Customized binding covers make documents stand out and appear more professional. One of the most frequent and relatively inexpensive ways to achieve this look is to print a design onto the front sheet of the document (on either the same type of stock used for the whole document or something heavier) then add a clear binding cover to protect it. Clear PVC binding covers come in 5, 7, or 10 mil and are offered in a variety of sizes – 8-1/2″ x 11″ covers that are flush with the edges of a standard letter-sized sheet of paper, 8-3/4″ x 11-1/4″ covers with round corners to protect the square corners of letter-sized books, 9″ x 11″ covers to accommodate letter-sized documents that include tab dividers, 8-1/2″ x 14″ covers for legal-sized books, and 11″ x 17″ covers for tabloid-sized (double-letter) books..
An alternative to using a clear PVC cover for a bound document is to laminate the printed design, which eliminates having to flip the clear cover as if it were an additional page in the document. This process can be as simple as inserting the printed page into a laminating pouch and then sealing it with a pouch laminator or encapsulating it using a roll laminator. If you would rather have one side of the cover laminated and the other side exposed (for writing an inscription, etc.), you can laminate the design using nylon “lay flat” laminating film which does not curl after being applied; however, due to the price per roll and investment in the specialized machine, this process is most often used by professional printers and graphic artists.
If you would like a recommendation for a machine or supplies to used to create your custom cover or for another project, please ask us within the comments section – we’re happy to share our knowledge with you and get your project rolling!