Let's learn the basics of CSS

So far we’ve worked with HTML alone.

HTML is great and all until we want to customize how a page looks.

That’s when we use CSS.

CSS is a Web standard and it stands for Cascading Style Sheets.

Here’s an example of CSS to style a paragraph tag:

p {
  color: red;

This CSS rule sets all paragraphs to be displayed in red instead of black, the default color.

A CSS rule set has one part called the selector, and the other part called the declaration block.

The declaration contains various declarations, each composed of a property, and a value.

In this example, p is the selector. It applies the following rules to all elements using the p tag on the page. And color: red; is the only declaration contained in the declaration block.

You can put this CSS in a style tag in the head of an HTML document:

  p {
    color: red;

And this will be applied.

Or, you can put it in a separate style.css file and then load it in the HTML head:

<link href="style.css" rel="stylesheet" />

This is more common when you have lots of CSS, which is what happens normally. CSS in the head of the HTML document works until a certain level, then it’s too painful to manage.

Another way, useful for “quick fixes”, is to use the style attribute on an HTML element:

<p style="color: red">test</p>

Multiple CSS can be listed one after the other:

p {
  color: red;

a {
  color: blue;

A selector can target one or more items:

p, a {
  color: red;

Spacing is meaningless in CSS. This means you could write the above CSS as:

p,a {
  color: red;}
p,a {              color: red;

And it still would work.

It’s important that each declaration ends with a semicolon ;.

Otherwise, you might get some headaches as the browser is not able to interpret the CSS.

Lessons in this unit:

0: ▶︎ Introduction
1: Colors
2: More selectors
3: Cascade
4: Specificity
5: Units
6: Advanced selectors
7: Typography
8: The box model
9: The display property
10: Responsive design
11: DEMO Create a simple design
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