Create and modify a style sheet

A style sheet is a file that contains formatting information that you can assign to the topics in your RoboHelp project. By implementing a style sheet, you provide a uniform appearance throughout your project. In addition, a style sheet reduces the work necessary to format your topics, because you need to establish your formatting decisions only in your style sheet instead of formatting items individually in all your topics, which can be time-consuming and produce inconsistent results.

You should almost never format any text manually. That is, don't select text within a topic and then apply a font, font size, font color, etc. Doing so will put in overrides, preventing the style sheet from working correctly within the manually formatted topic. To get the style sheet to work properly again, you would have to remove all the manual formatting codes, which is tedious. Letting the style sheet control all aspects of your topic presentation eliminates this problem. Then, if you change your mind about any of the formatting, you need only to edit the style within the style sheet to update every topic at once.

Users prefer a consistent appearance across a project, because it helps them to recognize, at all glance, that all the topics relate to each other as part of a whole document. Any formatting inconsistencies can leave users wondering if they've left your document and are viewing something new or if they've made some kind of mistake. Any such distractions from the content can contribute to user frustration.

To create a new style sheet

  1. Open any topic in RoboHelp, and then click somewhere within the topic to set the pane as active.
  2. On the Edit tab, in the CSS group, click New Stylesheet.
  3. In the Name box, type an appropriate name for your style sheet.
  4. In the Folder list, make sure Top Level Folder is selected.
  5. Make sure the Copy styles from check box isn't selected.
  6. Click Create.

The Styles dialog appears and is ready for you to begin modifying. Once you save your project, you will find your style sheet in the Project Manager pod, located inside the Project Files folder. You can edit your style sheet at any point by double-clicking it.

To modify standard styles in your style sheet

If you're working on a RoboHelp project for a class project, you need to set the following styles at minimum: Heading 1, Heading 2, Normal, and Lists, as covered below.

  1. Make sure the Styles dialog box is open. If it isn't, save your work, and then in the Project Manager pod, expand the Project Files folder, and double-click the style sheet file.
  2. Under Styles, expand the Paragraph category.
  3. Click a paragraph style you want to modify, including the Heading 1, Heading 2, and Normal styles. You will modify other styles, such as Heading 3, if applicable to your project.
  4. Make any appropriate changes to the font, font size, color, spacing, and so on for the given style.
  5. Click Apply to accept the current changes, and then make additional changes to styles in the Paragraph category as needed.
  6. Under Styles, expand the Other category.
  7. Click the Lists style, and then use the same font and font size you did for the Normal style. Doing so will keep your list text and the corresponding numbers formatted the same as your regular paragraph text.
  8. Click OK to accept all your changes and to apply them throughout your project.