Adobe InDesign Tutorial – Adding Bleed


Hi and welcome to this printed.com tutorial on how to add bleed in InDesign. My name’s Dan, and I’m going to show you through the process. Bleed is an area of print outside the document that’s trimmed after printing. It’s there as a precaution to make sure there’s no white space left on the document after it’s trimmed. When preparing a document for print, it’s really important to make sure the image extends right to the edge of the bleed, and that any text is set at a safe distance from the trim line. If you’re making a new document in InDesign, you’ll want to customise the bleed on the first screen. Click file-new-document, and make sure the bleed options are visible at the bottom of this window. To add bleed, type 3 millimetres into the first box. At printed.com we use 3 millimetres of bleed in all our documents. Make sure this chain link is clicked – it puts an equal value in all the boxes. Click OK. If you’ve already made a document, and you want to add bleed to it, click file-document setup, make sure bleed options are visible, and type 3 millimetres into the first box. Again, make sure this chain link is clicked – it puts equal values in all the boxes. Click OK To check if your bleed’s been added, press W to show and hide the document guides. The bleed is indicated by a red line that runs around the document. It’s really important to make sure any images run right up to the edge of this line – like this. Once your document’s ready for print, you’ll want to export it as a PDF. To export it, go to file-export, or press ctrl+e or cmd+e on a mac. In the export window, make sure ‘Adobe PDF for Print’ is selected from the dropdown menu. Type in a file name, and save. In the next window, you can customise the way your PDF is saved. For print, we recommend the PDF/X-1a:2001 preset. Click on the ‘Marks and Bleeds’ tab on the left hand side to show the bleed options. As we’ve already set the bleed, we can tick ‘Use Document Bleed Settings’. At printed.com we also like to include crop marks. To include them, tick the check box. Once you’ve set all your options, click ‘Export’. Make sure your PDF is exactly how you want it before sending it off. There should be crop marks in the corners, and the bleed should be visible at the edges. If you’ve checked your PDF, your document is now ready for print. Thanks for watching. We hope you found this tutorial useful.

21 thoughts on “Adobe InDesign Tutorial – Adding Bleed

  1. thanks for the tutorial! however, I wonder if there is a way to hide the bleed-part of the image? so the part that stick outside of the "paper" in InDesign? In case I would like to have a spread the bleed ends up bleeding over to the facing page and I´d like to be able to hide it but still have it there for when printing. is there a way to hide the bleed? thank you very much!

  2. thanks! short and straight to the point. I stopped using ID for quite some time and when I needed it again I had forgotten all the little details…

  3. Can i also add a bleed inside the document instead of it showing up on the outside of the document (which creates extra whitespace that then has to be filled up again)?

  4. O my god! Thank you so much! I had a paper due and the people of the print company didn't want to help me. They quite boldly said I had to figure it out myself. But this video really helped me!!

  5. So, but what the solution if I have more then 1 page: I've created 10 FACING pages and if I add bleeds, so there is empty on sides where 2 pages face each other. Maybe we need to add bleeds to Master pages too?

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