Competition: five copies of Ridiculous
Design Rules to be won



Dezeen have teamed up with Anneloes van Gaalen, author of the new book Never Use White Type on a Black Background and 50 other Ridiculous Design Rules, to offer our readers the chance to win five copies.


The book features 51 so-called design rules, such as 'less is more' and 'form follows function', their history, work, and quotes from designers that, support, illustrate or negate these rules.


The book is published by Bis Publishers.


This competition has now closed.


Competition closes 6 August 2009. Five winners will be selected at random and notified by email. Winners’ names will be published in a future edition of our Dezeenmail newsletter and at the bottom of this page.


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Here's further information from the publisher:


Never Use White Type on a Black Background
And 50 other Ridiculous Design Rules

The world of fashion and design is inundated with a seemingly endless list of rules. Think of ‘Less is More’, ‘Form Follows Function’, ‘Keep it Simple’, ‘Dress Your Age’ and the list goes on and on. They’re familiar sayings that some designers consider to be valuable words of wisdom, which serve as a guiding line and source of inspiration. To others, these rules are mere restrictions: design dogmas and fashion formulae that need to be bended, twisted or broken altogether.

Granted, creativity knows no bounds and therefore it seems rather ridiculous to restrict that creativity by sticking to a couple of age-old rules. However, in some cases the rules seem more like the basic principles that every designer should love, honor and obey.

Never Use White Type on a Black Background And 50 other Ridiculous Design Rules collects 51 famous and obscure design rules that are accompanied by chronologically placed quotes (courtesy of designers, architects, fashion designers, typographers and other creatives) and an image that either negates or supports the rule.

Whichever side of the fence you yourself are sitting on in the rules debate, you’re bound to find this book a source of inspiration, comfort, joy or just good old fun. Enjoy.

Ridiculous Design Rules is a concept of Four Weeks of FreeDesigndom, developed by Lemon Scented Tea and commissioned by Premsela, Dutch Platform for Design and Fashion.

Later this year titles on Ridiculous Fashion Rules, Ridiculous Advertising Rules and Ridiculous Typography Rules will be published.

Author: Anneloes van Gaalen
Design: BORN’84
12 x 17 cm / 160 pages
ISBN: 978-90-6369-207-0

Congratulations to the winners! Cássia Schroeder Buitoni in Brazil, Dave Blackwell in the UK, Piotr Grabski  in Poland, Luciano Morina in Italy and Rok Grdisa in Slovenia all won copies of Never Use White Type on a Black Background and 50 other Ridiculous Design Rules by Anneloes van Gaalen.

Posted on Wednesday June 24th 2009 at 5:48 am by Brad Turner. Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • Valeria

    Hope I can win this one!

  • This would be so cool to win! I’ve had this book on my Amazon wishlist for a while!

  • mon

    This book’s a winner! ;

  • Anne Moller

    Cool! It encourage to judge yourself about what to do.

  • katie brunero

    Love it!

  • WillM

    Ima get that book for sure….

  • Sam

    It’s definitely the best possible title for the book.
    Seems to be a must-have.

  • These rules are not for designers, they are what designers need to do in order to connect with the general public! Follow the rules and John and Jane Doe will get it, and buy the product. Don’t follow the rules and guess what, you have something clever and witty that only you and a few others understand!

  • anonomous

    is it bad that i just made my whole portfolio in black with white text?? … ohhh well, i guess i am a rebel

  • Anyway, Contra is always included in the game, doesn`t matter who writes the rules down.

  • Andrea Ubaldi

    Maybe sounds ridicoulous but .. I really hope to win it.

  • Tilman

    competition rule n°1: “You never win at competitions”.

  • clayton

    funny how apple’s ads and commercials always feature white text on a black background… seems to be working pretty well for them

  • Leanne

    i win!

  • Jane Norris


  • Design rules are non existant. Whoever uses them remarks a lack of imagination.
    The great thing about design is that it is completely free to renew and to create new patterns of communication. Design=creation, therefore there’s no time for followers, copiers or improvers. Designers must be creative.
    “Design Rules” should be “Design guidelines”, which in my opinion express better what we are here talking about…
    Interesting to see the outcome of this competition, though!

    Best regards to all

    Red social de arquitectura

  • Ambrose Vevers

    its always nice to win something

  • Hello Brad !!!How are you doing ?

  • Joan Prat


  • Cole

    20 entrants, 5 copies of the book. I’m liking these odds.

  • Andrea

    I want one! PLEASE

  • Liz

    Love it. I work with quite a few camel committees. Thanks for giving me the correct term.