Folding Style: T-Cross
Subcategory: Cross Folds
Level: Intermediate
Uses: Direct Mail, Announcements, Event Promotion, Retail

The Small T-Cross Mailer unfolds into the form of a “T” with short gate panels that hide and reveal the interior contents. This fold is a great choice for calling attention to announcements and product launches, it’s showy for retail, and a nice way to bring some style and creativity to simpler marketing messages.

The short gate panels are also fun to work with and create nice opportunities to organize your content and imagery. Saturate them with color and full bleed imagery or keep them clean with minimal graphics and work the whitespace. You really can’t go wrong.

Here’s what the Small T-Cross Mailer dieline looks like:

The Small T-Cross Mailer 3 Ways

This is unique and interesting mail format, but you may be wondering where it can fit into your marketing repertoire. Below you’ll find three real-world creative ways to use the Small T-Cross Mailer. **Special challenge – something is the same about all three, and something is different about all three. Watch the videos, and I’ll tell you what it is at the end of this post**

For Product Launches and Announcements:

Sample: Illustration by Schmidt Design Co. / Layout design by Carl Waite for HomeSpotter

HomeSpotter is a trusted software services partner for real estate businesses, providing marketing automation, mobile apps, and client collaboration platforms to help real estate agents sell more properties. This Small T-Cross Mailer was sent out to entice realtors to read case studies and to schedule a live demonstration of HomeSpotter’s Connect, Boost, and Spacio software offerings. Designer Carl Waite used the brand’s colors and eye-catching illustrations from Schmidt Design Co. to make the mailer pop.

I love the simple imagery and white space on the short panels. I also really like the vertical/upright orientation of the layout. This format is often designed on the horizontal, and the directional change of the artwork is really refreshing. The piece is printed on an uncoated cover weight sheet.

For Sales Promotions:

Sample: Allied Printing for BMW USA / bmwusa.com

This mailer for BMW was designed to promote a special sales event for BMW USA. The cover very simply and visually announces the sales event, and upon opening, the large full-color feature image of the car splits to reveal the interior, flanked by two short panels with call-outs. The opening order and the organization of the content is really well done, and the written content is kept simple to let the beautiful color imagery of the vehicles do the talking. The piece was printed by Allied Printing on a premium silk coated cover sheet.

Same Format, Different Size and Proportion

Sample: Volvo / volvocars.com

So, now let’s play a little bit with the scale and proportion, which is fun to do with specialty formats. Interestingly, this sample also happens to be a vehicle promotion—this time for Volvo—but the overall size is larger and the shape is much wider than the two I’ve shown you so far. It’s the exact same format, however. When opened, a simple message with block color and imagery divides the layout into three neat sections. The panels open to reveal “5 Reasons You’ll Love Owning the Volvo XC90” with additional imagery and supportive text. A clean and simple layout on a silky premium coated cover sheet gives it a sophisticated feel.

By the way, this sample was Fold of the Week Episode 478.

What’s the same? What’s Different?

OK, so here’s a test for everyone—what is the same and what is different about the three T-Cross samples I’ve shown you? Think about it.

The element that is the same is the format – all three use the same format with a matching cover and a mailing panel, and two short gate panels on the interior that meet in the center. What is different in all three is the direction or orientation of the art!

  1. The HomeSpotter sample has a vertical orientation with the gate panels opening up and down.
  2. The cover on the BMW sample opens in a downward fashion with the gate panels at the top of the layout
  3. The Volvo sample opens upward with the gate panels at the bottom of the layout.

Now, how cool is THAT?? For such a simple format, it’s very exciting to realize the creative options you have for the direction of the layout and the opening experience.

Love it? Make Your Own Small T-Cross Mailer

So, now that you’ve seen a few clever ways to use this fold, would you like to try designing one for yourself? Good! Design and print your own Small T-Cross Mailer here—you can download the template for free and get instant pricing, too.