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deform_bootstrap provides Twitter Bootstrap compatible widgets, templates and styles for the deform form library.

How to use it

I just downloaded this and wanna use it

In your Paste Deploy configuration file (e.g. development.ini) add deform_bootstrap to the list of pyramid_includes, or add a this line if a pyramid.includes setting does not exist:

pyramid.includes = deform_bootstrap

This will put the templates in deform_bootstrap/templates into the deform search path.

I want to try it before using

If you want to quickly try out deform_bootstrap and see how it looks in practice you can run these commands, assuming that you have a virtualenv set up in your deform_bootstrap directory:

$ git clone
$ cd deformdemo
$ ../bin/python develop
$ cd ..
$ bin/pserve demo.ini

You should now be able to access the demo site at

Additional widgets / getting rid of legacy stuff


Deform depends on jQueryUI for these wigdgets:

  • AutocompleteInputWidget
  • DateInputWidget
  • DateTimeInputWidget

deform_bootstrap comes with widgets that replace these, and that are compatible with Bootstrap. If you don't use any of these, you can skip the remainder of this section and just delete jQueryUI from your CSS and JS imports. Otherwise you'll need to add bootstrap-typeahead.js and/or bootstrap-datepicker.js to your JS includes.

You can then use deform_bootstrap's TypeaheadInputWidget as a drop in replacement for deform's AutocompleteInputWidget.

Unfortunately things are a litte more complicated for DateInputWidget and DateTimeInputWidget, because bootstrap does not provide native widgets for that usecases (yet?). Therefore you will need to either use deform_bootstrap.css provided by deform_bootstrap or build your own bootstrap.css using LESS <>. Once you have lessc installed it can be done like this:

$ cd deform_bootstrap/static
$ lessc deform_bootstrap.less

You'll then find your custom deform_bootstrap.css which immediately leads to a shiny new look for DateInputWidgets. For DateTimeInputWidgets you'll have to replace your existing imports. This is as easy as replacing from deform.widget import DateTimeInputWidget with from deform_bootstrap.widget import DateTimeInputWidget in your code.

<ul> / <li> markup

Deform uses <ul> / <li> markup for rendering sequences. Although one can argue, that this is semanticaly correct, it doesn't make much sense in the context of form rendering and requires quite some additional CSS to produce visually appealing results. Therefore deform_bootstrap removes all list markup and generates nice forms with no additional CSS required.

In order to make this work with not only with fixed length sequences, but also variable length sequences, 2 functions in deform.js needs to be patched. This can be done by simply adding the provided deform_bootstrap.js to your JS requirements. If your application doesn't use variable length sequences, you can safely skip this step.

Chosen by Harvest

A progressively enhanced replacement for HTML select elements, Chosen implements single and multiple selection modes that offer a much better UX than the standard widgets. It has autocomplete features, placeholder support and a slick style that looks good either with or without Bootstrap. See for documentation and examples. Only the jQuery version is provided by this package.

Static resources

deform_bootstrap comes with a bunch of static resources, which might confuse you. Fortunately most of them are just needed to pass all the tests and most most of them (if any) won't be needed in your deform_bootstrap based application.


This file contains the complete Bootstrap 2.0.1 CSS plus additional styles for the datepicker widget (see above). You may use it for your application (great for initial development), but might also want to consider rolling your own customized version for deployment.
The main style for ChosenSingleWidget and ChosenMultipleWidget.
This file contains a small fix for conflicts between chosen and bootstrap. Only needed if you make use of chosen, but harmless if you don't.
The styles for the native bootstrap datepicker widget (see above).

Note that chosen_bootstrap.css and bootstrap-datepicker.css are included in deform_bootstrap.css, so you will only need them if you use some other version of the bootstrap css.


Only needed if you want to use the native bootstrap datepicker widget (see above).
Only needed if you want to use the native bootstrap datepicker widget (see above).
Only needed as a direct dependency of the bootstrap_XXX.js files.
Only needed as if you want to use variable length sequences (see "<ul> / <li> markup" above).
Only needed if you want to use any of the other JS resources.
Only needed if prefer using deform's orinial AutocompleteInputWidget over deform_bootstrap's TypeaheadInputWidget or deform's DateTimeInputWidget over deform_bootstrap's native version (see above).
Same as for jquery-ui-x.x.x.custom.min.js.
Only needed if you want to use use_ajax=True with deform.Form.
Only needed if you want mask='...' with any of the deform widgets that support it.
Only needed if you use ChosenSingleWidget or ChosenMultipleWidget.

LESS / twitter_bootstrap

Not needed at all. Only used internally to build the custom deform_bootstrap.css with the additional datepicker styles.

Information for developers / contributors

deform_bootstrap passes 100% of the deformdemo tests. Please do run the Selenium tests before submitting a patch.

However, bootstrap requires a newer version of jquery than deform ships with by default. This in turn would require a newer version of jquery.form (> 2.43) which unfortunately is backward incompatible in its ajax handling. Thus, deform_bootstrap cannot currently support deform's use_ajax feature. The corresponding selenium tests have therefore been disabled until deform catches up. Note, that you can still use jquery.form itself.

Running Selenium tests

Follow the instructions in deformdemo to install Selenium. Then install deform_bootstrap in your virtualenv and from within the deform_bootstrap package run this command:

$ bin/python deform_bootstrap/demo/


input_prepend / input_append

Bootstrap has a nice feature to prepend/append text to input[type=text] form elements (see To use it with deform_bootstrap you can simply pass input_prepend or input_append as keyword arguments to the widget constructor in your colander.Schema subclass:

class PersonSchema(colander.Schema):
    weight = colander.SchemaNode(


Bootstrap supports four form styles. By default, deform_bootstrap uses the .form-horizontal style. You can specify one of the other styles be setting the bootstrap_form_style attribute of your Form:

myform = Form(myschema, bootstrap_form_style='form-vertical')


Bootstrap supports inline checkbox and radio choices. Normally RadioChoiceWidgets and CheckboxChoiceWidgetss are displayed with one choice per line. To select the inline style, set the inline attribute of the choice widget to a trueish value:

class MySchema(colander.Schema):
    choice = colander.SchemaNode(
            values=[(u'a', u'Apple'),
                    (u'b', u'Bear'),
                    (u'c', u'Computer')],
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