How Abstract works

Manage, version, and document your designs in one place.

Projects
1

Centralize “the latest” files

Import your Sketch files into Abstract and instantly create a centralized place for your most up-to-date design work and supporting documentation. In Abstract, the latest version is called master, so there’s never any confusion about what’s final and what’s still being worked on.

An overview of the master branch in Abstract shows a list of up-to-date files.
An overview of the master branch in Abstract shows a list of up-to-date files.
Master is where the most up-to-date and approved design files live within a project. The design files you import or create will make up your project’s master.
2

Design together, in parallel workspaces

Start an exploration by creating a branch off of master (your source of truth). Branches are safe spaces where you and other designers can work on the same files at the same time, without overwriting each other’s work or affecting master.

A highlighted branch shows work being done in Abstract, while two other branch names indicate additional teammates working on the same files.
A highlighted branch shows work being done in Abstract, while two other branch names indicate additional teammates working on the same files.
Branches are working copies of master, where you can explore and edit designs within a project.
3

Document progress, right on the work

Save your work with added context, building documentation as you go. Including notes about what you did and why is part of saving your work in Abstract. The more often you save your work with a commit, the more documentation you leave behind. This makes it easier for one designer to pick up where another left off, and for stakeholders to understand the reasoning behind design decisions. 

Artboards being changed in a design tool with an Abstract commit overlay that includes a summary of what’s changed on the design.
Artboards being changed in a design tool with an Abstract commit overlay that includes a summary of what’s changed on the design.
Commits are like super-saves: you’re saving a point in time you can return to, and adding context that summarizes the work done in the branch during that period.
4

Consolidate feedback, reviews, and approvals so no one has to ask, “Is it done?”

Request feedback from other designers and stakeholders, directly on the work. Comments and annotations are recorded on the artboards for easy reference. Don’t get stuck in feedback limbo: request formal reviews from leadership for approval and know exactly when something is ready to ship.

A preview of a specific artboard in Abstract with an annotated comment and a modal that indicates the branch is approved.
A preview of a specific artboard in Abstract with an annotated comment and a modal that indicates the branch is approved.
5

Merge what’s approved, roll back to previous versions without worry

After your designs are approved and ready to move forward, the next step is to merge, or add, your changes into master. You can compare different versions of artboards before deciding which changes you want to save to master and which ones you don’t. And, if you change your mind or make a mistake, you can always roll back to the previous version.

A comparison view of two versions of the same artboard that gives an Abstract user control over what design is merged into the master branch.
A comparison view of two versions of the same artboard that gives an Abstract user control over what design is merged into the master branch.
Merging takes all the changes you made on your branch and adds them to master.
6

Move design to development, without another tool

Transition work from design to development directly from Abstract. Developers can compare changes, view measurements, and download assets – all from a link. Viewer access is all they need (and it’s free).

An overview of Abstract’s inspect view where developers can copy CSS styles, properties, and measurements.
An overview of Abstract’s inspect view where developers can copy CSS styles, properties, and measurements.

Collaborate without the chaos