It’s fairly common for a project to have many components, each one a different size. Maybe it’s a branding project with a logo, letterhead, business card, envelope, poster, t-shirt, and brochure. Maybe it’s a book jacket with 2 flaps, a spine, and back and front cover. One approach is to create a new InDesign document for every separate piece. I would certainly do that for multi-page files like brochures and books. For one-page items, though, you could use another approach: create different page sizes inside the same InDesign document. There are 2 ways to accomplish this.
Start With a New Document
First, of course, you launch InDesign and create the new document (File > New > Document). The size of my sample file is 24″ wide x 36″ high. I always add a 1/8″ bleed in my document settings if it’s a print piece.
I like to use the Advanced workspace (Window > Workspace > Advanced), because that provides you with an excellent suite of panels, notably Pages, Layers, Links, Swatches, Paragraph Styles, and Character Styles. The Pages panel will play a key role in the first method of our tutorial: it’s where all the magic happens!
METHOD #1: Use the Pages Panel
- Open the Pages panel and create a new Master Page (or duplicate an existing Master Page). You could just create the new page size in the document page area and duplicate the spread if you need to reuse it. I recommend creating the various page sizes in the Master Pages area of the panel so that you can easily apply the settings to new document pages.
- At the bottom of the Pages panel, click on the Edit Page Size button. A drop-down menu will appear with a list of pre-set sizes. Select one of these sizes and the new Master Page will change to that size.
- If the size you want doesn’t exist in the pre-set list, you can create your own by clicking the Custom button. It’s important to always select one of the pre-sets before creating your custom size; your new page size won’t be applied until you select another preset.
- Type a Name in the blank field. Enter the measurements. Click the Add button. This adds the new page size to the list of available pages.
- Select the new page. Click OK.
- REMEMBER: The new page size won’t be applied until you select another preset size, then select the new custom size.
METHOD #2: Use the Page Tool
- Open the Pages panel and create a new Master Page (or duplicate an existing Master Page).
- Select the Page tool (instead of the Page panel); this feature in the Tool panel was introduced in CS5.
- Select the page you want to resize.
- Go to the top of the document window to the Control Panel and find the measurement fields. The default reference point will be the upper left corner; that means the page grows from the left. Type in the measurements you want.
- Or, you can click on the drop-down menu and choose one of the existing sizes.
- If you want the content to adapt automatically to the new page size, select Scale under Liquid Page Rule before choosing the new size.
- I found that this alternate method doesn’t always work, but try it for yourself: Press Alt/Option while dragging one of the nodules surrounding the page to scale the content while manually resizing.
If you prefer, you can watch the video tutorial I made that shows you how to create a file with multiple page sizes in Adobe InDesign: