Reading direction

When setting up the artwork in a layout program, it is important to observe the reading direction and/or folding of your printed design and set the page orientation accordingly. Otherwise, it can happen that the design is upside down on one side of the finished product.


Below you will find the following product examples for artwork setup:

Why the reading direction of the printed design matters

During production, one page of the product is printed first. Then, the page is turned around its vertical axis like turning a book page. Then, the reverse is printed. Due to these technical processes, unexpected constellations can occur depending on the reading direction. This frequently happens with products that have a different reading direction on each side. 

Example: Postcards with a design in portrait orientation on the front and a classic landscape format on the back.

The following application examples will explain what to pay attention to when setting up the artwork.


Folded leaflets


Folded cards

Folding type

To get an impression of the folding, reading direction and page orientation of your printed product, you can make your own folded sample. Take a sheet of paper, fold it as desired and write numbers or sample text on it.

Our example is a six-page folded leaflet (letter fold, portrait orientation) with: 

  • Title page (1) 
  • Reverse (1) 
  • Inside pages (2–4)