Editing the Configuration Options

Pattern Lab Node comes with a configuration file (patternlab-config.json) that allows you to modify certain aspects of the system. The latest default values are included within. This file is shipped within the editions or can be supplied from core and the command line interface. Below is a description of each configuration option and how it affects Pattern Lab Node.


Instructs Pattern Lab to append a unique query string to Javascript and CSS assets throughout the frontend.

"cacheBust": true

default: true


Sets whether or not to delete public.patterns/ upon each build of Pattern Lab. When set to false, incremental builds are also enabled.

default: true


Sets a specific pattern upon launch of the styleguide. This pattern will not be available in the navigation, or in view all pages. The only way to get to it will be via a refresh. Set it using the short-hand pattern-include syntax:

"defaultPattern": "pages-welcome",

A special value of all can also be supplied to display all patterns on load.

default: all


Sets whether or not you want the styleguide to load with the pattern info open or closed.

default: false


Sets whether or not to hide navigation options within the styleguide.


"ishControlsHide": {
"s": false,
"m": false,
"l": false,
"full": false,
"random": false,
"disco": false,
"hay": true,
"mqs": false,
"find": false,
"views-all": false,
"views-annotations": false,
"views-code": false,
"views-new": false,
"tools-all": false,
"tools-docs": false


Sets the boundaries of each of the viewport toggles, 'S'mall, 'M'edium, and 'L'arge. Clicking on one of these buttons will randomly set the ish Viewport to a value within the given range. Setting the range to the same number can effectively set an exact value. The first entry in ishViewportRange.s is the ishViewportMinimum, which is now obsolete. The second entry in ishViewportRange.l is the ishViewportMaximum, which is now also obsolete.


"ishViewportRange": {
"s": [240, 500],
"m": [500, 800],
"l": [800, 2600]


Sets the level of verbosity for Pattern Lab Node logging.

  • error will output a message as a thrown error
  • warning will output all warnings plus above
  • info will output all info messages, plus above (intended default)
  • debug will output all debug messages, plus above
  • quiet will output ZERO logs

This replaces the now obsolete debug flag.

default: info


Sets the naming of output pattern files. Suffixes are defined for 'rendered', 'rawTemplate', and 'markupOnly' files. This configuration is needed for some PatternEngines that use the same input and output file extensions. Most users will not have to change this.

"outputFileSuffixes": {
"rendered": ".rendered",
"rawTemplate": "",
"markupOnly": ".markup-only"


Sets the configurable source and public directories for files Pattern Lab Node operates within. Build, copy, output, and server operations rely upon these paths. Some paths are relative to the current UIKit. See UIKit configuration for more info. Note the patternlabFiles which help create the front end styleguide. Note also the intentional repetition of the nested structure, made this way for maximum flexibility. These are unlikely to change unless you customize your environment or write custom UIKits.

default :

  "paths": {
"source": {
"root": "./source/",
"patterns": "./source/_patterns/",
"data": "./source/_data/",
"meta": "./source/_meta/",
"annotations": "./source/_annotations/",
"styleguide": "dist/",
"patternlabFiles": {
"general-header": "views/partials/general-header.mustache",
"general-footer": "views/partials/general-footer.mustache",
"patternSection": "views/partials/patternSection.mustache",
"patternSectionSubtype": "views/partials/patternSectionSubtype.mustache",
"viewall": "views/viewall.mustache"
"js": "./source/js",
"images": "./source/images",
"fonts": "./source/fonts",
"css": "./source/css"
"public": {
"root": "public/",
"patterns": "public/patterns/",
"data": "public/styleguide/data/",
"annotations": "public/annotations/",
"styleguide": "public/styleguide/",
"js": "public/js",
"images": "public/images",
"fonts": "public/fonts",
"css": "public/css"


Sets the panel name and language for the code tab on the styleguide. Since this only accepts one value, this is a place where mixed pattern trees (different PatternEngines in the same instance of Pattern Lab) does not quite work.

default: mustache


See the Pattern State Documentation


"patternStateCascade": ["inprogress", "inreview", "complete"],


Sets the location that any export operations should output files to. This may be a relative or absolute path.

default: ./pattern_exports/


Sets an array of patterns (using the short-hand pattern-include syntax) to be exported after a build.

For example, to export the navigation, header, and footer, one might do:

"patternExportPatternPartials": ["molecules-primary-nav", "organisms-footer", "organisms-header"],

default: []


Sets live-server options. See the live-server documentation for more details.


"serverOptions": {
"wait": 1000


Starterkits by convention house their files within the dist/ directory. Should someone ever wish to change this, this key is available.


"starterkitSubDir": "dist",


Sets whole pattern types to be excluded from the "All" patterns page on the styleguide. This is useful to decrease initial load of the styleguide. For example, to exlude all patterns under templates and pages, add the following:

"styleGuideExcludes": [

These template and page patterns would still be accessible via navigation.

default: []


Sets the theme options for the styleguide. There are five options:

  • "color"
  • "density"
  • "layout"
  • "noViewAll" (optional)
  • "logo" (optional)

Available values are:

"theme" : {
"color" : "dark" | "light",
"density" : "compact" | "cozy" | "comfortable",
"layout" : "horizontal" | "vertical",
"noViewAll" : true | false,
"logo": {
"text": "Pattern Lab",
"altText": "Pattern Lab Logo",
"url": "/",
"srcLight": "styleguide/images/pattern-lab-logo--on-light.svg",
"srcDark": "styleguide/images/pattern-lab-logo--on-dark.svg",
"width": "187",
"height": "185"

See the initial release notes for the theme feature for example output on "color", 'density" and "layout".

"noViewAll" provides the possibility to hide the "View All" pages and links within the navigation.

And "logo" lets you finetune the different aspects of the logo displayed on the left top corner of the styleguide.


"theme" : {
"color" : "dark",
"density" : "compact",
"layout" : "horizontal"


Introduced in Pattern Lab Node v3, UIKits are a new term in the Pattern Lab Ecosystem. They are an evolution of the original Styleguidekit pattern which separated front-end templates from front-end assets like stylesheets and code. The existing styleguidekit-assets-default and styleguidekit-mustache-default have merged into uikit-workshop.

uikits accepts an array of UIKit objects, shipping with the one above.

  • name: the name of the UIKit
  • outputDir where to output this UIKit relative to the current root. By leaving this empty we retain the existing Pattern Lab 2.X behavior, outputting to <project_root>/public. If you had multiple UIKits, however, you would provide different values, such as:
  "uikits": [
"name": "uikit-workshop",
"outputDir": "workshop",
"name": "uikit-storefront",
"outputDir": "storefront",
  • enabled: quickly turn on or off the building of this UIKit
  • excludedPatternStates: tell Pattern Lab not to include patterns with these states in this UIKit's output
  • excludedPatternTags: tell Pattern Lab not to include patterns with these tags in this UIKit's output

Important details:

  • the default paths.source object paths within patternlab-config.json are now relative to the current UIKit. See the structure of uikit-workshop for more info
  • the default paths.public object paths within patternlab-config.json are now relative to the current UIKit's outputDir. Absolute paths will no longer work. Someone could test putting an absolute path in a UIKit outputDir property and see what happens I suppose.
  • dependencyGraph.json has moved to the project root rather than public/ as we should only retain one


  "uikits": [
"name": "uikit-workshop",
"outputDir": "",
"enabled": true,
"excludedPatternStates": [],
"excludedTags": []