# How to customize chapter heading in a fancy way?

I was studying a Master's thesis on functional analysis and I was attracted by the novel-like heading used by the author for the chapters.

How can I replicate it?

• Welcome to tex.sx! Have you tried customizing anything yet that you could show? Which documentclass are you using (for example is it a KOMA-scrip class)? This site is usually for problems that you run into when you already have some code. Have you looked at previous questions like Thesis chapter headings... (duplicate?), Fancy chapter..., How to format the chapter..., a guide from texblog – TivV Feb 27 at 12:06
• With the memoir class you can customized the chapter headings. See e.g. this PDF. The example on page 42 looks already quite similar. Try to adapt it and if you have any question, show us what you have with a MWE and for sure someone will help. You can have a look at our starter guide to familiarize yourself further with our format. – crixstox Feb 27 at 12:35
• Fairly certain that this is a duplicate of tex.stackexchange.com/questions/194530/… (OP would have to confirm, though) – TivV Feb 27 at 12:46
• I am sorry, I hadn't found that question before. Thanks TivV – Elia Vincenzi Feb 27 at 14:15

Here is an example of what can be done with titlesec (and xrfill + xcolor):

\documentclass{book}
\usepackage[svgnames]{xcolor}
\usepackage{titlesec}
\usepackage{xhfill}
\colorlet{rulecolor}{Gainsboro!40!Lavender}
\usepackage{lipsum}

\titleformat{\chapter}[display]
{\filcenter}{\mbox{}\xrfill[0.4ex]{3pt}[rulecolor]\textsc{\large\enspace\chaptername \thechapter}\enspace\xrfill[0.4ex]{3pt}[rulecolor]\mbox{}}{0.3ex} {{\color{rulecolor}\titlerule[1pt]}\vskip3ex\huge\bfseries}[\medskip{\color{rulecolor}\titlerule[1pt]}]

\begin{document}

\chapter{The General Structure of\\ von Neumann Algebras}
\lipsum[2]

\end{document


• That text doesn't sound like von Neumann algebras at all ;) – Martin Argerami Feb 27 at 19:54
• On another note, I tried your code and it ruins my section titles. Concretely, it gives me that \@secnumpunct is undefined. – Martin Argerami Feb 27 at 20:01
• (and it writes no space between the section number and section title). – Martin Argerami Feb 27 at 20:08
• ??? I haven't modified the format of section titles,. Maybe you have a custom format for these, which relies on the chapter titles format? You should post a minimal example reproducting the problem. – Bernard Feb 27 at 20:09
• \chaptername \thechapter should probably become something like \chaptername~\thechapter. – Schrödinger's cat Feb 28 at 1:31

Without any packages and the standard book class you can achieve this

as follows.

\documentclass{book}
\makeatletter
\def\thickhrulefill{\leavevmode \leaders \hrule height 1ex \hfill \kern \z@}
%\vspace*{50\p@}%
\vspace*{10\p@}%
{\parindent \z@ \centering \reset@font
\scshape \@chapapp{} \thechapter
\par\nobreak
\vspace*{10\p@}%
\interlinepenalty\@M
\hrule
\vspace*{10\p@}%
\Huge \bfseries #1\par\nobreak
\par
\vspace*{10\p@}%
\hrule
%\vskip 40\p@
\vskip 100\p@
}}
%\vspace*{50\p@}%
\vspace*{10\p@}%
{\parindent \z@ \centering \reset@font
\thickhrulefill
\par\nobreak
\vspace*{10\p@}%
\interlinepenalty\@M
\hrule
\vspace*{10\p@}%
\Huge \bfseries #1\par\nobreak
\par
\vspace*{10\p@}%
\hrule
%\vskip 40\p@
\vskip 100\p@
}}
\begin{document}
\chapter{Introduction}
\end{document}


The code is take from here.

First of all, check if your school has a template (hopefully in LaTeX!) for theses. If not, make sure that you respect (as far as reasonable/really required, see below) their standard format.

If I had to create my own style, I'd start with the (very customizable) memoir class (standard, available with major TeX distributions, comes with extensive and readable documentation; also check out memdesign on CTAN, it talks about how/why to design books), and look if one of the many chapter styles is what you want (or is near enough so you can tweak it to taste), check Madsen's "Various chapter styles for the memoir class" large collection of examples.

Re: "Reasonably respect guidelines": Here (haven't checked lately, but it was so a few years back), theses had to be written double spaced, one-sided, and only in Spanish. The first part is just leftovers from typewriter days (my thesis was written with one), the second part is pure nonsense (I guided several theses where the interested parties were international organizations, with English as principal/only language). Our library was thrilled with single-spaced, two-sided theses (less shelf space!), the Powers That Be didn't complain (didn't notice? didn't care?). But do check beforehand, get your advisor's support for any straying from the narrow path.