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Exporting to Code 🚚

All you need to know about Sketch2React's different ways of exporting to code.

Export to Capacitor.js

Wanna go directly to iOS & Android? Who wouldn't 😺💪
You now also can export directly to iOS & Android project via something awesome called Capacitor.js
  1. 1.
    Make sure you have all links between pages working and that you have visited each page once (it gets added to our export bundle that way)
  2. 2.
    Click on the Download button 👉 Download Capacitor project
  3. 3.
    Unzip the folder we created for you
  4. 4.
    Make sure you compress the images, we 🧡 TinyPNG
  5. 5.
    Drag the entire folder onto e.g., Visual Studio Code
  6. 6.
    Open up a New Terminal in VSC
  7. 7.
    Type npm install and hit enter
  8. 8.

Download the latest package.json file

When you export to Capacitor from Sketch2React you get a neat package.json file that holds important stuff like which version of Capacitor to install etc. Problem with that is that since we don't update our apps as often as Capacitor does you may run into errors while installing.
Simple solution? We just make sure we update this file👇 🤖 more often than Sketch2React. Easy peasy. After you have exported to Capacitor, just replace the autogenerated one with this one and you'll be fine as 🍷

Install Xcode Command Line Tools & CocoaPods

This is crucial to do before you go to the next step of installing either the iOS or Android platforms.
  • Download and install the Xcode Command Line tools. You can do this directly from within Xcode or you can just fire up the mighty Terminal app and add this installation snippet:
xcode-select —install
  • Download and install CocoaPods, easiest is just by adding this snippet directly in the Terminal:
sudo gem install cocoapods

How to install for iOS

  1. 1.
    Drag the entire exported folder onto your preferred code editor, we always use Visual Studio Code since it’s really nice (and free 🍬)
  2. 2.
    In VSC 👉 Terminal 👉 New Terminal
  3. 3.
    Just type npm install and hit enter key
  4. 4.
    You have now installed Capacitor.js onto your project folder 👉 Yes! 💪 Not ready yet though, a couple of easy steps left, carry on soldier
  5. 5.
    Type npx cap init and hit enter key. Capacitor will ask you a bunch of stuff, like what you want to call the app, where the www folder is etc. Do what is forced upon you and just be a happy camper 🏕️
  6. 6.
    Now it’s time to do the real magic, installing all the files Xcode needs to automagically convert this to a .xcode project
  7. 7.
    Type npm install @capacitor/ios and hit enter
  8. 8.
    One would assume you would be ready by now. You are assuming wrong dear Watson
  9. 9.
    Type npx cap add ios and hit enter key
Now comes the best command ever, hold on to your shorts or skirts 👇
  1. 1.
    Type npx cap open ios and like magic mushrooms Xcode will open up in the background and also open up the very same project you just created 👉 Huzzah!

How to install for Android

Just follow these instructions.

Updating the HTML

Say that you have exported from Sketch2React and later add new things/change stuff. Of course you want them updated inside Capacitor also. The easiest workflow is:
  1. 1.
    Update inside Sketch/Lunacy
  2. 2.
    Make sure you see those changes inside Sketch2React
  3. 3.
    Export as HTML
  4. 4.
    Copy the entire HTML export and overwrite inside the www folder in your Capacitor project
  5. 5.
    Jump back to your code editor (we use VSC) open up a new Terminal and run the following command. Make a happy 👯‍♀️
npx cap sync

How to export to React

Follow these instructions to the point and you’ll be exporting to React code and components in super little time. We promise 👍

Adding things to export

  1. 1.
    Open up Sketch2React app.
  2. 2.
    Go to File, Link Sketch-file (⌘L) or just drag and drop the Sketch file
  3. 3.
    Your Sketch file needs to have our markup rules (components etc)
  4. 4.
    Before anything can be exported to code, you need to add each artboard/page to our export bundle. You do that by visiting each page in your design, it adds itself automagically to our bundle after each page load. Neat right?
  5. 5.
    Press Download icon
  6. 6.
    Press React and save the .zip somewhere locally on your computer.

Known issues

Don’t save to Dropbox, OneDrive or Google Drive. Or use at your own risk of being really annoyed 😅
Once you begin installing all the packages that are included in our React export, these services will most likely hickup. Or send you automated emails complaining you have to many files 😸
This is because we use Create React App (among other things) and it contains an amazingly amount of really small files. Size-wise we’re talking about approx 220MB of downloaded packages.
iCloud seems to be working fine with these many small files, no crash so far and the syncing seems to be working great between computers linked to the same Apple ID.
🏎️ Cool, now let’s move on to the really exciting part…
Now comes a couple of steps that first can seem very odd and very unfamiliar. Specially if you have never installed thingies via the Terminal. We have streamlined this as much as we can but hey, this is a real design to code environment, you can’t cheat your way through this 😸

🖐️ Node.js

For our React export to work you first need to install Node.js.
  • Node.js is an open source server environment
  • Node.js is free
  • Node.js runs on various platforms (Windows, Linux, Unix, Mac OS X, etc.)
  • Node.js uses JavaScript on the server
Download the latest build from here

How to export to React (Terminal)

First of all, make sure you have admin rights to your computer or nothing of the below things will ever work.
  1. 1.
    Open Terminal app. You know that weird little app you maybe have been in contact with when doing funky stuff to your Mac 😆 It’s actually really friendly, don’t be afraid. But weird yes.
  2. 2.
    Write cd and do a blank space
  3. 3.
    Go to your dl Sketch2React .zip, unzip and drag drop the entire folder onto your Terminal window. Drop it precisely after the words cd + your blank space. It should look something like this cd /users/
  4. 4.
    Hit Enter ↩︎

How to install all required packages (Terminal)

  1. 1.
    Write npm install and hit enter ↩︎
  2. 2.
    Since you have entered the correct cd installation of all required packages should begin

How to start your development server (Terminal)

  1. 1.
    Write npm start and hit enter ↩︎
  2. 2.
    It will take up to one minute and then you will see this message in the Terminal will open up your default browser with localhost:3000
  3. 3.
    Done! Now continue with your development outside of Sketch, do all changes directly in code.

How to create a build (Terminal)

  • If the server is running, press Control+C to stop it
You can’t create a build while the server is running!
  • Write npm run build and hit enter ↩︎
It will create a optimized build of your entire project. It takes a bit of time, just chill, stand up, look out your window or something 😄

Building for Relative Paths

By default, Create React App produces a build assuming your app is hosted at the server root.
Here’s how you change that.
Open up package.json and enter this very path below version:
"homepage": "",
In our case here, we changed it to our own relative path.

Export to HTML

  1. 1.
    First of all, make sure you visit each and every page within our code app that you want to be included in your Export Bundle. Wait for the Your Artboard was added to the export bundle message to appear, it will take a few seconds per artboard, we're just making sure all the good stuff gets included 😺
  2. 2.
    Go to the Side Bar in our app and click Download
  3. 3.
    Save to great place
  4. 4.
    You know have a .zip file with all of your files, assets neatly organized in separate folders