How to use Abstract:

  1. Create a Branch. 👈 You are here.
  2. Commit your changes.
  3. Request a design review.
  4. Merge your Branch to Master.

In Abstract, new work starts by creating a Branch. You can think of a Branch as your working copy of the Master—what we call the files that act as the source of truth for a Project’s finalized designs. A Branch is where you can privately explore and edit designs in a Project before sharing them with your team by committing.

Create a Branch

How to create a Branch

You can create a Branch from the Master file or from another Branch. When you create a Branch from another Branch, we call the original Branch the “parent branch” and the new Branch the “child Branch”. You may choose to branch from a parent Branch if you’d like to pick up where someone else left off in their Branch.

💡Abstract tip: Creating a Branch does not affect the Master. You’ll commit your changes and go through a review process before you merge any changes to Master.

How to create a Branch from Master

To create a Branch from Master:

  1. Open the Abstract desktop app.
  2. Select the Project you’d like to edit.
  3. Select Master from the left side pane.
  4. Select the .SKETCH file you’d like to edit.
  5. Select EDIT IN SKETCH in the top right.
  6. Select CREATE A BRANCH.
  7. Enter a Branch name that describes the edits you’re planning to make in that Branch (e.g. Green version of iOS logo).
    • Note: If your Branch focus changes, you can edit the Branch name.
  8. Select CREATE BRANCH.

Your new Branch will open in Sketch. You can make edits right away.

How to create a Branch from another Branch

To create a child Branch from a parent Branch:

  1. Open the Abstract desktop app.
  2. Select the Project you’d like to edit.
  3. Select Branches from the left side pane.
  4. Select the Branch you’d like to branch from.
  5. Click NEW BRANCH in the top right corner.
  6. Enter a Branch name that describes the edits you’re planning to make in that Branch (e.g. Green version of iOS logo).
    • Note: If your Branch focus changes, you can edit the Branch name.
  7. Select CREATE BRANCH.

Your new Branch will open in Sketch. You can make edits right away.

How to edit a Branch name

You can rename a Branch if you veer off-course from your original intent.

To edit a Branch name:

  1. Open the Abstract desktop app.
  2. Select the Project with the Branch you’d like to rename.
  3. Select Branches from the left side pane.
  4. Select the Branch you’d like to rename.
  5. Near the Branch title at the top, click the ••• menu.
  6. Select Edit Branch.
  7. Type in the new Branch name.
  8. Click SAVE BRANCH.

How to delete or archive a Branch

Deleting a Branch deletes it forever. Deleted branches are unrecoverable. Archiving a Branch stores it in the Branch Archive in case you'd like to reference it later.

Archive a Branch

To delete or archive a Branch:

  1. Open the Abstract desktop app.
  2. Select the Project with the Branch you’d like to archive / delete.
  3. Select Branches from the left side pane.
  4. Select the Branch you'd like to archive / delete. 
  5. Click the ... menu at the top.
  6. Select Archive or Delete....

Branch ownership

When you create a Branch, you become the Branch Owner. As Branch Owner, you can:

  • Track edited files
  • Add files
  • Delete files
  • Delete the Branch
  • Create a Collection
  • Edit a Collection
  • Change Branch status

How to change your Branch status

To change your Branch status:

  1. Open the Abstract desktop app.
  2. Select the Project that contains the Branch you’d like to update.
  3. Select Branches from the left side pane.
  4. Select the Branch you’d like to update.
  5. Click the current status next to the Branch name.
  6. Select one:
    • No Status
    • Work in Progress
    • Open for Feedback
    • Request Review — This option guides you to request a design review.

How to transfer Branch ownership

To transfer Branch ownership, the new Branch owner needs to:

  1. Open the Abstract desktop app.
  2. Open the Project containing the Branch you’d like to take over.
  3. Select Branches from the left side pane.
  4. Select the Branch you’d like to transfer.
  5. Click NEW BRANCH in the top right corner.
  6. Name this Branch “[Old title]—[New Owner]’s version” or something similar.
  7. Click CREATE BRANCH.
  8. Select the parent Branch from the left side pane.
  9. Near the parent Branch title at the top, click the ••• menu.
  10. Select ARCHIVE.

Once the parent Branch is archived, the child Branch is automatically promoted to parent. From here, you can continue the work the original Owner started.

Was this article helpful?