Django + React (part 3 of 4)

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Step 5: Sass!

Sass is a delightful extension to the CSS language. It allows the nesting of CSS classes and selectors and the variables. Can’t live without it.

Stop your NPM server via “ctrl + c” and then install Sass.

$ npm install --save node-sass-chokidar

Create-React-App can’t read Sass. We need to convert our Sass files into a standard CSS file. Then we’ll want to watch all of our Sass files and keep the CSS file up to date whenever we make changes.


In the “scripts” section:

"build-css": "node-sass-chokidar --include-path .src/ --include-path ./node_modules src/ -o src/",

"watch-css": "npm run build-css && node-sass-chokidar --include-path ~./client/js/sass/ --include-path ./src --include-path ./node_modules src/ -o src/ --watch --recursive",

Install npm-run-all so we can run multiple commands in our npm server with a single command.

$ npm install --save npm-run-all

Add “start-js to our npm build.



"start-js": "react-scripts start",

Change “start” command so when we start our server it will build and watch our CSS.



"start": "npm-run-all -p watch-css start-js",

Change “build” command so when we build a file for production it will include our CSS and Sass.



"build": "npm run build-css && react-scripts build",

Rename src/app.css to src/app.scss.

$ mv App.css App.scss

Add a folder for all of our Sass files.

$ cd frontend/src

$ mkdir styles

$ mkdir styles/images

$ mkdir styles/scss

Move App.css and App.scss into the styles folder.

$ mv App.css styles/App.css

$ mv App.scss styles/App.scss

Start up NPM server.

$ npm start

Now our NPM server will watch “App.scss” and update “App.css” to match it.

We need to tell React where to look for our styles.



import './index.css';


import './styles/App.css';

$ rm index.css

Divide your CSS into individual files so they are shorter and more categorized. For example: layout/header/footer/etc.

These are the files that we will “include” in our src/App.scss file. The naming convention for files that are included is to have an ‘_’ in the beginning of the file name. I created the following:


Edit App.scss and delete everything in the file. These were generic styles added by create-react-app. We’re going to import our new Sass files instead.


@import './scss/_layout.scss';
@import './scss/_comic.scss';
@import './scss/_header.scss';
@import './scss/_footer.scss';
@import './scss/_about.scss';

Continued in Part 4