Mock up Apps with Salesforce Lightning Design System

John Stevenson

Created: 2017-03-03 Fri 14:13

What is SLDS

An open source, platform-agnostic CSS framework that welcomes contributions from developers & partners (reporting issues & submitting pull requests)

Build custom applications with a look and feel that is consistent with Salesforce core features

Follow our detailed guidelines to confidently design excellent apps that fit right into the Salesforce ecosystem.

Access to the Salesforce core visual and interaction design patterns and follow established best practices


In Visualforce Pages you could effectively use what ever frameworks you like, from simple Bootstrap based sites to more involved Angular.js frameworks.

Had to include things as static resources - no longer the case for SLDS

This gave fexibilty, but didn't provide much in the way of a standard UI or UX.

Did anyone actually follow the Salesforce style guide for Visualforce?

Comparing it to Bootstrap

Both are frameworks that are composed of pre-designed buttons, labels, grids and other presentation artefacts.

Both help speed up the development of any web based (or hybrid mobile) UI and provide a form of responsive design (Bootstrap more so than SLDS)

SLDS is the only framework that provides the artefacts to create UI's and UX that match Salesforce Lightning Experience.

What it is not

LDS - Latter Day Saints, also known as the Mormons

A replacement for Lightning Components (its a complementary technology)

Getting Started

Download a zip file of the latest release and add it like any other CSS library to your projects

For node.js projects use npm or bower to add SLDS to your project

Starter Kit - starting even faster

A way to build mock applications really quickly

  • Fork the repository
  • Clone it or download it onto your computer
  • In a terminal, cd into the design-system-starter-kit directory
  • Run npm install
  • Run npm run dev
  • Open http://localhost:3000

Making changes

Start by editing the `src/views/index.html` file as this is the main page of the running website.

  • src/assets: images, fonts
  • src/scripts: JavaScript files*
  • src/styles: stylesheets (built using Sass)
  • src/views: markup and data for your pages and templates


  1. Search SLDS website for UI elements and paste in the code.

Barry Hughes showing Starter Kit in action:

Converting to actual app

When building the real app, re-use all the styles and layouts from the Starter Kit

Use Starter Kit as the basis of building your own prototypes

See the license conditions of the project before distributing in source code and binary form.

sketch UI Kit for Lightning Design Sys

tem -

MacOSX only tool - a plugin for which is also commercial ($99)

sketch UK kit also available from SLDS downloads:

Awesome Bristolians

Demo: Code examples from the demo are at

Check out the bristol-dg branch for my changes


Introduction to SLDS

SLDS with VisualForce

SLDS Github repository


> I am unsure about Salesforce font license (assumed it was still for employees only)

Alternative projects

SLDS with React.js

Background Resources