F00BA2, BADCA7, and other terrible colors

I recently was working on a project when without warning the colors went crazy on the production app.

In short, the colors looked terrible on the production app.

But what do I mean by terrible exactly?

Before the change, there was a beautiful and intentional set of colors. These were hand selected by professional designer in an agency. But today those colors were knee jerked out for standard primary colors.

Engineers often will use colors like #F00 or #F00BA2. Perhaps you might even get the occasional #BADCA7. 

This is fine when you are just building out and testing the functionality. Yet, in most use cases, you don’t want your developers making design or color decisions.

Leave that up to your design team. They are the people that do that best.

We were able to isolate the problem by finding the offending inline style.

But this is not where it started.

It started because the backend dev was not sure how to create a specific module and so they improvised.

You can avoid this with a proper set of Design System Engineering tools. For example front-end code paired with a coded styleguide would have been a good place to start.

In this case the pattern existed. Yet, it was not intuitive to find. This led to engineer creativity.

Design Systems Engineering creates structure and standards that will keep your project on track. Let your creatives choose your colors and get your engineers back focused on functionality.


Also published on Medium.