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A stack of Saddle-Stitched Booklets

Saddle Stitching

Saddle Stitch Binding is ideal for Thinner Books

Saddle-Stitching is a popular and inexpensive method for binding thinner books and booklets.

Colorful Saddle-Stitched Books on a Table

Saddle-stitched books are created from sheets of paper that have been folded in half and then nested one inside the other. The fold line forms the book's spine. Wire staples penetrate through this fold line from the outermost sheet (the cover) all the way through the innermost sheet. The staples are cinched tight once they penetrate the innermost sheet (center sheet). This holds the sheets of the book together but allows each page to turn freely.

Most of the time, the cover of a saddle-stitched book is made from a heavier paper stock than that used for the inside pages. However, the cover and pages of some saddle-stitched books can also be created from the exact same type and weight of paper. This is called a "Self-Cover" book.

Saddle-Stitching is a good choice for bound documents that have a relatively low number of pages. This is because wire staples can only bind a given number of sheets together. Exactly how many sheets can be bound together is largely dependent upon the thickness of the sheets.

Examples of publications that frequently use the saddle-stitch method include comic books, coloring and activity books, brochures, magazines, thinner manuals, catalogs and directories, product and instruction guides, workbooks, multi-page wall calendars, event programs, bulletins and newsletters, and any other documents that have a relatively low page count.

The Saddle Stitching Process

Two folded pages of a Saddle-Stitched Book

Each folded sheet creates four pages

Because Saddle-Stitched books are constructed from sheets that have been folded in half, each folded sheet will create four pages of the book.

Three folded pages being nested inside one another

The folded sheets are nested together

After the sheets used to form the pages of the book are partially folded, they are nested together one inside the other.

Two staples in the spine of a Saddle-Stitched Book

Staples are driven through the fold line

The assembled sheets are then fastened with wire staples driven through the fold line of the spine.

An open Saddle-Stitched Book lying on a counter

Staples are cinched on the center sheet

The staples penetrate all sheets and are cinched after piercing the innermost (center) sheet. Two staples are normally used to secure the cover and pages together.

A plain white Booklet

The book is folded flat and trimmed as needed

After the book has been secured with staples, it is folded tighter and trimmed as needed.

What are the Benefits of Saddle Stitching?

Works Great With Lower Page Counts

Saddle-Stitching can bind as few as 8 pages.

Most Cost-Effective Binding Option

Because of its relative simplicity, Saddle-Stitch Binding is the most affordable binding style.

Works Good for Crossover Images

Because the saddle-stitch method allows books to open fully, images that span across two adjacent pages have minimal artwork disruption at the gutter.

Works On Practically Any Size Book

From pocket-size to oversize.

Adds Minimal Bulk or Weight to the Printing

This helps with any shipping or mailing expenses. Also, self-mailers with multiple pages are often saddle-stitch bound.

Short, Medium, or Long Runs

The Saddle-Stitch Binding method can be used for production runs of any length.

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