6.8. Representations: Drawings

Date Published

General requirements

Drawings of a design should:

  • show the whole, assembled product
  • accurately show the overall visual features of the product design
  • be accurately drawn (i.e. not sketches) with well-defined lines.

Drawing techniques


Colour, shading or cross-hatching are sometimes used to highlight the visual features of the design. Conversely, they can be used instead to indicate parts of the product that are not visual features of the design.

Shading (or cross-hatching) should not be so dark that it makes important details of the design hard to see.

If a representation includes shading, all of the views should show the same type/degree of shading. The principle that one representation cannot show anything that is not indicated or implied in the others also applies to shading.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Example (Design 201813984)

Product name: Security camera


This example shows acceptable, consistent use of shading.


It is acceptable for representations to use a combination of solid lines and broken (dashed or dotted) lines which helps to identify the product’s new and distinctive features.

Broken lines often indicate things like:

  • generic features of the product (i.e. not the new and distinctive visual features of the design)
  • boundaries (e.g. of a pattern on part of a surface)
  • stitching
  • perforations
  • hidden elements (typically in perspective views)
  • features that establish an environmental context – e.g. a store dummy (not part of the design) dressed in an item of clothing (the designed product).

Generally we assume that:

  • solid lines highlight new and distinctive features
  • broken lines show parts of the product that do not have new and distinctive features.

We do not completely ignore the parts with broken lines – it is just that we consider that the parts with solid lines are probably the main focus of the design being applied for.

Also, we assume that differences in line style are for a purpose. This means that if one drawing of the product uses solid lines and another uses broken lines, we will consider that they show different designs (and therefore will issue a formalities notice). An exception to this is with an environmental view.​​​​​​​


Product name: Hammer


In this example the 2 representations are identical except for line style. The drawing on the left implies that the whole product is equally new and distinctive, it is all in solid lines. The drawing on the right implies that the features drawn in solid lines are new and distinctive and the parts in dashed lines are less important. Because of this, we would consider them to show 2 different designs.



The colour of a product can be an important distinguishing feature. Two products that are exactly the same except for the colour have a different visual appearance. As in the following example, we would see them as different designs.

The set of design representations shown in the below example, all filed in one application, is inconsistent in terms of colour.


Product name: Shoe



Linework in drawings should be dark and well defined. Inconsistent, faint or otherwise sketchy lines are unacceptable.

The below is an example of representations (for more than one design) with linework that is sketchy and not well defined:


Product name: Handbag


Amended Reasons

Amended Reason Date Amended

Formal Requirements Instrument changes

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