How Do You Show Appearances in SolidWorks?

In SolidWorks, there are several ways to show appearances on your model. Appearances allow you to add color, texture, and other visual properties to your parts or assemblies. Let’s explore some of the methods you can use to showcase appearances in SolidWorks.

Basic Appearance Settings

Before we dive into the different methods of displaying appearances, let’s first understand the basic appearance settings in SolidWorks. To access these settings, right-click on the part or assembly in the feature tree and select “Appearance”.

  • Color: The color setting allows you to choose a specific color for your part or assembly. You can select from a wide range of predefined colors or create custom colors using the color picker.
  • Texture: The texture setting enables you to apply a surface finish or texture to your model.

    SolidWorks provides a variety of textures such as wood, metal, plastic, and more.

  • Bump: The bump setting adds a three-dimensional effect to your model’s surface by simulating small surface irregularities. This can be useful for creating realistic renderings.
  • Transparency: The transparency setting allows you to make your part or assembly partially transparent. This is particularly useful when working with see-through materials like glass or plastic.

Show Appearance in Display Style

To show appearances in different display styles such as shaded with edges, shaded, hidden lines visible, etc., follow these steps:

  1. Select the part or assembly in the feature tree.
  2. Navigate to the “Display Style” toolbar located at the top of the SolidWorks window.
  3. Click on the drop-down menu and select the desired display style.

Shaded with Edges

The “Shaded with Edges” display style provides a realistic representation of your model with visible edges. This style shows the applied appearances, including color, texture, bump, and transparency.


The “Shaded” display style renders your model without any visible edges. It showcases appearances in a smooth and realistic manner, making it ideal for presentations and renderings.

Hidden Lines Visible

The “Hidden Lines Visible” display style shows the applied appearances while also displaying hidden lines. This can be useful when you want to emphasize specific features or components in your model.

Show Appearance in Rendered Mode

If you want to create high-quality renderings of your model with accurate lighting and reflections, SolidWorks offers a dedicated rendering mode. Follow these steps to show appearances in rendered mode:

  1. Select the part or assembly in the feature tree.
  2. Navigate to the “Render Tools” toolbar located at the top of the SolidWorks window.
  3. Click on the “Render” button to enter the rendered mode.

In rendered mode, SolidWorks applies all appearance settings to your model and provides advanced rendering controls. You can adjust lighting conditions, add reflections, define backgrounds, and more to enhance the visual quality of your renderings.

Show Appearance in Drawings

SolidWorks allows you to showcase appearances in drawings as well. Here’s how:

  1. Create or open a drawing file that references your part or assembly.
  2. Insert a view of the part or assembly into the drawing sheet.
  3. Right-click on the view and select “Properties”.
  4. In the “Appearance” tab, you can specify the desired color, texture, and other appearance settings for that particular view.

By modifying appearances at the drawing level, you can create detailed engineering drawings with accurate representations of your model’s visual properties.


In SolidWorks, showing appearances is crucial for effectively communicating your design intent. Whether it’s through different display styles, rendered mode, or drawings, SolidWorks provides various methods to showcase appearances. By utilizing these tools and settings, you can create visually engaging models and renderings that accurately represent your design.