Designing Read the Docs

So you’re thinking of contributing some of your time and design skills to Read the Docs? That’s awesome. This document will lead you through a few features available to ease the process of working with Read the Doc’s CSS and static assets.

To start, you should follow the Development installation instructions to get a working copy of the Read the Docs repository locally.

Style catalog

Once you have RTD running locally, you can open http://localhost:8000/style-catalog/ for a quick overview of the currently available styles.


This way you can quickly get started writing HTML – or if you’re modifying existing styles you can get a quick idea of how things will change site-wide. changes

Styles for the primary RTD site are located in media/css directory.

These styles only affect the primary site – not any of the generated documentation using the default RTD style.


Contributions should follow the Contributing to Read the Docs guidelines where applicable – ideally you’ll create a pull request against the Read the Docs GitHub project from your forked repo and include a brief description of what you added / removed / changed, as well as an attached image (you can just take a screenshot and drop it into the PR creation form) of the effects of your changes.

There’s not a hard browser range, but your design changes should work reasonably well across all major browsers, IE8+ – that’s not to say it needs to be pixel-perfect in older browsers! Just avoid making changes that render older browsers utterly unusable (or provide a sane fallback).

Brand guidelines

Find our branding guidelines in our guidelines documentation: