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Catalogues & Magazines

Catalogues and Magazines

Catalogues and magazines are perfect bound publications printed either as one time issues or regularly such as daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly or annually. A magazine gets its name from a place in which to store a collection of something, as it is also used to describe the supply of cartridges in a firearm, the receptacle for film in a camera and in the form of the publication it is a place in which to store a collection of articles. A catalogue means a list of items, therefore the purpose of a catalogue is to list various things such as people or work involved at events such as exhibitions and shows, or products by retailers, particularly for mail-order businesses or fashion houses to show new product collections


Art exhibits, degree shows, fashion, food and industry retailers are the most common creators of catalogues. They are a great way to showcase photography and information at a smaller scale than a book, as these are usually given away for free or at a smaller cost.

Food and industry catalogues often have a light stock with gloss paper and are staple bound. Art, fashion and creative based catalogues tend to use a mixture of stock, using gloss for full bleed photography and favouring matte paper to add texture, and playing with size and format by using techniques such as tip ins, folding and die cutting. The cover is usually grounds for experimentation with texture, layers, colour, photography and pushing boundaries.

The photo to the right shows a degree show catalogue for a design course. The minimal cover uses foiling to add interest to the logo and create a beautiful limited edition catalogue. Also pictured is a stationer’s catalogue and a homeware retailer’s catalogue, both of which have much lower page counts and no extra customisation in order to keep costs down for mass production.

Magazines - Catalogues & Magazines


Magazines are published under a subject of interest, whether it be a very specialist subject such as parking or cow management or a broad subject such as gardening or the economy. These publications make money either through prepaid subscriptions, advertising, cost price or a combination of all three.

The regularity and price of a magazine publications can usually be identified by the weight of the paper used. A thinner paper with less pages usually identifies a weekly publication, whereas a heavy stock with a high volume of pages usually identifies a monthly, quarterly or annual publication, or a publication that sells a lot of advertising space – most common with fashion magazines.

Magazines often use a gloss paper for their internal pages, which is best suited to showcase the photography, however there is usually a mixture of stock as perfect binding easily allows for this. The cover is often a heavier stock than the internal pages, with more expensive publications using card.