How to Design a Corporate Letterhead Using Adobe illustrator CS5

How to Design a Corporate Letterhead Using Adobe illustrator CS5

Follow this tutorial to learn how to design a corporate letterhead in Illustrator using its basic tools and simple easy to follow methods

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Having a corporate letterhead is important for every business even if it is on a small scale. It helps to create a visual identity of the company and is one of the most important items in developing corporate identity. Creative letterheads can be easily designed using Adobe Illustrator. There is a certain format for a business letter head which you will learn in this tutorial. You will also learn how to create a simple artwork for the letterhead using basic tools in Adobe Illustrator and how to set the bleed area in it.

Follow the steps below to learn how to design a corporate letterhead using Adobe Illustrator.

Step # 1 — Create a new document
First of all, we will launch Adobe Illustrator and set the size of the document to “letter” or its dimensions to 8.5 inches width and 11 inches height. This is the standard size for a letterhead and does not vary. Set the bleed size to “0.125 inches” from all the sides. It is always a good idea to set a bleed area for the designs which will be printed so that there are no blank areas visible at the edges after being trimmed.

Step # 2 — Draw the margin lines
Once the document is open, we will draw a margin line of 0.5 inches from all the sides. The area for margin varies with the document size and it is always a good practice to keep all the text and information within the margin lines.

Step # 3 — Place the logo and name
A corporate letterhead must have a logo of the company, name of the company and the complete contact details. This the most common format for a letterhead. You can add some design elements to make it look attractive. Now we will copy a logo of the company and place it at the top left corner of the document. Remember to place it inside the margin lines. Now copy the name of the company and place it below the logo. The placement of the logo can vary according to the layout requirements.

Step # 4 — Insert the details
Now we will insert the contact details of the company on the letterhead. Use the type tool to insert the contact details of the company. Use “Garamond” font at point size 12 for the details. Do not use a font size of more than 12 pt for the details on the letterhead. You can decrease the font size to 10 pt or even to 9 pt depending on the x-height of the font you will use. Then we will set the leading to 18pt and align the text to the left. Place it to the top right corner of the document. Remember that the text should be inside the margin lines.

Step # 5 — Insert a straight line
Now we will use the pen tool to draw a straight vertical line just beside the contact details. The line should not extend the height of the text box. This is an optional addition. You can omit this line. Once done, select the text and line and change its color to “7B808A”.

Step # 6 — Create colorful spectrum line
We will add some design to this business letter head which will help us to create its visual identity. The design elements used should go with the company’s identity. We have a colorful logo so are going to design a colorful spectrum line to match the logo. Use the rectangle tool to draw small boxes over lapping one over the other and fill with different colors to create a colorful spectrum line. We will place the spectrum line at the bottom below the margin line. It should also exceed to the bleed area.

Step # 7 — Create trim marks
In the end, we will use rectangle tool to draw a rectangle of the same size as the artboard with “no fill”. Then we will go to “object” and select “create trim marks”. Trim marks will appear at all the edges. These marks will show from where the letterhead paper needs to be trimmed after printing. The corporate letterhead is now ready.


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