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How to design your own iBook template in iBooks Author

Create a template for frequent use within Apple’s brilliant iBooks Author app for Mac

MainThere’s an iBook revolution going on and everybody’s invited. Central to the revolution are apps like Apple’s iBooks Author, available free from the App Store. This enables anybody with basic computer experience to produce professional-grade electronic publications.

Upon first use of the app you might think you’re limited to a strict selection of design templates, but it’s easy to create your own and have it appear in this list so it’s ready for use over and over again – just the thing if you regularly need to create publications in the same style.

In fact, follow the steps below and you can create a new template in practically no time at all. We look at creating a recipe book template but the same steps can be easily adapted to all types of book.


Step 1

1 Opening a template

iBooks Author won’t let you create a blank document. Therefore to create a new template, you must adapt an existing one. Double-click the Basic template to start.

Step 2

2 Prepare the workspace

Tap Cmd+Alt+I to open the Inspector and click the View button, followed by Layouts, which will open a new panel at the left. Click the first Chapter thumbnail under the Layouts heading.

Step 3

3 Change the background

Pages look great with a subtle background texture. You can make your own or download one free from Click the Shapes icon and insert a square.

Step 4

4 Switch to texture fill

Open the Graphic inspector, then click Image Fill from the Fill drop-down list. Select your image file. Choose Tile instead of Scale to Fit from the menu beneath. In the Stroke menu select None.

Step 5

5 Adjust background size

To make the background fill the page, open the Metric inspector and type 2048 into the first field, then 1496. In the X and Y Position fields, type 0. Click Arrange>Send to Back.

Step 6

6 Insert pictures

To insert new pictures, drag from Finder onto an existing image. To alter the masking shape, click Format>Image>Unmask, then choose from the Format>Image>Mask with Shape menu.

Step 7

7 Alter image masking

Drag the mask borders to resize it (hold Shift
to retain the ratio). To resize the image within, double-click it and then use the zoom control, and drag the image to reposition it in the mask.

Step 8

8 Repeat for portrait

Click the Portrait button and repeat steps 3-7. Type 1496 then 2048 into the Metric inspector. On both orientations, tap Ctrl+A, put a check alongside Editable on Pages Using This Layout.

Step 9

9 Save the template

Repeat the steps for all page layouts, in both portrait and landscape, and click Apply Changes in each section. Save your new template by clicking File>Save as Template.

Click Image to Enlarge: