Developing Components in Isolation

Usually, in an app, you have a lot of UI components, and each of them has many different states. For an example, a simple button component could have the following states:

  • In a regular state, with a text label.
  • In the disabled mode.
  • In a loading state.

Usually, it’s hard to see these states without running a sample app or some examples.

Create React App doesn’t include any tools for this by default, but you can easily add Storybook for React (source) or React Styleguidist (source) to your project. These are third-party tools that let you develop components and see all their states in isolation from your app.

Storybook for React Demo

You can also deploy your Storybook or style guide as a static app. This way, everyone in your team can view and review different states of UI components without starting a backend server or creating an account in your app.

Getting Started with Storybook

Storybook is a development environment for React UI components. It allows you to browse a component library, view the different states of each component, and interactively develop and test components.

Run the following command inside your app’s directory:

npx -p @storybook/cli sb init

After that, follow the instructions on the screen.

Learn more about React Storybook:

Getting Started with Styleguidist

Styleguidist combines a style guide, where all your components are presented on a single page with their props documentation and usage examples, with an environment for developing components in isolation, similar to Storybook. In Styleguidist you write examples in Markdown, where each code snippet is rendered as a live editable playground.

First, install Styleguidist:

npm install --save react-styleguidist

Alternatively you may use yarn:

yarn add react-styleguidist

Then, add these scripts to your package.json:

"scripts": {
+ "styleguide": "styleguidist server",
+ "styleguide:build": "styleguidist build",
"start": "react-scripts start",

Then, run the following command inside your app’s directory:

npm run styleguide

After that, follow the instructions on the screen.

Learn more about React Styleguidist:

Last updated on 2/10/2019 by Ian Schmitz