Custom Page Sizes in the New Document dialog box
I can’t believe I never knew this, but on my recent trip to Australia, former-Adobe employee, and wonderful InDesign beta-coordinator Elliot Harper told me of a feature that he created for InDesign back around version 2. (That’s actually version 2, not CS2.)
Now that I’ve got some time in Iceland, after working in Dennmark (I love place dropping all the countries I’ve traveled to this year), I thought I’d write it up for you.
Let’s say you would like to save the page size of a business card. I always thought the only way was to set a custom size and then save that as a preset. But I was wrong.
What you do is open the Presets folder in the InDesign application folder. You’ll find a txt file called New Doc Sizes. Open it in Text Edit (Mac) or Note Pad (Windows).
The document, written by Elliot, explains how to create your own custom sizes in the Page Size menu. Rather than wade through all the text, the bottom line is anything you type without a semi-color (;) in front of it, becomes the information for a new setting in the Page Size menu.
So, for example, you want to have the custom sizes for a business card. You type the words business card (or as I’m in Iceland right now, you type Nafnspjald followed by a space and then the size for the width (85mm) and then the height (55mm).
You can type in any units with spaces or tabs separating the amounts.
Save the document. You don’t even have to quit and restart InDesign.
Automatically, the next time you choose File > New, you will see the setting for the business card (Nafnspjald) in the menu.
I love this! I would like to see more of these types of text files for supporting InDesign features all over. For instance, I would love to be able to define a whole bunch of style names simply by typing in the names in a text file and then placing them in a folder. The style definitions could come from the default basic style. But having those names automatically appear would be very helpful. Same with Swatches. Custom strokes. And custom sizes for stroke widths.
I’m sure you all have loads of other suggestions. Hey Adobe! Listen up. This is a neat way of working.