Facelifts

Holy moley… I always consider it headline news whenever one of the big dogs in standards-based web design gives their site a facelift. I usually hit a lot these sites on a daily basis. Their knowledge and knowhow has been of incredible benefit to me as a designer, and so it’s always inspiring to see what new trick or technique these guys conjure up, seemingly out of thin air.

This past month has see not one, not two, but three major redesigns, and two of them took place within 24 hours or so of each other. Uncanny!

Earlier in the month, Jeffrey Zeldman gave his site a much more organic, spring-themed design. The slim, centered column with dropshadow look is the new vogue (even I’m use it), and Zeldman uses to nice effect. Personally, I think some of the color selections could use a bit more tweaking, if only to give the site more contrast (all of those greens sort of blend together), but still, nice.

If you want to know about CSS, then Dave Shea is the go-to guy. His articles on CSS workarounds, semantic design, and just web development in general have been of inestimable value to me. That being said, I’m not a huge fan of his new design, codenamed ​“Proton”. But he has some interesting ideas about commenting and reply highlighting that are worth reading. However, thanks to the wonders of CSS, the old design is still alive and kicking, should you want to switch.

After checking out Shea’s site, I skipped on over to Stopdesign and stopped dead in my tracks. Gone was the dominant blues, replaced instead with glorious, glorious whitespace. I loved going through Doug Bowman’s thoughts on his redesign, from the new logo to the typefaces he’s using, as they validate some of what I’ve been doing on Opus over the past few weeks (more on that later, hopefully).