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About Toni Epple

Anton is a consultant worldwide for a wide variety of companies, ranging from startups to Fortune 500 companies, in many areas, including finance institutions and aerospace. His main interest is Client side development, and he has authored books and numerous articles on this topic. He is a member of the NetBeans Dream Team and a Oracle Java Champion. In 2013 he was elected as a JavaONE Rockstar, in 2014 he received a Duke’s Choice Award for his work on DukeScript.

FXML: Custom components using BuilderFactory

When you want to use FXML, you will need to be able to add your own components. That’s fairly easy, you simply need to add an import statement. Elements in your FXML-file that start with a capital letter will be interpreted as instances, and if they’re Java Beans, most important: if they have a parameterless standard constructor, everything is fine.

If not, it’s a bit more complicated. You will need to provide a Builder and a BuilderFactory to the loader. As an example, in FXExperience Tools a nice ColorPicker control is used, that needs a Color passed to it’s constructor. So in FXML we want to write something like this:

<?import com.fxexperience.javafx.scene.control.colorpicker.ColorPicker?><!-- ... --><ColorPicker fx:id="colorPicker" id="colorPicker" color="GREEN" />

Now we need to create a BuilderFactory and a Builder:

import com.fxexperience.javafx.scene.control.colorpicker.ColorPicker;
import javafx.fxml.JavaFXBuilderFactory;
import javafx.scene.paint.Color;
import javafx.util.Builder;
import javafx.util.BuilderFactory;

 * @author eppleton
public class ColorPickerBuilderFactory implements BuilderFactory {

public static class ColorPickerBuilder implements Builder<ColorPicker> {
 private Color color = Color.WHITE;
 private String id="colorPicker";

public String getId() {
 return id;

public void setId(String id) {
 this.id = id;

public Color getColor() {
 return color;

public void setColor(Color color) {
 this.color = color;

 public ColorPicker build() {
 ColorPicker picker = new ColorPicker(color);
 return picker;
 private JavaFXBuilderFactory defaultBuilderFactory = new JavaFXBuilderFactory();

 public Builder<?> getBuilder(Class<?> type) {
 return (type == ColorPicker.class) ? new ColorPickerBuilder() : defaultBuilderFactory.getBuilder(type);

And finally when loading the FXML you need to pass the factory to your loader:

(Parent) FXMLLoader.load(
 TestTool.class.getResource("GradientEditorControl.fxml"), null,
 new ColorPickerBuilderFactory())

That’s it, would be cool if I could make SceneBuilder understand that as well.

Reference: Add custom components to FXML using BuilderFactoryfrom our JCG partner Toni Epple at the Eppleton blog.

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