I've got a little birdy
The Nubbanator random_syzygy
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Livejournal layers with Classic Comments
Lots of people don't like the new Livejournal comments pages. They've added "classic comments" to the Minimalism style, but for whatever reason they coded it so that turning it on means that custom css no longer works. And that's the extent they're going to accommodate us.

So, I've built my own layouts that take the existing ones and change their comments pages to match the "classic comments" style. Enjoy.

I tried to make the source visible to anyone, but LJ doesn't seem to be handling its own source_viewable layoutinfo key properly. I've uploaded the source to my Google Docs account, so that you can click on the names and take a look if you're interested.


  • First, a note: this will only work if you are able to use Advanced S2 Customizations, which requires a paid account.

  • Find the layout that you want in the list below, and note the ID of my modified layout. If you want to use one of the default themes, note that ID as well.

  • Navigate to the Your Styles page in the Advanced Customization area.

  • Underneath "Create Style" at the bottom of the page, fill in the Name box with whatever name you want to give the new style, and click the Create button. That should take you to the "Edit Style" page for the new style you've just created.

  • From the Layout drop-down list, select "Other..." (the last item in the list).

  • A LayerID textbox will appear. Fill in the ID of the layout you want, and click the Change button.

  • New drop-down lists will appear. If you wish to use a default theme, select "Other..." from the Theme drop-down list and enter the ID of the theme you want in the new LayerID textbox. If you don't want one of the themes, skip this step.

  • Click the "Save Changes" button at the bottom of the page. This will take you back to the "Your Styles" page.

  • Your layout has now been created, but not applied. To make you journal display in the new layout, find the name you chose in the list of styles and click the Use button next to it.

  • Now that your layout has been created and applied, you can go to the normal Customize Journal Style page if you want to change options or apply custom CSS. Using custom CSS will not affect the comments pages.

Layer ID Name Default Themes
37955047 Flexible Squares with Classic Comments
(optional action links added to entries)
38105565 - Blue Gray
38105713 - Autumn
38105717 - Black and White and Red All Over
38109143 - Chocolate Milkshake
38109147 - Circular
38109153 - Circular Brown
38109155 - Eclipse
38109165 - Fresh Paint
38109411 - Gentle Dawn
38109427 - Icy Blue
38109441 - Lemon Grapefruit Tangerine
38109455 - Machine
38109805 - Nautical
38109815 - Pastel Spring
38109825 - Pink Punk
38109837 - Purple Periwinkle
38109847 - Tan and Teal
38114739 Smooth Sailing
(optional tag cloud added to the sidebar, and optional second sidebar with freeform HTML)
39232161 - Army Attire
39232167 - Banana Tree
39232173 - Blue Days
39232179 - Bruised Purple
39232181 - Chocolate Caramel Creme
39232187 - Easter Basket
39232313 - In the Forest
39232315 - Insane Yellow
39232319 - Midnight
39232321 - Mochachino
39232325 - Parrot Feathers
39232327 - Pretty in Pink
39232333 - Seeing Red
39232337 - Starry Night
39232447 - Toxic Teal
39232449 - Under Fire
39232455 - Very Violet
38621147 Bloggish 39343705 - April
39343707 - Baby
39343715 - Beckett
39343725 - Blue Crush
39343737 - Bonjour Chatette
39343745 - Bryant
39343747 - Classy
39343759 - Earth
39343773 - Folio
39343779 - Forest Green
39343801 - Green
39343809 - Knitting
39343819 - Masala
39343823 - Minimalist
39343829 - Porpoise
39343831 - Powell Street
39343863 - Purple Crush
39343869 - Stevenson
39343875 - Stitch
39343881 - Sunburned
39348039 - Travel
39314081 - Unstyled
39348051 - Wedding

What you see there is what I've done -- more layouts will be forthcoming. Comment to this post or email me if you have any questions, concerns, bug reports, or requests for additional layouts.


2012-04-15 06:55 am (UTC) (Link)

Hi N.

I was wondering if you knew of a fix for me to implement? So, up until now, I've always used the fancy layouts, all of which had a navigation bar at the bottom of each entry:

X comments/leave a comment/edit entry/edit tags/ add to memory/ etc

I used your Flexible Squares theme (Pastel Spring) and prettied it up a bit to fit my preferences, but I found that while it has the X comments/leave a comment toolbar, it doesn't have the rest of the links I find so incredibly useful, specifically edit entry and edit tags. While it is possible for me to do a bit of clicking around and edit things that way, I am lazy and spoiled and was hoping you had some way to add (or some directions I can follow) to make it possible to add those links directly to each entry while it is viewed from either my f-list or my "Recent Entries" page?

Thank you!


2012-04-16 03:26 pm (UTC) (Link)

Just for you!:

Flexible Squares, with all the entry links added: 38996561
Pastel Spring for the new layout: 38997599


2012-04-16 08:11 pm (UTC) (Link)

Hot damn are you amazing. Thank you so much! Also, stalking you now with my IRL LJ.


2012-05-01 09:35 pm (UTC) (Link)


I added a property to the regular Flexible Squares theme I made, so that you can use that one. It's in the Presentation group on the "Customize Your Theme" page


2012-04-29 10:44 pm (UTC) (Link)

Salutaaaaations! And many thanks for these, which I'm pretty much living off with every journal except the one I use to keep track of the atrocity that is the default comments.

I've got a tiny tweak for Smooth Sailing, if you'd be willing to make it. This bit of code will add the option to show tags as a cloud instead of a list.

(I'd just make it myself, but it's one that has to go in a theme layer or the original layout, and sadly because of LJ's weird "won't make public even if you tell it to" thing, we can't make our own theme layers for somebody else's style. Plus if it gets made to the original, then everybody who uses it has the option, not just me!)

ETA: sigh, LJ, way to turn some of the code into actual html *edits in the escape characters*


# Function to print a tag cloud in Smooth Sailing's sidebar.
function Page::lay_print_sidebar_tags() {

# Configurable Settings - you can change what is in red.
var int minSize = 10; # minimum size of tag links, in pixels
var int maxSize = 24; # maximum size of tag links, in pixels
var string tagPageLinkText = "View my Tags Page"; # text to link to the tags page

var TagDetail[] pagetags = $this->visible_tag_list();
if (size($pagetags) < 1) { return; }
var int most_count = 1;
"""<div class="sideboxContent" id="tags_sidebox"><ul>""";
foreach var TagDetail td ($pagetags) {
if ($td.use_count > $most_count) { $most_count = $td.use_count; }
foreach var TagDetail td ($pagetags) {
var string uses = get_plural_phrase($td.use_count, "text_tag_uses");
var string security = $td.visibility;
var int tagtextsize = $minSize;
if ($td.use_count > 1) {
$tagtextsize = (($maxSize-$minSize)*$td.use_count)/$most_count + $minSize;
"""<li><a href="$td.url" style="font-size: ${tagtextsize}px;" title="$uses, $security">$td.name</a> </li>""";
if ($tagPageLinkText!="") { """<a href="$.base_url/tag/">$tagPageLinkText</a></div>"""; }


Edited at 2012-04-29 10:51 pm (UTC)


2012-05-01 08:35 pm (UTC) (Link)

All set!

You should find a few new properties on the Sidebar tab of the "Customize Your Theme" page.


2012-05-01 08:56 pm (UTC) (Link)


Though -- maybe it's something else I have set that's messing with it? -- while it's doing the font-size thing (more uses, larger font), it's still displaying the tags as a list instead of inline.

While choosing list, ironically, displays them inline.

*edits for the third time to put in the THANK YOU that should have been there from the start*

Edited at 2012-05-01 09:00 pm (UTC)


2012-05-01 09:10 pm (UTC) (Link)

:D You're welcome.

There was some CSS for that edit that you didn't tell me about. Check your journal now.


2012-05-01 09:19 pm (UTC) (Link)

Sorry about that - I thought I'd grabbed it all (out of Xander's old theme layer) but I bet there was some additional stuff in his layout layer that I didn't get!

It looks lovely; merci beaucoup!


2012-08-19 08:49 am (UTC) (Link)

I found your post via googling and thank you SO MUCH for doing this.

I do have one question though, do you know if there's a way to show the navigation bar on comment pages only and not when browsing friends view? I had that prior to using this fix and now the navigation bar shows all the time and that seems to be my only option through the lj customization page. - Hang on, I think I'm just being late night dumb and confusing the navigation strip with the lj banner. But since I'm here: Would you happen to know how to allow the banner to show on my comments page? I don't actually mind it so much! If not, ah well.

Thank you again for figuring this out!

Edited at 2012-08-19 09:35 am (UTC)


2012-08-20 03:45 am (UTC) (Link)

You're welcome!

Unfortunately, I haven't found a way to add in the banner automatically, and I couldn't build it from scratch because of the way S2's security features are set up. The nav bar was the best I could do.

Edited at 2012-08-20 03:46 am (UTC)