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It used to be that I could just press a button in my browser, and a link would be added to my Pinterest board of wishes. Now, Pinterest track their users across the Web, and you can’t give your friends and family a shareable link that doesn’t require them to register a user on Pinterest.

With Wishlist, you can create your own well-designed overview of your wishes with eminently readable text and mobile support. Independent on the whims, motives, and business models of other websites.

Of course, this is a wishlist mainly in name; if you want to create a list of charities or causes for people to support, you go right ahead and realize that project. In keeping with the spirit of these times, Wishlist also has built-in support for adding a list of charities people can donate to in your name in place of or in tandem with other regular wishes on your list.

The emphasis of the wishlist design is that the text is big, filled with images to explain the product, and last but not least, an ordering based on price ranges, which is the main deciding factor for a purchase.

The site will be available at

If you know your way around Jekyll, GitHub, or static pages, you’ll also know how to host this elsewhere.

The project uses robots.txt to deter search engine indexing by default.


  1. Create a GitHub user, if you don’t already have one. Here is the registration page.

    The username you choose will be a part of the website URL.

  2. Go to your e-mail settings and make sure you’ve checked the box “Keep my email address private”.

  3. Create a repo named {{ github_username }} on GitHub.

  4. Import the required code by going to{{ github_username }}/{{ github_username }}

    and entering
  5. Delete CNAME which points to the custom domain of my wishlist. If you want to use your own custom domain, keep it but change it to point to yours instead.

  6. Update wishes.yml, when you create new work you want to share.

    You can do this with Git or the browser interface at{{ github_username }}/{{ github_repo }}/edit/master/_data/wishes.yml

    Consult _data/sample.yml for an in-depth explanation of the wishlist format.

  7. There’s also an optional /_data/charities.yml you can edit, if you want to encourage friends and families to donate to a charity in your name instead.

    This is enabled by default and uses the American Civil Liberties Union as an example.

    To disable charities for your wishlist, set the field enable_charities in index.markdown from true to false.

  8. Go to the settings of your repo,{{ github_username }}/your_repo/settings under Options and GitHub GitHub Pages.

    There, check the box on Enforce HTTPS. You can also set the custom domain here, which is handled by the CNAME file in your repo.

Congrats on your new site!

If you’ve received one of your wishes, you can either delete them or mark them as bought: true. If you do the latter, it will show up on the /bought of your site. You can also use hidden: true, if you want the wish not to be displayed anywhere for the time being.

Be aware that this is basically just the repo for my own wishlist, so don’t expect to be able to do a git pull or git fetch without something breaking. Besides, the wishlist is pretty much fine in its current state for the most part.

Command-line tricks

NB: There are a billion different programs with the unoriginal name yq. Make sure you don’t conflate them.

Show all wishes


brew install yq # or go get or install binary
yq r _data/wishes.yml *[*].title

You can’t perform any granular operations, but you could convert the YAML to JSON and use a tool like jq with a larger feature set.


This is a jq wrapper in Python that is still maintained. This is the best YAML tool out there, but I included mikefarah/yq for comparison and as a reminder of all the similarly named yq out there.

pip install yq
yq .[][].title _data/wishes.yml

And similarly, .[][].price and so on.

Because kislyuk/yq wraps jq, you also get syntax highlighting.

Can I use a custom domain name?

You sure can, but this is for what you might call technical people.

For one, you’ll have to edit the CNAME file to point to the domain you wish to use. As you can see, mine’s set to

I can’t get it to work :(

You’re welcome to contact me about this as well. We’ll figure it out.

Will my site automatically be updated with new features?

Nope. You’ll basically have to follow the so-called commit history for updates that sound important to you and copy-paste them yourself.

It is unlikely that there’ll be significant updates, but it is possible that changes will be made to index.markdown or _layouts/default.html.

Should this happen, and you really want to update your site, I recommend you just copy-paste the code to your current files and save the changes. I do not recommend you delete your site, re-create it, and then re-import this repo, as you will lose the information your entered in data/wishes.yml and _config.yml.

For this reason, it never hurts to have a backup of wishes.yml somewhere else, should you manage to pull what I just described.

Never underestimate your ability to do something obscenely dumb, especially when the hour’s late or alcohol is involved.

Related projects


  • Flat UI, the CSS framework for this project


  • RSS?
  • Basic print CSS

Known issues

  • Link-name capitalization
    • Doesn’t work for multiple-word names nor all-caps like “IKEA”
  • Empty price ranges
    • Empty price ranges shown when all wishes in range are all hidden or bought
    • Similar issue for the boughtlist when no wishes in the range are bought


Easily make and host your own accessible wishlist for friends and family.







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