Font Properties

color – You can apply colour to a font with the simple color property.  It accepts RGB (Red, Green, Blue) colours most commonly in the form of hexadecimal colour codes. (CSS uses International English thus color not colour as used here in old blighty, where we also walk on pavements and eat chips.)


color: #FF0000;

Colour Resources

There are a wealth of resources related to colour. Here are some useful ones:

  • Maths is fun site is good at explaining RGB and hexidecimal colour codes.
  • Adobe Kuler provides colour schemes built around a colour wheel.
  • color-hex like Kuler but without the wheel.

font-family – used to dictate the font face used.  Takes a list of fonts so that the first font listed is tried first, then the next etc.  You are advised to end any font-family listing with the name of the font-family you wish to use ie serif, sans-serif.  Fonts with white spacing in the name need to be placed in quotes.


font-family: "Courier New", sans-serif;

Tip:  Many web sites use sans-serif fonts like arial, verdana and tahoma.  This is because there some evidence that these font are read easier on a computer screen than fancier serif fonts like Times New Roman.

font-size – used to set the font size.  There are a range of unit of measurements that you can use when setting font-size.  For our purposes we will use pixels.


font-size: 12px;

font-weight – used to apply subtler levels of ‘boldness’ to those available in normal HTML.  These name be numeric values 100 through to 900 and descriptive values bold, bolder, lighter and normal the default.  


font-weight: 500;

Warning:  The ability to use numeric values depends on the font in use.

Text styles

The following properties can be used to format text.

text-align – used for text alignment.  Accepts the values center, left, right, justify and inherit.


text-align: center;

text-decoration – used for adding text decoration such as underlines.  Accepts the values blink, inherit, line-through, overline, underline and none.  The blink only works in Firefox.  The none value can be used to remove the underline from links as seen in our discussion of pseudo-classes.


text-decoration: none;

line-height – used for adding line spacing in typography ‘leading’. Takes value in various units of measurement ie px, ems %.  If no unit of measurement is used then the line-height is based on the current font size. That is if the font-size is 12px then adding a line-height of 1.5 will apply a 18px (12 + 6) line-height.


line-height: 1.8;

And there are more ….

These properties are designed to get you started – once you’re happy with these take a look at the fuller list of typography properties.

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