Simple Layout in Swift using HGroups & VGroups
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Simple Layout in Swift using HGroups & VGroups



Shinpuru Layout allows developers to layout user interface elements using horizontal and vertical groups. Items in groups can be sized in absolute points or relative percentages and groups may be nested.


If you're using Swift 2, UIStackView does horizontal and vertical group based layout a million times better, so I suggest you use that rather than Shinpuru Layout.


To install Shinpuru Layout for use in your own project, simply copy SLControls.swift and SLGroup.swift


To begin a Shinpuru screen, create a top level container, for horizontal layout:

let group = SLHGroup()

...and for vertical layout:

let group = SLVGroup()

This top level group needs to be anchored to its superview's bounds:

override func viewDidLayoutSubviews()
    let top = topLayoutGuide.length
    let bottom = bottomLayoutGuide.length
    group.frame = CGRect(x: 0, y: top, width: view.frame.width, height: view.frame.height - top - bottom).rectByInsetting(dx: 10, dy: 10)

Child elements can be added either though the group's children array:

for i: Int in 1 ... 10

...or with addSubView:


Standard controls will be spaced evenly across the entire width or height of their parent container.

You can subclass UIView based components and have them implement SLLayoutItem for more control over sizing. SLLayoutItem has two properties:

  • percentageSize - defines the percentage width or height of the SLLayoutItem
  • explicitSize - ignored if percentageSize is not nil, but allows an absolute size in points for the SLLayoutItem



Shinpuru allows for child components to be added and removed with animation. The AddAndRemove class demonstrates this. SLGroup supports two methods for animation:

  • addChild(child: UIView, atIndex: Int) - adds a child at a given index
  • removeChild(#atIndex: Int) - removes a child at a given index


This project ships with six demonstrations:

  • ComplexGrid - this was the file I used during build and test. The code is a bit messy, but it shows how a ludicrously complex grid can be built from a hierarchy of Shinpuru Layout groups
  • SoftimageLayout - a layout inspired by the venerable Softimage
  • AlignAndDistribute - a simple screen demonstrating left, centre and right align, along with evenly distributing components across the width of a container.
  • DepthOfField - my SceneKit depth of field demonstration updated to use Shinpuru for its layout.
  • CollectionView - laying out the contents of a UICollectionViewCell with Shinpuru
  • AddAndRemove - demonstrates dynamic layout with animation. The screen contains 'Add Row' and 'Remove Row' which add and remove rows at index zero. In turn, each row contains add and remove buttons which add and remove UIView instances with a yellow background at index two of the row (indexes zero and one contain the buttons)

#Further Information

To learn how Shinpuru was build and see examples of different layouts, see my blog: