I would like to thread a sequence of text through a number of pages. My requirement is that the body text always starts on the same line, and if there is a header, it always sits above this point. Each section (using the word section in the standard sense, not the InDesign sense) starts on a new page and has a header.

In this image, each chunk represents a different page, with the header in red and the body text in black.

enter image description here

Obviously this would be easy to do if the headers appeared at the same position as the body text starts, but this is not the case. I know I can use the Keep settings to make each header start on a new page, but how can I offset the header from the point where the body text starts.

At present I have removed the headers from the text and add them in separate frames outside of the threading, but this means that as text is amended the headers keep getting left behind on the wrong page.

  • Do your headers always take up the same number of lines?
    – Cai
    Commented Jul 4, 2016 at 15:29
  • They do at the moment ;) Commented Jul 4, 2016 at 15:42
  • Actually never mind that, I have a solution. Give me a minute to test and I will post an answer
    – Cai
    Commented Jul 4, 2016 at 15:45

2 Answers 2


Set up your text frames with a custom baseline grid that starts offset from the top of the frame. Set the Start to a value big enough to fit your headers:

Text Frame Options

Set the paragraph style for your body text to align to the baseline grid:

Paragraph Style Options

In the paragraph style for your headers, under Keep Options, set your headers to always start on a new frame. Make sure your header isn't set to align to any baseline grid.

Since your baseline starts offset from the top of the frame, the body text will always start at that offset and since your header isn't aligning to the baseline it will start at the top:

Separate Headers


The only way I can think to do this is to create a master pages with pre-defined text frames positioned where you want them.

If Column A on the left will always be the header (your red bar) and only your header, and there will never be headers in any other column, then create your master page called header that way. Your text will flow into the container you've created for it.

Then create a second master page called Text Only, and that will have evenly-positioned text frames. Use that for pages which don't have headers.

  • 1
    Thanks for your suggestion. The problem with this approach is that it requires I know in advance which pages will have the headers. If the text reflows and pushes the header onto the next page, it will move to the non-header template body text frame. Unless I'm missing something. Commented Jul 4, 2016 at 15:08

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