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A Handy Guide to UK Paper Sizes

A Handy Guide to UK Paper Sizes

Paper sizes are something even seasoned print veterans find themselves looking up occasionally. While some paper sizes are used on a daily basis at printers and design studios, there are others that are only used a handful of times a year. Those tend to be the sizes most easily forgotten, so we’ve come up with this handy reference guide that can be referred to any time, 365 days of the year. Don’t forget to bookmark it!

The following is not an exhaustive list of paper sizes, but it should cover the most commonly used sizes used by designers and printers around the UK. For the sake of brevity, we’ll leave out the more rarefied ‘legacy’ sizes that we simply tend not to encounter any more.

ISO Paper Sizes:

You may not have heard of ‘ISO’ paper sizes, but you will have used sizes like A4 and A3 perhaps on a weekly basis. A4, A3, A5, A2, B4 and B5 are probably the most easily recognisable examples of ISO ‘A’ and ISO ‘B’ paper sizes.

ISO 'A' paper sizesISO sizes have several neat, and very handy, mathematical properties about them:

  • The ratio of their sides is always 1 to 1.414 (the square root of 2, by the way).
  • To mentally compute the dimensions from one ISO paper size to the next, you simply keep the longest side and double the shortest. So A4 (210mm x 297mm) becomes A3 (297mm x 420mm). We simply doubled the shortest side (210mm) to get that new 420mm dimension, but kept the existing 267mm dimension — easy!
  • Note that the physical paper size at each step up is DOUBLE the paper area. So A4 is half the size of A3 (fold A3 in half and you end up with A4 again). A3 is in turn half the physical size of A2 and so on.
  • You can alternatively enlarge to the next ISO size (e.g. from A4 to A3) by enlarging the original 1.414 times. So, on a photocopier, for example, you would set the magnification to 141.4%.
  • Most ingeniously, the ISO ‘A’ sizes are designed to allow printers to easily compute the weight of a printed stack of papers simply by counting the sheets. It’s based on the fact that the size A0 is exactly 1 square metre in area. So, if you know you have paper that’s, say, 150gsm in weight (paper is specified in grams per square metre; gsm), you know that a stack of one hundred A0 sheets will be 100 x 150gsm, which is 15000grams (i.e. 1.5kg in weight). If your stack happened to be A1, then you simply need to divide that by two (because, as we learned above, the next A size down is half the size). For A2 you halve it again and so on.

ISO ‘A’ sizes:

The ISO ‘A’ series of paper sizes is most widely used for printing and design in the UK; most people will use A4 paper, for example, on a daily basis. As we mentioned above, each ‘step’ down from one A size to the next is exactly half the size, as you can see in the diagram above/right. Here are the main A sizes:

  • A0 = 841mm x H1189mm
  • A1 = 594mm x 841mm
  • A2 = 420mm x 594mm
  • A3 = 297mm x 420mm
  • A4 = 210mm x 297mm
  • A5 = 148mm x 210mm
  • A6 = 105mm x 148mm
  • A7 = 74mm x 105mm
  • A8 = 52mm x 74mm
  • A9 = 37mm x 52mm

If you want to go larger than A0, the next size up is called “2A0” (1189 x 1682mm). Use the maths trick above to go up from there to 3A0, 4A0 and beyond.

ISO ‘B’ paper sizes:

Exactly as with the ‘A’ sizes, each ‘B’ paper size can be Read more

We’re Now Printers in WC1 Too!

Our new print shop in London WC1

We’re pleased to announce that we are now the owners of an additional print shop, WCS Digital Print, based in Mount Pleasant, London WC1. So, if you’re looking for a printer in the Clerkenwell and Farringdon area of London WC1, we can also now help.

WCS Digital has been around since 1985, supplying high quality printing and design to west central London individuals, businesses and organisations for almost 35 years. Southside Print owners Rob Phillips and Sarah Codd have now also taken on WCS Digital Print and aim to bring similar improvements and investments to the WC1 print works, following on from their successes and proven track record at Southside Print. These are likely to include snazzy new printing and finishing equipment as well as cutting edge software that’ll help track the progress of orders and make print quotes fast and incredibly simple.

Printing services in Clerkenwell, Farringdon & London WC1

Like here at Southside, WCS Digital Print is a litho printer, a digital printer, a large format printer and a copy shop. So, as well as offering high quality printing of just about anything, you can also go to WCS Digital for photocopying, document duplication and image/document scanning services. WCS also offers print management services, graphic design, brochure production, booklet making, document binding, bookbinding and direct mail solutions. Just like Southside, it’s a full design and print solution! More details of the Read more

Printers in Borough, London SE1

Printers in Borough, London SE1

Borough market - blue plaque

We are printers in Borough, right in the heart of London SE1. Based in Tabard Street, Southside Print offers high quality printing to individuals, businesses, shops, charities and organisations across the Borough & SE1 region. So, whether you’re a resident who needs personal stationery, a cafe that needs printed menus, a pub that needs posters to promote gigs, an SE1 charity that needs fundraising literature, a shop that needs printed booklets or catalogues or one of the many businesses in the Borough that requires sales and marketing collateral, we can help. We’ll print everything for you at the highest quality, for a competitive price. What’s more, our turnaround times are hard to beat and we offer free local delivery and a click and collect service for those close by.

Further afield?

Perhaps you’re a little bit outside the Borough region. No problem! We print for companies and organisations everywhere in the UK and abroad and even have a web print shop where anyone in the world can order popular items like stationery, posters, brochures, leaflets and bound documents 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Simply choose your desired options, submit your payment and we’ll take care of the rest. And don’t forget that ‘click and collect’ service for local customers.

What can we print?

We can print pretty much anything you can think of! For example, brochures, catalogues, letterheads, business cards, compliments slips, NCR (multi-part) order pads, menus, posters, display graphics, exhibition panels, signs, newsletters, annual reports, leaflets, flyers, booklets, brochures, labels, stickers, wedding invites, postcards and a whole host of other printed items. In fact, if it’s produced by printing ink on paper, chances are we can supply it.

The Borough

Entrance to Borough Market

The Borough is an extremely cosmopolitan community, with a really good buzz about it. You have Borough Market right at its heart and there you can pick up anything from gifts to fruit, vegetables, street food from around the world, the finest delicacies and much more. Pubs, restaurants, cafes and other eateries abound and throughout the Borough you have a huge abundance of shops including independent traders and high street brands all competing for the attention of shoppers. All these businesses and traders need to be at the top of their game to attract passers by so it’s important that they get their message across in window displays, inside and on their printed promotional literature. Many of them also hand out flyers in the SE1 streets. We can help with all of that not only by producing the finest print, but also by making it look a million dollars in the first place, courtesy of our in-house graphic designers. That’s where we can make a real difference in your ROI (return on investment) to ensure that you communicate your service or product USPs (unique selling propositions) and key messages clearly to your prospects. That’s how you are most likely to turn them into paying customers. Supplying your own artwork? That’s Read more

Looking for an ‘Order of Service’ Printer?

 

Order of Service printer in London Bridge & SE1

Are you looking for an Order of Service printer for a wedding, funeral or other type of ceremony? We can help with the printing and design if so.

The ceremony itself can be for a wedding, civil ceremony, renewal of vows, a blessing, funeral, remembrance service, religious ceremony and so on. For any of these, an ‘Order of Service’ will be a very useful and welcoming document for the guests who will be attending.

An Order of Service programme is usually produced in a booklet format although can sometimes take the form of a simple double-sided card. At Southside Print, we can design and print it in whatever style you prefer, of course; after all, every ceremony is different.

Typical Content

The front of an Order of Service programme usually shows who and what the ceremony is for along with a time, date and venue.

Then, either on the front or inside, it usually outlines, step by step, what will happen during a ceremony, all in the correct order. The steps can include a welcome message followed by things like readings, hymns, prayers, poems, blessings, music (each usually noting the author etc.), the ceremony itself, perhaps the signing of the register if it’s a wedding — and so on.

Sometimes on the back page, the organiser may choose to thank the guests for coming and to acknowledge key people for their input during the event. These may include anyone who spoke during the ceremony along with, perhaps, naming and thanking people like bridesmaids, the ushers and so on. The back may also mention details for any reception if it’s a wedding or civil ceremony, and how to make donations (often given in lieu of flowers) if it’s a funeral.

Design & Printing Style

Each ceremony is unique and therefore the Order of Service booklet that goes with it should also be unique. Those organising the event will often have a particular look and feel in mind too, so the design style of Order of Service programmes varies widely. The exact type of ceremony will also have a bearing on the most appropriate look and style, of course, so a design for a funeral programme will often look more restrained than one for a wedding. This is where Southside Print can help. We have in-house designers who can take your brief and turn it into exactly what you have in mind for your particular ceremony. With printing and finishing services all in-house too, it means that we can turn the whole job around very quickly and cost-effectively. Our facilities include lamination along with digital foiling, which can really lift your Order of Service away from the ordinary and give it a feel of real quality, all without breaking the bank. So, whether your Order of Service is a multi-page booklet or a simple double-sided card, we can make it look smart and extremely professional.

We also design and print wedding stationery, invitations, table cards, menus, Save the Date cards etcWe also Print Invites, Thank You Cards, Stationery etc.

We can also design and print invites, Thank You cards, Save the Date cards and other wedding/ceremony stationery for you along with place setting name cards, menus, table cards, large format table plans and pretty much anything that requires printing for your special event.

Fancy Papers

Another of the things that can make your Order of Service programme and any related stationery really stand out is specialist paper or card. Ask us about this as we have many different options to choose from including textured stocks, tinted stocks, luxury stocks, recycled papers and even luxury lined envelopes. Using any of these can really make your printed piece look superb!

About Southside Print

Southside Print are Read more

Restored Artwork for Restorative Justice

Restored Artwork for Restorative Justice

Sometimes even a supposedly simple piece of design and artwork can meet with unforeseen complications, which can then make printing seemingly impossible. That’s exactly what happened with some business cards for our local client Why Me? recently, when their original artwork went completely missing. They’d had some fairly straight forward business cards produced in the past, but couldn’t locate the original artwork files. That’s where Southside Print’s Matt Potter came to the rescue. Matt is Southside Print’s resident graphic designer. He simply used some of the last few remaining cards as visual reference and, based on those, managed to rebuild the artwork entirely from scratch. He successfully matched fonts, colours, the layout and the design and, in no time at all, the ‘new’ business cards had been printed and supplied to the client — a great outcome for everyone.

Lost your Artwork? Need it Restored?

No problem at all. As with the business cards above, we can usually match fonts or find something very similar if an exact match is not possible. We can also match colours, design layouts and often we can even reproduce or substitute missing graphics. While some graphics are easier to replace than others, our talented design and artwork team can usually save the day and rescue the situation in virtually every case. That’s true whether it’s for business cards, leaflets, brochures or something larger like a poster or display panel. We can supply a free quotation before proceeding, of course, so you’ve nothing to lose by asking us for potential help.

About ‘Why Me?’

Why Me? is a national charity that primarily helps victims of crime to attain some kind of restorative justice. As part of this, the charity’s Restorative Justice Service helps offenders to understand the true impact of their crimes which, in turn, can often help to stop them re-offending in the future. Indeed, this is exactly how the charity started life …

The charity was started by Will Riley, himself a victim of crime. Back in 2002 when Will was a London businessman, a burglar gained entry to his house. Will confronted the burglar, a struggle ensued and Will eventually managed to hand the burglar over to the police. It turned out that the burglar was a career criminal named Peter Woolf. Woolf was sent to prison for the crime but the two men later met again voluntarily at a ‘Restorative Justice’ meeting at Pentonville Prison.

“Imagine the person who has caused you harm is sitting opposite… What would you say?”

Will, the victim, was able to explain the impact of the burglary directly to the offender in question and to obtain answers to some challenging questions. This process turned out to be a healing one and represented quite a turning point for both men. Will Riley subsequently felt that he was no longer fearful of opening his front door and Peter Woolf stopped offending completely, going ‘straight’ after many years of crime. Not only did both men directly benefit but also it meant that potentially hundreds of additional people did not become victims of the burglar once he left prison. Such is the power and potential of Restorative Justice.

The video below explains more and features both Will and Peter, who both now Read more

Printing for Bikecation, a Cycling Holiday Company in Borough High Street

Digital & large format printing for Bikecation in Borough High Street

Just like the organisation featured in our last post, our latest case study is for a customer based in Borough High Street. This time it’s the turn of a dynamic cycling holiday company, aptly named Bikecation. Located just a stone’s throw from our print works in SE1, it made good sense for them to try the services of a local printer and we were very pleased to help. Print jobs included some eye-catching posters, which were printed on 200gsm ‘photo satin’ stock, along with some promotional business cards, which were printed on 300gsm silk coated stock. Bikecation supplied the design and artwork files and, as you can see, the design is striking and contemporary. Production was turned around very fast, although the customer didn’t really require them for about a week — we just like to get ahead at Southside Print!

Take a look at some of the A1 posters:

Large format poster printed for Bikecation, the one-stop shop for tailor-made cycling trips Printed poster for show offer to customers Digitally printed poster for book signing by Bikecation's Rob Penn Poster for books signed by Bikecation's Rob Penn Poster for Bikecation & bespoke, corporate, charity & custom cycling breaks Poster for Bikecation's affiliate scheme for bike shops & clubs

About Bikecation

Bikecation started life after a conversation between two cycling enthusiasts; Rob Penn, formerly a City lawyer, and Jamie Paterson, a businessman. Both were keen advocates of the simple pleasures of bike riding and enjoyed travelling. Bikecation turned their shared dream of starting a custom cycling holiday company into reality. As well as being a tour guide for the company, Rob has a best-selling book ‘It’s all About the Bike: the Pursuit of Happiness on Two Wheels’ which has been translated into nine languages and has been made into a BBC documentary called ‘Ride of My Life‘.

Bikecation offers a wide range of custom cycling holidays including leisure cycling holidays, road cycling holidays, a more adventurous style of guided cycling trip called Rob Raids (personally guided by Rob Penn), bespoke mini breaks, cycling training camp breaks, cycling sportives and even ‘Watch & Ride’ breaks where you can watch famous bike races like the Tour de France whilst also getting the chance to ride the course yourself before the actual event.

Included amongst the cycling breaks on offer are corporate tours, private guided holidays and even organised charity events. Destinations include a wide range of beautiful locations in the UK as well as Europe and it’s up to you whether or not you’d like to be accompanied by a Bikecation cycling guide on your particular trip. Bikecation also moves your luggage for you, so you are free to enjoy the cycling and the stunning views. So, whether you’re into slow-paced family cycling along gentle routes in Wales, island hopping in Croatia, doing wine and food tours by bike in Bordeaux, or really going hell-for-leather up classic cycling climbs in the Alps, Bikecation has something to suit you. The range of options is outstanding! What’s more, all hotels are checked and pre-vetted to suit cyclists and sports enthusiasts as well as being hand-picked so they’re perfectly located along the very best cycling routes.

As the company says: Read more

Printed NCR Sets, Menus & Posters for Nelson’s Restaurant, SE1

Design and printing for Nelson's Restaurant

One of our favourite places to eat in Borough High Street is Nelson’s Sandwich Bar & Restaurant. Their food is delicious, freshly cooked and very affordable, but more about that in a moment.  First, we’ll tell you a little about the kind of design and print work we’ve been doing for them recently:

  • Our very own graphic designer Matt Potter designed and supplied artwork, to the customer’s brief, for their brand new menus. These were digitally printed/colour duplicated onto 200gsm white ‘Mondi’ stock. We printed them in full colour both sides onto SRA3 (oversize A3) card, trimmed them down to A3, gloss encapsulated them and then folded them to A4. The reason for the encapsulation, which both laminates the menus and seals the edges, is so that they are waterproof and are easily cleaned after use in the restaurant. We supplied just 28 menus, hence digitally printing them rather than using our litho presses.
  • Matt also designed, printed and supplied two A3 laminated signs/posters which are attractive and eye-catching for use in the restaurant. What better way to announce a special deal to customers!
  • 3-part NCR order padA very practical piece of print was a batch of 3-part NCR sets (pads) which are now being used by waiters and waitresses when taking orders. The restaurant required 100 pads, consisting of fifty 3-part NCR sets per pad. ‘NCR’ stands for No Carbon (as in carbon paper) Required. An NCR set is a multi-part pad, where a person can write on the top copy and, due to clever properties in the paper itself, the pressure of writing duplicates what’s being written onto subsequent sheets, so that different people can all have a copy. In this particular case, each of the 3-part sets has a printed white sheet at the top, followed by a blue and a yellow sheet underneath. So, for example, the waiter or waitress can keep a blue copy, the customer can have the top, white copy and the kitchen staff can have the 3rd, yellow copy. It’s quick and easy, particularly as we ‘micro perf’ (perforate) the pads so that pages can be torn off easily and also because we design the wrap-around cover so that it doubles up as protection under each 3-part set being written upon. That way the next set of 3 sheets doesn’t also duplicate the order. Each order pad also has a board back, to keep it rigid when being used.

About Nelson’s Restaurant

Nelson's Restaurant, Borough High Street, London SE1Nelson’s Restaurant is literally a stone’s throw from Borough High Street tube and a just a few minutes’ walk from London Bridge station in London’s SE1. They offer breakfast, lunch and takeaways during weekdays from 7am to 5pm. Southside Print London Bridge can definitely vouch for how delicious their food is! They do a huge range of different teas, coffees and cold drinks along with a fantastic choice of tasty breakfasts – all at extremely reasonable prices. For example, a large breakfast tea is just £1.50 and a Full English Breakfast is just £6.50.

You can also go for something like a vegetarian ciabatta or focaccia (a Tricolore of mozzarella, avocado and tomato is just £4.90, for example). Yum!

The lunch menu includes anything from fried scampi and calamari, to soup, various fresh pasta dishes and salads, which include Nelson’s own take on a Caesar Salad; a salad of crispy leaves layered with capers, croutons, grilled chicken and parmesan dressing (£7.90).

The takeaway menu includes Read more

Brochure Printing for Munro & Forster Communications, London SE1

Brochure printing for Munro Forster CommunicationsSouthside Print London Bridge recently printed some lovely brochures for Munro & Forster Communications, who are based a stone’s throw away from the SE1 printer at Bank Chambers, Borough High Street, just 5 minutes from London Bridge station.

The Contemporary Graphics

Both brochures use smart, modern designs that utilise contemporary ‘flat’ graphics and bright colours. As such, they’re easy on the eye, fresh looking and thoroughly engaging, which is a testament to the skill of the graphic designer, considering the subject matter involved.

The Digital Printing

The brochures were each printed in full colour process (‘CMYK’) from design and artwork supplied by the client’s own in-house graphic designer. Southside Print London Bridge utilised its digital presses to print both jobs as these best suited the relatively low quantities involved — just 100 and 300 were required respectively. Both brochures were printed with 200gsm cover stock and 120gsm internal sheets, which were all then trimmed, collated, folded and saddle-stitched into the finished brochure format. Printing production was turned around in just 2 days from start to finish.

About Munro & Forster Communications

Munro & Forster Communications is an award-winning consultancy that specialises in PR for sectors including healthcare, wellbeing, education and the environment. Clients, who range from food and pharmaceutical organisations to non-profits and the public sector, benefit from an integrated public relations and public affairs service through the use of both off-line and on-line PR activity, along with social media solutions where appropriate. As well as day-to-day media relations, services include Read more

Printing for The Art Academy, Borough, London SE1

Digital printing for The Art Academy

Spring Courses PosterThe Art Academy is one of our close neighbours here in the London Bridge/Borough region of London. They sometimes need posters, brochures and flyers printed and, as we’re in the same SE1 area, we are a natural choice for printing of such items. A couple of examples of marketing collateral produced for them can be seen above and details of both the printing and the Academy follow below.

Open Days PosterWe produced the Spring Courses poster (shown right) using The Art Academy’s own design and artwork supplied and printed it as ten A3 posters and fifty A5 flyers. Both were printed in full colour, single-sided, using our digital printing press. This was perfect for the relatively low volumes required and allowed for a speedy turnaround. The stock used was 170gsm ‘Essential Silk’ which started life at a size of SRA2.

We also produced a similar poster, in the same manner, for their Fine Art Foundation open days. This can be seen on the left and utilised exactly the same ‘Essential Silk’ paper as the first example.

Lastly, we also supplied some full colour, 200gsm brochures (not shown), each incorporating a front flap. Due to the low volume and fast turnaround needed those were produced via colour copy/duplication and finished to a folded size of A5.

Special Offer to students of The Art AcademySpecial Printing Offer for Art Academy Students

Southside Print London Bridge are currently doing some great printing deals for Art Academy students, who are being offered a 20% discount on business cards, A5 flyers and A6 flyers. These would be great for impressing future clients and employers at Graduate Shows. Click the blue poster thumbnail for more details and special pricing or download the full-sized version here (right-click to save).

About The Art Academy

The Art Academy, based just around the corner in Borough High Street, is an independent art school and registered charity (No. 1078804). It offers art education programmes via evening classes, part-time classes, short courses and weekend courses right through to longer-term Diplomas, Foundation and Certificate courses. The wide range of art programmes is matched only by the huge diversity of those attending and includes portrait, figure and sculpture work, painting, printmaking, ceramics, glass, digital art, art history and drawing.

“In just 10 years, The Art Academy has grown from one person’s idea into a thriving organisation, that nurtures creative talent and reaches out to the wider community.”

The principle aims of The Art Academy are: Read more

Duplication, Digital & Large Format Printing for ‘Teens and Toddlers’, London Bridge

Printing for Teens and ToddlersThe London Bridge branch of Southside Print recently produced printing and duplication work for Teens and Toddlers, which is based in Tooley Street near London Bridge SE1.

Digital and large format printing

A1 large format display board

The work produced for Teens & Toddlers included:

  • A 4-page brochure (shown above) which was produced as A3 full colour print-outs that were then creased and folded down to A4. This particular job used 350gsm ‘Essential Gloss’ stock and the design and artwork were supplied by the client;
  • An A1 display panel (shown above right) which was printed on our large format printing press and produced using a 190gsm full colour print mounted to foam board. Again, the design and artwork were supplied by the customer.

Southside Print London Bridge produced both jobs entirely in-house using our digital printing/copying service and large format printing facilities. Click the links to learn more about those printing services.

About Teens and Toddlers

Teens and Toddlers is an award-winning organisation that exists to support young people, particularly the disadvantaged and those who have abandoned hope of achieving well at school. What makes the organisation out of the ordinary is that teenagers mentor younger children, the aim being to build life skills, self-belief and confidence in the teenager, thereby enhancing success at school and ultimately within both the workplace and community. The toddlers involved benefit enormously too. Mentoring of younger children by teenagers was shown to Read more