July 12, 2018



Your marketing materials often make your first impression and are essential to the success of your business, organization, or event. They are critical to successful branding, and your customers will be directly influenced by the information presented.

First impressions matter. Experts say we size up new people in somewhere between 30 seconds and two minutes.

–Elliott Abrams

The material you present to the world doesn’t have to be expensive or complicated, but it needs to reflect the best of your business. When it comes to printing multi-page documents, such as brochures, catalogues, and booklets, understanding the binding options will help you put your best foot forward. Saddle stitch and perfect binding are the two most common options.

What is saddle stitch binding?

The saddle stitch is a type of binding that staples collated papers at the fold. It gets its name from the saddle-like equipment used when stitching and folding.

The saddle stitch is optimal for a variety of book types, including catalogs, manuals, booklets, multi-page brochures, price and parts lists, newsletters, mailers, calendars, and more.

Saddle stitch binding process

After pages are printed, the binding process takes five quick steps. Watch the video to see each step as a CarMax coloring book comes into being.

  1. The tower collates the pages into a book.
  2. The pages are sent to the stitcher, which uses the two spools to create the staples.
  3. The books are pushed up to be folded in half.
  4. The folded pages are delivered to the face trimmer where a blade takes off about an eighth of an inch to create a clean edge.
  5. The bound and trimmed books pass to the final belt to be collected and boxed.

How can saddle stitch binding benefit a business, educational institution, or nonprofit?

The saddle stitch binding method is economical, can be used for short runs, has a fast turnaround time, can be hole-punched, and can accommodate artwork that might span two pages. 

What are the page count requirements for saddle stitch binding?

The booklets need to be a minimum of four pages and a maximum of 116 pages. The number of pages will always be divisible by four.  

What is perfect binding?

Perfect binding is a form of bookbinding in which the pages are bound by adhesive and the back folds are cut off leaving a perfect edge for the glue to adhere to the hard or soft book covers.

Perfect binding is commonly used for annual and corporate reports, manuals, catalogs, and thicker product brochures and magazines.

Saddle stitch vs perfect binding?

How do you choose between the two types of document binding? A rule of thumb is any project that is 48 to 116 pages can be bound by the saddle stitch. Anything over 117 pages should use perfect binding. We’ll be able to work with you to guide you through the selection process.

Let’s get started

We know every business is different, and we’re here to help you determine your needs and stay within your budget. Contact us for personalized solutions or get an estimate.

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