What is a Duo Tang Folder?

What is a Duo Tang Folder?

Ever heard of a Duo Tang folder? What is a Duo Tang Folder? A number of teachers ask for it by name when they assign their yearly school supply lists. Many businesses use them for presentations and reports. Well what are they exactly and what makes them different from any ordinary folder?

Assorted Color Duo Tang Folders with abstract design

A Brief Duo Tang Folder History

The Duo Tang folder acquired its name from its original manufacturing company the Duo Tang company. The  Duo Tang company began manufacturing these folders back in 1931. The brand was later taken over by holding company, Esselte who specializes in office products back in March 2003, when the company bought out the Consumer Products Division of Centis Inc.

Eventually all previous All Duo-tang products were replaced by Esselte products or discontinued, but the style of folder still remains popular.

Duo Tang Folder Style

Duo Tang folders are typically made from cardstock paper and feature embedded brass fasteners. Cardstock paper is a thicker, heavier paper.

To use a Duo Tang folder, open the flaps on the inner center of the folder and place the loose pieces of paper on the brass fasteners. To secure the paper, flatten the brass fasteners.

open blue duo tang folder with closed blue duo tang folderMany Styles and Spellings


Here at JAM we sell two different version of this classic folder. The original Duotang Paper Folders with Clips for 3 Hole Punch shown above as well as some without the hole punch. They come in the standard 9 x 12 sizes and feature seven unique colors. An added of our 3 hole punch styles feature a fun swirl detail.

duo tang folders in bright assorted colors


While the correct spelling of this type of folder is Duo Tang like the original company who manufactured this type of folder there are still other various that would still be considered correct.

  • Duo-Tang
  • Duo Tang
  • Duotang

Next time your shopping for your kids school supplies and their teacher asks for a couple of Duo Tang folders you wont have stand there stumped or track down a sales rep.

So if you hear the question “what is a Duo Tang Folder?”, we expect you’ll have the perfect answer.

5 Replies to “What is a Duo Tang Folder?”

  1. Nicolina,
    Actually, Duo-Tang Products was previously called Ellingsworth Mfg. Co., and that company stemmed from 4 different companys. You are, however, correct with the 1931 start date.
    I worked there from 1974 to 2003, Machine Repair, to Personnel Manager, VP Administrative Services. I was the last person out the door in 2003 after Esselte bought us and then shut us down. Thanks for bringing back some good memories.
    Jim Todd

  2. In the 90’s I purchased some dou tang 3 holed folders. They came with a plastic tab that you could use to hang the files in a drawer. They would slide ot to allow the hanging feature. Are they availbal.

  3. I worked at Ellingsworth back in 1967,68, I wish I had some of the folders, I remember one pocket folder that was a picture what looked like a pizza, but was covered with bug’s and worms.i operated the machine that folded the folder after punching in eyelets and tabs in. I loved the job.

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