What software to use for non standard print style's?

Im going to make a new CV that isn’t a standard A4 style, some kind of booklet that folds out. Should i still use InDesign for this, and how would I be able to get it printed?

I’m not sure if i should work out the overall size, then whether you cut and fold in the places you want to make it into the booklet? Has anybody else done a similar thing or know how i’d go about doing it? I kind of want it to be similar paper to that of a CD cover and booklet.

I appreciate any help


Yeah, I would still say indesign. I was just doing some stationery and it helps to do a layout of what it would look like closed first and then do another custom sized one of it unfolded. Then depending on how many you want to make and what size it is, you may just need to print the next standard size up, which you would need to do for a bleed anyway, and then pull out the paper cutting tools.

Make sure you design it on paper first, as in sketch it out or make a tiny scale model, before you hit the computer.

You could check with a printer or two in your area. Most good printers will take any file type, but the amount of work they have to do on their end will cost you money. So, contacting them ahead of time about bleeds, color setups, file organization, etc can save you some money in the long run.

That said, InDesign is quickly becoming the gold standard for multi-page layouts. So, if you’ve got it, you might as well use it. That way the printer can have native InDesign files so nothing is lost in conversion.

I would suggest sticking with InDesign also. You could do it with Illustrator but the type features are hard to beat in InDesign. I have my resume and portfolio all setup in InDesign and could not be happier with it.

If you are having a printing company print them ask them what they would like and for any suggestions they have. If you are printing them yourself then just go with trail and error.

You should probably try and end up with a PDF no matter which way you go. The text will be much more crisp then if you try and use a raster program to print from.

Thanks for the tips guy’s. Wouldn’t want to end up printing a load off with the wrong folds or wrong sides printed, could easily be done. Good idea to make a small sketched out version so that I know exactly what goes on what page, and how it opens out.

One problem I had when printing my A3 portfolio out was that the colours were way different than what I could see on screen using the standard InDesign presets.

  1. Make sure your monitor is properly calibrated.

  2. If possible make sure source images are cmyk (though don’t convert if you have rgb ones).

  3. Check your output profiles and working profiles in indesign.

  4. Check what kind of printer you are using, what ppd profile it is set to, and what file they are printing from (ID source or x-1a PDF).


Thanks rkuchinsky, I will visit the local place where I can print my work and find some details of the printer format, colours, and paper sizes etc…

I’ve mocked up a rough version of how I want the CV on paper, and measured it so I can get the exact size in InDesign. Is there an easy way to set my rulers up to specific positions without dragging and working out via the ruler distance? In other words I want a customized grid format so I know exactly where the document folds, and what information goes into what section.

Also, just out of interest… What do you guy’s think of having a ‘creative’ CV? I am quite happy with my current CV and was going to use it when sending PDF’s of my work to companies because it would be much easier to read/copy/print to hand out. But if i were to send a hard copy, and to take one for an interview then maybe a more creative booklet type CV would be better?


Regarding thoughts on a “creative CV”

I’m all for it as long as it doesn’t distract from your ID work.
I have seen many recent grads attempt to design themselves a flashy portfolio/cv and due to their lack of graphic design and print knowledge end up sabotaging their ID work.

I don’t have In Design in front of me, but you can set up columns, margins etc. somewhere in the top menu bar.

Btw, that quote is not from me. It’s from the OP.