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How to Make a Booklet in InDesign

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Difficulty:IntermediateLength:LongLanguages:
Final product image
What You'll Be Creating

Ready to take the next step in layout design? In this tutorial, we show you how to create a booklet in InDesign. For this stylish design, we’ll use essential tools for setting up pages that will help you in your future projects.

Booklets are a form of brochure containing more than four pages and not more than 48 pages (the page count should be divisible by four). This non-periodical publication is great for marketing purposes because it allows you or your client to show their business in detail.

In this tutorial, we show you how to make a booklet in InDesign. You can also keep this as a four-page document to create a brochure in InDesign. Regardless of which you choose to do, you will be learning essential tools that will help grow your layout skills. We will be touching on Master Pages, Paragraph Styles, Color Swatches, and many smaller tips and tricks. 

You can use this tutorial to help you set up an InDesign template for distribution to your clients or to keep for yourself. If you are looking for specific tutorials on how to make a brochure in InDesign, we’ve got plenty of that! Scroll down past the tutorial and you’ll find some of our suggestions. 

In a hurry? We’ve got amazing InDesign brochure templates and other InDesign templates over at Envato Elements and GraphicRiver. Go check them out! 

What You Will Need

You'll need access to Adobe InDesign; if you don't have the software, you can download a trial from the Adobe website. You'll also need the following assets:

Download the assets and make sure the font is installed on your system before starting. When you are ready, we can dive in! 

1. How to Create a Booklet in InDesign

Step 1

In InDesign, go to File > New. Name the document Booklet. We will create a letter size newsletter template. Set the file to the following dimensions:

  • Width to 8.5 in
  • Height to 11 in 
  • Orientation to Portrait
  • Units to Inches
  • Pages to 12
  • Check Facing Pages
  • Margins: 0.75 in
  • Bleeds to 0.125 in (it's best to seek your professional printer’s preference)

Click Create.

Create a new file

Step 2

For this booklet tutorial, we will work with different Layers. Organising layers is an important practice to keep all the elements in the file organised. Bring up the Layers panel by going to Window > Layers. Double-click on Layer 1 and rename it Copy (Back). 

In the Layers panel main menu, select New Layer. Name it Background. Click OK. Create two additional layers named Images and Copy (Front). 

create new layers

Step 3

Head over to Window > Color > Swatches to expand the Swatches panel. Choose New Color Swatch button from the main menu. Set the Swatch Name and values to the following: 

  • Light: C=15 M=35 Y=45 K=0 
  • Medium: C=35 M=80 Y=80 K=40
  • Dark: C=65 M=70 Y=70 K=75

Click Add and OK after you input each of the color values.

create color swatches

Step 4

For this tutorial, we will create a list of Paragraph Styles that we will use to format parts of the booklet. 

Head over to Window > Styles > Paragraph Styles to open the Paragraph Styles panel. In the main menu, select New Paragraph Style, and set the Style Name to Title. Select the Basic Character Formats option from the left side menu. Use the following settings:

  • Font Family: Bw Modelica
  • Font Style: Black Condensed
  • Size: 30 pt
  • Tracking: 25
  • Case: All Caps

Select the Character Color option from the left side menu. Set the color to the Medium swatch. Click OK.

create paragraph styles

Create a New Paragraph Style, set the Style Name to Deck. In the Basic Character Formats option, use the following settings:

  • Font Family: Bw Modelica
  • Font Style: Regular Condensed
  • Size: 18 pt
  • Tracking: 25

Select the Character Color option from the left side menu. Set the color to the Medium swatch. Click OK.

Create a New Paragraph Style, set the Style Name to Copy. In the Basic Character Formats option, use the following settings:

  • Font Family: Bw Modelica
  • Font Style: Regular Condensed
  • Size: 9 pt
  • Leading: 12 pt
  • Tracking: 10

Select the Indents and Spacing option from menu on the left and set the Space Between Paragraphs Using Same Style: 0.1 in. 

Select the Character Color option from the left side menu. Set the color to the Dark swatch. Click OK.

Create a New Paragraph Style, and set the Style Name to Pull-quote. In the Basic Character Formats option, use the following settings:

  • Font Family: Bw Modelica
  • Font Style: Bold Condensed
  • Size: 20 pt
  • Tracking: 10

Select the Character Color option from the left side menu. Set the color to the [Paper] swatch. Click OK.

Create a New Paragraph Style, set the Style Name to Folio-Page number. In the Basic Character Formats option, use the following settings:

  • Font Family: Bw Modelica
  • Font Style: Bold Condensed
  • Size: 8 pt
  • Tracking: 100

Select the Character Color option from the left side menu. Set the color to the Medium swatch. Click OK.

Create a New Paragraph Style, set the Style Name to Folio-Section. In the Basic Character Formats option, use the following settings:

  • Font Family: Bw Modelica
  • Font Style: Harline Condensed
  • Size: 420 pt
  • Tracking: 10

Select the Character Color option from the left side menu. Set the color to the Light swatch. Click OK.

list of paragraph styles

2. Setting Up Guides and Master Pages for Your Booklet Design

Step 1

On the Pages panel, double-click on the A-Master pages. Head over to Layout > Create Guides. In the Create Guides option window, set the Rows Number to 5 and Gutter to 0. Set the Columns Number to 8 and the Gutter to 0.1875 in. Under Options, select Fit Guides to: Margins. Click OK.

set up guides

Repeat this process on the opposite page.

create guides on both pages

Step 2

On the Layers panel, select the Copy (Front) layer.

Using the Text Tool (T) from the toolbar, create a text box under the bottom left corner margin. Right-click on the text box and select Insert Special Character > Markers > Current Page Number. A letter “A” will represent the page number. On the second line, you can add the title of your booklet. 

add page number

Select the text and head over to the Paragraph Styles panel. Format the text with the Folio-page number style. 

format with paragraph styles

Select the text box and press Command-C to Copy and Command-V to Paste. Place this duplicated text box on the opposite page. Press T to activate the formatting tools on the Control panel. Select the paragraph formatting tool and set the text box to Align Right.

duplicate and place on opposite page

Step 3

On the Layers panel, select the Background layer. Using the Rectangle Tool (M), create a small rectangle with a Width of 0.7 in and Height of 0.4 in. Using the Swatches panel, set the color to the Medium swatch. 

Place the rectangle on the left side margin of the left page. Duplicate it by pressing Option and drag. Place the newly duplicated element on the right margin of the right page. This is a great anchor for the title.

create rectangles

Step 4

Head over to the Pages panel, right-click on A-Master and select Apply Master to Pages. Under To Pages, type 2-11. Click OK. These are the pages the A-Master page will be applied to.

apply master to pages

3. Creating a Cover of Your Booklet Design

Step 1

On the Layers panel, click on the Background layer. 

Head over to Page 1. Using the Rectangle Tool (M), create a shape on the top portion of the cover.

While selecting the rectangle, press Command-D to Place the Close up of coffee seeds image. Select the image with the Direct Selection Tool (A) and resize the image on the Control bar to 20%.

add an image to the top of the cover

Create another rectangle of the same size as above. Head over to the Swatches panel, select the Dark swatch and set the Tint to 60%. 

add a rectangle over the image

Step 2

Create a rectangle for the bottom portion of the cover with the Rectangle Tool (M). Using the Swatches panel, set the color to the Dark swatch.

create a rectangle to cover the bottom of the cover

Using the Line Tool (\), create a line that goes across the width of the page. On the Swatches panel, set the stroke color to the Light color swatch. On the Control panel, set the Stroke Weight to 5 pt. 

Place the line between the image and the bottom of the cover. 

create a line across the width of the cover

Step 3

On the Layers panel, lock all the layers and leave the Copy (Front) unlocked. 

Using the Text Tool (T), add a title and a deck to the booklet and place it in the top left corner of the page. 

Open the Character panel (Window > Type & Tables > Character). For the title, set the Font to Bw Modelica Bold Condensed, Size 55 pt, and Leading 50 pt. 

For the deck, set the Font to Bw Modelica Light Condensed and Size 18 pt.

add a title and deck Use the paragraph styles to format the text

Step 4

Using the Text Tool (T), add a text box to fit the width of the page and place it over the bottom margin. While selecting the text box, press Command-B to open the Text Frame Options window. Under Columns, set the Number to 3. Click OK. 

add a text frame with 3 columns to the bottom of the cover

Add contact information to the text frame. On the Character panel, set the font to Bw Modelica Light Condensed and Size 9 pt. 

add contact information Use the paragraph styles to format the text

4. Creating the Inside Spreads of Your Booklet Design

Step 1

Let’s work on Pages 2-3 of the booklet. On the Layers panel, unlock the Images layer. 

Head over to Page 2 and using the Rectangle Tool (M), create a rectangle that measures 10 in in Width and 11.25 in in Height. This element will go over the gutter of the page. 

Select the rectangle and press Command-D to place the Coffee cup with roasted beans image inside it. Using the Direct Selection Tool (A), move the image to find a good placement. 

add an image to the inside spread

To make the page number visible, we need to change the color. Press Shift-Command and click on the page number to unlock it from the Master Page. Using the Swatches panel, change the color of the type to [Paper].

Lock the text frame by pressing Command-L. 

change the color of the page numbers

Step 2

On Page 3, add a text box using the Text Tool (T). Place the text box at the very top of the page, and add a title and a deck. Using the Paragraph Styles panel, format the title and the deck with their corresponding styles.

add a title and eck use the paragraph styles to format it

Create a text box using the Text Tool (T) for the bottom portion of the page—this will house the body copy. This text box should take the remaining width of the page. While selecting it, press Command-B to open the Text Frame Options window. Under Columns, set the Number to 2 and the Gutter to 0.1667 in. Click OK.

add a text frame and create two columns

Add content and use the Paragraph Styles panel, to format it to the Copy style.

format the text with the paragraph styles

On the Layers panel, select the Copy (Back) layer (lock all the other layers if necessary). Using the Text Tool (T), draw a text box and add the section number. Using the Paragraph Styles panel, format the text box to the Folio-Section style. Place the section number anywhere on the page—I chose to display it near the title and deck. 

Now we can use this spread as a base for the rest of the inside pages.

add a section number

Step 3

For Pages 4-5, we will create a mirrored layout of what we created on Pages 2-3. 

Select all the elements on Pages 2-3, and press Command-C to Copy. Head over to Pages 4-5 and press Shift-Option-Command-V to Paste in Place. 

The elements will be pasted onto one layer, but it's best to move the elements to their respective layers. You can do so by selecting an element on the page, heading over to the Layers panel, and dragging the square on the right to another layer.

duplicate the elements on the next spread

Using the Selection Tool (V), move the image to the right. Select all the elements on the right side of the page and move them towards the left side.

switch the position of the images and text

Let’s start editing by changing up the image. Select the image and press Command-D to Place the All kinds of coffee on spoons image. Using the Direct Selection Tool (A), select the image followed by R to Rotate the image. 

To add a pull-quote, create a text box using the Text Tool (T). While selecting the text box, press Command-B to open the Text Frame Options window. On the window, set the Inset Spacing to 0.375 in on all sides. Click OK. 

Using the Paragraph Styles panel, format the text box with the Pull-quote style. For the quote credit, open the Character panel. Set the Font to Bw Modelica Light Condensed and Size 14 pt. 

add a new image and a quote to page 5

Use the Text Tool (T) to add your own copy on Page 4.

To add a pull-quote on the body copy, create a text box with the Text Tool (T). Format the text box on the Character panel, setting the Font to Bw Modelica Bold Condensed, Size 14 pt. 

On the Swatches panel, set the color to Medium. 

On the Text Wrap panel (Window > Text Wrap), select the Wrap around bounding box. Set all the Offset sides to 0.125 in.

add a pull-quote to break up the text

Step 4

For Pages 6-7, we will create a resting spread to give the reader a visual break. 

Press Shift-Command, select both of the rectangles on each side at the top of the page, and press Delete. 

On the Layers panel, select the Background layer. Using the Rectangle Tool (M), cover the spread with a rectangle. Use the Swatches panel to set the color to the Dark swatch. Lock the Background layer on the Layers panel and select the Images layer.

create a background

Press Command-D to add the Experienced barista making coffee and Hot drink warm up images. Feel free to arrange them as you wish—here I placed both on opposite sides of the spread. 

add images to the spread

Copy the pull-quote from Page 5 by pressing Command-C. Paste the element by pressing Command-V on Pages 6-7. Use the Text Tool (T) to edit the quotes. 

add quotes to the spread

Step 5

Pages 8-9 will have a different layout than the rest of the booklet. This interview style spread is a good visual contrast to the rest of the layout. 

Press Shift-Command, select the rectangle on Page 9, and press Delete. 

Using the Rectangle Tool (M), cover the spread with a rectangle and make sure this is on the Background layer. Use the Swatches panel to set the color to the Dark swatch. Lock the layer and select the Images layer. 

add a background to the spread

Copy (Command-V) and Paste in Place (Shift-Option-Command-V) the title text box from Page 4 onto Page 8. Use the Text Tool (T) to edit the text. Using the Swatches panel, change the color of the text to the Light swatch. 

add a title and change the color

Create a text box using the Text Tool (T). Head over to the Control bar, and set the Width to 2.9 in and the Height to 5.7 in. 

Using the Text Tool (T), add copy and use the Paragraph Styles to format the text to the Copy style. Select the text and change the color on the Swatches panel to Light. 

Select three words from the beginning of the text box, and head over to the Character panel. Set the Font to Bw Modelica Black Condensed. This is a great way to let the reader know where each interview starts.

create a text frame use the paragraph styles to format it Change the color on the swatches panel

Select the Ellipse Tool (L), and click on the document to open the Ellipse option window. Set the Width and Height to 1 in. Click OK. Place the ellipse over the text frame and use the Align panel to Center both elements. 

Using the Text Tool (T), create a small text frame under the ellipse. This will serve as the name/title text. Use the Paragraph Styles to format the text to the Copy style. With the help of the Swatches panel and the Character panel, create your own combination of styles. Don’t forget to show us in the comments below! 

create an ellipse and place a new text frame underneath it

Duplicate the text frame and circle three times by pressing Shift-Option and dragging. Repeat these elements on the opposite page.

Select each circle and press Command-D to Place the following images: A person holding a sign, Portrait of pretty young waitress, Barista cafe, and Attractive business owner. Using the Direct Selection Tool (A), select each image within the ellipse to move and resize. 

duplicate the elements and add photos into each ellipse

Step 6

For Pages 10-11, we will go back to the initial layout. 

Copy (Command-C) and Paste in Place (Shift-Option-Command-V) the title, deck, section number and copy from Page 4 onto Page 10. Use the Text Tool (T) to edit the copy.  

duplicate the elements on page 4 onto page 10

To create a copy that extends to the next page, we will use the threading option. Duplicate the text frame onto Page 11 by pressing Shift-Option and dragging. Delete the text in the new text box. 

duplicate or create a new text frame on the opposite page

Select the text box on Page 10. If you have overflowing text, you will see a red plus symbol on the bottom right. If you don’t have any overflowing text, you’ll see an empty blue box. Click on the red plus symbol or blue box, followed by a click on the empty text box on Page 11. This will allow you to continue the text on the next page or anywhere you are threading the text box. 

thread the text from page 10 to page 11

Press Command-D to place the Coffee image. Place the image in the bottom left corner of Page 10, and make sure it is bleeding out of the page. Head over to the Text Wrap panel (Window > Text Wrap) and select the Wrap around bounding box button. 

add a new image and use the text wrap tool

Press Command-D to place the Barista at work image. This time, place the image in the top right corner of Page 11. Make sure it is bleeding out of the page and covering the first inside column of Page 10. Head over to the Text Wrap panel and select the Wrap around bounding box button. Set the Offset to 0.125 in—this will help with the text frame underneath. 

add an image on the opposite page and use the text wrap tool

Step 7

Using the Rectangle Tool (M), cover the back page. While selecting the rectangle, press Command-D to Place the Coffee beans image.

Create another rectangle of the same size as above. Head over to the Swatches panel, select the Dark swatch and set the Tint to 60%. 

Copy (Command-C) and Paste (Command-V) the contact information from the front cover.

add an image and a rectangle over it on the back cover Re-create contact information from the front cover

5. How to Export a File for Printing

Before exporting a file for printing, it's useful to take a look around all the edges of the design. This is to make sure all the images and vectors bleeding out are touching the bleeds.

Step 1

To export the file, go to File > Export. Name the file Booklet and choose Adobe PDF (Print) from the Format dropdown menu. Click Save. 

export as a PDF file for print

Step 2

In the Export Adobe PDF window, set the Adobe PDF Preset to Press Quality. Under Pages, select Export As Pages.

select Press quality from the PDF presets and Export as Pages

On the left side of the panel, select Marks and Bleeds. Check All Printer’s Marks and Use Document Bleed Settings. Click Export. You will have a ready-to-print PDF file.

check all the printers marks and document bleed settings

Great Job! You’ve Finished Your Booklet Design!

In this tutorial, we learned how to make a booklet in InDesign. We covered important tools that will help you set up a multi-page InDesign template. If you lowered the page count, you can use this as an InDesign brochure template. Today, we learned to:

  • create a ready-to-print InDesign file
  • set up Master Pages with folios
  • organise Paragraph Styles to format text
  • add Color Swatches 
  • format text boxes into columns
  • use the Text Wrap tool on images and text

If you are new to InDesign and need a booklet templates or promotional marketing templates right away, head over to Envato Elements and GraphicRiver. We’ve got many options to explore! 

If you liked creating a booklet in InDesign, you might like these:

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