1. Designs are like Themes

Print My Blog (PMB) Pro separates content from the design so projects can all look totally different by using different designs, or they can all have the same look by reusing the same design. Designs are a lot like WordPress themes in that no two are alike, each has different settings, each supports custom CSS for fine-tuning, and you can even create your own (or hire a designer to create one for you.)

After you’ve dabbled with choosing and customizing a design for a first project, it’s good to learn about the power of designs to make them just the way you want.

What Does a Design Affect?

The following are some of the aspects of the generated files that will be different, depending on which design you use and how you customize it.

  • Page backgrounds
  • Font style and size
  • Spacing of content
  • Margin content (eg page numbering, running titles, or organization’s branding)
  • Post meta information to show (eg choice of whether to include categories, tags, published date, etc.)
  • Default title page design

Designs also have different support for features like dividing articles into parts, front and back matter, and choices of article templates.

Designs are Specific to Formats

When you create a project you choose which file format you intend to create. Eg a digital PDF or a print-ready PDF. Projects for making digital PDFs can choose between digital PDF designs, like Classic Digital PDF, Buurma Whitepaper, and Mayer Magazine. Projects for print-ready PDFs can choose between the Classic Print PDF, Economical Print PDF, and Editorial Review PDF.

Projects can Use the Same Design

You can reuse the same design across all your projects to create a consistent look-and-feel. For example, a designer could setup the design as desired, then the content writers could use the design in all the projects they write.

Projects can Use Different Designs

Each project can also use a different design. So, you can make project which is an archive of all your posts using the Classic Digital PDF, and then also make a monthly newsletter project using the Mayer Magazine.

Each Design has Different Settings

Each design has different settings. This way there can be designs with simpler settings (which are more “opionated”, best for those who don’t want to worry about design and focus on the content) and designs with more complex settings (best for those who want more control). So if you don’t see a setting to control something in your design, you might want to try a different design because what you’re wanting to do might be something outside its intended purpose.

Designs Support Different Features

Additionally, designs can vary in their support for sone features.

Parts, Volumes and Anthologies

Most designs allow you to group content into parts, but some might be simpler and not support parts; or they might support grouping parts into a volume, and they might even support grouping volumes into anthologies. This is indicated on the design’s details.

Front and Back Matter

Most designs support front matter, which is content that comes before the main body of the text, things like titles pages, table of contents, and a preface. Designs will usually number front matter pages differently, like with Roman numerals instead of decimal numbers.
Most designs also support back matter, which is content that comes after the main body of the text. The design can give these pages a distinct look, but often they look the same as the main matter (in which case back matter just helps organizing the project’s content.)

Designs Can Have Different Section Templates

Section templates tell the design how you’d like a section to appear. For example, a design’s default section template will show the section’s title and maybe other info like author or category. But if you instead switch the section to the “Just Content” section template the title and other info will be omitted (this is nice if you want that section to have a very custom layout.)

Designs can support other section templates as well, like a full-page image template or a two-column template.

Becoming a Master of PMB Designs

Now that you’ve been introduced into what a design is, how they can differ, and what they affect, it’s time to dive into the details of each.