You’re ready to print that file you’ve been working on. But is the file you’ve been working on ready for print? Let’s take a look at what it takes to set up for print.


A bleed area of .125″ is needed for us to print. What is a bleed? It’s the part of your file that stretches beyond the finished size. Think of a cookie cutter. Now think about the cookie dough. When you roll out the dough, it works best if it’s larger than the cookie cutter, right? Same with printing with bleeds. For example, if you wanted us to print an 8.5×11 flyer that has a background photo that will go all the way to the edge of the page, you will need to provide a file with bleeds. What we will do is place two of them on larger paper (12×18 or 13×19) and cut them down to 8.5×11. In cutting, we will trim off that .125″ so that the finished 8.5×11 will have the background image going all the way to the edge of the paper.

Crop Marks

A bleed is great, but crop marks tell us where to cut. Crop marks (or trim marks) are the lines at the corners of files that tell us where to line up the blade of our cutter so we can cut your print job to the correct size. Setting the crop marks is automatically done by the design software and you should not have to draw them in manually.

Gang Up

Ganging up in printing means that we fit as many instances of your file on a sheet of paper stock as possible. This obviously cuts down on waste but also speeds your print job along because there are more printed per machine click. Ganging up is something that we will do and something that you (the customer) shouldn’t do. Why? Well, it’s seldom done correctly, and the other reason is that most customers who try to gang up work themselves thing we only print on 8.5×11 sheets of paper. In reality, we print on larger sheets and sending us 1up files allows us the flexibility to determine what stock to use.