Front Matter

A REST framework build on top of Pyramid and SQLAlchemy.

If you use the SQLAlchemy ORM for your models, you already specify the type of the column, if it’s nullable, a default value and other properties.

So instead of duplicating what you already specified in your SQLAlchemy models and writing validation for your REST API again either from scratch or with another utility like marshmallow, RESTAlchemy inspects your models and derives the API from this.

Of course, sometimes you want to return something else for some attribute or restrict access to a resource etc. For that, you have many special RESTAlchemy attributes or functions that you can use on your model.

You don’t have to jump between your view implementation, the model and validation code. Everything is right there at your model. (Of course, you can still split everything up if that’s what you prefer).


  • DRY

    Most things you need for your REST API is already specified in your sql model. What type, what values are allowed, is it nullable or required, default values, relationships, etc.

    There is no need to write extra validation or rendering code.

  • Simple to use and extend yet very powerful and flexible

    For those attributes that you want to handle differently, you can easily do that by adding extra methods (or variables) to your models without much boilerplate.

    It’s really easy to only return certain attributes on some conditions or write your own create/change/query functions.

  • Provide a simple and easy to use REST Interface

    With a very quick look at a few API calls, the user should be able to figure out how to query stuff without much thinking and the URL schema and query parameters should feel “natural”.

    You can easily query a resource with some relationships expanded without having to do multiple calls or stitching your model back together like in most other REST frameworks.

Project Info

The python restalchemy package is hosted on github.

Releases and project status are available on Pypi.

The most recent published version of this documentation is at


For questions and general discussion, join our mailing list.

For feature requests or bug reports open a GitHub issue.

Check the website for updates.


Existing app

If you already have a Pyramid app and want to extend your app with REST functionality, simply

$ pip install restalchemy

And add RESTAlchemy to your pyramid.config.Configurator object with config.include(“restalchemy”).

You have to tell RESTAlchemy how to find your models, for that you need to set a function with config.set_set_model_function() that takes a string (which is the model name as part of the URL) and returns your model class or None. You can check this function from the cookiecutter template for inspiration.

So at minimum you have to add this to your config:


See Configuration for more infos.

New app

If you want to start a fresh project, it’s best to use cookiecutter:

$ cookiecutter gh:restalchemy/cookiecutter-restalchemy

and follow the steps show from this command.