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If it wasn't clear, "style" in this context refers to changes in the CSS, so things like font-size, font-style, background color, etc.

I have a very simple and minimalistic icon at the moment with 3 ampersands with increasing font sizes and boldness, but feel that there are probably better representations.

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    Most of the time, it's exactly what you have but an "A" rather than an ampersand.
    – Scott
    Commented Jul 9, 2014 at 21:33

2 Answers 2

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{CSS} inside a document icon is the representation most often used for changes to a stylesheet.

If your goal is to simply represent "style" an "Aa" icon is most often used. However you may also consider using an artist palette as older versions of windows programs would use this.

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Google use a capital A underlined and italicised in Gmail - enter image description here - but I wouldn't recommend that. Even after months of frequent use I still end up puzzled looking at every icon every time I need formatting options: I'm just not ever looking for an underlined italic A when I'm looking to change formatting.

So my suggested workflow would start with what people usually are looking for:

  1. Find out (or, estimate) what the most commonly used style change(s) by your users is
  2. Make an icon based on that.

For example, if bolding and text size changes are the most common, you might go with something like:

enter image description here

Or if people often switch fonts and colours:

enter image description here

etc etc.

The choice of letter / character is important only in that it needs to be generic enough that it won't make people think the icon is about that. So a or A are good because they're obvious "default" letters. Other letters would give the impression of standing for something significant.

& isn't a bad choice, but might give the impression of standing for some obscure never-used function. Other symbols like #, % etc would definitely risk looking like they stand for some technical advanced feature.

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