Design Systems London #6

Our Design Systems London community got together for yet another fantastic meetup, bringing to the table some of the most hot topics on all things Design Systems.

Driven and powered by YLD, our DSL community gathers top digital product minds to explore, explain and discuss challenging concepts, from product design to engineering culture with a main focus on Design Systems.

After two successful DSL conferences in 2018 and 2019, as well as a quite remarkable NYC meetup edition, our community is now back for in person meetups — all this can be found on our Youtube channel for the ever growing community around the world to enjoy.

Curious how our latest DSL #6 meetup went?

DSL #6 meetup, again hosted by our Head of Product Design Luis Klesfjö, took place at the News UK Building by London Bridge, with a stunning view over London.

With our in person tickets sold out, the event space room was packed with Design Systems enthusiasts for a great evening of talks, networking and some light snacks, followed by a Q&A session with all speakers.

With the event also being livestreamed on our YouTube channel, we had people joining us live from all corners of the world; Canada, Portugal, United Kingdom, United States, among other exciting places.

As always, the meetup featured inspiring talks and riveting discussions on all things Design Systems; this time, the line-up included Mike Messina (Senior UX Designer, News UK), Mitchell Vivanti (our very own Senior Software Engineer at YLD) and Riccardo Erra (Senior Frontend Engineer, Mews).

The talks

‘Speak to people: How a Nimble Feedback Process Helped Us Understand Our Users’ with Mike Messina

The meetup kicked off with an insightful talk from Mike about the feedback-gathering journey he and his team have been on at NewsKit, an open-source multi-brand design system at NewsCorp. During his presentation, Mike shed light on the methods used to gather feedback from the users, including some practical examples and findings of their user satisfaction survey. Consumer interviews and ad hoc feedback were some of the other points discussed during the talk — if you are interested to know more about Mike’s journey make sure you watch the full recording of the talk here or his blog article on the topic here.

‘Design Systems Deep Dive: Peace Between Devs and Designers’ with Mitchell Vivanti

For the second talk of the evening, Mitchell delved into the relationship between designers and engineers and talked us through ways to achieve “peace” between the two disciplines. Mitchell led the presentation with one main question in mind — what makes a Design System good? Is it all about individually great components or the absence of components that actually causes pain? Going deeper into the talk, Mitchell spotlighted three key things to achieve a great developer and then a great designer experience, followed by some action points to consider. Find this and more by watching the full recording of the talk here.

‘Accessibility in Design Systems: Easy Wins and Lessons Learnt’ with Riccardo Erra

Last but not least, we welcomed Riccardo to the stage to talk about accessibility, “(…) the practice of making your websites usable by as many people as possible” quoted from here. By using this definition, Riccardo believes we can start more inclusive conversation — instead of dividing the world into “us” and “them” we should rather talk about accessibility that matters to all of us.

As mentioned during the talk, Design Systems are presented as a unique chance for us to include accessibility into our component libraries, starting with some easy wins like testing colours, keyboard navigation, screen readers, semantic code, among others. As the title of the talk suggests, Riccardo’s presentation also covered some of the lessons learnt during his accessibility journey — things that he and his team were not fully aware of at the time. If you are eager to know more make sure you watch Riccardo’s talk here.

Q&A session

The closing part of the meetup was a joint Q&A session with all our speakers answering questions from the audience in regards to their presentations, but also about Design Systems in general. Make sure to watch or rewatch the livestream recording here.


This event would not have been such a success if not for the support of our DSL community. It was such a joy for us to welcome new members but we were also very excited to see so many familiar faces among our online and in person attendees. We would also like to thank our speakers, as well as our community team at YLD and the News UK team for putting together such a great event. You can watch the full recording of our DSL #6 livestream here.

Keep an eye out for more exciting event announcements on our social media channels. Follow DSL on Twitter and Linkedin, and join us on Meetup to keep up with all the news — we will see each other very soon!

We at YLD are always eager to expand our team so if you are looking to work at a dynamic, fast-growing and aspiring company check out our open positions or send our talent team an email!

Links and suggestions

DSL #5 at Figma Livestream recording here

All previous DSL events here

Design Systems London #6
was originally published in YLD Blog on Medium.
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