For a couple of weeks now I have been browsing the internet looking for some good examples of beautiful yet simple professional web designs. My hope is that some of these designs will help to inspire you when you design your next site. I will try to give my 2 cents on some of these designs as I go.
I love how 31Three uses the image of a butterfly to add some complexity to its simple design. The image really makes the design pop.
GoPlan is on this list because of their color scheme. The dark header with a light colored content area is really becoming a common design trait, and goplan executes it beautifully.
What resulted in me adding fluidbook to this list is how they use icons and typography to help the design flow.
ExpressEngine does a great job enfisizing the main content area of the site through a dark background and light content area color scheme.
CarbonMade is another example of how a color scheme can make a design. Using many bright colors can sometimes cause flow issues for a site, but CarbonMade uses bright colors to its advantage.
3000k is probably my favorite on this list. They use both images and color to create a beautiful design that really stands out to me.
This is another example of how a lot of colors can be used to make up a simple and professional looking design. The use of orange and gray really helps to flow the eye to the main sections of the site.
Amy Mahon’s design is easy, it uses a handwritten typography to standout as a blog like no other.
Dark color schemes can be very hard to work with, but Level9 does an excellent job with the dark color scheme. For me, it is the background pattern that really makes this design.
SimpleBits is probably the most simple and plain design on my list, but again the use of a dark header with a bright content area really helps your eyes to flow with the design.
Creative Ireland Forums
The Creative Ireland Forum really does a great job of using colors to break up a forum. Most forum designs are very repetitive because it is just list of post or forums. The use of blue links on a light brown/tan background keeps your eyes from getting tired.
Tick is another great example of how multiple colors can be used to create flow in a web design.
Avenue Creative is just like Level9, in that it uses a nice background pattern to break up a very dark design.
Simply Invoices uses just a little bit of color to break up a predominantly simple white design.
Ploink-Brothers does a great job with color scheme and background pattern. The orange on brown color combination is hard to work with, but they have done it beautifully.