@nativescript-community/fonts
Process fonts in a nativescript package
npm i --save @nativescript-community/fonts

Using font icons with NativeScript

The Problem

You can use icon fonts with NativeScript by combining a class with a unicode reference in the view:

  • CSS
.fa {
font-family: FontAwesome;
}
  • view
<Label class="fa" text="\uf293"></Label>

This works but keeping up with unicodes is not fun.

The Solution

With this plugin, you can instead reference the fonticon by the specific classname:

<Label class="fas" text="fa-bluetooth"></Label> 

Install

npm install @nativescript-community/fonts --save-dev

Usage

The plugin performs two pieces of processing on your project when enabled at build time:

  • It will scan your code for the relevant character tokens, replacing them with the actual character.
  • It will parse your font file and remove all unused characters, which depending on your particular usage will greatly reduce the size of the font.

This processing is configured in your webpack.config.js and occurs at build time.

FontAwesome

FontAwesome is distributed as a npm package so we can make use of that to add it to our project.

  • Install as a dev dependency
npm i @fortawesome/fontawesome-free --save-dev
  • Create classes in app.css/scss global file, for each font you wise to use:

    .fas {
    font-family: 'Font Awesome 6 Free', 'fa-solid-900';
    font-weight: 900;
    }

    .far {
    font-family: 'Font Awesome 6 Free', 'fa-regular-400';
    font-weight: 400;
    }

    .fab {
    font-family: 'Font Awesome 6 Brands', 'fa-brands-400';
    font-weight: 400;
    }
  • Use the icon name in the text and set the class for the font, for example:

    <Label class="fas" text="fa-trash-can"></Label> 
  • Configure in your webpack.config.js

    Import the required function/enum:

    const { addFontsConfigFontAwesome, FontAwesomeFontType } = require('@nativescript-community/fonts');

    Configure the fonts that you are using:

    addFontsConfigFontAwesome({ 
    fontTypes: [FontAwesomeFontType.solid, FontAwesomeFontType.brands, FontAwesomeFontType.regular], stripCharactersFromFont: true });

Material Design Fonts

Material Design Fonts are also available as a npm package.

  • Install as a dev dependency

    npm i @mdi/font --save-dev
  • Create classes in app.css/scss global file, for the font:

    .mdi {
    font-family: 'Material Design Icons', 'materialdesignicons-webfont';
    font-weight: 400;
    }
  • Use the icon name in the text and set the class for the font, for example:

    <Label class="mdi" text="trash-can"></Label> 
  • Configure in your webpack.config.js

    Import the required function/enum:

    const { addFontsConfigMDIFont } = require('@nativescript-community/fonts');

    Configure the fonts that you are using:

     addFontsConfigMDIFont({
    stripCharactersFromFont: true,
    });

Other fonts

You can also use any other fonts:

An example where we explicitly define the tokens for the font icofont.

  • Download the font and place it in your project e.g. fonts\icofont.ttf

  • Add the css

    .icoFont {
    font-family: 'IcoFont', 'icofont';
    font-weight: 400;
    }
  • Configure in your webpack.config.js

    Import the required function/enum:

    const { addFontsConfigCustom } = require('@nativescript-community/fonts');

    Configure the fonts that you are using:

        addFontsConfigCustom({
    pathToFont: 'fonts/icofont.ttf',
    tokenPrefix: 'icofont-', // text text before the icon name in your source code
    tokenValues: {
    trash: 'ee09', // token name, character code
    },
    stripCharactersFromFont: true,
    });
  • Use the font:

      <Label text="icofont-trash" class="icoFont"/>

An example where we are not using icons but want to optimize the font size, Google Monoton.

  • Download the font and place it in your project e.g. fonts\Monoton-Regular.ttf

  • Add the css

    .monoton {
    font-family: 'Monoton', 'Monoton-Regular';
    font-weight: 400;
    }
  • Configure in your webpack.config.js

    Import the required function/enum:

    const { addFontsConfigCustom } = require('@nativescript-community/fonts');

    Configure the fonts that you are using:

      addFontsConfigCustom({ pathToFont: 'fonts/Monoton-Regular.ttf', extraCharacters: 'trash-can', stripCharactersFromFont: true });

    We are not using this font for icons, so here we simply wish to optimize the font, and we pass in the few characters that we use this font for.

  • Use the font:

    <Label text="trash-can" class="monoton"/>

An example where we define the tokens for the font in an scss file, dripicons.

  • Download the font and place it in your project e.g. fonts\dripicons-v2.ttf

  • Add a scss file e.g. fonts\dripicons.scss with the contents:

    $trash-can: \e053;
  • Add the css

    .drip {
    font-family: 'dripicons-v2', 'dripicons-v2';
    font-weight: 400;
    }
  • Configure in your webpack.config.js

    Import the required function/enum:

    const { addFontsConfigCustom } = require('@nativescript-community/fonts');

    Configure the fonts that you are using:


    addFontsConfigCustom({
    pathToFont: 'fonts/dripicons-v2.ttf',
    tokenPrefix: 'drip-',
    tokenScss: 'fonts/dripicons.scss',
    stripCharactersFromFont: true }
    );
  • Use the font:

        <Label text="drip-trash-can" class="drip"/>

Full Example webpack.config.js

const webpack = require("@nativescript/webpack");
const { addFontsConfigFontAwesome, addFontsConfigMDIFont,
FontAwesomeFontType, addFontsConfigCustom } = require('@nativescript-community/fonts');
module.exports = (env) => {
webpack.init(env);

addFontsConfigFontAwesome({
fontTypes: [FontAwesomeFontType.solid,
FontAwesomeFontType.brands,
FontAwesomeFontType.regular],
stripCharactersFromFont: true });

addFontsConfigMDIFont({
stripCharactersFromFont: true,
});

addFontsConfigCustom({
pathToFont: 'fonts/Monoton-Regular.ttf',
extraCharacters: 'trash-can',
stripCharactersFromFont: true });

addFontsConfigCustom({
pathToFont: 'fonts/icofont.ttf',
tokenPrefix: 'icofont-',
tokenValues: {
trash: 'ee09',
},
stripCharactersFromFont: true,
});

addFontsConfigCustom({
pathToFont: 'fonts/dripicons-v2.ttf',
tokenPrefix: 'drip-',
tokenScss: 'fonts/dripicons.scss',
stripCharactersFromFont: true });

return webpack.resolveConfig();
};

Usage Notes

In the examples above stripCharactersFromFont is set to true. This ensures tha the unused characters are stripped from the fonts.

For a better development experience you want to set this to false during development, one option is to set it to the value env.production which should be true on release builds.

Credits

Idea came from farfromrefug's post here.

License

MIT