Using text styles

WebPlus lets you use named text styles (pre- or user-defined), which can be applied to frame text, table text, or artistic text. A text style is a set of character and/or paragraph attributes saved as a group. When you apply a style to text, you apply the whole group of attributes in just one step. For example, you could use named paragraph styles for particular layout elements, such as "Heading", "Quote", or "Body", and character styles to convey meaning, such as "Emphasis", "Code", or "Reference".

Styles can be applied to characters or paragraphs using either the Text context toolbar or the Text Styles tab. Both paragraph and character styles can be managed from the Text Style Palette.

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Paragraph styles and character styles

A paragraph style is a complete specification for the appearance of a paragraph, including all its font and paragraph format attributes. Every paragraph in WebPlus has a paragraph style associated with it.

This hierarchical approach makes for powerful text style control. You can modify the "Normal" style which will affect all other "child" styles such as Body and Artistic Body. See Text style hierarchies.

A character style includes only font attributes (name, point size, bold, italic, etc.), and you apply it at the character level—that is, to a range of selected characters—rather than to the whole paragraph.

Text style hierarchies

All paragraph or character text styles available in WebPlus are ultimately based on the respective Normal and Default Paragraph Font text styles.

Paragraph styles

Character styles

The Text Style Palette dialog's tree menu shows the hierarchical relationship existing between styles in your site. The "parent" styles, i.e. those used as the basis for subordinate "child" styles, are displayed initially, but can be expanded to show their associated "child" styles by clicking the  box. All styles are listed alphabetically.

So why have this hierarchy of text styles? The key reason for this is the ability to change a text style at any "level" in the hierarchy in order to affect all "child" styles which belong to it. This leads to powerful style management, perhaps making dramatic changes by modifying the "top-level" Normal paragraph style, or more focused changes by modifying text styles under the indented text style.

You can create custom paragraph or character text styles at any level in the above hierarchy. Every new style is derived from a previously defined base style, and so consists of all the base style's unchanged attributes as well as any attributes you've redefined. Your custom text style could then be the basis for further custom text styles if needed.

Working with named styles

 The named style of the currently selected text is displayed in either the Text Styles tab or the drop-down Styles box on the Text context toolbar. A character style (if one is applied locally) may be shown; otherwise it indicates the paragraph style.

To apply a named style:

  1. Using the Pointer Tool, click in a paragraph (if applying a paragraph style) or select a range of text (if applying a character style). If you apply a paragraph style, it will be applied to the whole paragraph regardless of the amount of text selected. If you've selected text in more than one paragraph, the change takes place in all selected paragraphs.

  2. Display the Text Styles tab and select a style from the style list.
    - or -
    On the Text context toolbar, click the arrow to expand the Styles drop-down list and select a style name.
    - or -
    Choose Text Style Palette... from the Text menu, select a style name, and click Apply. The paragraph or selected text takes on the properties of the named style.

The Text Styles tab highlights the paragraph or character style applied to any selected text.

As both paragraph and character formatting can be applied to the same text, all of the current text's formatting is displayed in the Current format box on the tab. In the example below, currently selected text has a Strong character style applied over a Normal paragraph style.

To update a named style using the properties of existing text:

  1. Make any desired changes to some text that uses a named style.

  2. On the Text Styles tab, right-click the style and choose Update <style> to Match Selection.
    - or -
    Right-click on the changed text and choose Text Format>Update Text Style (or choose Update Text Style from the Text menu).

All text using the named style, throughout the site, takes on the new properties.

To create a new paragraph or character style:

  1. Either:

  1. On the Text Styles tab, select the paragraph or character style on which you want your new style to be based.

  2. Click  Create Paragraph Style or  Create Character Style, or right-click and choose Base New Style on <selected style name>.

- or -

  1. In the Text Style dialog, define the style Name, the style to be Based on, and Style for the following paragraph. Uncheck Always list in Studio to exclude the style from the Text Styles tab. Uncheck Export to external CSS file if you don't want the style included in the published site's CSS file; by default, all text styles will create a CSS file (wpstyles.css) when your site is exported. The text style entries can be modified externally to WebPlus in this CSS file, to change the appearance of your published site's text (without the need to edit all text styles individually in WebPlus).

  2. In the left tree menu change any character or paragraph attributes, tabs, bullets, and drop caps you want to include in the new style definition.

  3. Click OK to create the style, or Cancel to abandon changes.

To create a new style using the properties of existing text:

  1. Format the text as desired.

  2. To define a character style, select a range of reformatted text. To define a paragraph style, deselect text but leave a blinking cursor (insertion point) within the newly formatted section.

  3. Type a new style name into the Text context toolbar's Styles drop-down list and press Enter.

The new style is defined with the properties of the selected text.

To modify an existing style:

  1. From the Text Styles tab:

    Right-click on the character or paragraph style you want to modify and then choose Modify <style>....
    - or -

    With a style selected, pick the  Manage button from the Text Styles tab, then choose the Modify... button.

  2. From the Text Style dialog, define (or change) the style name, base style, and any character, paragraph or hyperlink attributes, tabs, bullets, and drop caps you want to include in the style definition.

  3. Click OK to accept style properties, or Cancel to abandon changes.

  4. Click Apply to update text, or click Close to maintain the style in the site for future use.

Alternatively, choose Text Style Palette... from the Text menu to modify styles and to change text defaults.

It's good practice to use schemed colours when applying colours to your text styles. This way your text style will update if you change the site's colour scheme or import text styles to a website with a different colour scheme.

To apply schemed colours to text styles:

To delete one or more text styles:

  1. Right-click a text style and select Delete <style>....

  2. From the dialog, click Remove. For deletion of multiple styles, check multiple style names first. For removal of all or unused styles, use appropriate buttons.

You can preview any style and then apply it to a word, paragraph, or story.

To preview a style:

  1. From the tab's  Tab Menu button (top-right of tab), click the Hover Preview option.

  2. Select a section of text (a letter, word, or paragraph) on your web page.

  3. On the Text Styles tab, hover over any style in the list (select Show All to see all styles). The selected text will update to show how the style will appear in situ.

  4. Select  Preview at the top of the tab to see the style within the tab as it would appear on the page.

  5. Select  Show All to reveal all available styles in the tab.

Removing local formatting

To return characters and/or paragraphs back to their original formatting, click the  Clear Formatting flyout in the Text Styles tab. This is great for reverting some formatting which hasn't quite worked out! You can clear the formatting of selected characters, paragraphs, or both depending on what text is currently selected. The following table indicates the effects of different types of text selection on clear formatting.

Selection

Clicking Clear Formatting affects..

Word

Character

Range of text

Character

Single paragraph

Character and Paragraph

Multiple paragraphs

Paragraph

Story text

Character and Paragraph

Text frame

Character and Paragraph

You also have the flexibility to be more explicit about how clear formatting is applied by clicking on the Clear Formatting option's drop-down arrow, i.e.

To remove local formatting:

  1. Select locally formatted characters or paragraph(s) as described in the above table.

  2. Either:

Like Clear Formatting, you can use Reapply Styles on the Text Styles tab (or Text context toolbar) to clear all local overrides leaving the default text. However, where Clear Formatting reverts the text to Normal style, Reapply styles reverts the text back to its current name style. Use Reapply Character Style (retaining paragraph styles overrides), Reapply Paragraph Style (retaining character style overrides), and Reapply Both Styles to remove both character or paragraph style overrides simultaneously.

If you prefer, you can remove a style's formatting, enabling you to start building up your text style again. Choose  Manage on the Text Styles tab, click the Modify... button, then click the Clear All button from the General section.

Changing common styles

Changing one character or paragraph style for another is very simple for a single portion of text. However, in WebPlus, it's just as easy to swap one style for another by selecting multiple instances of the style and choosing an alternative style. This swaps styles across paragraphs and throughout entire stories all at the same time.

To select (and change) a style throughout your site:

  1. Right-click a style displayed on the Text Styles tab.

  2. If the style is used in your site, you'll see a "Select All n instance(s)" message (n is the number of times the style is used).

    If there are no occurrences of the style, the option is greyed out.

    Click the message label—text formatted with the chosen style is highlighted.

  3. Hover over style names in your styles list. Click on a chosen style to apply the style to the selected text.

Overriding default hyperlink formatting

Hyperlinking text automatically adopts the site's default hyperlink formatting (colour and underline style). This allows visitors to quickly distinguish hyperlinking text from ordinary text. This can be overridden for individual instances as well as for all hyperlinked text using a particular text style.

There are three hyperlink options for any text style:

For details on updating text styles, see Working with named styles.

Importing styles

To import one or more styles from another WebPlus file:

  1. Choose Text Style Palette... from the Text menu.

  2. Click the Import... button and use the dialog to locate the file from which styles should be imported, and the specific style(s) to be imported.

  3. Use Tools>Save Default Settings... to record the set of styles (along with other defaults) as a global setting so it will remain in effect for future sites. For information, see Updating and saving defaults.

To retain styles while importing a text file:

  1. Choose Insert>Text File... from the Text menu.

  2. Check Retain Format in the Import Text dialog if you want WebPlus to import and retain the source file's named styles. Any text not tagged with a style will be marked with the "Normal" style as used in your site. Uncheck to discard styles; WebPlus will always mark all text with the "Normal" style.