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Table Cloth is a table view helper for Rails. It makes generating the HTML in Rails Views easy.

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Table Cloth

Table Cloth gives you an easy to use DSL for creating and rendering tables in rails. It's new, so if you want a feature or have an improvement? Make an issue!

Follow me! @robertoross

Build Status


Add this line to your application's Gemfile:

gem 'table_cloth'

And then execute:

$ bundle


Table Cloth can use defined tables in app/tables or you can build them on the fly.

Table models can be generated using rails generators.

$ rails g table User

It will make this:

class UserTable < TableCloth::Base
  # Define columns with the #column method
  # column :name, :email

  # Columns can be provided a block
  # column :name do |object|
  # end
  # Columns can also have conditionals if you want.
  # The conditions are checked against the table's methods.
  # As a convience, the table has a #view method which will return the current view context.
  # This gives you access to current user, params, etc...
  # column :email, if: :admin?
  # def admin?
  #   view.current_user.admin?
  # end
  # Actions give you the ability to create a column for any actions you'd like to provide.
  # Pass a block with an arity of 2, (object, view context).
  # You can add as many actions as you want.
  # actions do
  #   action {|object| link_to "Edit", edit_object_path(object) }
  # end

Go ahead and modify it to suit your needs, pick the columns, conditions, actions, etc...

In your view, you would then use this code:

<%= simple_table_for @users, with: UserTable %>

The second approach to making tables with Table Cloth is in the view.

<%= simple_table_for @users do |t| %>
  <% t.column :name %>
  <% t.column :email %>
  <% t.actions do %>
    <% action {|user| link_to "View", user } %>
  <% end %>
<% end %>


You can create your own column by making a class that responds to .value(object, view)

class ImageColumn < TableCloth::Column
  def value(object, view)

In your table

<%= simple_table_for @users do |table| %>
  <% table.column :name %>
  <% table.column :image, using: ImageColumn %>
<% end %>


A lot of tables have an actions column to give you the full CRUD effect. They can be painful but Table Cloth incorporates a way to easily add them to your definition.

class UserTable < TableCloth::Base
  column :name

  actions do
    action {|object| link_to 'View', object }
    action(if: :admin?) {|object| link_to 'Delete', object, method: :delete }

  def admin?


Create an initializer called table_cloth.rb

Configuration looks like this:

TableCloth::Configuration.configure do |config|
  config.table.class = 'table table-bordered'
  config.thead.class = ''
  config.tbody.class = '' ='' ='' =''

You can also configure specific tables separately.

class UserTable < TableCloth::Base
  column :name, :email

  actions do
    action {|object| link_to "Edit", edit_object_path(object) }

  config.table.class = ''
  config.thead.class = ''    = ''
  config.tbody.class = ''    = ''    = ''

You can set any value on table element configurations. For example:

config.table.cellpadding = 1 = 'top'

You also have the option to specify options on a specific column with the td_options key.

class UserTable < TableCloth::Base
  column :name, td_options: { class: "awesome-column" }

Not good enough? Fine... you can do row / column specific config as well for a TD.

class UserTable < TableCloth::Base
  column :name do |user|
    [, {class: "#{user.type}-user"}]

This would render something alow the lines of:

<td class="admin-user">Robert Ross</td>


  • TableCloth was built during my open source time at philosophie
  • simple_form for the idea of simple_table_for


  1. Fork it
  2. Create your feature branch (git checkout -b my-new-feature)
  4. Commit your changes (git commit -am 'Add some feature')
  5. Push to the branch (git push origin my-new-feature)
  6. Create new Pull Request
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