Spreads + Bleeds

When you create a multi-page document InDesign and want to save it as a PDF for printing, there are a few things to keep in mind. You will want to save as “spreads” and you include bleeds. Here are the simple steps for this process below.

Once your document is complete:

1. File > Export > Adobe PDF (print)

2. Make sure to check the box titled “Spreads” to ensure your “facing pages” export (and print) next to each other.

3. At some point in your design, your work (and/or backgrounds) may reach the edge of the page. By including “bleeds” in your settings, you can trim the page(s) without creating an ugly white gap at the edge of the page. To make sure your PDF includes this formatting, follow these additional steps in the “Marks and Bleeds” area of the Export function.

  • Check the box titled “Crop Marks” in the “Marks” section.
  • Next, manually type in the appropriate amount of “bleed” in the “Bleed and Slug” area. I suggest 12 mm.


4. Click Export. You should now have a PDF that includes spreads, crop marks, and bleeds.

5. Print, exhale, smile.