Tailwind CSS: It looks awful, and it works.

Adam Wathan, TailwindCSS creator

As of Rails 7, you can automatically install TailwindCSS when generating a new rails app by running rails new -c=tailwind -d=postgresql. Adam also personally helped with the default styles.

I am super excited that just like me, Adam will be also speaking on Rails World.

In this mini-series I will cover the main aspects of using TailwindCSS when building a Rails app.

When you create a new Rails app, first of all you want to figure out navigation (navbar, sidebar, footer) and UI responsiveness (make it work on all screen sizes).

Let’s build a responsive layout with a sidebar that is replaced by a dropdown on a small screen:

Responsive Layout with sidebar using TailwindCSS

Here’s the HTML for this layout:

<!-- app/views/layouts/application.html.erb -->
<body class="bg-green-200">
  <header class="bg-slate-500 flex justify-between p-4 sticky top-0 h-20 items-center">
    <div class="md:hidden"></div>
  <div class="flex flex-grow">
    <nav class="bg-slate-400 w-1/6 md:flex flex-col hidden justify-between p-4 text-center sticky top-20 h-[calc(100vh-80px)]">
        right sidebar TOP
        right sidebar BOTTOM
    <main class="w-5/6 p-4 bg-rose-300 flex-grow">
      <% (1..100).each do |i| %>
        <p><%= i %></p>
      <% end %>
      <%= yield %>

Colors are present for you to see the different elements.

Now, it’s up to you to give unique styles for each page inside yield.

For example, for a page with centered, not full-width content you can do:

<!-- app/views/posts/new.html.erb -->
<div class="mx-auto max-w-md">
  New Post
  <%= render "form" %>

That’s it! 🤠

Next step: Make the navbar dropdown actually work on small screen when the sidebar is hidden 🙈