Using Pattern States

Pattern states provide your team and client a simple visual of the current state of patterns in Pattern Lab. Pattern states can track progress of a pattern from development, through client review, to completion or they can be used to give certain patterns specific classes. It's important to note that the state of a pattern can be influenced by its pattern partials.

The Default Pattern Statespermalink

Pattern Lab comes with the following default pattern states:

  • inprogress: pattern is in development or being worked upon. a red dot.
  • inreview: pattern is ready for a client to look at and comment upon. a yellow dot.
  • complete: pattern is ready to be moved to production. a green dot.

Any pattern that includes a pattern partial that has a lower pattern state will inherit that state. For example, a pattern with the state of inreview that includes a pattern partial with the state of inprogress will have its state overridden and set to inprogress. It will not change to inreview until the pattern partial has a state of inreview or complete.

Giving Patterns a Statepermalink

Giving patterns a state is accomplished by setting the state frontmatter key on any pattern's companion .md file. Consider this media block pattern:


We would create or edit a file in the same location, calling it

state: inreview
The media block consists of...

Adding Customized Statespermalink

The three default states included with Pattern Lab might not be enough for everyone. To add customized states you should modify your own CSS files. DO NOT modify pattern states in public/. You cannot be assured these files won't be overwritten.

You can use the following as your CSS template for new pattern states:

.pl-c-pattern-state--newpatternstate {
background-color: #B10DC9;

Place this class inside ./source/css/pattern-scaffolding.css to separate it from your css. Then add newpatternstate to your patterns' markdown state to have the new look show up. If you want to add it to the cascade of the default patterns you can modify ./patternlab-config.json. Simply add your new pattern state to the patternStateCascade array.