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Vue Charts: Layout

This section explains the different components that a chart is made up of and how they are laid out inside a chart.

What makes a chart?

Each chart is composed of a single or multiple series, and optionally a legend, axes, and captions, such as title and subtitle. All of these components are managed by the chart's layout engine. They are sized and positioned appropriately based on the chart's dimensions, the nature of the data and the configuration.

To get the desired results when a chart is resized or the data changes, it helps to understand the way the layout works.

For example, given the data:

var data = [
    beverage: "Coffee",
    Q1: 450,
    Q2: 560,
    Q3: 600,
    Q4: 700,
    beverage: "Tea",
    Q1: 270,
    Q2: 380,
    Q3: 450,
    Q4: 520,
    beverage: "Milk",
    Q1: 180,
    Q2: 170,
    Q3: 190,
    Q4: 200,

We can create the chart pictured above using the following chart factory config:

    data: data,
    container: document.body,
    title: {
        text: 'Beverage Expenses'
    subtitle: {
        text: 'per quarter'
    padding: {
        top: 40,
        right: 40,
        bottom: 40,
        left: 40
    series: [
        { type: 'column', xKey: 'beverage', yKey: 'Q1', stacked: true },
        { type: 'column', xKey: 'beverage', yKey: 'Q2', stacked: true },
        { type: 'column', xKey: 'beverage', yKey: 'Q3', stacked: true },
        { type: 'column', xKey: 'beverage', yKey: 'Q4', stacked: true },
    legend: {
        position: 'right',
        spacing: 40


The padding required to make space for chart components such as the axes, legend and captions is calculated automatically.

Extra padding can be set using the padding config, which defaults to 20 on all sides. In the example above, padding is set to 40 on all sides.


If the legend is enabled, the chart layout will add extra padding to the side of the chart that the legend is positioned. The series are already padded on each side, so there will be some empty space between the series and the legend.

The legend's spacing config can be used to apply padding on the outer edge of the legend. It defaults to 20, but is set explicitly to 40 in our example.

The legend position is also optional and defaults to 'right'. In fact, the legend config itself is optional; the legend will be shown by default, but can be hidden using legend: { enabled: false }.


When we add captions, such as title and subtitle, the layout figures out the amount of padding to add to the top of the chart automatically.

Size Changes

When the chart's size changes, the padding amount typically doesn't change, meaning it's only the series area that grows or shrinks on size changes.

By default, the chart will resize automatically to fill the container element. If either the width or height configs are set, auto-sizing will be disabled unless the autoSize config is explicitly set to true.

Make sure to give the chart's container element an explicit size, otherwise you will run into a chicken and egg situation where the container expects to size itself according to the content and the chart expects to size itself according to the container.

Next Up

Continue to the next section to learn about the legend and its layout.