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Customization of PatternSkin

This page describes ways to change the layout, fonts and colors of PatternSkin.

Page contents:

Screen parts

The PatternSkin view template uses four screen parts:

These parts are dynamically included topics:

Top bar

The top bar is mainly used as branding space. To change the screen room for the logo, see below, Customizing the logo.

Left bar

The menu items are css-formatted bullet lists. So in WebLeftBar you write:

   * *Group*
   * [[SomeTopic][Link 1]]
   * [[AnotherTopic][Link 2]]
   * [[ThirdTopic][Link 3]]

The left bar may contain a Go box instead of the top bar. Use:

   * <input type="text" name="topic" size="16" />

The personal left bar block is formatted like the rest of the left bar.

Bottom bar

The bottom bar contains the copyright disclaimer, but may contain other information, perhaps a web list.

Customizing the logo

The top bar is 60 pixels high, and has a padding of 5 pixels on top, bottom and left, so the logo should be 50 pixels high. If your logo image has a different size, you can either alter the padding in style.css (.twikiTopBarContents) or change the top bar height in layout.css (look for the comment setting the height of the top bar).

You can also choose to set a background image for the top bar. In style.css, add this to .twikiTopBar:

   background-position:top left;
and set the correct image file path.


Font style

Font styles are defined in style.css in these places:

html body {
   font-family:"Lucida Grande", verdana, lucida, helvetica, sans-serif;
h1, h2, h3, h4, h5, h6 {
   font-family:"Lucida Grande", helvetica, lucida, verdana, sans-serif;
textarea {
input, select {
.twikiSeparator {
.twikiEditPage .twikiSig input {

Font size

Font sizes in PatternSkin are scalable. This means that even on Windows Explorer, the text in the browser can scale with the user settings (in contrast to many sites where texts have a fixes pixel size, these cannot be changed by the user).

Scalable text is a big accessibility asset. If you notwithstanding want to have a fixed font, or if you want to set the default size smaller or bigger, the easiest way is to make a new entry for body, below the 2 other entries:

html body {
   ... (keep)
html>body {
   ... (keep)   
html body {

-- TWiki:Main.ArthurClemens - 15 Aug 2004