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Sketch Tutorials

How to Use an InVision DSM Library in Sketch

Jon Moore
Jon Moore
Sep 17, 2018 · 8 min read

Background

One of the hardest parts about asynchronous collaboration is the whole “asynchronous” part. After all, it’s hard working with someone on a project if you’re on different schedules, in different timezones, and with different levels of experience.

  • Outdated Work: If someone makes a change without the whole team knowing, you’re gonna have a world of hurt when you have half of the deliverables using one button style, and the other half with another.
  • Extra Work: Naturally, if you’re duplicating efforts and/or working with dated tools, extra, unnecessary work is required to fix things. Yikes.

Before We Dive In…

As I said before, I’m going to assume you’ve read my other article already. If you haven’t, I assure you it’s very well written, thoughtful, and frankly, really premium content 🙃 If you wanna know how to import your design system into InVision DSM, read this:


What We’re Designing

I’m going to walk you through a basic dashboard for a fake designer marketplace site which allows me to see statistics about my portfolio.


Layer Styles

Let’s start by building the top nav bar. I’ve drawn a rectangle, and now I want to start using the styles defined in the design system.

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Pro Tip: Show and hide this window by pressing Command + L!

Text Styles

We’re gonna need some items in our nav, and we want our text to match the system, so text styles will be our best friend.

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Using Components

Components…symbols…call them whatever you want. I tend to think of them as “components” from the perspective of a member of the design team, and “symbols” from the perspective of the librarian.

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ProTip: Pin the parent-level auto layout stack to the left. That’s how the logo “snaps” into place.

Receiving Updates

As we discussed, the primary use case for a centralized design system is asynchronous collaboration. When the design system is updated, everyone should be notified, and it should be pretty painless to synchronize your design(s) with the latest version.

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Summary

I think the nicest thing about designing with the DSM library is you really don’t have to change your workflow much. I’m skeptical of any tool that forces me to change the way I design because I’ve gotten so efficient already.

  • Organization: Sketch did an okay job with style- and symbol-organization using slashes (Icons/Products/Facebook Icon), but it’s a bit of a hack. Being able to see components thoughtfully organized made it much easier to find things when I was just browsing.
  • Inline Guidelines: If I was brand new to an organization and using DSM for the first time, the inline guidelines would make it pretty easy to just…well…start working. Provided the librarian was verbose and descriptive when they constructed the design system in DSM, I really have everything I need to design in accordance with the organization’s guidelines.
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Click above to view the completed Design System on InVision!

UX Power Tools

A publication for designers, written by designers.

Thanks to Ehud Halberstam

Jon Moore

Written by

Jon Moore

Principal Design Partner at www.innovatemap.com in Indianapolis, and co-founder of www.uxpower.tools. Contact me at 1jonmoore@gmail.com.

UX Power Tools

A publication for designers, written by designers.

Jon Moore

Written by

Jon Moore

Principal Design Partner at www.innovatemap.com in Indianapolis, and co-founder of www.uxpower.tools. Contact me at 1jonmoore@gmail.com.

UX Power Tools

A publication for designers, written by designers.

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