Creating and Using a Custom Text Style

Reference Number: KB-01325 Last Updated: 09-27-2013 01:51 PM

The information in this article applies to:

Chief Architect Premier or Chief Architect Interiors or Chief Architect Lite


I see that Text Styles are used to control the appearance of most of the text in Chief Architect.  How can I use them to customize the text in my drawings?


A Text Style is simply a collection of text attributes such as font, color, and size which you can set up to meet a particular drafting need and then apply to any object that has text associated with it.

Text Styles make it fast and easy to ensure that objects in a given plan or layout file use identical text attributes.

Note: Because of the editing capabilities of Rich Text, text objects created using this tool do not use Text Styles.


Chief Architect's installed template files include a selection of predefined Text Styles.  These can be customized as needed and, if you require more variations in your text, you can also create new custom Text Styles.


In this example, we will use Text Styles to customize the appearance of Up/Down arrows for Stairs and Ramps.

To customize an existing Text Style 

  1. Open the plan file in which you would like to create a custom Text Style.

    • In this example, the Framing Annotation Set is active in a simple drawing with some stairs and text objects.

  2. Select Edit> Default Settings  from the menu. In the Default Settings dialog:

    • Click the [+] beside Text to expand this category.

    • Select Text Styles from the list.

    • Click the Edit button.

  3. In the Saved Text Style Defaults dialog:

    • Notice that "Default Text Style" is selected in the drop-down list.

    • Click the Edit button.

  4. In the Text Style Defaults dialog, make any desired changes to the Default Text Style and click OK.

    • For the purposes of this example, we will check Bold and Italic, change the Character Size to 10" and the font Color to red.

  5. Click OK to close the Saved Text Style Defaults and Layer Display Options dialogs, as well, and see the results of these changes in floor plan view.

  6. Notice that the change has affected the text of the stairs' Up/Down arrow, but also the text associated with the text, marker, callout, and dimension line.

    All of these objects have been affected because in the Framing Annotation Set, they all use the "Default Text Style".  In this situation, if we want to change the appearance of the stairs' Up/Down arrow without affecting the other items, we need to create a custom Text Style.

  7. Select Edit> Undo  to undo your changes to the Default Text Style.

To create a custom Text Style

  1. Click the Select Objects  button, then click on an object with a Text Style you wish to modify to select it, and click the Object Layer Properties edit button.

    • The Object Layer Properties  edit tool opens a special version of the Layer Display Options dialog which lists only the layers that affect the appearance of the selected object.

  2. In the Object Layer Properties dialog:

    • Select the layer associated with the object's text. In this example, that layer is "Stairs & Ramps, Up/Down Arrows".

    • Click the Define button to the right of the Text Style drop-down list.

  3. In the Saved Text Style Defaults dialog, click the Copy button.

  4. In the New Default Name dialog, type a short, descriptive name for your new custom Text Style.

  5. In the Text Style Defaults dialog, specify the attributes that you want for your custom Text Style. 

    • In this example, the same changes are made as in step #5, above.

    • Click OK to close all dialogs.

    • Before you close the Saved Text Style Defaults dialog, notice that your new Text Style's name is now selected in the list.

  6. Your new custom Text Style is now available for use and has been assigned to the Stairs & Ramps, Up/Down Arrows layer.  It can be also assigned to other objects, as well. 

To use a custom Text Style

There are several ways that you can assign a custom Text Style to objects in your drawing.


You can assign your Text Style to any layer in the Layer Display Options  dialog or the Object Layer Properties  dialog.  Many objects, including the Up/Down label for stairs and ramps and object labels, always use the Text Style assigned to their layer.


To assign a Text Style to a layer

  1. Select Tools> Display Settings> Layer Display Options  from the menu.

  2. In the Layer Display Options dialog:

    • Scroll through the list of layer names to find the one you want to assign a new Text Style to. 

    • Click on the layer name to select it.

    • Select the desired Text Style from the Text Style drop-down list.

  3. Click OK to close the dialog and apply your change. 

Text, Callouts, Markers, Dimensions, and Schedules all have a Text Style their defaults dialogs, you can assign a Text Style to these objects by name or by layer.


To specify a Text Style by name

  1. Select Edit> Default Settings  from the menu and open the defaults dialog for one of the objects listed above. 

    • In the Saved Defaults dialog, select the name of a Saved Default.  

    • In this example, we will open the Callout Defaults dialog using the Framing Callout Defaults.

  2. On the Text Styles tab:

    • Click the radio button beside Use Text Style;

    • Select the desired Text Style from the drop-down list;

    • Click OK to close the dialog and apply your change.

  3. The selected Text Style will now be used whenever a new callout is created while the Framing Callout Defaults are active - as they are when the Framing Annotation Set is in use.


Text Styles can also be assigned to individual Text objects, Callouts, Markers, and Schedules in their specification dialogs. 


The Dimension Line Specification dialog does not have a Text Style tab; however, you can specify which Saved Dimension Default a dimension line inherits its attributes from on the Dimension tab of the dialog.