Calidario: Creating calendars easily in InDesign for discerning designers


Printed calendars are in demand – even more so for ones that are customised or adaptable to corporate criteria. Calidario has a tool which enables you to configure InDesign-compatible calendar templates in your browser quickly and inexpensively.

The year is coming to an end and soon they will be needed in abundance – calendars. Business in orientation tools has provided the German print industry, and especially the imaging market, with significant turnover in the past years, in part with double-digit growth rates. And the prognosis for the field of stand and customisable calendar print material is very good. For this reason I’m taking a look at the following calendar service, which appeals to especially discerning tastes and those who love detail.

When browsing through various shops, you find calendars in a multitude of forms. But what if, for instance, your corporate design requires more configuration options and “mere” template filling through uploads isn’t enough? Sure, you can always produce a calendar completely from scratch. Only this – as so often – is a question of time and expense. And because your calendar should set itself apart from standard ones, it means a lot of effort. That’s what Deborah and Tobias Köngeter at WirbelWild thought, too, and with Calidario they have established another brand for design services.

The calendar template configuration is comprised of three key fields, each with various options; Source:

The configuration of the calendar template can be set directly in the browser. For this, the purchaser selects the country and from among more than 100 different languages; these include common European languages as well as numerous Asian target languages. For the settings that follow, colour combinations on the basis of the respective mixing systems can be selected and saved as options in the right column. What is significant is that the predefined colours can still be modified later in InDesign. In addition to the selection of three layouts – annual wall planner, photo calendar and three-month calendar – the design and subsequent print format for the respective year can be configured, whereby any size is possible. In the right column of the configurator is an option for integrating holiday dates and bank holidays etc., which are stored in the databank. These are saved in the automatically generated template file and, like the other settings, can also be modified in InDesign. Searching for calendar data is therefore no longer necessary, which means the template using the adjustable defaults is quickly accessible.

“With its layout templates, Calidario succeeds in creating a valuable basis for designers, without restricting room for creativity and simultaneously saving time.” – Bernd Zipper


There is no registration required to get a first look at the configuration options and see how to use the calendar with integrated paragraph and character style possibilities. After downloading the design templates, they can be used directly as an IDML file in InDesign and be filled in further. If the designer likes the free trial template, on the same page he or she can buy the calendar, even with the complete dataset, which costs EUR 19.90 for any calendar layout. In order to avoid inputting all the settings again, a configuration code is stored in the test file with the selected parameters. Good stuff! As for further design possibilities in InDesign, all regular editing options are available because, although the document contains the preformatted paragraph and character styles, there are no further restrictions. So integrating, e.g., layout settings (CD) from previous calendars or other pre-existing projects is also possible.

Currently the tool is “only” available for InDesign – yet as the majority of designers rely on Adobe, there should not be any compatibility issues for most prospects. Perhaps a template maker for the application in QuarkXPress will even follow.

When the foundation has been laid, then fine-tuning the calendar design via InDesign is possible – here, a photo calendar; Source: zipcon consulting

My Take: Calidario is advantageous because creatives can concentrate on the artwork, saving time with the pre-configuration. Considering this, the price for the IDML template is not too high. The prerequisite is, of course, that the design opportunities in the layout programme are worth it for the designer and/or the company or retail customer. After enquiring at Calidario, I was told that in addition to the three existing layouts, they are planning further layouts, e.g. appointment planners and desk calendars. I’m very excited to see how the whole thing develops – and indeed when there will be an offer like this from the established online printers. For, up to now, I haven’t been able to find any comparable application as regards creative tools for designing calendars.

Founder and CEO of zipcon consulting GmbH, one of the leading consulting companies for the print and media industry in Central Europe. The technology and strategy consultant and his team actively support practical implementation in a wide variety of customer projects. His work involves developing visions, concepts and strategies for the players active in the print production process across a wide range of industries. His areas of expertise include online print, mass customization, strategy and technological assessment for print, and the development of new strategies in the print and media environment. Bernd Zipper is the creator and chairman of Initiative Online Print e.V. and, in addition to his consulting activities, is an author, lecturer and sought-after speaker, orator and moderator. His visionary lectures are regarded worldwide as trend-setting management recommendations for the print and media industry. (Profiles also in Xing, LinkedIn).

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