Style Sidebar

The Style sidebar is an effective tool for customizing the aesthetics of your diagrams.

Accessing the Style Sidebar

To open the Style sidebar, you have several options:

  • Sidebar Header Bar: Click on the "Style" button located in the sidebar header bar.
  • Ribbon Access: Navigate through the ribbon by selecting View → Windows → Sidebars → Style.
  • Classic Menu Path: Choose View → Sidebars → Style from the classic menu.
  • Quick Action Box: Type 'Style' into the quick action box for direct access.
Style Sidebar
Style Sidebar

Working with Sub-Styles

The Style sidebar is equipped with various features for substyle manipulation:

  • Sub-Style Selection: The top bar displays the name of the currently selected sub-style (with 'Default' being the main style). Two arrows on the left side of the bar enable you to switch between sub-styles. By default, there are two sub-styles: 'Base Style' (Default) and 'Alternate' (often used for window title bars or checkboxes in User Interface diagrams).
  • Context Menu for Sub-Styles: Right-clicking on the top bar brings up a context menu that allows you to select a sub-style. This menu also provides a submenu with options for adding or replacing the current alternate style. The alternate style can be derived from the base (default) style in several ways, including:
    • Same Style as Default
    • Lighter or Much Lighter
    • Darker or Much Darker
    • Grayscale
    • Inverted Brightness
    • Complementary Colors
    • Inverted Colors
    • Fill by Border
    • White
    • Black

Styling Properties

This sidebar contains a range of styling properties, neatly organized into various groups. Understanding these groups will help you enhance the visual appeal of your diagram elements.

Groups in the style sidebar:

  • Background: This section allows you to modify the background properties of your diagram elements. You can choose colors, and even add gradients to make your diagrams visually striking.
  • Border: In the Border group, you can adjust the properties of the borders around your diagram elements. This includes setting border color, thickness, and style (such as solid, dashed, or dotted lines).
  • Texts: This area focuses on the text styling within your diagrams. You can change font types, sizes, colors, and alignment to ensure that text is both readable and aesthetically pleasing.
  • Layout: The Layout group offers a variety of options to enhance the structural and spatial aspects of your diagram elements. It includes settings for padding, margin, proportion modifier, text wrapping and rounding, helping you maintain a neat and organized appearance.
  • Label Connector: This section is dedicated to styling the connectors for labels in diagrams. You can show them (as they are hidden by default), adjust properties like color, thickness, and line style.
  • Shadow: In the Shadow group, you can add and customize shadows for diagram elements. This feature can add depth and emphasis to specific components of your diagram.
  • Glow: The Glow option allows you to add a glow effect around elements. This can be used to highlight or draw attention to key parts of your diagram.
  • Effects: This final group contains various additional visual effects that can be applied to diagram elements. You can enable gloss or sketching effect here.

The changed parameters of the style are applied immediately to the selected element. You can read more about styling options and discover how to make your diagrams even better.

Expanding and Collapsing Groups

To view the options within a specific style group, click on the group’s name or the plus icon next to it. This will expand the group, revealing all the styling options available under that category.

If you want to hide the options within a group to declutter your sidebar or focus on other groups, simply click again on the group’s name or the minus icon. The group will collapse, hiding its contents.

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