So I was playing around with Visual Studio 2010 and when I removed the Application.EnableVisualStyles() method from the Main() method, I noticed that the controls on the design surface don't change, they maintain their visual style, but when the application is run, it doesn't have the styles.

Is there a way to disable visual styles on the design surface? I can't seem to figure it out. The closest I got was changing the OS theme.

Seems kinda silly to try to design an application without Visual Styles and be forced to do it with visual styles enabled on your design surface. Kinda like trying to draw a picture using just a sheet of carbon paper and not seeing what your drawing looks like for real, just a idea.

Perhaps you should consider WPF to design your styles?

That's the thing...I don't want a style. I want the application to use the system's default, boring grey form with square controls etc...similar to if you set the windows 7 theme to windows classic.

Also, I am an avid hater of WPF. XML should not be used to control style or anything else. It's a bloated "language" that while should be human readable, is more difficult to read than old ini files. That's my opinion anyway.