Mockups and Folding Dummies
When Mr. Toad's staff designers work on layout jobs, it is standard procedure for us to print out rough copies, cut them to size with a razor blade and a straight edge, and drop the result into a jewel case (if applicable). This happens at least once, and often several times. We strongly recommend that other designers adopt this practice. To skip the mockup stage is to risk ruining an otherwise brilliant design by making some format gaffe that would have been caught with ease, such as...
- improper placement of images on the inside traycard
- incorrect orientation of the main spine.
- improper centering of elements on a page with a bleed on only one side
- mismeasurements that often occur when designers design from scratch, rather than using templates
- unintentionally cropped type or critical images (!)
CD design is closer to package design or product design than it is to magazine or newspaper layout. Most designers would not cut proofs of all the pages in a magazine to size and bind them together before going to press. But a product design specialist wouldn't dream of designing a label for a soft drink can without seeing how it looked wrapped around an actual can.
When you supply files for a saddlestitch (stapled) booklet, we require that you supply a folding dummy with all the pages assembled in the correct order. Needless to say, the page numbers indicated in your files should correspond to the dummy!
When providing files for folders or poster folders, you should also supply a folding dummy. If it deviates in any way from standard folding, you must make sure that your desires are clearly communicated. Note that many deviations from standard folding will trigger upcharges. For instance, if you request a "gatefold" 8-panel folder, an extra stage of hand folding is necessary, since the folding machine can't produce that particular configuration on it's own.