What is a Design System?

A Design System is a living, breathable document that includes an organization's brand guidelines, style guide, components, and code that make up their product. Design systems bridge the gaps of inconsistencies across a product making all of its components complete and cohesive with one another.

Who is a Design System for?

A design system is for anyone who is working on a product within a given organization. It allows for users to stay on-brand and avoids redundancy and unnecessary work among teams.

Styles Icon


Styles include the elements that make up visual feel of a website. These make up a lot of branding elements including color, imagery, typography, and layout.

Components Icon


The components of a design system include more specific elements of a website such as buttons, drop shadows, menus, and pagination. These elements may have more flexibility than the styles, but still have proper use and guidelines attached to them.

Accessibility Icon


Accessibility is large part of the world wide web. All Washington University in St. Louis websites should be built and tested for compliance with the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C)'s Web Content and Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1, Level AA.