How to Import PDF Template


How to Import the PDF Template



Downloading the Template

Your template should be downloaded and ready to import into your book pages. Store it in your IMAGES folder or in a newly created folder labelled TEMPLATES. If you have more than one, label accordingly and store in the same file.

If you haven’t done the downloading yet:

Follow the instructions to get organised.

Should you decide NOT to tackle the bleed layout, then skip this section and move to the next stage. However you will have to deal with it before you can finalise your files for the book proof prior to printing. Information on the Bleed Layout, Templates and how to proceed is in Step 07 Print Ready PDFs if you are doing it yourself. If not, you’ll have to get an expert’s help.

Importing the Template

Before you import your PDF template make sure you have read the bleed information first. It is important to understand the relationship between the template and the bleed and how they work in unison.

The template is required to set the bleed allowance. This ensures the background colour or image goes right to the edge of each page. If your bleed is done incorrectly, parts of your artwork or text may be lost in the trimming stage.

Inkscape program should already be open


Open Inkscape from your Desktop


Double click to open


Open your Book Page Master File so you can import the template straight into the page. You have two options:

  • Open template in a new Inkscape window
  • Cut and paste template into your book page file
  • Move into correct position
  • Close the Inkscape window that you opened the template in


  • Import the template directly into the book page file
  • Move into position on the page.

The choice is yours.

The instructions below however, are for the latter method:

File  >  Open


Select file to open dialogue box will appear


Select BOOK LAYOUT folder

Double click to open

Select your Book Page Master File and double click to open


Your page should look like this:


Now it’s time to import your template

File  >  Import


Select file to import dialogue box will appear

You will need to locate the TEMPLATES folder


Double click on TEMPLATES folder to open


Click on folder once then click Open

You will now need to locate the PDF Template file that you downloaded from the printer and saved on your computer.


Double click on PDF Template file to open


Click on file once then click Open

PDF import settings dialogue box will appear:


There is no need to change any settings or preferences as your PDF template is lines only, no text.

Click on OK 

Your template will be imported onto screen. The mouse position will be the centre of the template. So wherever your mouse is on the screen when you click OK to import, is central of where your Template will appear.


Now the template can then be picked up and dragged into position on your book page.


Hover mouse over cropped area on Template object and the hand pointer will appear. Once that is visible, pick up the Template and drag it into position.

To drag: click and hold mouse button down and then drag into position on book page.

Make sure it is as exact as possible. Then release the mouse.


PLEASE NOTE: when the Template appears it is automatically selected as a single object, ready to move or manipulate even though each of the lines may appear cropped. For ease of positioning and to ensure these lines stay together while you move the template it is wise to group them together, then ungroup them later when needed.

A handy move!

The short cut to Group Objects is:

Ctrl + G

To Ungroup:

Shift + Ctrl + G

For further information on Grouping Objects by manually cropping them, see below:

To group objects: position mouse at top left of guidelines and clear of the edge and then dragging your mouse diagonally, draw a crop box around guidelines. When the mouse is clear of the bottom right corner, release and it will snap back, selecting everything in the crop box. 

Now you can pick them up together like a single object and drag them to the desired location.

To move: hover mouse over object and it will change to the hand pointer so you can drag to wherever required. Click and hold down mouse button to drag and then release, when it is in position. If you need to reposition it, ensure the hand appears when you hover over it and then move to its new location.

When in position, release the mouse.

Once your Template is positioned you are ready to resave your mastercopy file again. Your document should be exactly the same size as your imported template. If not, go and check your measurements for both.

The document dimensions should match the external bleed margin, that way when your book is trimmed of the external bleed, all background images and colour will meet the edge of your pages. The inside margins will be your parameters for keeping your text etc within the finished trimmed edge of the page.

There are still a few more things to do before you have a complete master file to work from. But you have completed the importation of the Template and will now be ready to move on to the next step once your file is resaved.

To save: 

File > Save

File will be saved straight over the top of the existing file of that name


File > Save as

Select file to save as dialogue box will appear:

Manually select the file name

e.g. 01BookPageMasterFile.svg 

Click on file then click Save

A dialogue box will appear asking if you wish to replace the existing file

Click on Yes

Click here to go to my Screen Tour of Inkscape Tools and Features


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