Skip to content
Closeup of printed folders on printing assembly

What is the most eco-friendly binding method for your green printing project?

There are several ways to bind a book or booklet, and your green printer can produce most of them in-house. Perfect binding, otherwise known as paperback book binding, involves gluing the pages into a book block and then wrapping a pre-scored paper cover around the pages. Case binding for creating a hardback book is similar, except that the cover is made by wrapping a pre-printed sheet around cover and spine boards prior to binding. Wire “spiral” or “twin-loop” binding can also be accomplished with plastic, but because we try to avoid the use of plastic in our operation, this is not one of the services we offer. The most common binding method for smaller publications is saddle-stitching, which is accomplished by creating staples from a roll of unfinished wire.

Illustration of perfect binding method for print

Perfect Bound

Illustration of spiral binding method for print

Spiral Bound

Illustration of saddle stitched binding method for print

Saddle Stitched

Illustration of case binding method for print

Case Bound

So which is the best binding for your earth-friendly publication?

Taking plastic coil out of the picture, it’s pretty much a toss-up, depending mainly on the intended purpose of the book. Perfect binding uses only non-toxic glue to make a book. Case binding involves the use of boards which are made from heavy, recycled, unbleached chipboard. While many people do like to laminate their hardback covers, this does protect the books for a lifetime with proper care. Saddle-binding uses a minimum of material – about 2 inches of unfinished 24 gauge wire. The wire twin-loop method uses the most material of all the binding methods, but the wire is partially recycled, and there is no coating on it. This is a great way to bind a journal or any book that needs to stay perfectly flat when open.

Print your book, newsletter or magazine on 100% post-consumer recycled paper with either soy inks, or our organic, non-toxic digital ink, then pick the binding method that best suits the intended use of the project. Barefoot Press will handle the job from start to finish under one roof, assuring that the product meets our high standards for both production quality and low environmental impact.

Back To Top