How do you make editable design work?

over 9 years ago from , Product/Design

We have some flyers, data sheets, etc. and we would like non-designers to be able to edit things like text and maybe inline images. We have tried editable PDFs in the past and it did not go well. How do you guys do this? Editable PDFs? Give them copies of creative suite? Other options?


  • Ben Grace, over 9 years ago

    I know a designer that does the layout in indesign, then uses word publishing view to remake it in word. You have to explain to the client that it's not a perfect solution, and fonts can be an issue. Personally, I hope to never have to do this. link to tutorial

    Canva is pretty cool for designing online.

    3 points
  • Eric Chu, over 9 years ago (edited over 9 years ago )

    To expound on my comment, if you use Keynote, make sure you set up proper templates and text styles and enforce them. Otherwise you'll spend lots of time rearranging things.

    2 points
    • Matt Lindley, over 9 years ago

      Interesting idea. How does this work for print items though? Seems kind of like a weird hack-y way to go about this.

      0 points
  • Eric Chu, over 9 years ago


    2 points
  • Jed BridgesJed Bridges, over 9 years ago

    If you are on a Mac I'd recommend having your designs created with Pages. Its a cheap program and can yield beautiful designs : )

    1 point
  • Mike JohnsonMike Johnson, over 9 years ago

    In my experience people always just ask a designer to make the edits. When non-designers make changes - even just text - you still end up with problems like line breaks where they shouldn't be, whitespace issues, poor use of text formatting, or character encoding problems from text being pasted in. Once people start trying to add images as well, you get a whole new set of issues.

    1 point
    • Matt Lindley, over 9 years ago

      Yeah, I know what you mean, but it would be a huge plus to not have to do this for everything. I feel like there should be a better solution. If we can make webpages with a cms that allows easy collaboration and editing, why can't there be a similar solution for print?

      0 points
  • Michael van HolkerMichael van Holker, over 9 years ago

    For a banner campaign I made a set of banners in PS with different sizes, custom headers and a bunch of buttons. The non designer is putting in his content in GIMP. You can work with .psd files within Gimp but you have to rasterize layer effects and gradients to make it work well.

    0 points
  • Stefan TrkuljaStefan Trkulja, over 9 years ago (edited over 9 years ago )

    You could always make an app: https://pypi.python.org/pypi/psd-tools or LayerVault's very own: https://cosmos.layervault.com/psdrb.html

    0 points
  • Nicole DominguezNicole Dominguez, over 9 years ago

    If I were you, I'd make a web page and host it on GH pages. Make a print style sheet, rejoice.

    On github pages, anyone can make edits to files and have it update live. You controlling the CSS gives you full control, and the best part is there's no special software!!

    0 points