I am using a code similar to the following example to create a table with tkinter using Python 3:

  • Each cell is individually created as a ttk.Label and displayed using .grid(row, column)

  • Some of my values get updated while the program is running with tk.StringVar().set()

  • Each value is unique and has it's own variable name count1 count2

This example seems short, but in my program I have a few more rows being displayed and each row has 2 StringVar() that I need to keep updated. Overall, it's a very large for loop because it has to check if it's in the correct row & column combination (row 1 column 0 or row 2 column 0) before creating a StringVar().

  • Any suggestions on how to reduce the size of my for loop?
  • Are there better ways of creating tables that need a few values consistently updated?

Thank you for your time and Happy Holidays!

import time
import tkinter as tk
import tkinter.ttk as ttk
from threading import Thread

gui = tk.Tk()

style = ttk.Style()
style.theme_create('custom', settings={
    'header.TLabel': {'configure': {
        'background': 'white',
        'foreground': 'dark green',
        'font': 'Times 16 bold',
        'padding': (10, 0)}},
    'TLabel': {'configure': {'background': 'white', 'font': 'Times 12'}},
    'TFrame': {'configure': {'background': 'white'}}})

table_frame = ttk.Frame(gui)
table_frame.pack(pady=(36, 0))

values = [('Count', 'Date', 'Time', 'Phrase'),
          ('5', '12/12/10', '03:15', 'blue car'),
          ('13', '09/09/98', '16:20', 'red door')]

total_rows = len(values)
total_columns = len(values[0])

for i in range(total_rows):
    for j in range(total_columns):
        if i == 0:
            label = ttk.Label(table_frame, text=values[i][j], style='header.TLabel')
            label.grid(row=i, column=j)
        elif i == 1:
            if j == 0:
                count1 = tk.StringVar()
                label = ttk.Label(table_frame, textvariable=count1)
                label.grid(row=i, column=j)
                label = ttk.Label(table_frame, text=values[i][j])
                label.grid(row=i, column=j)
        elif i == 2:
            if j == 0:
                count2 = tk.StringVar()
                label = ttk.Label(table_frame, textvariable=count2)
                label.grid(row=i, column=j)
                label = ttk.Label(table_frame, text=values[i][j])
                label.grid(row=i, column=j)

def increment_count():
    increment_count.status = 'run'

    while increment_count.status == 'run':
        new_minute1 = int(count1.get()) + 1

        new_minute2 = int(count2.get()) - 1



increment_count.status = 'exit'

1 Answer 1


As I suspected, there's already a thing for this - a TreeView. Strongly prefer built-in widgets that get the job done, leaving the construction of individual elements as a last resort if the built-in widget doesn't at all meet your needs.

There's plenty of examples on how to use this as a table, but if I were you I'd start with the reference documentation.

Remove the first row of your values and use it as a dedicated heading, instead. Break your i/j loop into two halves - a heading half, and a body half.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Thanks a lot! I didn't even know you could use TreeView like that, I thought it was just for dropdown menus. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 4, 2021 at 17:19

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