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Unity Principle of Design – Best Tips for 2024

Written By Mashia Aftab | Last Modified On April 22, 2024

The unity principle of design, also known as the rule of unity, is a guideline for putting together a visually pleasing layout. This standard applies to all website design and development mediums, app design, movie making, and more.

In this article, we’ll show you how to apply the principle of unity in your designs and which mistakes you should avoid.

What Is the Unity Principle of Design?

The unity principle of design is the idea that all design elements should be unified to communicate effectively. This means that all the elements should be working together to tell one story, and it should be easy for people to understand what that story is.

The unity principle of design also means that every element should be doing a little bit to contribute to the whole instead of some elements being more critical than others. A good unity principle of design example is when you have an image and text next to each other on your website, both things should add something important to the overall picture you’re painting for your customer, and neither should be unnecessary or distracting.

When you use this principle well, it can:

  • Help make your brand feel cohesive and consistent across all its materials
  • From how people interact with your company online (through emails or social media posts) to how they respond when they contact you in person at an event or trade show.

What Are the Seven Common Principles of Design?

There are seven common principles of design that are used in many different fields, from graphics to interior design. They are:

  • Balance
  • Scale
  • Contrast
  • Pattern
  • Movement and Rhythm
  • Emphasis
  • Unity

1) Balance

This principle is all about creating a sense of equilibrium in your design. It’s about ensuring that the parts of your design work together to create an even whole and that no one part stands out more than any other.

Balance can be achieved in many ways: through color (by using complementary colors), through shape (by pairing shapes with similar or different proportions), through size (by making one element larger or smaller than the others), and so on.

The best way to achieve balance? It’s up to you!

2) Scale

Scale is about the size of a piece of furniture, art, or other design elements.

You can use a scale to make something look larger or smaller than it is. For example, if you want to make a piece of art seem smaller than it is, then you’d use small furniture and other accessories around it. To make it seem more significant, use large furniture and accessories instead.

Another way to use scale is by using a high-contrast color scheme. This makes things feel more extensive because they’re more noticeable and stand out more.

3) Contrast

The principle of contrast is the difference between elements in a space. The contrast principle of design can be created using different materials, textures, or colors.

For example, using a dark color on one wall and a light color on another creates contrast. If you use an ornate pattern with a simple pattern, it also creates contrast. Contrast is used to draw attention to certain parts of a room or furniture.

4) Pattern

When designing a product, it’s tempting to throw everything at the wall and see what sticks. Often, this approach can feel like a way to get creative; any rules or constraints do not limit you.

But if you want your product to be successful, you must think about how the visual elements of your design work together. You need to ensure they’re communicating with each other in a way that makes sense and is easy for people to understand.

5) Movement and Rhythm

Movement is essential because it’s the key to creating a sense of flow and continuity in a space. The movement principle of design is about creating an environment that feels like it’s moving, whether using contrasting colors, repeating patterns, or something else entirely.

Rhythm is the repetition of elements throughout space to create a unified aesthetic. The rhythm principle of design can also refer to the repetition of forms within a room, like if you have window frames that repeat across several windows or doors.

6) Emphasis

This principle involves highlighting essential elements within your layout to stand out. For example, using bolder text than usual or making certain items larger than others (such as an image).

7) Unity

The principle of unity refers to a sense of wholeness or oneness. It can be achieved by establishing one dominant element and positioning all other stuff around it about that central focal point.

Read More: How to Build an Effective Product Design Team

Why the Unity Principle of Design Is Important?

You may ask, ” Why is the unity principle of design important?” Let us give you the right answer.

1) Helps to Create a Cohesive Visual Experience

The unity principle of design is crucial because it helps to create a cohesive visual experience. When designing something, it’s essential to remember the overall impact you want your work to have and how your design elements will come together to achieve that effect.

2) Helps You Make Sure All of Those Elements Are Working Together

The unity principle of design helps you ensure all of those elements work together in one way or another and reinforce each other instead of fighting against each other.

For example, if you’re designing a website for a client who sells handmade furniture, using different colors for different sections of the site can be effective as long as those colors are all within the same color palette and have meaning. If one section uses red and another uses green, but there’s no reason for them to share those colors (like both being about springtime sales), those colors might end up seeming random instead of intentional and meaningful.

Conceptual Unity vs Visual Unity

There are two different kinds of unity: conceptual and visual.

“Conceptual unity” is the idea that everything in a design should work together to convey a single message or idea. An excellent example of this is the logo for the United Nations, which uses the same font for all its languages. This type of unity is often established using only color, shape, or typography without any need for symbolism or illustration.

“Visual unity” is achieved when everything in a design looks like it belongs together because it shares a standard style or theme. This can be done through color and shape alone or by combining them with other visual elements like illustration and photography.

Unity in UX Design

Unity in UX design is a principle that guides the creation of user experiences. It involves creating visual and functional consistency in your design.

The basic idea is that if you want people to be able to navigate your product or service quickly, then you need to make sure everything has a similar look and feel the same fonts, colors, and images will help them identify where they are at any given time.

  • Your website should have a consistent color scheme throughout.
  • Your logo should be the same on all of your marketing materials.
  • Your buttons should be recognizable across all platforms (desktop, mobile, etc.).
  • The list goes on!

When designing a website, the unity principle of design can help you ensure that all of your elements work together to create one cohesive experience for your user. When they’re done with their interaction with your site, they should feel like they’ve been guided through a process or journey, not like they were clicking around aimlessly.

If you are looking for free trials to practice the unity principle in your designs, then try Adobe XD.

How to Achieve Unity?

Design’s unity principle helps create a sense of consistency, harmony, and balance. It’s the key to creating a great user experience for your users.

But how do you achieve unity?

Here are some tips:

1) Use Colors Consistently

Use colors consistently throughout your designs. You can choose any color if you stick with it across all design elements. This will help create a sense of cohesiveness within your user interface.

2) Use Similar Fonts

Use similar fonts throughout your designs. If you have several different text sections on your website or app, make sure they all use the same font family, weight, and size to look like they belong together.

3) Limit Yourself to Just One Typeface per Project

Limit yourself to just one typeface per project and use it consistently. This will ensure that everything looks like it belongs together regardless of whether it’s an image or text-based element (or both).

Read More: 14 Tips For Choosing A Web Design Company

Tips to Apply Unity in Design

Unity is the principle of design that says things should be a cohesive whole. It’s the idea that things should have a relationship with each other and their space.

There are three main ways to apply unity: color, size, and shape. Let’s break down each one!

1) Color

Color is one of the most essential tools in design because it can instantly evoke an emotion or feeling. Use a single color throughout your design to create a cohesive look, or use multiple colors to create an exciting contrast between elements.

2) Size

Size is also an essential tool in design because it helps create a hierarchy within your content. You want big things on top and more minor things below them. It’s pretty simple! But don’t get too carried away with making everything giant-size; sometimes, more minor elements can be just as powerful as larger ones if you use them correctly (like emphasizing text).

3) Shape

The shape is another essential tool for creating unity in your designs because it helps establish relationships between different elements within your content.

For example, if you have two squares next to each other, they’ll be related somehow, but what about when you have triangles or circles? That’s where their shape comes into play so they have some connection.

Unity Principle of Design Best Practices

Unity is one of the most essential principles of design. It makes your designs feel cohesive and purposeful rather than like a random collection of elements.

The unity principle of design says that all design elements in a composition should work together to create a unified visual impression. The more similar they are, the stronger the unity will be.

Here are some other ways to incorporate unity into your designs:

1) Always Consider How a New Element Will Fit Into Your Overall Design

According to the unity principle of design, you should always consider how a new element, object, or component will fit into your overall design before including it. This helps create a cohesive aesthetic for your space but also helps ensure that each piece adds value to the overall composition.

Once you’ve made this decision, keep your components consistent with each other, so they feel like they belong together. You can keep things simple and use similar colors or textures throughout your design. This will make it easy for users to navigate your product and understand how different elements are connected.

2) Consider How the Internal Components of the Design Work Together

Take a step back from your design and consider how the internal components of the design work together.

The key to getting this right is to constantly check in with yourself and ask yourself: “Does this element interact with any other element on its own or within the context of my design?” If the answer is yes, then you should ensure that those interactions are clear and intentional. If the answer is no, then you should consider removing it from your design altogether.

3) Unity Doesn’t Mean Uniformity

It’s important to remember that unity doesn’t mean uniformity. It doesn’t mean every piece has to be precisely the same or follow similar rules. Instead, it means finding ways for each piece to complement others in ways that enhance their meaning and purpose rather than detract from them.

4) Make a Checklist With All Seven Design Principles

Make a checklist with all seven design principles, then assess how each is used in your design and whether or not they complement one another.

You’ll want to ask yourself questions like:

  • Is my layout symmetrical?
  • Are there any elements that seem like they don’t belong?
  • Does the color scheme work together well?
  • Are there any elements that feel out of place with each other?

After evaluating these principles individually, try combining them into one cohesive unit. This will help you see where there may be some conflicts between different parts of your design that might need tweaking or adjusting so that everything works together harmoniously.

5) Have Someone Examine Your Design, Then Explain It to You.

Have someone examine your design, then have them explain it to you. If the intended experience of your design matches what users encounter while viewing or engaging with it, you will quickly find out.

For example, if you have an app that helps people move from point A to point B, you don’t want to include images of trains or planes in your design unless those images are somehow related to moving from point A to point B. The same goes for colors: if green represents safety and red represents danger, you should only use green when trying to convey safety and red when trying to convey danger.

Read More: How to Become a UI/UX Designer?

Bottom Line

While we could all follow many design principles to improve the look of our work, the unity principle of design might be one of the most important and valuable. Because it helps you to unify your composition, making it more pleasant and practical to view. Keeping these aspects consistent will help you create a visually appealing design that reinforces your main message.

It is a beneficial principle for many graphic designers since most clients want a unified design for everything from logos to websites.


What Is a Good Example of Design Unity?

Visual unity might be considered, for instance, when selecting two distinct colors that need to work well together (harmony) or selecting the same color for two distinct buttons because they are both equally significant (repetition).

Why Does Art Have Unity?

The idea of unity defines how different elements of a work of art or a design combine to create a feeling of completeness. Proximity, clarity, consistency, and consistency can all help with this.