Saddle stitch vs perfect binding. What’s the difference? Saddle stitching is a binding method where a document is wire stitched on the spine, also known as stapled. The process involves inserting forms on top of other forms over a saddle and driving stitches through the gathered piece’s backbone. Saddle stitching is more often used on smaller page counts as the larger the page counts can result in creep. Creep occurs when middle pages of a folded section extend slightly beyond the outside pages. However, by trimming the inner pages, the pages can be made flush. This can sometimes result in text being cut off. Designers are required to make the inside pages slightly smaller to accommodate trimming, but it can be incredibly time consuming. To avoid this process designers often leave saddle stitching to smaller jobs with lower page counts and opt for perfect binding. Furthermore, when there is a high page count, a saddle stitched booklet can be bowed when laid flat. Other drawbacks of stapling is the durability. In the long term, tearing can occur if the booklet is too heavy and if the pages are individually too thin.
Perfect binding is where the cover wraps around the text pages including the front, spine and back. Glue mechanically wiped onto the spine area seals the cover to the text. Designers are aware that a greater margin is required on the inside of pages to allow for ease of reading. Annual reports, high end publications and manuals are often perfect bound. When deciding the method of binding, it is advisable to consult with the printer to let them run the numbers as different page weights will affect the outcome and cost of your project. Contact Erwins Printing for your next binding project.