White Space: Eye Candy for Readers!

Posted: November 29th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Design | No Comments »

Try to walk lightly on the page (or the screen). White space is polite because it gives your readers a rest. Honestly, white space will probably be your readers’ favorite part of any paper!

But white space does more than just allow your readers to rest. It is also a key design tool for making your papers more readable. Why? Because it makes structure visual. It shows where you are shifting thoughts and beginning new points.

Here are some ways to add white space:

  • Create wide margins.
  • Double space between paragraphs.
  • Double space before and after headings.
  • Leave an extra space before beginning a new Roman-numeral heading.
  • Increase the spacing between major sectional breaks, such as between the opening and the body of the paper.
  • Insert a centered, light line between major sections. This line works especially well in letters and looks like this:


Line spacing is also important. In a shorter paper, such as a letter to a client, single spacing may make the structure of a paper more apparent. In longer works, such as briefs or memoranda, double spacing (or 1.5-line spacing) is usually easier on the eye. Indeed, a 10-page, single-spaced paper is a paper that begs not to be read.

So step back and take a look: how big is your text footprint?

What do you think?