I’ve spent a bit of time over the last month designing a new blog that I’ll be launching soon, and in doing so, I’ve become aware of some design and coding habits which, when put together, clearly compromise a bit of a “design signature”. If you’ve designed more than five sites in your site, you likely have a design signature too, although it’s probably different than most other designers and coders you know. You may not even know you have it, but you do.
Here’s part of what makes up my design signature:
- I start with a CSS reset
- For column layouts, I float every column (usually left but sometimes both left and right)
- I use the clearfix class to clear all of my containers
- I use dotted underlines for body-copy links that change to solid underlines on hover, and no underlines for links that appear within navigational lists
- I use desaturated colors for visited links
- I employ fixed-width centered layouts using a container div, auto margins, and a center text-align on the body
I almost can’t even think about producing a page template until all of these elements are in place, and no design would feel right to me without them. Additionally, I know the browser implications of them so well that I scarcely have to even test in IE anymore.
Do you have any design signatures of your own? If so, what are they and how do they affect your work?