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Basic Elements of Design

Elements of Art or Design

Jahanara Akter
Lecturer, Dept. of Fashion & Design
KCC Women’s College (Affiliated by Khulna University)
Khulna, Bangladesh



In creating a design one of the components which interact is the Art Elements. The elements of design and principles of design are flexible and should be interpreted within the context of current fashion. Elements of design contains lines, shape, colours and texture that create a visual image. The principles of design are the rates that govern how elements are combined. The elements of design are therefore the raw materials that must be combined successfully.

The following are the different Elements of Design:

  1. Line
  2. Colour
  3. Form
  4. Shape
  5. Space
  6. Texture
  7. Size
  8. Value

These elements are considered as “Plastics” in art language because they can be manipulated or arranged by the designer to create desired illusions.

1. Line:

A line is a fundamental mark or stroke used in drawing in which the length is longer than the width. Two connected points form a line and every line has a length, width, and direction if it is straight. All lines are used to design a dress.


Types of line:

  • Horizontal line
  • Vertical line
  • Oblique line
  • Diagonal line.
  • Curved line etc.

2. Colour:

Color is both an external occurrence and an internal sensation of three basic dimensions – hues and their relative values and intensities.

When we talk of principles of designing, or when we start off with a given design theme the first thing to occur to our minds is the colour and texture of the fabric. Also while choosing a colour one must be at most careful as colour creates the first impression and hence can glorify or destroy ones appearance. Even simple silhouette may be enhanced by using effective colour schemes.

4. Shape:

It describes the outer dimensions or contour of an object. Shape also encloses space and imparts a certain character to the object viewed. Through clothing design, the shape of the human body is often revealed in a natural way, but sometimes even distorted. The shape of clothing in a human body, communicates silently, the messages about the wearer.

5. Space:

In design, space is concerned with the area deep within the moment of designated design, the design will take place on. For a two-dimensional design space concerns creating the illusion of a third dimension on a flat surface:

It is generally considered to be the area seen between the shapes. Busy space in clothing becomes distinctive and fatiguing to view where an interesting space may go unnoticed or appear monotonous. Both repetition and extreme contrast of a line, shape, space or form produce emphasis.

6. Texture:

Texture appeals to the sense of touch, sight and hearing and thus the function of texture in an overall design is key. Since all surfaces have a texture ranging from smooth to rough, texture is both an integral part of any design and can not be left out or not considered.


Texture is the surface quality of a shape – rough, smooth, soft hard glossy etc. Texture can be physical (tactile) or visual. As texture is the feel, drape and degree of stiffens and softness of the fabric, it also creates a visual effect upon the wearer, given a small swatch of fabric, the designer can visualize the texture and the fall of fabric which helps him to design further.

7. Size:

Size is simply the relationship of the area occupied by one shape to that of another.

8. Value:

Value is the lightness or darkness of a colour. Value is also called Tone.

Elements of Design at a glance:

Elements of art or design
Elements of art or design



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