Install the latest stable release

$ pip install djangocms-cascade

or the current development release from github

$ pip install -e git+


Create a database schema

./ migrate cmsplugin_cascade

Install Bootstrap

Since the Bootstrap CSS and JavaScript files are part of their own repository, they are not shipped within this package. Furthermore, as they are not part of the PyPI network, they have to be installed through another package manager, namely bower.

cd djangocms-cascade
bower install --require

Alternatively copy the installed bower_components into a directory of your project or to any other meaningful location, but ensure that the directory bower_components can be found by your StaticFileFinder. In doubt, add that directory to your STATICFILES_DIRS:

    os.path.abspath(os.path.join(MY_PROJECT_DIR, 'bower_components')),


Add 'cmsplugin_cascade' to the list of INSTALLED_APPS in the project’s file. Optionally add ‘cmsplugin_cascade.extra_fields’ and/or ‘cmsplugin_cascade.sharable’ to the list of INSTALLED_APPS. Make sure that these entries are located before the entry cms.

Configure the CMS plugin

    'cmsplugin_cascade.clipboard',  # optional
    'cmsplugin_cascade.extra_fields',  # optional
    'cmsplugin_cascade.sharable',  # optional
    'cmsplugin_cascade.segmentation',  # optional

Activate the plugins

By default, no djangocms-cascade plugins is activated. Activate them in the project’s with the directive CMSPLUGIN_CASCADE_PLUGINS.

To activate all available Bootstrap plugins, use:

CMSPLUGIN_CASCADE_PLUGINS = ('cmsplugin_cascade.bootstrap3',)

If for some reason, only a subset of the available Bootstrap plugins shall be activated, name each of them. If for example only the grid system shall be used, but no other Bootstrap plugins, then configure:

CMSPLUGIN_CASCADE_PLUGINS = ('cmsplugin_cascade.bootstrap3.container',)

A very useful plugin is the LinkPlugin. It superseds the djangocms-link-plugin, normally used together with the CMS.


Generic Plugins which are not opinionated towards a specific CSS framework, are kept in a separate folder. It is strongly suggested to always activate them:

CMSPLUGIN_CASCADE_PLUGINS = ('cmsplugin_cascade.generic',)

Sometimes it is useful to do a segmentation. Activate this by adding its plugin:

CMSPLUGIN_CASCADE_PLUGINS = ('cmsplugin_cascade.segmentation',)

Restrict plugins to a particular placeholder

Unfortunately djangoCMS does not allow to declare dynamically which plugins are eligible to be added as children of other plugins. This is determined while bootstrapping the Django project and thus remain static. We therefore must somehow trick the CMS to behave as we want.

Say, our Placeholder named “Main Content” shall accept the BootstrapContainerPlugin as its only child, we then must use this CMS settings directive:

    'Main Content Placeholder': {
        'plugins': ['BootstrapContainerPlugin'],
        'text_only_plugins': ['TextLinkPlugin'],
        'parent_classes': {'BootstrapContainerPlugin': None},
        'glossary': {
            'breakpoints': ['xs', 'sm', 'md', 'lg'],
            'container_max_widths': {'xs': 750, 'sm': 750, 'md': 970, 'lg': 1170},
            'fluid': False,
            'media_queries': {
                'xs': ['(max-width: 768px)'],
                'sm': ['(min-width: 768px)', '(max-width: 992px)'],
                'md': ['(min-width: 992px)', '(max-width: 1200px)'],
                'lg': ['(min-width: 1200px)'],

Here we add the BootstrapContainerPlugin to plugins and parent_classes. This is because the Container plugin normally is the root plugin in a placeholder. If this plugin would not restrict its parent plugin classes, we would be allowed to use it as a child of any plugin. This could destroy the page’s grid.


Until version 0.7.1 the Container plugin did not restrict it’s parent_classes and therefore we did not have to add it to the CMS_PLACEHOLDER_CONF settings.

Furthermore, in the above example we must add the TextLinkPlugin to text_only_plugins. This is because the TextPlugin is not part of the Cascade ecosystem and hence does not know which plugins are allowed as its children.

The dictionary named glossary sets the initial parameters of the Bootstrap 3 Grid system.

Define the leaf plugins

Leaf plugins are those, which contain real data, say text or images. Hence the default setting is to allow the TextPlugin and the FilerImagePlugin as leafs. This can be overridden using the configuration directive

    'alien_plugins': ('TextPlugin', 'FilerImagePlugin', 'OtherLeafPlugin',),

Bootstrap 3 with AngularJS

Some Bootstrap3 plugins can be rendered using templates which are suitable for the very popular Angular UI Bootstrap framework. This can be done during runtime; when editing the plugin a select box appears which allows to chose an alternative template for rendering.

Template Customization

Make sure that the style sheets are referenced correctly by the used templates. DjangoCMS requires Django-Sekizai to organize these includes, so a strong recommendation is to use that Django app.

The templates used for a DjangoCMS project shall include a header, footer, the menu bar and optionally a breadcrumb, but should leave out an empty working area. When using HTML5, wrap this area into an <article> or <section> element or just use it unwrapped (suggested). This placeholder shall be named using a generic identifier, for instance “Main Content” or similar:

{% load cms_tags %}

<!-- wrapping element (optional) -->
    {% placeholder "Main Content" %}
<!-- /wrapping element -->

From now on, the page layout can be adopted inside this placeholder, without having to fiddle with template coding anymore.