Pros and Cons

The Pros

  • Lies flat and stays flat 
  • Pages can fold back 360 degrees
  • Cost effective 
  • Pages can be pulled out 
  • Different substrates and tabbed sections can be bound together in any configuration
  • Wire-o is available in lots of different colours and finishes and loops vary in size from 4.8mm to 25.4mm allowing you to bind small and large extents. 
  • Pages open without a step up, making it suitable for crossover images

The Cons 

  • Standard wire-o binding has no printable spine - but you could print the edge of the book block!
  • Wire-o can be damaged / crushed in transit 







Useful links
  • Binding
  • - Printing

Wire-o Binding

There are so many options to consider when wire-o binding. All styles involve separate wire loops that are used to bind the book mechanically through punched holes along the spine. Wire-o binding can be used for hardcover or softcover publications, small and large extents and is extremely versatile. Popular for notebooks, journals, catalogues, educational publications, calendars; it has the advantage of lying flat and staying flat when open - perfect for writing in, or photocopying from, or for using in the kitchen when hands free is a must!  

We've compiled some pictures to show you some of the many styles available - if you have more, send your pictures by email to: 




standard .jpgStandard Wire-o Binding

This is probably the most commonly used wire-o styles and shows the classic wire binding with separate front and back covers.    This type of wire-o has the disadvantage of having no spine, so when filed away on the shelf the book can be difficult to identify.  Although of course, you could print the book title onto the spine edge of the book block as shown here



wire-o half canadian.jpg

Half Canadian 

Quite why the Canadians have a wire-o binding style named after them is something of a mystery! In this binding style the wires (which some find unsightly) are partially concealed by a one piece cover that is bound in at the back only so the wire-o is partially visible through the back cover. This option provides a printable spine so that the book can be picked out from a shelf but still has the advantage of laying flat. 



full canadian.jpg

Full Canadian 

Similar to Half Canadian, in this version the partially hidden wire is exposed on the front and back cover.  This option also provides a printable book spine. 



cased in wire-o.jpgCased In / Concealed wire-o (round spine)

Here the wire-o is completely concealed and the book block is pasted into a case.  Often this will be made with a rounded spine to accommodate the wire-o.  The effect is a full hard back binding that feels really durable.   



cased in wire-o square_edited-1.jpgCased In / Concealed wire-o (square spine)

Again, with this hardwearing style the wire-o is completely concealed and is looped through the liner and pasted into the case.  



semi exposed.jpgSemi exposed / semi concealed 

As the cased wire-o, the book block is bound into a case cover.   The case is designed to have the wire-o (often in contrasting colour) visible from the spine. 



wrap around wire=o.jpgWire-o Wraparound 

This style uses a wrap around cover bound into the back of the book and provides a spine that can be printed.  



easel.jpgEasel Binding

Wire-o binding into a tent or easel card. This format is freestanding and the pages can be flipped over.   Useful for calendars and educational formats.  




split wire-o.jpgSplit or skip wire-o binding

Shake it up a bit!  Books can be bound using more than one run of wire to produce an attractive designer feel.  And you can apply this idea to any of the above styles!