Skip to main content
Version: 5

Controlling Pages with Pagebreaks in Custom Templates


The PDF software, mPDF, introduces a custom HTML tag called <pagebreaks/> which you can use to create new pages in your PDF. It goes hand in hand with the @page CSS property, and when used together they give you precise control over the look and feel of each page of your document.


You can explicitly add page breaks to your PDF using the <pagebreaks/> HTML tag. And while there are a large number of attributes this tag supports – like page margins and sheet size – we prefer to forgo them and use @page instead (discussed here).

In its most basic form, you can add pagebreaks as simply as:

<p>My content here...</p>

<!-- Basic Page Break -->

<p>This is on a new page</p>

When used this way, the new page will use the same size and margins as your previous page.

When using page numbering in the header or footer you can also use the <pagebreaks/> tag to reset the page number.

<!-- Reset the page number back to 1 -->
<pagebreak resetpagenum="1"/>

<!-- Reset the page number to 5 -->
<pagebreak resetpagenum="5"/>


We briefly touched on using @page when discussing headers and footers. This special CSS property can be used to control margins, headers/footers and backgrounds:

@page {
margin: 3mm;
background: #EEE;

However, it can also be used to target specific pages in your PDF document using Named @page selectors, in conjunction with the <pagebreaks> tag. When using named @page selectors you can also control the paper size and orientation.

Let's take a look at a simple example:

@page rotated {
size: landscape;

<p>My first page</p>

<pagebreak page-selector="rotated"/>

<p>This is on a landscape page</p>

In the above example, we've told the PDF engine to use the page selector rotated in the <pagebreak> tag. This then applies the @page rotated properties to your new page.

Feel free to use multiple named @page selectors in your PDF template:

@page a5 {
paper-size: 148mm 210mm;

@page largemargins {
margin: 30%;

<p>My first page</p>

<pagebreak page-selector="a5"/>

<p>This is on an A5 document</p>

<pagebreak page-selector="largemargins"/>

<p>Still on an A5 document (because the last page used A5 and we didn't override it), but with large margins.</p>

Samples and Further Reading

We've put together a sample PDF templates showing off how page breaks can be effectively used.

For more information about the methods discussed, we recommend reviewing the mPDF documentation: