How many times have you hit “print” on your device, only to find a page that fell short of your expectations? Whether the image was cut off or the border was too thick, it just wasn’t what you were expecting.

To avoid this common issue, you can use bleed and crop marks before you print a document. They allow you to produce your image without cutting off the text or losing parts of the design. But what do these terms refer to, and why do you need them?


What Are Bleed & Crop Marks?

Bleed” printing might sound like a morbid term, but the concept is quite simple. Think of how when ink bleeds, it spreads beyond the boundaries of your design. Any part of the image that extends past the edges of the page is considered the bleed, and is typically removed once the piece is printed.

We use bleed printing to ensure that images extend to the edges of the page without any white spaces around the borders. It’s efficient, precise, and prevents your image from being cut off. For precise graphic design work, bleed printing is practically essential.

Conversely, crop marks indicate where the finished product will be trimmed after it has been printed. When you print a document that has bleed, you may have a harder time determining where you want to crop the image—there is no white border to indicate that. Thin crop mark lines help you trim the image to your exact parameters.


Why Are They Important?

Once you understand what this method is, the next step is understanding why it’s useful. Here’s how you can use bleed printing to your advantage:


Not all printers can print an image that covers the entire page.

Most printers add borders to pages by default because the machine has trouble printing all the way to the edges of the page.

But those white borders will make a business card or flyer look unprofessional. You want to impress your clients, not show them that it’s your first time printing promotional material. Use bleed printing to make your design look more refined.


You want to prevent your design from being cut off.

If you’re printing a graphic with intricate lettering or a design, you don’t want to lose any part of it to the printed edges.


Losing one letter can change the entire context of a word. For example, let’s say that you were advertising for a jewellery store, and your sign was supposed to read, “GOLD”. Without bleed printing, you might end up with a sign that says “OLD”, and your customers will have no idea what you’re selling.

You want to get rid of the border.

In an advertisement, every inch of space counts. A white border will look unprofessional and poorly planned.

Bleed printing comes in handy for signs, binders, and posters. It allows you to print exactly what you want without compromising the size of your design.

Although configuring bleed and crop marks can be difficult, it’s necessary to get precise and clean edges with all printing projects. Use bleed printing to eliminate any risk of your design being cut off. At PrintPro, we offer printing services in Winnipeg. We’ll ensure that your design is printed perfectly. Call today!