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Expert Advice, Resources

Print Coloring Books with Smartpress

If you’ve paid attention in any bookstore lately, you know coloring books are a hot trend. And not just for children — adults are the ones picking up their colored pencils, markers and pens to color within the lines!

The Best Papers for Printing Coloring BooksWhen you’re designing coloring books for a client or to sell along with your merchandise, make sure to present the product in a way that’s easy for people to work with and enjoy. That means using the best paper for the purpose. Adults will be using your product for relaxation, art therapy, and pure enjoyment, so the entire book should enhance those experiences.


Choose a thick, durable stock for the outside cover of your coloring book. Premium Gloss in a cover weight stock protects the book’s interior pages from wear and tear over time as the book gets carried around and repeatedly opened and closed. It will show off a colorful cover design well and feel smooth to the touch.

Interior Pages

Uncoated stocks are the best to use for writing, drawing and coloring. Our Uncoated Smooth stock comes in a variety of thicknesses and is perfect for the interior pages of your coloring book. While 70# text weight stock is fine for drawing with crayons and colored pencils. We recommend 100# text or 80# cover stock for use with most markers. Sharpie® markers, however, will bleed through even 100# text weight stock.

Page Set-Up

In general, and specifically for the Sharpie reason mentioned above, think about setting up your coloring books with a design only on the front of the page, leaving the back blank. If marker colors do bleed through, they won’t ruin an uncolored design. Finishing your book with perforated pages will allow users to remove the page they’re working on and just carry that design with them instead of the entire book. Framing a page will also be easier if it’s removed cleanly with perforation.


The binding for your coloring book can affect usability, too. Saddle stitching is great for books with low page counts. Square backing is saddle stitching with a squared-off spine that can be used on books with more pages (up to a .25” spine). If your coloring book is very thick (up to a 2” spine), use perfect binding.

We strongly recommend you order a hard proof of your coloring. We’ll send the hard proof to you and wait for your approval before moving ahead with the order. You’ll have the opportunity to change paper weight, upload a new file, or make other changes. If you approve the hard proof, your full order will go into production, and your coloring books will be in your hands in no time!



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