How to print a PDF booklet.


My friend Dave has just moved across to a mac and he tells me that in Microsoft publisher you can use a booklet template to make a booklet. Publisher did this automatically. With Pages in OS X there is no such built in option to do this automatically, but there is a great little program called ‘create booklet’ that will do it for you when you go to print the document.

By booklet I mean A4 pages folded in half to make an A5 booklet that you staple in the middle. To do this all the pages need to be re-ordered, for example, page 8 goes near page 1, page 2 near page 7 and so on.

You need to download a little program called ‘Create Booklet’ which will add an extra option to your printing window to allow you to do this.

You can download it directly here or you can try the original webpage here.

After you’ve downloaded it, Click on the ‘install- Create Booket PDF Service’
This will install an extra menu item in your printer menu to be able to print booklets.

After you’ve done this, go into Pages (or Microsoft Word or whatever program you are trying to print from) and select print, like you are going to normally print a document. But instead of pressing print (in the bottom right corner of the window) select the ‘PDF’ button in the bottom left of the window, and click on ‘Create Booklet’

Your document will automatically be made into a booklet.

It will open in a new window, and you can either ‘save’ it as a PDF file (to email to someone or print out later) or you can print it as a booklet to your printer.

You then need to select the ‘double sided’ box and select ‘short edge binding’ not ‘long edge binding’.  Short edge binding means you want to fold the booklet along the shorter edge of the A4 page. If you select ‘long edge binding’ it will print ht back page upside down.

When you are designing a booklet, it will be printed smaller than usual. The A4 page you see on your screen will be printed on 1/2 an A4 page when you make a booklet, so you ‘ll make all the text a bit bigger than usual. Eg you may choose to use 18 point font instead of 12.

Note: There was an application called ‘Cocoa Booklet’ that used to do this but it doesn’t work in Snow Leopard, this is the new way of doing it.

Note: If you want to publish a book, and need a more professional binding solution try this program (it’s not free).

Create Booklet and El Capitan

Some people have reported that ‘ create booklet’  does not work with El Capitan.  I can verify that it does work perfectly with El Capitan. If it’s not working can I suggest you try reinstalling it.

Also, I think there are two versions running around…

There is the paid version by ‘TheKeptPromise’ available  from the Apple App store and from here,  which is called “create booklet 1.2”. It costs $15.  It may not work with El Capitan.

I can verify that ‘create booklet 1.1’, the free version by Christoph Vogelbusch does work with El Capitan. Last time I checked it was available from here.



66 responses to “How to print a PDF booklet.”

  1. Ganry74

    The ideal outcome would be a solution of the problem with no single individual having to think all that hard. ,

  2. Yes I agree it’s a shame it’s not built in. I’m not sure why it’s not.

  3. Russell

    Great solution! A few years back I found you could create booklets using OpenOffice and posted about it on my blog. That’s even a non-mac solution.

  4. Renae

    Hi Wayne,

    Really sorry to contact you on here, but not sure how else to get to you.
    I am trying to use your picture perfect word press template for a website.
    It says I need to install and activate the page-links-to plugin. Done, installed and activated, but the template still comes up with the same message.

    Any suggestions?

    Please contact me at



  5. […] this article ? Click here to for how to make a pdf booklet. […]

  6. Chris

    Adobe Reader* has an option for Booklet Printing under the Page Scaling menu in the Print dialog box.

    *version 9 so OK for MacOS X 10.4.11 & later, don’t think earlier versions have it.

  7. Holly

    This is fantastic – thanks for this! For some reason when I convert it to a booklet file it says that it’s not universal and to ask the developer. I’ll keep slogging through the internet to find a solution…

  8. CJ

    Thanks, At last I can print booklets!#

  9. Lynn

    WOW. Finally I can easily print a booklet, without all the drama.
    Thanks a lot.

  10. Bob

    have tried using this to print a booklet but when I save it to PDF it merges two pages onto one leaving one side blank. Anyone have any ideas how to fix this?

  11. GLH

    I’m sorry guys but I’ve downloaded the program and still can’t print in booklet format as 50% of the pages are upside down. PLEASE HELP ME!

    1. Sam

      I had this problem too! When you go to print, select the drop-down box that says ‘Preview,’ then change that to ‘Layout.’

      Where it says ‘Two-sided’ change it to ‘short-edged binding.’ Seemed to fix the problem for me.

  12. Earl

    I have not been able to get it to work. Using Lion, latest Word for Mac and pages are grouped wrong with intermittent skipping or blank pages. Created document in Word, saved to pdf and trying to create booklet from pdf. Duplex printing with reversal was closest to success.

    1. Erin

      I have the same problem. I have Lion, created doc in Numbers, and when I click Create Booklet it is converted to a PDF, but it leaves pages blank that shouldn’t be and does not put them in the right order.


  13. Travis

    Works great!! First I printed the odd pages, and then put those papers back in my printer and printed the even pages. And voila! A double sided booklet without me having to rearrange a single page!

  14. thanks heaps for this, I always had trouble with printing anything more than a 4 page booklet…

  15. I have managed to print a booklet from a pages document but the font has been made very small and I cannot work out why or how to change it. Any ideas

    I have produced a staff handbook in A5 and want to print it as a booklet. I have followed the suggestions and downloaded ‘Create a Booklet PDF Service’ and can get one printed.

    However it has changed the font size and made it too small. Any suggestions as to how to overcome this?

    1. Well it does make the font smaller as everything reduces from A4 to A5, so you have to allow for this and make everything bigger when you design it, is that what you mean?

  16. Jennifer

    I am having the same problem. Not sure how to fix. Can anyone give any suggestions?

  17. Bruce

    This works great when printing a directory from FileMaker Pro. Just set up a custom page size of 5.5 x 8.5. I was able to make a double-sided booklet of 30 pages fit on 8 double-sided pages in a few minutes. Before, it took hours to lay this out by hand. Thanks for some great software.

  18. Jim West

    All I get is:
    An error occurred while processing your request.
    Reference #97.31951645.1345918760.69de812
    An error occurred while processing your request.
    Reference #97.f4589140.1345918973.18cbb28
    I have a brand new MacBook Pro, updated Office: MAC 2011.

  19. G

    Link to create a booklet no longer working…

  20. ToolBox Systems Limited

    I was looking for it too. A quick 30 second Google and I discover that you can get it from here:

    or the developer’s site here:

  21. Jim

    Just downloaded Create Booklet program today and created a booklet successfully as one pdf, but preview crashes every time I try and print the booklet. Is there any way around this or am I doing something silly? I am running OSX 10.5.8

  22. Laura

    I have been using the function shown above for creating a booklet on Mac for years. When I went to do it today, it suddenly stopped creating it! I had just used it five minutes previously without a problem, now it just won’t show the created document at all!!! Bizarre … Any ideas?

  23. Margaret

    Just downloaded this. It’s not working. All the pages print out of order. I tried printing odd pages first and then even pages. Did not work. I have Mountain Lion. Any ideas on how to make this work?

  24. Coming a bit late to this post, but I thought I’d post a useful response for other Googlers to find.

    As far as I know, there still isn’t a “create booklet” feature built into Apple Pages, but there *is* a “print as booklet” feature built into Adobe Reader, which is free (and very useful to have anyway).

    So what you need to do is just create a document which is just a normal set of pages one after the other — be it with Apple Pages, LibreOffice, Word, or whatever you like — then export it as a PDF (using the option in the Print dialogue, for instance).

    Then just open the exported PDF document in Adobe Reader, and choose “Booklet” from the print dialogue there.

    Voilà, one print-ready booklet for you.

  25. Maree

    Thank you so much! I have just spent hours trying to work out the best way to create a booklet, and after reading your post I had it done in a matter of minutes!

  26. Nico

    Et voila indeed!! Exporting to Adobe Reader was simple and effective for my booklet.
    Thanks SO much Tim!!

  27. Kristen

    The link to install the program no longer works…

    1. oops – I’ll see if I can find anywhere it’s still available.

  28. Bill

    Hi there. Please help!
    I installed this program and it arranged the pages into the correct order as a booklet very quickly. However, I can no-longer print anything. I get a message that the printer is off line and it doesn’t matter what I do, it won’t print.

    I tried removing the two files that seem to have been added, but still nothing.

  29. Joe

    I love this app and I’ve gotten it to work great except I am having a problem with the margins when I print. I’m getting 1″ margins on all four sides of the individual pages…so a 2″ space between the text on pages 2 and 3 of my booklet. Have you ran across this issue before? My printer will print borderless so this shouldn’t be a problem and yet no matter how I set my margins it doesn’t change. Thanks for any insight!

    1. I found the same problem when creating the booklet in the Printing setup box.
      I went to the Applications folder and opened the “Create Booklet” app from there and it worked perfectly.

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