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Design Snack #11: Saving color palettes in Sketch

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In our last Design Snack, we talked about managing color palettes in Photoshop using Creative Cloud Libraries. But someone asked a great question: what about Sketch?

The challenge

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Managing color palettes on the fly in Sketch isn’t an easy thing to do. By default, Sketch doesn’t have the most robust color management system. There’s really just global colors and document colors. The problem is that if you work on a range of products or client projects, each has a different palette.

Sure, you can just build out a mega set of global colors that include all of your clients, brands, and sub-brands, but at that point it becomes a jumbled mass of little color swatches with no differentiation from each other.

Furthermore, there’s not a quick way to share palettes amongst your team, so everyone just has to manually enter hex codes to be sure they’re using the right colors.

The solution

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When Sketch occasionally lacks something, their amazing community of designers, developers, and fans usually make up for it pretty quickly.

The most helpful plugin for color management I’ve found is Sketch Palettes by Andrew Fiorillo, which lets you save out different versions of your global palettes or document color palettes and pull them up whenever you need, depending on what you’re designing.

Once you’ve downloaded and installed the plugin, the rest is simple.

Create your color palette in Sketch, then go to Plugins > Sketch Palettes and save your palette. You’ll notice the option to load palettes here as well.

Once you’ve built out some palettes, you can load them as needed without cluttering your color menu. And If your whole team uses Sketch, this is a great way to share palettes between the whole group (which is just good, thoughtful coworking).

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Author

Andy Orsow
Designer and product marketer at InVision, resident GIF-ologist and video maker.

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