I am looking for a word which describes a layout of differently shaped and oriented objects that are all square relative to each other, and which leaves a minimum but necessary amount of space between each object.

These images are examples of the type of layout I mean:

Example 1

Example 2


2 Answers 2


If you're talking about the trend of laying stuff on the ground and taking a picture, you're referring to a flat lay.

  • I learned something new as well.
    – Dunnup
    Jul 24, 2015 at 20:47

There is a branch of mathematical optimization problems called packing problems. Your layout would be called a "rectangular packing". In a mathematical algorithm, the empty space between objects would be achieved just by padding the object sizes with a border before running the optimization.

  • I was wondering if maybe they wanted a mathematical answer. In that case, would tessellation be correct?
    – shimsham
    Jul 24, 2015 at 20:03
  • Tessellations are tilings of the plane and thus infinite, so I'd say packing is more appropriate here.
    – Will
    Jul 24, 2015 at 22:36

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