This is our popular weekly design news post where we share our favorite design related articles, resources and freebies from the past week. If you have spotted or want to share something that you’d like to be listed in the next issue, please feel free to let us know. You can also check out Webdesigner News for more great content from around the web that can be interest to web designers.
For many years, I worked in sales and marketing. I was employed by major corporations and part of my work included helping clients create websites, presentations, and advertising. I was able to retire early, but my love for this type of work has opened many doors for me to work on a volunteer basis for businesses like our local Chamber of Commerce, Animal Shelter and as a volunteer with programs through the library. I also help small business owners with their websites and advertising.
My experience has taught me, it matters not how well written something is, if no one reads it. Graphics, pictures and art work are what grab the eye. It is the beauty of the page, website, brochure or church bulletin that causes one to read on. This was a major stumbling block for me. My talent was words – not graphics. Then I found GraphicStock.com and it has changed my life! I wish I had known about this incredible resource when I was in corporate America.
The selections are endless. I have never had a problem finding exactly what I need to make my page jump out and grab a reader. This is saying a lot. You see, I do not just write about the local bake sale. I actually provide a volunteer service to small businesses and community services that are in need of professional, higher quality material but do not have the budget for a marketing team to design it. Read the rest of this entry »
Most of the multipurpose WordPress themes you will see in this list have been included because of the flexibility, their multiplicity of features, and the overall quality that sets them apart. Most of these themes can be used for a wide variety of different purposes, although several have been selected because they are top choices for the dedicated purposes they have been designed for. You will also find a couple of templates that could prove useful for startups, or for developers working on a limited budget.
Every item here is worth a look, but those we have placed at or near the top of the list are there for a purpose. It is our belief that the top two or three represent the best themes money can buy, even if they address a multiplicity of uses rather than being dedicated to a given area. You should find what you are looking for here.
Version 4 of the X Theme will once again set a standard for WordPress themes with the release of an incredible new front end page builder. This multipurpose theme is already the most versatile and fastest selling theme on the market today. The release of Version 4 is imminent, but you don’t have to wait. Purchase X Theme today, and when Version 4 rolls out, its new and exciting features will be yours to use. Plus, a couple of weeks later another X Theme major update promises to impress its buyers.
You can achieve virtually any look and layout you can visualize with this multipurpose theme. Page building is super-fast since you have at your disposal a large and diverse collection of elements that are supported and continuously updated by Themeco. When you purchase X, you are purchasing more than just a theme, albeit an extremely powerful theme. You are also buying into a community of users who are eager to share their knowledge with you. You will also benefit from the type of excellent customer support you would expect to be associated with a premier product such as this.
With more than 100 ready-to-use, pre-designed and built layouts, Be Theme easily qualifies as being the biggest theme ever to appear on the market. This multipurpose theme has more than size going for it however. It is definitely a premium offering, and you will be hard pressed to find an excuse for no purchasing it. Its look and feel design is practically unmatched, as is the multiplicity of its practical and useful features.
Be Theme lends itself to smart, professionally-looking business and professional websites, but you can use this theme for virtually any type of website you have in mind. The large selection of layouts to choose from makes getting started, or coming up with a good idea, an easy task. The overall design is extremely robust, so you can take full advantage of the theme’s available functionality without fear of compromising responsiveness or usability. Read the rest of this entry »
A huge collection of flat Apple devices mockups to showcase your responsive web designs. The PSD file includes iPhones, iPads, iMac and Macbook with different viewing angles and now even an Apple Watch!
When it comes to a mobile user interface design presentation these phone mock-ups will really come in handy. One of the important points to consider in UI design presentation is to make it looks natural as possible. To give a real preview of the original product to thee client or the public is really time consuming and need a lot of effort. Here is the set of iPhone 5 mockups. They served us well, hope you will find them useful too.
Apple watch is one of the latest products that has released recently. I expect there will be a lot of demand for Apple watch designs so here is a 4 Apple Watch mockups that you can use. These will help you design beautiful apps for this new piece of technology, and show them nicely to your clients.
An experienced website or mobile app developer can sail through the initial design process, only to have things come to a grinding halt when the time comes to convert his designs into SEO-friendly, cross-browser compatible code. PSD to HTML conversion can be a time-consuming task, and an error-prone one as well for anyone who does not do it on a daily basis. Fortunately, there are a number of companies, and several online or downloadable tools, that can do the conversion for you.
Several of the leading PSD to HTML/CSS businesses are listed below, together with a downloadable tool you can use to perform conversions yourself. Browse the list, and see what might work best for you.
PSD to Manythings, as the name implies, is a company that offers a variety of practical services to the web community. Send them your PSD design, and they will return pixel perfect, cross-browser compatible (X)HTML, CMS, and Ecommerce markup, templates, or themes. This company has a sterling reputation. It serves clients in over 50 countries, and it has more than 500 WordPress implementation projects under its belt. This is the only PSD to HTML company recognized by Woo Commerce. Many within the using community will tell you it is among the top 10 companies in the industry.
In addition to their basic PSD to HTML services, PSD to Manythings’s services include PSD to Responsive HTML, WordPress, OpenCart, and Joomla. They will also upgrade and/or maintain your website if you request. Their development team will fully adhere to your specifications and requirements and deliver clean, well-documented, and SEO semantic code on time and at an affordable price.
Chop-Chop.org is another highly-regarded company that can take your PSD design and convert it into hand-coded, multi-browser compatible, pixel perfect HTML and CSS markup. All you have to do is upload your design file, whether it is a PSD file, an AI file, or another standard file type, and send along your payment (PayPal will work best). Your designs will be sliced, or “chop-chopped” if you prefer, and the resulting clean-coded, SEO-friendly HTML/CSS files will be sent to you via email. Chop-Chop.org currently serves over 500 clients in more than 30 countries. With more than 5 years of software development experience behind it, this company has a well-deserved reputation as being one of the best, and possibly the best startup shop in the HTML/CSS slicing service industry. Read the rest of this entry »
If you’ve ever compared website creating to magic, you may have noticed that both online shop creating and a magic trick consist of 3 parts.
In the first part you see the object: a ‘raw’ template with plenty of Latin text, a name which doesn’t even fit your project and a design which you still need to adjust. The second part is “The Turn”. The ordinary thing turns into something extraordinary. At this stage you customize a template to a state which you hope impresses your customers and becomes eye-candy to you. The third part of the trick is usually getting everything back to the initial state… but not for you. This is actually the only thing that differentiates a website creation from a regular magic trick. Your rock-solid, online store endures for a long time, spreading joy and profit to the owner and customers alike. Actually, it is more magical than a regular trick, and that’s great.
We suggest that you check out these 20 free & premium eCommerce templates: OpenCart, Magento, Prestashop & WooCommerce. Beautiful, elegant and ready to roll, they can become a superb foundation for your online stores. Start a new project at the drop of a hat, check out the themes, get inspired and – most important – remember anything is possible for you.
Free PrestaShop Themes
1. Tire Rack
Wheel & Tires template will become a great theme for a wheel & tire store. Strict square design is the central idea of the layout. Ironically, square design sells round-shaped items best. Anyway, this theme will also be perfect for industrial, architecture, interior and sport stores.
IKON is a free PrestaShop theme. A truly clean design excludes any distracting items, focusing your attention on the products in the store. The proper effect is achieved by using lots of white space and the hover effect applied in the menu. Simplicity – that’s the main idea.
Another free PrestaShop theme for creating an online shop. An unusual shape is used in the design of this theme – a rhombus. There is a call-to-action button on it; overlooking it is absolutely impossible. When you scroll down, you see the first New Products section, then Featured Products and Recent Blog almost at the bottom. Read the rest of this entry »
Before you take on your next web or app design project asking yourself the following questions might help enhance your productivity and make your work more cost-efficient: Am I using the right tools and resources for the project that I’m working at? Is there a better way I could approach this project? Are the tools and resources that I’m using the best available on the market? There are new tools and resources constantly appearing on the market, some of which could make your work easier and your results more professional looking.
You may find this listing of UX and UI tools and resources quite useful. Most of these tools feature rapid prototyping capabilities together with powerful team collaboration and information sharing capabilities. If you are looking for the latest UI resources too, then browse this listing and stay updated with the most recent developments in the UX and UI industry.
Creating prototypes will make communication between the designer, the project manager, the development team and the client easier. Proto.io not only makes this whole process painless, but it also does it in style.
You’d be surprised by the options that Proto.io offers to its users in order to create mobile prototypes of their app designs. What’s interesting among its new features is that it has a vast interactive Material Design UI library.
This tool allows you to show your audience prototypes that have the look and feel of the real app. The latest version is packed with a number of new or improved features. There are for example, 49 new fully-interactive UI elements that support ripple effects, drop shadows, an upgraded color picker, and a selection of animated morphing features that allow even greater creativity.
Different versions can be created for various devices and screen sizes thanks to the adaptive UI elements found in Proto.io’s library. You can download your prototype to your mobile device, see how it looks directly on it, and show the prototype to your clients in a realistic environment. No coding is necessary to create of manage your prototypes.
Pidoco can be used to create wireframes, mockups and prototypes for any number of applications, including mobile apps. Powerful features in this prototyping tool include real time editing and smart sharing, a spec generator, an extremely useful template system and more.
Pidoco makes it possible to create highly interactive prototypes that give a realistic picture of what the final application will look like. Clicks, keyboard and touch commands can be combined to configure a prototype as you go along. This powerful prototyping tool with its commenting, versioning, and issue tracking capabilities, enables you to easily collaborate with others and share real-time information in the process. You can run your prototypes on mobile devices with the click of a button via an app, and without a need for downloading or generating code. Read the rest of this entry »
X is one of the best themes you can now find in WordPress theme market, when you are concerned about simplicity of User Interface, different designs to choose from, deep-level customization and lots more. Even though basic kinds of elements may resemble the real theme, you can change almost everything in Theme X, making it seem somewhat exclusive in perspective of a user. This completely responsive theme includes other features such as a page builder, based on drag-and-drop layouts, typography that includes more than 600 Google fonts, shortcodes to extend looks & productivity of your blog or site, customizable backgrounds, integration with eCommerce etc.
More often than not, Bridge — the WordPress theme —can be an appropriate way to bridge the gap between your, or your client’s, firm and the customer. Truly impressive & simple design of Bridge will steal almost everyone’s mind, given that the theme offers an intuitive control panel to keep things in motion. As great blessing to the visual impact, Bridge offers other sorts of features such as retina-ready display, background that supports videos and images, tons of shortcodes to extend reach etc.
Well, if you are one of those who do not like coding, Brooklyn will be one of the best themes you can find for blog or site you have created using WordPress CMS. With a number of impressive designs, Brooklyn can different categories of requirement a professional internet marketer, blogger or web developer might have. Some of the other features of Brooklyn are ultra-responsive design and layout, seven different header styles, unlimited page styles to use etc.
Node.js is increasingly gaining popularity among web developers. Due to all hosting companies Node.js remains the prerogative of dedicated servers and VPS. Actually VPS is a solution that even a small startup can afford.
For more details refer to the documentation on nodejs.org. As you know, Node.js supports modules. You can find the folder for global modules here: \winginx\nodejs\node_modules\. Modules installed in this folder will be available in all scripts. You can use them, or create a copy in the home directory of your site.
- Winginx includes module manager NPM, popular framework Express.js, and template engine Jade.
- For debugging Node-Inspector module is connected. It’s ran as a Node.js server, to access it hit http://localhost:8080/ (please note that it works only in the webkit-compatible browser – Google Chrome).
- What’s more, to ease your work with database modules and MySQL are also connected.
In brief we can say that Node.js, in contrast to PHP, is not interpreted but is compiled into a single server, and therefore occupies separate port. In conjunction with nginx it works as a backend-server, practicing dynamic queries, and nginx is engaged in statics. Read the rest of this entry »
Like designing? Or already a Pro? You are sure to find this useful. Here is a collection of 10 awesome freebies for your next design projects. Whether you’re looking for “plug and play” visual content, a beautiful textures, or some icons, you’re bound to find new favorite free web design resources on this list.
Quality is essential if you’re to maintain a professional finish. Fortunately the quality of the resources available to us continues to rise and premium standard resources are everywhere. Here’s a collection 10 Killer Free Web Resources from DealFuel.
1. Trendy Grunge Textures
Grunge effects rules year after year. This is one trendy texture that never runs out of Popularity. So get your website trendy this season with these subtle grunge textures.
2. Thin Line Icons
These line icons serve as sure-shot attention grabbers. They make the websites user friendly and help navigate a user on your website efficiently
3. A Collection of Eye-catching Vector Icons
Spice up Your website’s features with these 30 Flatteriffic Vector Icons.