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GUI Designing for Python: IDEs and Add-ons

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Python is a versatile and powerful programming language, widely used for a variety of applications. One area where Python shines is in the development of Graphical User Interfaces (GUIs). This article will delve into the realm of GUI designing for Python, exploring various Integrated Development Environments (IDEs) and add-ons that can streamline this process.

Quick Answer

Designing GUIs for Python can be made easier with the use of various IDEs and add-ons. Some popular options include Glade, which allows for visual interface design using GTK widgets, and Qt Designer, which offers a drag-and-drop interface for designing GUIs. Other tools such as Quickly, Eric IDE, wxFormBuilder, and Camelot also provide efficient ways to create and develop Python GUI applications.


Glade is a GUI builder that allows you to design your interface visually, using GTK widgets. It’s a popular choice among Python developers because it’s straightforward and easy to use.

To design a GUI with Glade, you simply drag and drop components onto a canvas. The resulting interface is saved as an XML file, which can be loaded into your Python program using the GTK library.

Here’s a simple example of how you can load a Glade UI file in Python:

import gi
gi.require_version('Gtk', '3.0')
from gi.repository import Gtk

class MyWindow(Gtk.Window):
 def __init__(self):
 Gtk.Window.__init__(self, title="Hello World")
 self.button = Gtk.Button(label="Click Here")
 self.button.connect("clicked", self.on_button_clicked)

 def on_button_clicked(self, widget):
 print("Hello World")

win = MyWindow()
win.connect("destroy", Gtk.main_quit)

In this code, gi.require_version('Gtk', '3.0') specifies the GTK version to use. Gtk.Window.__init__(self, title="Hello World") initializes a new window with the title “Hello World”, and Gtk.Button(label="Click Here") creates a new button labeled “Click Here”. The button.connect("clicked", self.on_button_clicked) line connects the button’s “clicked” signal to the on_button_clicked method, which will be called when the button is clicked.


Quickly is a set of command-line tools that simplifies the process of developing software in Python. It provides templates for creating different types of applications, including GUI applications.

To create a new project with a GUI, you would use the command quickly create ubuntu-application <project-name>. This creates a new project with a basic GUI. You can then use the quickly design command to open the GUI in Glade and make changes to it.

Qt Designer

Qt Designer is another popular choice for GUI designing in Python. It’s a part of the Qt framework, and it provides a visual interface for designing GUIs.

Like Glade, Qt Designer uses a drag-and-drop interface for adding and arranging widgets. Once you’ve designed your GUI, you can load it into your Python program using the PyQt library.

Here’s an example of how you can load a Qt Designer UI file in Python:

from PyQt5 import uic

Form, Window = uic.loadUiType("example.ui")

app = QApplication([])
window = Window()
form = Form()

In this code, uic.loadUiType("example.ui") loads the UI file created by Qt Designer. QApplication([]) creates a new application instance, and Window() and Form() create new instances of the form and window. form.setupUi(window) sets up the user interface for the window, and displays the window.

Eric IDE

Eric IDE is a full-featured Python IDE that includes a GUI designer. It uses the QScintilla editor widget, which provides features like syntax highlighting and code completion.

Eric IDE’s GUI designer is integrated into the IDE, so you can design your GUI and write your code in the same environment. This can make the development process smoother and more efficient.


wxFormBuilder is a GUI builder for the wxWidgets toolkit. Like Glade and Qt Designer, it provides a visual interface for designing GUIs.

Once you’ve designed your GUI with wxFormBuilder, you can generate Python code for it. This code can be loaded into your Python program, providing a straightforward way to create a GUI.


Camelot is a Python framework for building business applications. It’s built on top of Python, SQLAlchemy, and Qt, and it includes components for creating GUIs quickly and easily.

Camelot is inspired by the Django admin interface, and it provides a familiar and responsive GUI for users. It also includes features like form validation and error handling, making it a robust choice for business applications.


Designing GUIs for Python can be a complex task, but with the right tools, it can become much more manageable. Whether you prefer a standalone GUI builder like Glade or Qt Designer, or a full-featured IDE like Eric, there are plenty of options to choose from. By understanding the features and advantages of each tool, you can choose the one that best suits your needs and streamline your Python GUI development process.

What is the advantage of using a GUI builder like Glade or Qt Designer?

GUI builders like Glade and Qt Designer provide a visual interface for designing GUIs, allowing developers to easily drag and drop components onto a canvas. This makes the design process more intuitive and efficient, especially for those who are not familiar with coding GUIs from scratch. Additionally, GUI builders generate code automatically, reducing the amount of manual coding required.

Can I use Glade or Qt Designer with languages other than Python?

Yes, both Glade and Qt Designer are not limited to Python. Glade is primarily used with the GTK library, which supports multiple programming languages, including C, C++, and Vala. Similarly, Qt Designer is part of the Qt framework, which can be used with C++, Java, and other languages. However, in this article, we focus on their usage with Python.

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