Types of Folds for Brochures, Pamphlets, and Folders

Finding the Right Fold

It can be a common misconception that when it comes to brochures, pamphlets, and folders, the type of fold you use doesn’t really matter. But choosing the right fold for your project can make the difference in fully engaging your customers and getting your messaging across. 

Having an idea of how you want your brochure, pamphlet, or folder project folded can also be helpful for your printer, as different types of folds may require different design specifications and considerations. Getting to know the most common folds for these types of projects can help you get all of the details in place so that you can hit your project deadline after it goes to the printer.

Parallel Fold

The Parallel fold refers to the fold style where all of the panels are parallel to each other. A parallel brochure, folder, or pamphlet fold will first open like a standard folder with two inside panels of design space. It will then further unfold, revealing four more panels. The Parallel fold option allows you extra space to create a large scale design since the four panels are directly adjacent to one another when the paper has been opened. Parallel folds can be a great way to turn a simple project into a professional, polished-looking piece of art for your brand or company.

Roll Fold

The Roll fold is a variation of a Parallel fold, where the first panel folds into the second panel, the second panel folds into the third panel, and so on depending on the number of panels that are designed. This popular fold type is named after the rolling technique that is used by the printer to shape the paper into a design that is similar to a spiral. As each panel in a Roll design is folded, it becomes progressively smaller and is tucked inside the next panel. Because of this more complicated design, Roll folds can be difficult to pull off correctly, but as the interior panels can create one large four-panel design once it’s unfolded, this fold type can also bring a unique design and look to your project.

Accordion Fold

This type of fold is also a variation of a Parallel fold, with all of the folds being parallel to each other, but with the Accordion fold, the paper unfolds like an accordion. Accordion folds are especially popular for brochures as they fold down small but are able to hold a good amount of information. A typical accordion-folded sheet has two folds that create six panels of design space and the ability to create two-page spreads on the inside panels. It may also be possible to design additional accordion folds depending on the size and the type of paper you’re working with. Your printer can give you suggestions on paper types and accordion fold specifications depending on your vision for the overall design and messaging.

Right Angle Fold

A brochure, folder, or pamphlet project that uses this fold type has two or more folds where each is at a right angle to the fold before it. Also known as the French fold, the Right Angle fold has the appearance of a standard brochure but offers more space for design and messaging. 

Gate Fold

The Gate fold results in panels that fold outward from the center. Gate folds create six panels total, but the center panel on each side is the same size as the left and right panels combined. This is a common fold technique for presentation folders and brochure folds. Gate folds offer a lot of room for creativity, and your printer will be able to tell you when a gate fold is the best choice.

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Brochures can be printed in both small and large quantities, and Thomas Group Printing is here to help you plan the fold, finish and more for your brochure, folder, or pamphlet project.

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