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Adding borders

From: CSS: Core Concepts

Video: Adding borders

Applying borders to elements is a fairly simple process, but the Border property syntax can be a little bit cumbersome. Let's explore the options we have when applying borders to our elements, and how to write the syntax efficiently. In this exercise, we will be working with the borders.htm file You can find that in the 05_05 directory. Again, very simple structure here, if I scroll down, I can see that I have the heading 1 and that's what we're going to initially apply a border to. And then I have all these paragraphs down here and they have classes that basically correspond to the different styles you can apply to borders, and we are going to take a look at those after we're done playing around with the syntax of the border declaration. Okay.

Adding borders

Applying borders to elements is a fairly simple process, but the Border property syntax can be a little bit cumbersome. Let's explore the options we have when applying borders to our elements, and how to write the syntax efficiently. In this exercise, we will be working with the borders.htm file You can find that in the 05_05 directory. Again, very simple structure here, if I scroll down, I can see that I have the heading 1 and that's what we're going to initially apply a border to. And then I have all these paragraphs down here and they have classes that basically correspond to the different styles you can apply to borders, and we are going to take a look at those after we're done playing around with the syntax of the border declaration. Okay.

So I'm going to scroll up to my Styles here, and after the paragraph, I am going to go ahead and create a selector for h1. The first thing that I am going to do is I want to explore the verbose syntax of borders. There are actually three different ways that you can apply borders in terms of their syntax; one is a very verbose, the second one is sort of a shorthand notation for a single side, and then we have a uniform shorthand notation that is extremely efficient. So we are going to do the inefficient way first just so you can see it, and then we are going to refine the syntax to maybe more of an efficient way.

So the first thing that you can do is you can declare that you want a border, and you can declare that border on all the different sides of your elements. So you can do top, right, bottom and left just like you can with margins and padding. But with border, you're always declaring a width, a style, and a color. Using this syntax, you can declare them individually. So if I say border-top-width, I can pass that a value. So in this case, I am just going to give it a border-top-width of 1 pixel. Then I can say border-top-color, and I can do these in any order that I want basically.

We will just go ahead and do #000 which is black. Then I can do border-top-style. Now, we are going to experiment with styles and all the different styles that are available to us in just a moment. So for right now I am just going to do solid. So now, that would apply a top border to this h1 that is 1 pixel, black and solid. If you use this verbose syntax, you have to do this to every single side. So we would come down here and say border-right-width: 1px; border-right-color:#000 and then border-right-style: solid.

That's fun right? So I'm betting you guys don't want to go and complete the rest of this. So if you were going to go ahead and complete it out, you would do the same thing for border-bottom and border-left. You would declare individual width, colors and styles for each one of those. You end up with 12 separate selectors that are all really just applying a border to one element. So it's not very efficient. So let's take a look at maybe a little bit more efficient way to do this. Instead of going ahead and declaring the width, color, and style their own separate rules, I can use the sort of directional shorthand notation.

So I could just say border-top and when I say border top, I can pass-in all three of those properties. So I can say 1px solid #000. So after border-top, I can do border-right: 1px solid #000, border-bottom: 1px solid #000, and finally, border-left: 1px solid #000.

So that's much more efficient than what we were doing before. Rather than having 12 separate properties, we only have 4 and we're declaring basically border all the way around this to each individual side. Now using the syntax, the nice thing about this, let me just go ahead and save this and we will go ahead and preview this in one of our browsers. There we go. So I am getting a border of equal width all the way around this. The thing that I like about this syntax is that if I wanted to do something a little bit different here. So, for example, if I decided that I wanted a really thick top border and then 1 pixel border for everybody else, I could save that, preview it, and you can see it sort of gives me that nice top border.

So using this sort of directional shorthand notation, you can declare individual borders for each edge of the element which is very nice. But if we want to do a solid single width border all the way around the element, this also is not very efficient. So I can take this one step further and just use what we call the uniform shorthand notation and I could just say border. Here I can just do border: 1px solid black; If save this, and test this in the browser, I get that nice 1 px border all the way around it again.

So using this shorthand notation, you're essentially passing the same border to each of the sides. So I really recommend using one of those two syntaxes depending upon whether you want your border to be uniform or not. I mention that we would take a closer look at the border styles that were available to us, and I'm going to do that through the use of these class selectors. You can see, for example, that I have got all these different paragraphs and I have these classes applied to them, and I just want to come up here and I am going to do each one of these as border and then 2 px solid, and I am going to do #f00 just as something a little bit different, save that.

I am going to do f00 rather than black because I want you guys to see how color is applied to a few of these border styles, some of them don't get quite the color applied to it the way that you would think, some of them use color almost as a highlight if you will. Okay. I am going to keep going. Here, I am going to do border: 2px, and this time, I am going to use dotted; so dotted for the line style, then #f00. Going down to the next line, you can probably guess what we are going to do here. I am going to do border: 2px-#f00.

Now, I'm going to change up a little bit because the remaining borders down here, the double, the groove, the ridge, the inset and the outset often require thicker borders in order for you to be able to see the style because some of these have sort of a three-dimensional styling to them, and if you try to do them with a 1-pixel border, you really wouldn't see the formatting or the styling of that particular border. So I am going to up the width of these. For double, I am going to do border: 4px and then double #f00. For groove, we are going to do border: 4px groove #f00, for ridge, border: 4px groove#f00.

We have two more to do, border: 4px inset #f00, and finally, and yes, feel free to copy and paste, it probably would have been a little quicker; border: 4px outset #f00. Okay, let's take a look at all these different styles, I am going to save this. Again, I am going to go up to my browser and I'm going to preview this again.

So you can see these first three the solid, dotted, and dash give you pretty consistent styling throughout all of your browsers; the double, groove, ridge, inset, and outset these require a little bit of a thicker border in lot of cases at least 3 pixels or higher, in this case I am using 4. Now, the color that I used here f00 is a red and depending upon which browser you're looking at in, some of them apply colors a little bit differently, especially some of the older browsers. So I am just going to open up another browser here real quick.

In this case, I have opened it up in Chrome, and you can see there's not too much of a difference between that. Now, I am going to open it up in Firefox. Now, here in Firefox, we see a little bit of a difference. Let me compare this again to Opera. So take a look at the outset and the inset values. Now look at those in Firefox, so that's a lot lighter so that color is being used as a much brighter highlight, it's also being used as a much brighter highlight on the ridge and the groove. Let me try this in Safari and you can see that you get the darker red in Safari like you're in the other browsers.

So it's up to the browser itself to go ahead and display that style the way that, that style is basically just defaulting in that browser. It's when you throw a color in the mix, you are going to see some slight variations these days, especially with some of the older browsers that you might be working with. So another thing I want to mention here before we close is that with the advent of CSS3 and the adoption of some of those properties, you are going to have even more options than you currently have in regards to borders. CSS3 introduces border images which allow you to use images as decorative border.

So you can specify images for the sides and the tops and basically decide how you wanted the tile between the sides as well. Now it's not fully implemented across all of the browsers yet, but if you want to see it in action, I recommend going and checking out my CSS3 First Look title for more information on border images.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for CSS: Core Concepts
CSS: Core Concepts

81 video lessons · 40833 viewers

James Williamson
Author

 
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  1. 4m 57s
    1. Welcome
      55s
    2. Using the exercise files
      4m 2s
  2. 1h 7m
    1. Exploring default styling
      4m 56s
    2. CSS authoring tools
      2m 29s
    3. CSS syntax
      4m 45s
    4. Writing a selector
      4m 10s
    5. Setting properties
      8m 40s
    6. Common units of measurement
      7m 47s
    7. Inline styles
      5m 1s
    8. Embedded styles
      5m 19s
    9. Using external style sheets
      10m 34s
    10. Checking for browser support
      8m 48s
    11. Dealing with browser inconsistencies
      5m 30s
  3. 2h 15m
    1. Structuring HTML correctly
      2m 51s
    2. Element selectors
      4m 52s
    3. Class selectors
      6m 4s
    4. ID selectors
      3m 27s
    5. Using classes and IDs
      10m 7s
    6. Element-specific selectors
      4m 35s
    7. The universal selector
      5m 42s
    8. Grouping selectors
      4m 49s
    9. Descendent selectors
      7m 32s
    10. Child selectors
      5m 7s
    11. Adjacent selectors
      5m 30s
    12. Attribute selectors
      12m 43s
    13. Pseudo-class selectors
      3m 54s
    14. Dynamic pseudo-class selectors
      8m 29s
    15. Structural pseudo-class selectors
      6m 45s
    16. Nth-child selectors
      13m 10s
    17. Pseudo-element selectors
      12m 40s
    18. Targeting page content: Lab
      8m 56s
    19. Targeting page content: Solution
      7m 59s
  4. 42m 39s
    1. What happens when styles conflict?
      4m 0s
    2. Understanding the cascade
      5m 47s
    3. Using inheritance
      6m 11s
    4. Selector specificity
      6m 55s
    5. The !important declaration
      4m 5s
    6. Reducing conflicts through planning
      3m 33s
    7. Resolving conflicts: Lab
      6m 45s
    8. Resolving conflicts: Solution
      5m 23s
  5. 1h 47m
    1. Setting a font family
      7m 10s
    2. Using @font-face
      9m 18s
    3. Setting font size
      7m 35s
    4. Font style and font weight
      6m 52s
    5. Transforming text
      3m 58s
    6. Using text variants
      2m 49s
    7. Text decoration options
      4m 26s
    8. Setting text color
      3m 2s
    9. Writing font shorthand notation
      8m 49s
    10. Controlling text alignment
      6m 33s
    11. Letter and word spacing
      9m 11s
    12. Indenting text
      4m 30s
    13. Adjusting paragraph line height
      10m 30s
    14. Controlling the space between elements
      6m 41s
    15. Basic text formatting: Lab
      8m 45s
    16. Basic text formatting: Solution
      7m 14s
  6. 2h 1m
    1. Understanding the box model
      16m 53s
    2. Controlling element spacing
      14m 29s
    3. Controlling interior spacing
      10m 49s
    4. Margin and padding shorthand notation
      6m 27s
    5. Adding borders
      8m 57s
    6. Defining element size
      10m 7s
    7. Creating rounded corners
      6m 58s
    8. Background properties
      2m 51s
    9. Using background images
      5m 10s
    10. Controlling image positioning
      10m 25s
    11. Using multiple backgrounds
      7m 5s
    12. Background shorthand notation
      5m 25s
    13. Styling container elements: Lab
      7m 55s
    14. Styling container elements: Solution
      8m 17s
  7. 47m 51s
    1. Color keyword definitions
      5m 4s
    2. Understanding hexadecimal notation
      6m 5s
    3. Using RGB values
      4m 58s
    4. Using HSL values
      5m 17s
    5. Working with opacity
      2m 23s
    6. Using RGBa and HSLa
      3m 8s
    7. Styling drop shadows
      5m 38s
    8. CSS gradients
      6m 32s
    9. Working with color: Lab
      4m 26s
    10. Working with color: Solution
      4m 20s
  8. 1m 58s
    1. Additional resources
      1m 58s

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