Differentiation Design / Decoration
A design is a simple line composition, which may be derived from ornaments, for example the Greek meander.
Decoration refers to an object-related surface composition made up of individual ornaments. The relationship between ornaments and decoration is subtle, yet dynamic. An ornament is not bound to any particular surface and can be positioned at will; decoration is strictly bound to the surface prescribed by the object. While an ornament, as a stylized individual motif, can be repeated as often as desired, decoration comprises a balanced overall composition. Decoration is subject to time-bound variations and changes; ornaments are part of a strict tradition. The result is that widely differing, stylistically transformable types of decoration can be created with ornaments that barely change at all.
Bernd Evers, Rainald Franz