Running Heading with Numbering


YouTube Videos:

Running Headline with Numbering (9:32)


running_header_numbers.indd - InDesign document


We created a running headline for our header before, but this heading did not include the actual numbering. Unfortunately InDesign CS5 has no automatic function to include the numbering of your headline into the running header (see Fig. 1). However here is a workaround.



Table of Contents


1.) Follow this tutorial step by step
2.) Character Style creation

3.) Cross-Reference setup

4.) Embedding the Cross-Reference in the header

5.) Cleaning up, reminder



1.) Follow this tutorial step by step


To solve this problem, we need to use the headline numbering as a Cross-reference for each headline, and then embed the Cross-Reference into our running header. I know, sounds confusing, but I will explain it step by step. It will all make sense in the end.


Fig. 1: The numbering of your headlines can't be transferred to your running header automatically.


2.) Character Style creation


To make our life easier, let's create a Character Style that applies a color to our Cross References. Call it "Running Header NUMBERING" have it based on no other style and apply a color (for example red, see Fig. 2).


Fig. 2: Character Style creation window.


3.) Cross-Reference setup


Next you want to place your cursor at the end of your first headline, and insert a Cross Reference. Select the right Paragraph Style and the right headline in your menu (see Fig 3)!


Fig. 3: Make sure to select the right Paragraph Style! If you have a headline like "3.4 Headline" select Paragraph Style *head 2*.


Change the Cross-reference Format and include the Character Style "Running Header NUMBERING" (see Fig. 4, orange underlined). Use the following Definitions depending on your headline:

Head 1: "^h<paraNum />."

Head 2 & 3: "^h<paraNum />"

Make sure to give your new Cross-reference Format a good name and save it as a new Format. Use the right one for your Cross-Reference depending on the level of your Headline!


Fig. 4: Settings for the Cross-Reference Format for headlines with level 1. Make sure to not include the last "." point for level 2 or level 3 headlines.


Click on *OK* in your Cross-Reference window.



4.) Embedding the Cross-Reference in the header


You should now have a headline like shown in figure 5.


Fig. 5: Result so far. The "End Nested Style" we inserted over the Cross-Reference Format prevents the "3." from showing up behind our headline in the running header.


Next we want to create a new variable that picks up our Character Style "Running Header NUMBERING" (the red "3." in figure 5) for our running header. Go to *Type* -> *Text variables* -> *Define...* and copy the settings from Figure 6.


Fig. 6: We need to create a new variable that contains only the numbers we did transfer into our Cross-References.


Insert the numbering variable from above on your master page (in front of your running headline variable). if you include a tab between both variables, you can adjust the spacing to 10mm, by using "Tabs" in your Paragraph Style (see Fig. 7).


Fig. 7: On the master page you can insert the Number variable in front of your running header "text" variable.



5.) Cleaning up, reminder


This will create on your text pages with the desired running header (see Fig. 8).


Fig. 8: The final result. Now you only need to get rid of the red "3.". The real headline looks a little bit bigger because it has the Character Style "bold" applied. It will look much better in the actual text.


To get rid of the Red "3." reduce the text size to 0.1pt and color to [Paper], to make the 3 disappear (Do these things in the Character Style "Running Header NUMBERING").


Remember: To make this method work, you have to include a Cross-Reference to every headline!


UP - Vasco Elbrecht - (2011-2014)