I am completely new to WCAG compliance and I have several questions.

I.e. say that you’re using the tool Color-pair Contrast Testing to check the contrast of background and foreground color. Your colors may fail for normal size text - but what if you’re using them for an icon or logo?

Does everything in your design need to pass WCAG contrast compliance?

Take this design, for example:

enter image description here

What about the thin grey lines under each of the module headings? The hex code for this is #EAEAEA, and of course that will fail all tests with #FFFFFF as the background. But I’m just using them for design purposes - to mark off where the header is in the module. It will seriously (and negatively) effect my design if I have to remove everything that doesn’t pass color-contrast compliance.

What about the icons - in the menu and in the "Print Reports" module, etc?

And I have more questions like this. Does anyone know of free resources that will answer some of these questions?

  • The parts that are necessary to understand the point of the page. So charts, text, etc. Apr 20, 2020 at 21:48
  • @ZachSaucier I see - so building off of that - say that the top of the green gradient in the chart does not have acceptable contrast with the white background, #7FC242 (green) to #FFFFFF (white). However, if I make the border of the green gradient in the chart darker, like #005E0C (dark green) would that be acceptable? Example: i.imgur.com/MAXaFgF.png Is it ultimately about the colors that border one another? Apr 20, 2020 at 22:06
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    These are guidelines. Do what you think is best :) Apr 20, 2020 at 22:15
  • @ZachSaucier looking back, this was really such a non-answer. If you've created a prototype from your mockup, the axe DevTools - Web Accessibility extension will scan your page for free, telling you what elements are not compliant. Mar 17, 2021 at 18:24

1 Answer 1


More specific answer - if the graphic itself is being used to communicate information, then yes, it needs to be contrast-compliant. But if there is text next to / underneath the graphic, which provides information or explains the graphic, and the text is contrast compliant, then you're good - your graphic does not need to be contrast-compliant.

EDIT - And if you've created a prototype for your application, check out the axe DevTools - Web Accessibility Testing extension in chrome. This tool will scan your page for accessibility issues and will tell you what elements are not compliant.

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