How To Make A Custom Colouring Book

Many people consider colouring books as playthings for children only – but that is not so! There are many adult-oriented colouring books available these days – people use them for relaxation or there is a growing trend of adults including drawing as part of larger mindfulness, meditation and therapeutic practices. There are many reasons why both adults and children can get great pleasure from spending time completing well-designed illustrations in a colouring book. Here are some guidelines as to how YOU can create your own custom colouring book:

Choose A Theme

When designing your own colouring book, you are free to base it around any subject you like – you can keep it simple and straightforward or get wildly creative and design it in as outlandish a fashion as you can imagine! Choose a theme or topic that interests you – what images appeal to your imagination and taste – perhaps wildlife, beautiful scenery, flowers, or even artistic, abstract images!

Your Target Audience 

You need to decide who your colouring book is for – is your target audience going to be children – if so, what age range do you need to pitch the book? If it is for young children who may be using crayons for the colouring, then consider that the designs need to contain large blank spaces with thicker outlines, whereas, if your book is aimed at older children and perhaps an adult audience, then the designs should be more complex with thinner edging and more intricate details.

Size And Format 

Consider the size of your pages – imagine your look of your pages and ensure they are large enough to display the detail of your designs and drawings and how easy they would be to complete with the different drawing materials such as ink, pencils, markers or crayons. Consider whether your images are going to be digitally scanned and, if so, think about the size of the original images and the trim size and format – are they to be landscape or portrait?


Decide on a medium for your colouring book – many books feature black-and-white illustrations which you can easily sketch in pencil, making it easy to alter and embellish as your design progresses.  Consider also, if you intend to convert your hand-drawn illustrations digitally, that medium and thick black lines scan, reproduce and print well.


There are many aspects to consider when deciding on your layout:

  • Pages – Decide on a sequence for your pages and organise them in that fashion – creating your book layout upfront will make the later tasks easier.
  • Artwork – After designing and creating your illustrations, sort them into order, then you need to scan them – ensure your image files are of the quality and high-resolution to produce clear, definitive lines that are consistent throughout the pages. It is good practice to attempt a few test scans to ensure the digital images are effective on the actual page sizes of your custom colouring book.
  • Software – Choose an appropriate bookmaking ‘tool’ – there are options available to create your colouring book with many print companies offering bespoke online tools allowing you to upload PDF’s of your images where you can draw your pages by hand or digitally load them to create a book ready for print.
  • Cover – Consider your book cover – this is what people will see first and, hopefully, draw attention to your book, so perhaps choose your favourite illustration from the book and reproduce that as the cover to give people a preview of what is inside. Show the illustration ‘completed’ as such, in full colour to demonstrate how good it can look when finished, or perhaps show the illustration semi-completed to create the image of how the purchaser could progress the illustrations contained in the colouring book.
  • Print – Once the pages and cover design have been finalised, use an established print company to actually print the number of copies of your book you need.

Once created and printed, you would need to consider how to market and distribute your book – again, an experienced print company can help and advise you on such matters.