A tool for creating visually pleasing print borders using the golden ratio. For any picture or paper size you can calculate and preview the result.

Why did I start thinking about using the golden ratio for print borders? Actually, I was about to print one of my pictures. Looking at the screen preview of the print, I was trying to **figure out visually pleasing borders**.

Yes, I understand that this is a very subjective matter. But my goal was to create a **repeatable approach** for different picture and paper sizes.

In the past, I had used Martin Bailey’s print border calculations. He uses 10% of the shorter side of the paper as border size, but I find this too technical.

## Golden ratio print borders

Then I remembered having read about the golden ratio (represented by the Greek letter phi: φ, or 1 : 1.6180339887…) and how **its proportions are considered aesthetically pleasing**. So I checked if someone has already tried this out. The only related post I was able to find was about how to optimize the picture-to-border ratio. The post explains how to calculate a border size for a given image size, using the golden ratio. What I wanted was the exact opposite – to calculate the borders for a given paper size.

In the end, I developed my own formula to calculate the border size for any given paper size. I decided to **make it available online so others can try and use it as well**. The header image at the top of this post is an example of how the result looks like on ISO sized paper.

The original version of the calculator could only **calculate the picture size for a given paper size**. With the latest update, you can also **calculate the paper size for a given picture size**. A **preview **will give you an idea of how the result looks like. Additionally, you can choose to **increase the lower border height** for a more dynamic off-center look or to leave some space for text.

## The golden ratio calculator, version 2

This is how the calculator works:

- Enter width and height – this can be any dimension: pixel, millimeter, inches, whatever you prefer. The results use the same dimension.
- Choose if width and height refer to picture size or paper size
- Select if you would like to place the picture off-center
- Click
*Calculate* - You will see a proportional visual representation of the resulting layout. Further below is a table with the complete dimensions.

hey, thanks for this tool!

Thanks for the comment Laszlo!