Style Guide & Pattern Library

This is the living style guide for OddSite and associated OddBird branding materials.

It is still in development, using OddBird's Accoutrement and Herman open-source toolkits to automate as much living documentation as possible.

Writing Content

When creating content it is important to stay consistent. Review a sample blog post, and keep in mind the following guidelines:


  • Content in a <blockquote> does not need quotation marks or italics. The CSS does the styling.
  • Blockquotes should be used when quoting another source. Blockquotes require 4 spaces.
    This is a blockquote with citation. Vestibulum tortor quam, feugiat vitae,
    ultricies eget, tempor sit amet, ante.

    --Person Name
  • If you want to highlight something and make it look similar to a blockquote, but do not have a source, you can use the following:
.. callmacro:: content-macros.j2#pullquote

  This is the best piece of content. It isn't quoting an external source,
  but the post is making an AWESOME point and I want to make it shine!


  • Always capitalize the “O” and “B” in OddBird and OddSite.


  • Guess we are going with the Oxford comma. writing, design, and development Note the comma before the coordinator in the sample.


  • En Dash – Used to show ranges of things (e.g. January–March)
  • Em Dash — Instead of using em-dashes for asides as suggested by the The Chicago Manual of Style, using space en-dash space makes the block of text more readable. (e.g. this thing – and also that thing – etc) Read more here
  • Citations still need 2-3 dashes (-) to trigger the attribution class


  • Use Title Case: Capitalize the first letter of every word except articles, prepositions, and conjunctions.
  • Do not use punctuation at the end of your title unless it contains more than one sentence or is a question.


  • When using an image within the post content, provide an alt description for screen readers and search engines. Alt text should describe what is in the image.
  • We have some utility classes for images and figures and will be adding more soon. Currently, you can use the following:
    • size-quarter
    • size-half
    • size-full
    • img-border adds a hairline, helpful when using a screenshot with a white background.

Note: If declaring a size, it remains this size regardless of screen size.

The following utility classes will push or expand an image (or item) outside of its parent container:

  • extend-left - extends slightly outside of its container to the left
  • extend-right - extends slightly outside of its container to the right
  • extend-small - extends a small amount past its container on both sides
  • extend-large - extends a large amount past its container on both sides
  • extend-full - extends from left to right edges of screen

If using one of the above extend-* utility classes, alignment is built in. If not, the :align: directive accepts left, right or center and outputs as a class.

Below are a few examples when adding alignment, alt text, classes and links to images in RST:

.. image:: /static/images/blog/miko.jpg
   :align: right
   :alt: Miko smiling while playing outside
   :class: size-quarter img-border

.. image:: /static/images/blog/imagename.jpg
   :alt: page with grid lines over artwork
   :class: extend-right


  • WIP - We will be featuring an introductory paragraph in each post. Stay tuned for details.

Line Length

  • Use links. To our posts and to external sources. Linking is good.
  • Links should open in the same window/tab unless there is a task being completed on that page that would lose a persons progress like filling out a form.


  • Each post should have a summary. This is shown on the archive pages (home and birds if recent, blog archive, tag archive) and when sharing on content to social sites.
  • The summary should not be repeated as the intro in the post.
  • It is created near the top of the document and format is as follows:
summary: |
  This is your short summary. You can include a excerpt that will appear
  on the archive pages and as the default social media summary.


  • Any post that contains a code sample should use the Code tag.
  • Use the plural version of a word if available. For example, Videos even if one video is referenced in the post.
  • Reference the tag list before deciding on which tags to use in order to avoid variations of the same topic.
  • Tags are Title Case.
  • Tags with multiple words should have spaces instead of dashes unless the phrase is hyphenated. Multi-word tags need to be declared as a string:
tag: ['Open Design', OddSite]
  • Tags are used to show related content. Think about what topics were covered in this post that would help the reader find a related article.
  • Adding tags when you are finished writing might result in cleaner and more accurate tags.
  • Posts that talk about sponsorship should include the Community tag.


  • No whitespace at the end of lines. In Sublime Text, we strongly recommend the following settings:
"rulers": [79],
"default_line_ending": "unix",
"ensure_newline_at_eof_on_save": true,
"translate_tabs_to_spaces": true,
"trim_trailing_white_space_on_save": true