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Using Space in Everyday Design

What is the first thing you think of when you think of space? A simple response could be an empty area. A more intricate response to this question could be a location outside the Earth’s atmosphere. 

Both responses are correct. In the floral industry, space is listed as one of the Elements and Principles of Design. We have already talked about line and form. Now, is the time for some space. 


Space is defined as the area in, around and between a structure. This element gives the opportunity to admire each individual flower in an arrangement. There are three categories of space to take into consideration. These three points are positive space, negative space and void.  

Positive space is the area of composition that is materially occupied by something including a flower, branch, container or a solid object. If you can see it and touch it, it is considered positive space.  

Negative space is intentionally vacant space in a composition. Some of the reasons this is purposely created is to make a structure look larger or taller.  

Finally, the term void happens naturally or occurs as you are placing pieces into your design.  

Every time you add material to any structure, you lose some space. It’s mandatory for that to happen in order to finish an outstanding arrangement.  Apply this element and its categories to your designs, and you will notice the difference it

makes. Reference the AIFD Guide to Floral Design for more in-depth information, and join Jackie Lacey on Floriology Institute’s #Design Time for a hands-on demonstration.