Welcome to Knapsack! Knapsack is an open source, scalable platform ideal for multi-brand design systems. Using Knapsack, you can get your own design system up and running quickly.
Knapsack is the brain child of Evan Lovely, CTO of Basalt and co-maintainer of another open source project, Pattern Lab. Over the past few years, he and the rest of the Basalt team have gleaned learnings from implementing design systems across large organizations from myriad of industries.
What they found: The current tools on the market enforce an unnecessary ceiling for teams looking to build a robust and flexible design system. This ceiling is commonly found by organizations that manage more than a few digital properties or sub-brands.
The name is a recent change from its predecessor, Bedrock. Knapsack was born out of "The Knapsack Problem."
What is Knapsack?
Knapsack is an API-first framework and foundation for your single source of truth. This includes the ability to hold:
- Coded components, organized, and language-agnostic
- Documentation for Design Tokens, Brand Standards, Usage, and Version History Context
- Page Builder, a prototyping function to display and assemble component variants into a full experience (great for tight iteration loops and on-the-fly creative brainstorms w/the broader DS team)
- A flexible, open API allowing for integrations with design tools, documentation software, and project management systems
Who uses Knapsack?
Knapsack is primarily used by front end developers, but provides immediate benefit to designers, product owners, content producers, and project managers.
After the components are created in Knapsack, the platform can be used every day to maintain, evolve, and prune your design system. Benefits of this adoption includes:
- Rapid implementation and modification of components, cross-property\
- Expand and prune your library through introduction and deprecation of patterns\
- Integrate sub-brands into the global design system at your own pace\
- Prototyping for Designers and Content Managers\
- Understanding context, design intent and user journeys per digital property\
- Managing versions at the component level\
- Integrate new employees and contracted agencies quickly