Template: Jewel case CD layout for Scribus


Since most audio CD production companies only offer printing templates for closed, proprietary applications like 'Adobe InDesign', 'Adobe Photoshop', 'Corel Draw', etc. I thought it was time to release a printing template based on Free Software!

Here is a link to a layout template for creating a CD artwork (booklet, inlay, label, ...) for a classic CD jewel case - with the Open Source Desktop Publishing application "Scribus":

>>> Download: scribus-CD_jewel_case-template.zip <<<

The template was created and used for layouting the audio CD artwork of our 2nd album: "X marks the spot".
The version of Scribus used was v1.3.3.11.

If you have any questions, feedback, etc - don't hesitate to contact me (Pick category: "technical request").

Template contents

The template contains the following page types

  • 12-page booklet pages:
    We've had 12 pages, but it should be quite easy to adapt to more or less booklet pages. What's quite helpful is the numbering of pages, because sometimes it's not quite obvious which booklet side is on which page.
    Additionally, I've linked the booklet text frames in the right order, so you can just copy/paste text into one of them, and it will be distributed across the pages correctly.
    Only exception is the last page, because that one is usually used for non-continous text, such as credits, etc.
  • Inlay:
    This is the back side of the CD's jewel case
  • Tray:
    If you're using a jewel case with a transparent tray (not black, like it usually is), you can have a graphic underneath the CD within the case.
  • CD label:
    This is the image actually printed on the CD itself. If the CD is printed professionally, there is usually no offset or bleeding areas, so you might have to adjust the size manually to the size specification of the production facility you're producing at.
    (In my case it was e.g. changing the inner circle from 22mm to 24mm size. So no big deal)
  • CD label (Neato stickers):
    For printing a CD label in a copyshop (e.g. for creating a dummy-master to send to the production facility), we've used CD-label stickers. Unfortunately, each vendor has a different positioning of the stickers on the A4 sheet, so this template only works with stickers from 'Neato'.
    Tip: If you're using a different CD-label sticker set, you can quickly adapt the template by scanning the sticker page and put it in a background layer in Scribus, scaling it 1:1. Then you can easily move/resize the template's printing boundaries to match the sticker page (This is how I've done it).

Example content

I've left some example content in the template, as paragraph styles, because I've made the experience that it's easier to delete/modify/adapt something, than to start from zero - even with paragraph styles or text.

Printing limits & size information:

The template contains 2 layers that should *not be printed*:

  1. Printing limits:
    This layer contains visual boundaries about bleeding edges, safe-areas, etc. - so you can align your content properly, without having to fear that there are nasty surprises when comes to final printing and cutting.
  2. Size information:
    I've found it quite practical to have exact size information (in millimeters) about the printing limits, because this makes it very easy to adapt the template to e.g. other applications or environments.
    (You might want to turn that layer invisible during layouting, because it may distract optically)


Since we've put quite some time into making, cleaning and publishing this template, it's released under a "Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Austria" license.

This means, you are free:

  • to copy, distribute, display, and perform the work
  • to make derivative works

Under the following conditions:

  • Attribution:
    You must give the original author credit.
    In our case, please refer to us somewhere in your resulting work, like this for example:
    "Scribus design template by XBloome (www.xbloome.com)"
  • Share Alike:
    If you alter, transform, or build upon this work, you may distribute the resulting work only under a licence identical to this one.
    Might sound a bit restrictive, but I don't like "hit-and-run" actions, so if you profit from my time/work, why shouldn't you pass this benefit on to others? :)