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How to create a cover with the One-Piece (Wraparound) Cover Designer

Lulu_Content1Lulu_Content1 Creator
edited April 2019 in Cover Formatting

The One-Piece Cover designer provides dimensions and an upload link. You'll need to create the cover file to specifications and upload the file on the Cover Step. The cover file must meet the specification exactly to ensure the cover is printed correctly.

Please Note: The One-Piece Cover designer will NOT add a barcode to your cover.

Dimensions for a one-piece cover can be found in the cover step of the Publishing Wizard or in the table below. The Lulu Create Page estimates spine widths when you select your book format and enter your book's page count.

Please Note: The cover dimensions for hardcover books are slightly larger than the stated page dimensions. This is normal; the cover is slightly larger than the pages of the book.

This is the equation for determining the width of a one-piece cover for a paperback:

Bleed + back cover + spine + front cover + bleed

This is the equation for determining the width of a one-piece cover for a dust jacket hardcover:

Bleed + Back Flap + Back Cover + Spine + Front Cover + Front Flap + Bleed (See a visual example)

This is the equation for determining the width of a one-piece cover for a casewrap hardcover:

Turn-in bleed + Back Cover + Spine + Front Cover + Turn-in Bleed (6" x 9" example) (8.25" x 10.75" example

This is the equation for determining the width of a one-piece cover for a coil-bound project:

Bleed + Back cover + Front Cover + Bleed

Note: Coil-bound projects do not include a spine, therefore this area should not be included in the uploaded cover file.

For best print results of your one-piece book cover, follow these tips:

  • Your one-piece cover PDF file must be saved as version 1.6 or earlier. Otherwise, you will receive an error message when uploading your file in the cover creation wizard:
    "We're sorry. We encountered an unrecoverable error. If you are unable to complete the publishing process, please contact support."
    You can also use the Lulu Job Options file (found at the bottom of this article) to ensure your PDF version is correct.
  • Although, it is possible for you to create a very complex PDF using Adobe Illustrator with many layers, fonts etc. do not do this. Our automated cover creation process creates a flattened, single layer PDF file that is then sent to the printer.
  • Avoid transparencies and transparent areas in your image files, as these cause unsightly gray or white areas in the printed material.
  • The more complex the PDF, the greater chance that the process of converting, or rasterizing, it for print will generate errors. If you've created a cover PDF that uses fonts and separate images, your best option is to open the PDF in Photoshop — it will automatically ask for DPI (300 is optimal) and color palette (choose CMYK). It will then rasterize the file to a single layer.
  • Leave crop marks off of the uploaded PDF image.
  • Only include spine text on projects with more than 80 page interior files. Including spine text on narrow spines will result in blurred or unreadable text.
  • We do not recommend the use of sharply contrasting colors for your spine and cover images since all printed books -- not just Lulu books -- can have a slightly offset spine. This means that some of the spine may spill onto the cover, or some of the cover onto the spine. The difference is minor and will not be greater than 1/8th of an inch.

Dimensions are for Perfect Bound book projects unless otherwise indicated.

Pocket Book

4.25 x 6.87"
10,795 x 17,4498

8.75" + spine x 7.125"
22,225 cm + spine x 18,0975 cm

5.5 x 8.5"
13,97 x 21,59 cm

11.25" + spine x 8.75"
28,575 cm + spine x 22,225 cm

5.83 x 8.26"
14,8082 x 20,9804 cm

11.90" + spine x 8.51"
30,226 cm + spine x 21,6154 cm
US Trade

6 x 9"
15,24 x 22,86 cm

12.25" + spine x 9.25"
31,115 cm + spine x 23,495 cm
US Trade Dust Jacket

6 x 9"
15,24 x 22,86 cm

19.25" + spine x 9.5"
48,895 cm + spine x 24,13 cm
US Trade Casewrap

6 x 9"
15,24 x 22,86 cm

13.75" + spine x 10.75"
34,925 cm + spine x 27,305 cm

6.14 x 9.21"
15,59 x 23,39 cm

12.53" + spine x 9.46"
31,82 cm + spine x 24,02 cm
Comic Book

6.625 x 10.25"
16,8275 x 26,035 cm

13.50" + spine x 10.50"
34,29 cm + spine x 26,67 cm
Small Square

7.5 x 7.5"
19 x 19 cm

15.25" + spine x 7.75"
38,735 cm + spine x 19,685 cm

9 x 7"
22,86 x 17,78 cm

18.25" + spine x 7.25"
46,355 cm + spine x 18,415 cm
Crown Quarto

7.44 x 9.68"
18,8976 x 24,5872 cm

15.12" + spine x 9.93"
38,4048 cm + spine x 25,2222 cm
US Letter Casewrap

8.25 x 10.75"
20,955 x 27,305 cm

18.25" + spine x 12.5"
46,355 cm + spine x 31,75 cm

8.26 x 11.69"
20.9804 x 29.6926 cm

16.76" + spine x 11.94"
42,5704 cm + spine x 30,3276 cm
Large Square

8.5 x 8.5"
21,59 x 21,59 cm

17.25" + spine x 8.75"
43,815 cm + spine x 22,225 cm
US Letter

8.50 x 11"
21,59 x 27,94 cm

17.25" + spine x 11.25"
43,815 cm + spine x 28,575 cm
Large Landscape Casewrap

12.75 x 10.75"
32,385 x 27,31 cm

27.5" + spine x 12.50" or
69,85 cm + spine x 31,75 cm
Large Square Casewrap

12 x 12"
30,48 x 30,48cm

26" + spine x 13.75" or
66,04 cm + spine x 34,925 cm
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