Book printing terms explained

Term Defintion
Banding Banding is a series of lighter or darker bands or extraneous lines running across a print that are not part of the image.
Barcode A machine-readable representation of data. Developed by Bernard Silver, the barcode was inspired by Morse code with the dots and dashes extended into lines.
Bleed Printed areas that extend beyond the ‘trim’, or the final finished size of the page. Without including a bleed, it is impossible to finish a job accurately and white edges will show where the pages are cut.
Binding A print finishing process through which the pages of a publication are gathered and securely held together. See also Canadian binding, Perfect binding, PUR binding, Saddle stitched binding, Sewn binding and Wiro binding.
Book A set of printed pages that are fastened along one side and encased between protective covers.
Bulk The thickness of a sheet of paper. Generally speaking, paper with higher basis weight, as measured in GSM, has greater bulk but without the weight gain. Stock with greater bulk tends to feel more substantial between the fingers than typical printing paper.
Canadian binding A wiro-bound publication with a wraparound cover and an enclosed spine.
Cased Our term for a hardback book.
CMYK (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black)
CMYK is the abbreviation for the four process colours used in standard four-colour printing, and most – but not all – colour digital printers. Cyan, magenta, yellow and black are known as subtractive primaries. These colours provide the widest colour gamut with the smallest number of inks.
Perfect (unsewn) binding An adhesive binding style where the backs of gathered sections are cut off and leaves are glued at the binding stage.
Sewn binding After gathering the sections, a sewing machine inserts threads through the spine of each section and then uses further threads to join each section to the other, to form the book block. This is the strongest but most expensive form of binding.
Saddle stitched binding 4 page sections are bound together with wire stitches (staples) applied through the spine along the centrefold.
Wiro binding A spine of metal (wiro) rings, which binds a document and allows it to open flat.