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Column guides and spreads in InDesign

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jonathanhughes's picture
Joined: 19 Dec 2007 - 9:28pm
Column guides and spreads in InDesign

Is there an easy way to set up column guides on each side of a spread in InDesign?

Say I'm working on an 11 x 17 brochure (which will be folded in half). I've got a .5" margin, but I'd like the gutter to be 1", and each side to have 6 columns for my grid. My usual cumbersome method would be to draw a text box with six columns the width of one side of the spread, and then manually put guides at the same spot as the the columns in the text box?

I feel stupid for asking this (having been working in Indesign for so long), but is there an easier way?


Jacob Sievers's picture
Joined: 9 Oct 2009 - 8:17pm

You can apply different settings to each side of a spread by using master pages - though I'm not clear on why you would need to do that in this instance.

Igor Freiberger's picture
Joined: 20 Jun 2008 - 8:44pm

If you are working with a 11x17" paper, your procedure is already the best I know.

But things could be easier if you work with a spread of two 11x8,5" pages:

01. Create the document using "facing pages" option enabled.

02. Set inside margins to achieve the central gap (in your case, they are actually the same 0.5" in order to get the final 1" gutter).

03. In master page, use the command Layout > Create guides to set up your 6-column layout. Note the option to define guides inside margins only.

These two optional controls could also help your work:

04. If you want to edit the spread with both pages visible, disable "Allow document pages..." option in pages panel menu and drag page 2 to be together with page 1.

05. Use the File > Print booklet to finnish the work or make imposition in Acrobat with the excellent Quite Imposing plug-in.

James Michaels's picture
Joined: 6 Mar 2010 - 12:54am

You only need to create the guides on one side, then select all the guides (command-option-G), duplicate them (edit > duplicate) and drag the duplicates as a group to the other side. Not a huge timesaver, but it's a little faster.

Bert Vanderveen's picture
Joined: 13 Jun 2004 - 8:19am

There are scripts you can use to take care of this tedious type of work. You can find them in the usual places (eg Adobe Studio etc,)