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960 grids with constraints for Designer 1.5

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Hi guys! I needed to create a custom design for a Brand manual and I was struggling with the fact that there's no layout grid option like sketch. So I decided to download the illustrator templates of the 960.gs grid system and adapt it to affinity designer using the constraints (so no matter how wide your artboard is, the grid will always strech porportionally). Hope you find this as useful as me.


You've got three files:

  1. 12 column layout
  2. 16 column layout
  3. 24 column layout

Happy designing!




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Thank you for these resources, but could you please tell me how to install / use them, as I have no idea where resources such as gradients, swatches, brushes, grids etc are stored.


Thank you very much.

High-End Photographic Prints



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Hi DesignMeister,

Welcome to Affinity Forums :)

There's a menu on top right of each panel that let's you import the corresponding resources, so for swatches for example, go to the Swatches panel, click on the top right menu and select Import Palette.... Same for brushes. The above templates are just regular files with a few objects (the columns) inside a single layer. Open them as any regular file to use as a base for your project. If you want to keep them at hand you may want to drag them (select the grid on canvas) to a new category in the Assets panel (menu View ▸ Studio ▸ Assets).

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Thank you very much MEB!

High-End Photographic Prints



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I had a similar problem and found the "show as list" option works best for me.  You still get a thumbnail and as long as you name accordingly then it clears up most issues.

Example of how i'm structuring the assets:


- Web

   - - 1170 | 1140 (* 1170px width with an 1140px container)

   - - 980 | 950 (...)




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I played around and figured a way to do it without external dependencies, it's not perfect, but it works.


We know a 960 grid is 960px wide (don't confuse this with the width of our workspace, as monitors vary in resolution width), we'll stick with 960px centred.

If we want a 12 column grid, 960px divided by 12 = 80px, thus each column occupies: 10px (white space) + 60px (coloured column) + 10px (white space).


The way to implement this is

Create a new web document in Affinity Designer, doesn't matter on width, as monitor width vary, as we're only interested in 960gs centered.

Select 1280 x 800 resolution for this example, select pixels as units (for now), click ok.


We need to open the Grid and Axis Manager.

From the menu Select: View -> Grid and Axis Manager.


With the Grid and Axis Manager open.

Ensure show grid check box is checked (enabled)


Uncheck Use Automatic Grid

Click Advanced Button to expand available Axis options.

Uncheck Uniform (make sure it's not selected).


On the first Axis:

Select spacing 60px (column width)

Set gutter to 20px. We know each column has 10px either side, 20px between adjacent columns.

I select divisions to 15, creating a 15 x 4px grid within each column (column being 60px wide).


On the Second Axis:

Select spacing 60px (same as first)

Divisions same as first access to 15 (or change to visible desired horizontal partitioning)

and Gutter to 0 (this will now leave columns)... ensure ZERO!!


Finally to create the 960px 12 column workspace.

As our current document has 14 columns displayed on our 1280px wide document.

Using the Guides manager (select: View -> Guides Manager)

Add 2 Vertical guides at 150px and 1110px.


You will have something that resembles a centred 12 column 960 grid system within the 2 guides set.


You can play around with snapping and constraints to enhance it further.


Also to finish off nicely, as the columns start from the left you've got 20px of white space on the final right column.

Just reduce the document by 20px or set/select 1260px width, instead of 1280px.


It would be nice if they added a grid offset starting point for x and y (and by gutter or space) and number of times it's repeated for x and y, also each axis (column) has a spacing colour option, to allow us to create a highlighted column background colour.  That way, we'd be able to create a proper 960 grid, or any type of dynamic grid, limited to the number of columns we want and centred (offset) and coloured correctly.

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