Lulu offers several ways to create a cover for your project! 

The cover creation options can be accessed after uploading your interior PDF. This allows our site to make a custom template using your exact page count. Your spine will be sized precisely on this template to make creating a cover more effortless than ever! 


New to Canva?

If you’re new to Canva, we recommend reviewing their design library tutorials to better understand how to use the Canva cover designer. 

Download Template

The first step is to download the custom cover template. This template includes your front and back cover plus the spine sized to match your paper selection and page count. 

Once you’ve downloaded the cover, click the Canva button to open their cover designer.

We recommend uploading the template we offered to verify the position of your spine. You can do this by uploading the template, adding it to your canvas, and dragging it to the corners of the canvas. From there, you can reduce the transparency to see how the cover you’ve created aligns with the trim, margin, and bleed lines on the template.

Be sure to remove the template from your cover before using the cover.

Select Design on Canva

The Canva-powered cover designer will open in a new window. Be sure your browser allows cookies. 

To start, you’ll be prompted to create or sign in to a Canva account. This will save your cover designs and allow you to access them later to edit and download them.

Design on Canva

Their designer will display a pre-sized canvas to match the overall size of your cover (front, back, and spine, plus flaps for a dust jacket). You can use their templates to start your cover or you can create from scratch using their element library. 

Canva offers a number of ‘premium’ elements and templates. These can be purchased directly through your Canva account or accessed if you have Canva Premium.

Once you’ve completed your cover design, click the [Use Cover] button and you’ll be returned to Lulu with your newly designed cover! 

What to Keep in Mind

Canva connects to your browser before creating your cover. This means it links to the email/account you are currently logged into via your browser, NOT your Lulu account. 

If you log out of your browser's email, such as your Gmail account, you will not be able to edit your cover. 

Canva will show a pop-up verifying the email address associated with your cover. You'll want to log into that email address. 

You can also request access through the verification pop-up and the access request will be emailed to any address you enter. 

If you have a designer assisting you with our cover, we highly recommend sharing the file with them and anyone else involved. 

Special Instructions for Comic Book and Magazine Covers

If you’re creating a Comic Book or Magazine, you have the option to print on the inside front and back cover! To use this option, you must upload a PDF with 2 pages.

We recommend downloading the template provided for a Comic Book or Magazine to see the layout requirements for this unique cover design.

Hardcover (Dust Jacket) Cover Formatting

If you create a Dust Jacket Hardcover project, you must upload a cover file. Our template shows how to design the flaps along with the front and back covers.

You’ll also select your linen from the available color options and add foil spine text. Note that the total character count on your spine cannot exceed 42. Additionally, there are limited characters our foil spine stamp can support.

Supported Characters:

  • Roman characters sets (A-Z, 0-9)
  • ;',./!`^&*()~+:?"ˇ˘°´¨¯-

Unsupported Characters:

  • Lower case characters
  • _ (underscore)
  • Punctuation marks or accents used as decorative elements in lieu of a title
  • nonroman character sets (Cyrillic, Arabic, Hebrew, Farsi, Chinese, Japanese, Thai, etc.)