littlemissrobot.com

Little Miss Robot

The awesome team at Little Miss Robot wanted to modernise their style guide management tool. When they asked me to help, I was happy to work with their developers to make it happen quickly.
Little Miss Robot

Developing a style guide framework

The Little Miss Robot team has been busy developing style guides and front-end components libraries for clients for quite a while already. Like any good team of tech enthusiasts, they like to automate things where they can to streamline their process.

They had written a great little framework using Nunjucks, Gulp, Node and Express to create and maintain components libraries for their clients. They were quite busy with client work and thus needed some extra bandwidth to work on the framework and update it. I could dedicate a few days to the project, so we decided to do it together.

Modernising the engine

I first sat together with their lead developer and we quickly established a list of the requirements for the project. We then worked on my own to build an updated version of the framework they already had in place with Node, Express and Nunjucks.

After adding Gulp 4, dotenv as well Webpack and Babel for JavaScript, we had a flexible setup that allowed us to quickly build self contained components, have pretty fast build times, continuous integration and was quite friendly to work with for designers and developers alike.

We were able to complete the engine part of the style guide framework in about a week. After that, other developers could take over and build what was needed on top of it: a set of default components and a light but clever theming system that allows the team to brand the framework for various clients.

After a few tests, our new framework was ready for some production work. I must say I was quite impressed when I saw the first couple of style guides the team built with it.

Working with such talented developers and designers made this project a lot of fun to work on for me. I was also a good occasion to learn a few new Node tricks and to work with Express to build a simple router. Working at the intersection of design and developement is really what I seem to enjoy the most these days.