A bi-fold brochure is simply folded in half, either vertically or horizontally, to create four panels. This simple, low-cost fold is one of the most commonly-used brochure types.
To create a z-fold brochure, the paper is folded in thirds, accordion-style, and opens in the shape of a “z.” It has six evenly-sized panels: three on the front and three on the back. It’s compact and can include a lot of content. This type of fold is often used for “quick glance” brochures.
A tri-fold brochure is created by folding the paper into thirds and then tucking the right panel inside. It has six evenly-sized panels: three on the front, three on the back. This is another one of the most common brochures. It’s low-cost, compact and easy to carry, and offers enough space to include a lot of information.
While the number of panels and the panel sizes are the same as z-fold brochures, a tri-fold brochure offers a sense of timing: one panel is revealed after another.
With a gate-fold brochure, the panels fold out from the center, like a two-door gate. They have a total of six panels (three front and three back), with the center panel being twice as large as the others. Gate folds work well with creative, graphic-heavy designs. The gate-style front panels can convey a sense of invitation to the reader.
French Fold (8-Panel Right Angle Fold)
The sheet of paper is folded in half in one direction, and then again in the opposite direction. A French fold brochure has a total of eight evenly-sized panels: four front, four back. This type of fold is well-suited for maps or any brochure involving large diagrams.