What is Principle Element of Fashion

If you are into sewing for sometime or pursuing fashion, you must be aware what is the key principle element of fashion. The difference in an expert designer and a mere novice is - understanding of principles and elements of fashion designing. These are not very technical. We all are aware of these terms in our everyday life but perhaps we skipped a few details, which I try to cover up here.

There are some key elements which make your style a hit or a miss. Not all of us are born with a great understanding of these principles of designing but with a little observation and creative experimentation, anybody can be her own designer. That also a pretty good one!

So, here we explore the secret element and principle of fashion or dress making. These are the secrets that the designers put into the dresses they make for you and empty your pockets.

These are very simple things yet no designer will explain you in detail least you start using your own creativity and THEY run out of business.

You might have used these elements in different ways in different times or might have given them a miss sometimes. So, here we just have a little hint of what they really are :-



I always say that dress making is somewhat like cooking. You may have your individual liking or disliking, tastes or distastes but what makes your creation a hit, is right proportion of all the ingredients.

You dress’s pockets, lace, buttons, patchwork, hooks, collar, cuff has to have a pleasing match of sizes. There is no need to put in odd pieces together to spoil the look.

  • You must have a clear picture of the goal, you want to achieve by your design. What LOOK you exactly want?
  • Based on that you should put the proportional sizes of different pieces of a dress together.


Sometimes, you would have noticed some dresses, which might have been simple yet catch your fancy. Other times, you would also remember some dresses (though they may be sky rocketed priced) looking quite over the top and vulgar.

This is the element, we call balance of design. It should not be too heavy or too light. Just right! The equal distribution of visual appeal is balance.

Though, our design can be symmetrical or asymmetrical, yet it has to have a defined balance otherwise the effect is disturbing, which may make us uncomfortable .

Elements of Fashion

The balance in your dress design is also influenced by some fashion elements also:

Position of Prints & Design

  • While making a dress, a large print or flowers placed near the center can be balanced by smaller prints or plain fabric near the edge to get a slimmer look.

What should be the Size

  • Larger looks heavier. Big prints creates volume. Plain dresses make you look slimmer.

Thickness & Appearance of Fabric

  • A dress with more complex texture looks heavier than one with a simple texture or no texture at all.

What should be the Color Value & Shades

  • Darker feels heavier and looks heavier, too. That’s one of the reason we have one Short Black Dress in our wardrobe because longer black dresses are ideal for petite figures.


When we have a beautiful repetition of prints, lines or color, we create rhythm in our design. Rhythm in a design looks pleasing and appealing.


Nature has created us with some unique features and the purpose of our dress is to highlight that uniqueness in us.

There needs to be a highlight or main focal point in our dress which attracts the attention as soon as anybody looks at it.

he emphasis can not be spread every where in a dress. It has to be at one or two major points preferably.

Though there can be dominance & sub ordinance of design, which means some points are highlight, some are not so highlighted.

Unity & Harmony

When all the elements of a design blend together to create a pleasing and desirable style, then it’s unity and harmony of design.

These principles of dress designing may seem a bit theoretical but believe me once you start taking a note of them in your everyday dressing, you’ll feel a dynamic change in your personal style.

Do you want free sewing tips and tutorials?

Popular Reading