Designing a Restaurant Menu
Illustration by John Hersey

Applying styles and establishing hierarchy


From:

Designing a Restaurant Menu

with Nigel French

Video: Applying styles and establishing hierarchy

Now at present, all of our text is just slapped onto our page, and it is very difficult for us to tell what's what, so we need to establish some sort of hierarchy and order with our text. And this will be done using paragraph styles, and also some character styles. But first and foremost, paragraph styles, which apply formats to our text on a paragraph by paragraph basis, so they are the more global of the two. And I like to always start by working with the text that occupies the vast majority of my document, be it a book, be it a brochure, be it a poster, or in this case, a menu, and that is going to be my body text. So my body text is going to be each of the menu items, and that's where I am going to start.

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Watch the Online Video Course Designing a Restaurant Menu
2h 46m Appropriate for all Jan 16, 2012

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In this course, author Nigel French shows how to create a cost-effective, elegantly styled restaurant menu with Adobe InDesign, Photoshop, and Illustrator. The course develops three menu designs: folder, four-panel card, and single-page, exploring the design considerations for each, such as size, folding, typeface, and paper stock. The course also sheds light on incorporating logos, choosing appropriate color schemes, and producing menus online and in print.

Topics include:
  • Adding text and design elements
  • Adding texture with a Photoshop brush
  • Creating a proof
  • Adding stylized headers
  • Designing menu inserts
  • Placing and cleaning up text
  • Creating a template
  • Adding a textured background
  • Preparing a menu for print
Subject:
Design
Software:
InDesign
Author:
Nigel French

Applying styles and establishing hierarchy

Now at present, all of our text is just slapped onto our page, and it is very difficult for us to tell what's what, so we need to establish some sort of hierarchy and order with our text. And this will be done using paragraph styles, and also some character styles. But first and foremost, paragraph styles, which apply formats to our text on a paragraph by paragraph basis, so they are the more global of the two. And I like to always start by working with the text that occupies the vast majority of my document, be it a book, be it a brochure, be it a poster, or in this case, a menu, and that is going to be my body text. So my body text is going to be each of the menu items, and that's where I am going to start.

So I'm going to actually set this to Regular, as opposed to Medium Helvetica, and then I am going to change the typeface to 10 point in size, and I am going to increase the leading to 13 point. Let's consider some of these other options. I am going to change the language dictionary to UK. I am going to turn off hyphenation. Hyphenation is something that is not always a bad thing, but in the context of a menu, we don't want items hyphenating, so I definitely want that turned off.

And that's it for now. I've got a feeling that I'm going to need to come back and edit the style, but at the moment, what I am going to do is come to my Paragraph Styles panel, choose New Paragraph Style, and I am going to call it item, since it's a menu item. Apply style to selection checked, so now everything on my menu has that paragraph style applied to it. I am now going to move over to the sections: Breakfast, Lunch, Drinks, etcetera. And I'm going to format the first of these; obviously we want this to be bigger.

So I am going to make it bolder as well. So it's going to be bolder, and it's going to be bigger. Just how much bigger? Well, let's see; let's try 24 points. Now, since I'm using a leading value of 13 points for my text, I like everything to be based on that number of 13, so I am going to change the leading value of my section heads to 26; two times 13. Then I am going to apply Color, so let's come over and look at the color schemes that we created in an earlier movie.

And I am going to start out by using this color; I am using the third of the color schemes that we created. I am going to apply that to the text. Let's see how that looks. All right. Now what I am going to do is create a style based upon that selection. New Paragraph Style, and I will call it section. The next step is to apply that style to the other section heads. Click in the paragraph. You don't need to have the whole paragraph selected, just click in it, click on the style name; those are our different sections.

Now we need some spacing. In this case, what we are going to end up with is each of these sections on a separate page. So for that reason, what I am going to do is I'm going to change something called Keep Options that is associated with the section style. Now, to edit a style that we have already created, right click on it, choose Edit section, and then go to Keep Options. I want to start this paragraph On Next Page. So when I do that, on page 1, all we see now is the first section, but if I now move to page 2, we have got the second section.

At that point, our text flow stops, and we see that we have overset text. So to pick up this text flow, what we need to do is go and click on that red plus, so we have a loaded cursor. Move to the next page. On the odd numbered pages -- on pages 1 and 3 -- ultimately we are going to end up using the right-hand column, and on the even numbered pages, the left-hand column. So I am going to skip the left-hand column on page 3, and hold down my Alt key while I click on the top margin to flow that column. And then press Alt+Page Down, which will take me to the next page, and come and click at the top of the left column on page 4.

We now have our text in four columns on four pages. The only problem is on page 1, it needs to be on the right-hand column. I am going to delete this empty column, select that, and then move that over. So we have now got the text in the right places. Still, we need to establish some more hierarchy, and some more order, by creating some more styles, and very carefully applying spacing between our paragraphs. That I will do in the next movie.

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