Tutorial 4: The Blank Template CSS for Joomla
Reprinted with permission from Compass Design: Valid W3C joomla template designs for your website
In an earlier section, we discussed a slightly different design process. Instead of creating the design and then doing the CSS layout, we will be doing it the other way round, the Joomla CSS first. We are doing this because we want to make an blank CSS template file that can be reused by anyone.
Let's startout with a basic blank template, no layout, just all the font typography styling. This is a blank template to help speed production of a site. Its not a production template CSS file , all styles shouldn't be filled in, ones that don't get used should be deleted before using. This blank CSS file has several features:
There are 'shorthand' styles at the beginning of each style definition. Once you have figured out the styles, fill the shorthand versions in and delete the long versions. The syntax is:
line-height | font-family
Here is an example, rather than this...
Read more at An Introduction to CSS shorthand properties about this syntax.
Global CSS Reset
At the beginning of this joomla CSS file is a few styles that set all styles to certain characteristics. You then have to over-ride these later on. The first key global style is:
Everything is given a zero margin and padding and then font size is set to 76.1%. The reason font is set here to 76.1% is to try and get more consistant font sizes across browsers. All font sizes are then set in em's further down. A link that discusses this idea:
Header Tags and Joomla CSS Titles
Sometimes I will have Joomla titles turned off and use h1/h2 tags in content. Usually I am doing this to get a SEO bonus*. To get some consistancy across titles depending whether I have the off or not, I'll define the Joomla CSS alongside the hX tags. For example:
This is personal preference, you could certainly separate them out.
*I have realised I could get a further SEO bonus by keeping the Joomla titles to show in parameters and then hiding them through a CSS style, and making the titles linkable. Any of these would work:
Note that there is some discussion regarding hiding text with CSS. Please read this if you are considering it!
Joomla Rounded Corners
Towards the end of this blank template CSS file is the code to have rounded corners. Its the same technique used at joomla.org and requires the module suffix contained in index.php file to be "-3".
OK, ready? So here is the blank CSS template. Note it doesn't include any layout, we'll be looking at this next time.
The blank template CSS file for joomla is free for you to take and use. If you do, maybe drop me an email to show your project.
Now, how to use this blank CSS file? Well, after you have done all your joomla CSS styling, your file will have all that extra empty CSS. Just use this tool to get rid of it. Be careful and do a test to make sure you know what it does first!!
A preview from our next joomla tutorialTutorial 5: Making a 3 column Joomla Theme for your joomla website
In this joomla tutorial, we will look at a 3 column theme for your joomla website. Most joomla websites use 3 columns and having the theme start with that is a good foundation. Then later we can hide side columns if there is no content in them for that page.
� 2005 Compass Design/Barrie North, December 2005.
Barrie creates valid joomla template designs at his consultancy, Compass Design