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Design system: the essentials

Woman in front of colorful funfair.

Do you want to teach yourself the essentials of design systems? Look no further—we have gathered our popular content on design systems in one place, for your convenience.

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Frequently asked questions

What is a design system?

A system maintaining visual and functional elements in one place, to fulfil brand principles through design, realisation, and development of products and services.

What does a design system contain?

Design systems usually include organisation principles, design principles, components (codes, bars, buttons, cards, icons), and patterns (specifications on how to use components consistently).

How do you build a design system?

Communicate advantages early (scalability, reuse, brand protection), find inspiration from others, keep it simple, start modest and build for scale, use smart documentation and roadmap, build a robust process, collaborate across functions and departments.

What are examples of design systems?

Polaris by Shopify, Material Design by Google, Atlassian Design, IBM Design Language, Airbnb Design, Fluent by Microsoft, MailChimp, Nachos by Trello, Solid by BuzzFeed, Buffer, Apple, Lightning by Salesforce.