This PDF will explain the basics of our PSD guides and show design techniques that work as well as design techniques that do not work. First you will select your card size and fold style, for this guide we will use a 5x7 Wide Fold Card. This means that the card will be 7"x5" when folded and 14"x5" when unfolded, and that the fold will be on the left along the 5" size. It is important to keep in mind that all of our guides are sized .25" larger to accommodate for our bleed and trim tolerances.
The guides for every ProDPI folded card will be 3 separate PSD files, a Front, a Back, and an Inside. The files that you prepare for submission must be the exact same size as the PSD guide. If your file is not sized exactly the same as the guide it will be enlarged or cropped to fit this printing area which will potentially lose or alter elements of your design.
Red and Blue Guides
1. RED = Cutting Zone. The RED area of the guide represents where the trimming will occur when your cards are cut down. It is important to note that your image/design must completely fill the RED area because the trimming can and will occur anywhere within that space.
2. BLUE = Suggested Border Thickness. The interior blue line indicates the size that your border must be if you are creating a design with a border. If you are not using a border in your design, this blue line is not important.
NOTE: Text, image and logos can all be safely located outside the blue line as long as they do not go into the RED cutting zone.
Correct Design #1
1. Text and logo information is safely inside the RED area.
2. Image and background design bleed ALL THE WAY to the edge of the file and guide clearly shows where trimming will occur.
Correct Design #2
In this design the image has been cropped so that it fills the entire RED trim border. This is acceptable when you have a design or very close crop that you are concerned about losing. Your border must be smaller than the white area outside the RED trim border for this design trick to work. See close up in image below. Your final file size will still need to be the same as the guide.
Correct Design #2 Cont.
Background of design extends past the RED trim area.
Correct Design #3
If you are designing a border into your card, it is very important that you make it the same size as the space outside the BLUE guide line. A border this size will have a very even and centered appearance on the final product.
Design Mistake Example #1
This is the first of three examples of design techniques that you should not use for any card product. In this example the image has been cropped to the final card size of 7"x5" and placed on the larger 7.125"x5.25" file. The image goes all the way into the middle of the red which might make it look like it is okay, but it definitely is not. The trimming will leave uneven slivers of white on all four sides of the final card!
Design Mistake #2
This is the second of three examples on design techniques that you should not use for any card products. In this example the image has been cropped to fill everything except the RED cut zone. The trimming in production will leave this card with slightly larger but still very uneven white borders.
Design Mistake #3
This is the final example of a design technique that should NOT be used on any card product. In this case the designer wants a border that is smaller than the border size that is designated by the BLUE guide line, but this type of design is never successful. Our trimming equipment has a tolerance and the likelihood of a border this small looking even on the final product is very very small.