality to your brochure or catalogue and as a bonus will work wonders for the long-lasting durability of your publication.

We realise that it’s often a struggle for you to give your literature an edge without paying over the odds. That’s why we couldn’t recommend perfect bound printing more; it’ll give your clients an awesome impression and really will last long enough to prove its worth.

What is perfect binding and is PUR binding different?

Perfect binding is the method used to create a square spine (much like a soft-back book). The pages are folded and collated into the right order, then glued into the spine of the cover.

PUR is the type of glue we use to bind the cover and text pages together. It’s a strong, durable glue and the best one available which is why we use it!

How can I use perfect bound brochures in my marketing plans?

Printing your brochure as a perfect bound booklet makes so much sense. You can use the perfect binding style as a base for all manner of other beautiful embellishments, such as a spot UV gloss varnish (awesome on top of matt or soft-touch velvet lamination).

Try experimenting with unusual paper styles too, such as this unique, award-winning perfect bound brochure we produced using a Kraft uncoated board for the cover.

What are the most popular sizes for perfect binding brochures?

  • A4 landscape and portrait
  • 210 x 210mm square
  • A5 landscape and portrait
  • DL (210 x 99mm or third A4) portrait
Lithographic printing - litho print with Newton Print

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Lithographic printing - litho print with Newton Print

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What are perfect bound brochures useful for?

  • Catalogues
  • Brochures
  • Look Books
  • Magazines
  • Manuals

Paper Choices

You might find yourself asking: what is the best paper to use for my brochure? Our team of printing experts have put together this quick guide, but remember we’re always happy to help by phone, email or live chat.

Silk Coated Papers

Silk is a coated paper which has a slight sheen to it and is our recommended option for colour printing.

Pros:

  • Superb colour vibrancy and accuracy
  • Smooth, silky finish
  • Available in weights from 80gsm up to 450gsm

Cons:

  • Can show fingerprints/scuffs over time without a laminate to protect (although very rarely)
  • Isn’t as ‘matt’ as uncoated

Gloss coated papers

Gloss is also a coated paper which has more sheen than silk.

Pros:

  • Superb colour vibrancy and accuracy
  • High-gloss finish
  • Available in weights from 80gsm up to 450gsm

Cons:

  • Can show fingerprints/scuffs over time without a laminate to protect (although very rarely)
  • Is generally more suited to a product catalogue than a luxury brochure

Uncoated papers

Uncoated paper has no sheen at all (IE it is completely matte) and is becoming more popular as a ‘natural’ paper for printing.

Pros:

  • Natural, organic feel to the paper
  • Available in smooth or rougher finishes
  • Totally matte finish
  • Gives an impression of eco-friendliness
  • Feels thicker than silk or gloss papers
  • Available in weights from 80gsm up to 450gsm

Cons:

  • Reduces the vibrancy of colours and imagery
  • Can have quite a strong odour (but that might be a good thing!)

Speciality papers

If you’re looking for something out of the ordinary, we recommend using a special paper for the cover. It will make your brochure stand out and customers will interact better with it.

Here are some ideas:

Kraft board

This is a brown board with cardboard-like appearance and has a very rustic, organic look and feel. Check out our YOGI Look Book and Newtown Packaging Brochure case studies.

Colorplan

A hugely popular range from GF Smith, it is a fairly rough uncoated paper available in a range of different colours and embosses. You can see some of these in our Yorton brochure and Duesday Wallet case studies. There are plenty of alternatives too, such as the Keaykolour embossed paper we used for the Cavanna Homes brochure.

Translucent papers

These work best throughout the brochure as a highlight or design feature. You can see an example of this in our Hentland Service Package brochure case study.

See this in action

Yogi perfect bound brochure look book

YOGI LOOK BOOK

This stunning look book for our client Laced Creative is a perfect bound book that uses Spot UV with a tactile Kraft cover and uncoated paper to create a rustic, unfinished feel.


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Microsoft brochure with perfect bound spine

MICROSOFT BROCHURE

This classy brochure for Microsoft’s Employee Engagement programme includes a tactile uncoated paper with spot UV, perfect bound spine and index tab cutting.


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Yogi perfect bound brochure look book

PACKAGING BROCHURE

We produced this unique brochure for our client who was keen to emulate the raw cardboard effect of their packaging materials, so we used a Kraft cover to pack a real punch.


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Yorton perfect bound brochure printing

YORTON BROCHURE

A beautiful work of art, this perfect bound booklet includes a Gmund Rhinoceros embossed cover from GF Smith with bronze foil blocking to create a luxuriant, tactile finish.


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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Are there enough pages in my brochure for a perfect bound spine?

Usually a minimum of 32 pages of text is recommended for perfect bound brochure printing, but this will depend on the thickness of the paper used. We’d always recommend a perfect bound spine for anything with more pages than 60pp as it would be too bulky and springy for a standard saddle-stitch. (You may have heard of PUR bound brochures – it’s exactly the same thing. PUR is just the type of glue that we use in perfect bound booklet spines. It’s flexible and tough, meaning that your brochure will open out better and last longer).

Can I have a small volume of brochures perfect bound?

Perfect binding is ideal for both low and high quantities including digital print. It’s a really cost-effective binding method and is relatively quick to produce. We produce a lot of digitally printed brochures with a perfect bound spine and it does make a lot of sense given the relatively low cost and long life.

What paper specification is best for a perfect binding?

It probably goes without saying that perfect bound books, catalogues and brochures should have a decent cover with lamination (350gsm – 400gsm) and a thinner text paper (130gsm – 170gsm are the best options). This will give you the perfect blend of durability, cost-efficiency and quality.

Perfect binding is suitable for all paper options. Often, we find that catalogues and magazines are best on a gloss paper. Brochures, look books, guides etc are usually printed on a silk paper (less sheen than a gloss). For a touch of class and to give your brochure a ‘natural’ feel, go for a tactile uncoated paper. Ask us for samples to help you decide which is best for you.

Is perfect binding durable?

Perfect binding with our PUR adhesive creates a super-strong spine which can withstand a lot of use and won’t be subject to pages falling out. We’ve been using this binding method for years and have never had any issues at all, so we’d highly recommend it.

If you need your brochure to really last long, we’d recommend a section-sewn (or thread sewn) bound book. This is literally as it sounds; the book is bound together at the spine with actual thread before the cover is attached. If you’re expecting your book to get a lot of use and want it to last for years, this is the one for you.

What printing techniques and special finishes can I use with perfect bound brochures?

We always recommend a lamination for the cover to protect it and keep it looking tidy. You can choose from the standard matt or gloss or go for a spot of luxury with soft-touch velvet lamination – truly irresistible! For extra protection (especially if you have a lot of dark colouring on the cover) then we recommend our anti-scuff matt laminate which is much more resistant to fingerprints, scratches and marks.

The beauty of laminated covers is that you can choose an additional print finish or two to embellish it. Spot UV varnish works really well on top of matt and soft-touch laminations, and you can see examples here. Spot UV varnish on an uncoated cover has a really impressive effect too and you can see an example here.

Foil Blocking is also a stunning visual effect and comes in a variety of colours and patterns, including holographic foil. You can read more about foil block printing here.

How do I set up my print artwork files for perfect binding?

Everything you need to know is in our guide to supplying artwork. If you need a helping hand though, please get in touch with our studio at 01626 368992 and the team will be happy to help or pop a question into our chat window.

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