White space in web design

See also: Horror Vacui

White space in web design White space isn't wasted space. In fact, it is often the most important element in a design.

What white space is

White space, also known as "negative space", is used to describe the area around an object. If you're talking about a drawing, it's the part of the paper that hasn't been drawn on. In web design, it's the part of the page that isn't taken up by lines of text or images. 

Why white space is so valuable

Have you ever seen a billboard that is so full of junk that you can't read it? Even at full size, the billboard above is difficult to read. The reason for this is that there is no space between the text and the graffiti; they're on top of each other. You probably won't have graffiti sitting on top of your web page very often, but text can still be difficult to read just by not having enough space between the lines and letters.

Let your content breathe

Content is king. Don't crowd the king. It's cliché, but it's useful to keep in mind. By giving your text, images, and other elements enough space to be visually distinct, you make a web page easier to read and digest.


What's your take on white space? Ever had to defend it with a client?

Photo credit stanthony.camden