[scribus] making your own Pantone color list

Gregory Pittman gpittman at iglou.com
Fri Sep 20 01:40:14 UTC 2013

As we all know, Pantone so far maintains its position to not officially 
allow for Scribus to release its color list.
When I checked today, it seemed that the link in the wiki no longer 
leads to a zip file you can get from Adobe for the Pantone colors.

Searching around, I found this site:


where you can see quite a list of Pantone colors. So here is a new 

1. View the source of this page (Ctrl+U in Firefox), then save the file.
2. Open up this file, and make a copy - you might as well have it end in 
.txt, since you're going to destroy it as an HTML file anyway.
3. What you see is standard HTML, with bits like this in it once you get 
to the table of colors:

<TD align=middle><FONT
                         face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" 
                       <TD width=75 bgColor=#f4ed7c

Your key information here is in 2 parts - 'PMS 100' and '#f4ed7c', the 
name of the color and its RGB representation (as the site notes, do not 
believe that this RGB is necessarily accurate for this spot color, which 
is an ink). Notice how they have (intentionally?) split the name in two, 
so it's not easily searchable. It's Ok, we're smarter than that anyway.

4. Now use a text editor that can use regular expressions for Replace. I 
used KWrite. The reason for reg exp is so you can put something like 
</FONT></TD></TR>\n into the Find field, replace with nothing, to not 
only remove the tags but also the carriage return at the end of the 
line. There is some variability, but all the same a LOT of 
repetitiveness of this HTML file. There are a lot of spaces to contend 
with as you go, but again, use the Replace function to get rid of those 
en masse.

5. Eventually you end up with a file consisting only of lines like:

PMS 100 bgColor=#f4ed7c

but this is a bit of trouble. Why? Look at a line from a Scribus color 
swatch XML file such as you might want to end up with:

<COLOR RGB="#f4ed7c" NAME="PMS 100" Spot="1" />

We want the RGB before the color name, bummer. Now, let's shape our 
lines into what we need, again using Replace, out of order, but adding a 
comma to split the halves:

NAME="PMS 100" Spot="1" />,<COLOR RGB="#f4ed7c"

6. Here is a small Python script which reads your file a line at a time, 
splits it at the comma, then saves in another file with the parts 
switched (don't forget the #!/usr/bin/env python at the beginning):

file_object = open('output.txt','w')
for line in open('pmscolor.txt'):
         L = line.split(',')

I tried to strip out the carriage returns at the end of each line, but 
it didn't work, so once again, back to KWrite and reg exp to turn 
'\n<COLOR' into '<COLOR'.  Make sure you scan the file for any mistakes 
or omissions.
Now the only thing to do is add the XML tags at beginning and end, with 
a suitable name for your Pantone color file, and save with an .xml 

7. Is this legal? AFAIK, it's as legal as a web page displayed openly on 
the internet. We've just taken the information from it and transformed 
it to something we can use in Scribus.


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