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How to Set Up Your Diary for Printing

How to Set Up Your Diary for Printing

Read Time: 3 Minutes


26 Jun 2020

Designing custom branded diaries for your business is a fantastic way of boosting brand awareness – especially since you’ll be giving potential clients and customers a reminder that lasts the whole year! But designing them can be a little daunting. That’s why we’ve created this simple guide on how to make a diary in a range of popular programs such as Microsoft Word and Adobe InDesign


How Many Pages Are in a Diary?

When you print diaries online with instantprint, the only pages you’ll need to design are the covers – we’ll sort out the rest! We use a week-on-week view yearly calendar template for the inside pages, that’s fully set up for the year ahead, including notable dates. With inside pages and covers combined, diaries are printed with 120 printed pages.

That leaves you with four printed pages to design: the front cover, inside the front cover, inside the back cover and the back cover. We recommend that you set this up as separate pages in the same document in reading order. Once we’ve set your proof up, you’ll be able to check that they’re in the correct order before sending them off to print.

How to Make a Diary in Word

Microsoft Word is a really popular tool for beginners because it’s widely available and easy to use. Here’s how to set up your diary covers in Word.

Setting Up Your Document

To set your pages to the correct specifications:

  • Go to Layout > Page Setup
  • Under Size, choose A4 or A5
  • Add an extra 3mm to each side to account for bleed area
  • Increase Margins by 9mm on each side to account for the safe zone, which helps keep important text and artwork away from the cutting and binding edges


Add Images

  1. Go to Insert > Pictures
  2. Double click the high-quality image you want to add
  3. Resize the images by dragging the corner handles
  4. Click the middle of the image and drag to reposition it

Inserting Shapes and Borders

To add a border in Word:

  1. Go to Design > Page Borders
  2. Choose a border and customise it using the different settings

To add shapes:

  1. Go to Insert > Shapes
  2. Choose a shape 
  3. Click and drag to draw the shape
  4. Change the shape’s colour by clicking the shape and going to Shape Format > Shape Fill and picking a colour


How to Make a Diary in Publisher

Microsoft Publisher is similar to Word, but built for design, meaning you can get a more professional finish. Here’s how to set up your diary artwork in Publisher.

Setting Up the Document

  1. Go to Page Design > Page Setup
  2. Set the Paper Width and Height to the diary size you want
  3. Add an extra 6mm to each measurement to account for the bleed area
  4. Set Margins to 9mm as a safety zone to help keep important text and images away from the cutting and binding edges

Inserting Images

  1. Go to Insert > Pictures
  2. Choose an image and double click it to insert
  3. Drag the image to position it
  4. Drag the corner handles to resize


Adding Text

Publisher requires you to add text boxes for text. To do this:

  1. Go to Insert > Draw Textbox
  2. Click and drag anywhere on your document to draw a text box
  3. Type into the box to add text
  4. Drag the corner handles to resize 


How to Make a Diary in InDesign

Looking for a more advanced way to design your artwork? InDesign is a fantastic option if you have more experience.

Setting Up Your Canvas

  1. Go to File > New Document
  2. Choose A4 or A5 under the Document Pre-Set details
  3. Add 9mm to the side Margins and 3mm to the top and bottom of the page to act as your safety zone
  4. Choose 4 pages
  5. Tick Facing Pages and create your document


Adding Images

  1. Go to File > Place
  2. Double click the image you want to use to insert it
  3. Click and drag the image to position it


Adding Text

To insert text:

  1. Select the Type tool in the Tools Panel (it looks like a T)
  2. Click and drag your mouse anywhere on the canvas to draw a text box
  3. Type into the text box and choose colours, fonts and sizes from the panel at the top
  4. Resize the box using the Select tool

Remember to keep images high quality, colours in CMYK and text legible for a professional diary design your customers will be proud to use. If you’d like any more help with this, please get in touch with our team and we’ll be happy to help! 

Jennie Talbot

About the Author

Hi! I’m Jennie, and I’m the Creative Lead at instantprint. I love using my design knowledge to inspire small businesses to think outside the box when designing their print.