Reading through the Google Material Design principles and explanations, it seems like they have abstracted the design of products to a high level that is applicable to a range of traditional and digital products. While I can see how it can apply to a range of devices, I can't really see how it is suitable for print items or things that are text heavy.

Has anyone tried to use Google Material Design as a basis for designing digital and print materials? Is it intended for those types of products?

2 Answers 2


"Material Design" leans heavily on visual design elements from the print world

From Material Design principles website:

Bold, graphic, intentional. The foundational elements of print-based design—typography, grids, space, scale, color, and use of imagery—guide visual treatments.

Material is the metaphor... The material is grounded in tactile reality, inspired by the study of paper and ink,

So for 2 of the three principles the answer would be YES. Visually it is easy to recreate in print and digital (more so than say the previous "holographic" visual style).

However given the rich way the third principle: Motion provides meaning is implemented makes it a cornerstone of the design. If you can't replicate the dynamic parts of the design then both

  • by definition, it is no longer Material Design
  • it is potentially a weaker solution than an alternate physical design

Certainly a website can be dynamic enough, but anything more static I'd say the answer is no.


I think this restaurant menu based on material design will interest you.

enter image description here

  • Is this live somewhere on the Internet? Can you provide a link? It certainly has a Google Material Design look and feel about it. I would like to see the interaction and behaviour as well.
    – Michael Lai
    Oct 14, 2014 at 11:20
  • @MichaelLai Unfortunately, No. The guy who made this was just a college student and made this for fun.
    – steve
    Oct 14, 2014 at 11:38

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