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Creative Commons - Attribution photo by Per Axbom

12 Mobile Web Design Trends for 2013 and Beyond…

Some websites are not so mobile friendly but in 2013 that is changing—almost a must for web designers. Users want websites to be seamless and exact on PCs, laptops, smartphones and tablets. What are designers looking at to make this possible? Here are 12 trends that are changing the online world.

1. More Responsive Web Designs

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Image via Flickr axbom

RWD or Responsive Web Design means once employed, a website is viewable on any device, desktop, smartphone or tablet. Newspapers and sports-themed websites are gaining tons of followers with new RWD looks that dismiss scrolling left to right for reading text and the image conversions are flawless.

It is true 67 percent of Internet users say they are more apt to buy on the go. With more people using tablets and smartphones to make purchases, RWD cuts out the need for different SEO and HTML in order for consumers to browse and buy no matter what the device; the site looks the same.

2. Websites Are Losing the Clutter

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Image via Flickr webtreats

It used to be the more action-packed a website home page, the better but no more. Designers have realized less is more. They are doing this with hidden landing pages and shorter navigation bars. Some websites are losing the navigation bar altogether.

With hidden landing pages, users searching on smartphones will land on the desired page instead of the home page making them more apt to buy or learn more. These hidden pages while still found in a search, when packed with SEO and keywords, are helping to end the clutter on home pages. Left and right arrows and scrolling bars are also making websites fresh and crisp enticing the viewer move through with touchscreens or the mouse.

3. Websites Will Look More Like Apps

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Image via Flickr by Microsoft Sweden

Forget the old term “there’s an app for that,” and instead, think app look-alike-designed websites. The Wall Street Journal reported as of June 2012, the Apple App store offered 650,000 available apps for download and the Google Play Store was not far off at 500,000. And, mobile users are downloading those apps at a large rate—30 billion for iPhones and 15 billion for Android operating systems.

Designers will achieve a wider audience with app-looking websites and users will enjoy the familiarity they bring.

4. Navigation Bars That Move

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Image via Flickr Gustavo da Cunha Pimenta

CSS programming allows for the “position: fixed” offering navigation bars that scroll up or down when users do. Although not new, they provide users an easy way to head to another part of the website faster.

The fixed position works best with where website navigation bars are page content or search-driven so users can quickly change search criteria or click on scrolling bars to narrow down desired content.

5. The Use of Larger Photos and Images

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Image via Flickr Life@Microsoft Australia

Web designers are also skipping smaller images and opting for larger high-resolution images instead. Not only are these eye-appealing when designed correctly, larger images offer the chance for more elements within the image.

Popular venues for large images include expos, health care, lobbies, restaurants and retail stores that offer an inside feel to the viewer.

6. The Insertion of QR Codes

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Image via Flickr Dan Zen

QR (quick response) codes are now widespread on websites as a call to action—and mobile users are scanning them.

Good for discounts, promotions, coupons or for informational purposes, when users find these calls to action they are pulling out their Blackberry cell phones to take advantage of these hidden square offerings.

7. Influx of Social Media Badges

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Image via Flickr birgerking

It used to be most websites would have a Facebook and Twitter badge and that was it. Now, designers are leading users to companies on LinkedIn, Google+, Digg, StumbleUpon, Tumblr, Pinterest and more.

Beyond leading viewers to these social media pages, web designers are also using social media badges on blog posts pages where readers can share the posts on their social media pages.

8. Integrated Video

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Image via Flickr Bonnie Bogle

Desktop Google searches will almost always provide a YouTube video. Part of the reason is Google owns YouTube but the other reasons is the real-life scalability videos offer.

Consumers can see how a product works, take a 360 degree tour or learn how to use software and videos are playing a big part in web design.

9. Larger Typography

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Image via Flickr adactio

Yes if the typography is bigger, it’s better in today’s world of web design. CSS and XHTML coding is making larger typography fit onto mobile phone screens but when using laptops, desktops or tablets, larger text—and simpler fonts—are engaging viewers.

The Sans Serif font is in again along with big text and much like larger photos, designers are using this trend for web design more and more.

10. DIY Website Design

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Image via Flickr Phil Oakley

WordPress has been around for a while now allowing DIY designer to create their own designs; GitHub is another. Known as open source software many DIY designers are finding free templates created by the skilled open source pros or creating their own.

With open source software brings many plugins each with its own must-have feature and if you want your website to have a great mobile look, there are plugins for that too.

11. HTML5 and JavaScript Surging Ahead of Flash

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Image via Flickr Josef Dunne

With upgraded features in HTML5 and JavaScript, Flash is going away. Wed designers are taking advantage of what HTML5 and JavaScript can do such as offering a rich Internet application (RIA)—Chrome Experiments is a good example of just how designers are making websites rich and interactive.

Movement and engagement are the force behind this type of design.

12. Story Timelines

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Image via Flickr Vixie Rayna

Companies rich in history are using story timelines and opting out of the conventional feel of homepages. This learn more about us approach allows for great imagery and text as well as a cinematic feel.

Popular industries engaged in using story timelines are automakers, food manufacturers and the fashion industry.

These new trends in web design are not only making websites more mobile friendly, they are also engaging the user, providing interaction and offer smart searching capabilities. Because technology and web designer programming changes in a flash, along with these trends in web design for 2013, expect even more from the innovative and the imaginative.

Sectionals

Best Implementable DIY Ideas For Your Living Room

If you no longer get ‘stunned’ seeing your living room or if you feel stressed looking at the mess and poor arrangement of stuff and furniture in it, maybe this is the time that you do a face-lift! Your living room is your place of refuge after a hard day at work. Isn’t it nice to sit on a lovely couch, have some chips and a beer while watching your favorite TV show? But all the comfort and stress-relieving benefits of having your own living room can all be turned into waste if it doesn’t have any sense of order, style, and beauty.

The best thing is – you don’t have to hire a professional interior designer to add beauty to your living room! There are simple DIY design ideas that you can implement in your very own living space. Here are some of them:

  • Rearrange the sectionals. Sectionals are modern types of chair that are widely used in various home environments. Sectionals are a great choice because it gives you flexibility and makes it easy to rearrange any time you wish. You can revamp your living room just by rearranging the position of your sectional chairs. As easy as that! What if you don’t have sectionals at home? Well, maybe it’s time that you consider buying one!
  • Use silver trays. Having a collection of silver trays in your living room gives it a modern and very artistic appeal. Silver ornaments are very eye-catching and they could give an elegant look to your living space. Don’t like silver? Then have a collection of a design that you love. Whether it’s some Asian-inspired rugs, indoor plants, figurines, vases, etc. Just make sure they go hand in hand with the rest of the décor in your home.
  • Add beautiful flowers. Perk up your room with a bouquet of vibrant flowers placed in an equally vibrant vase! You have a choice whether to use real flowers or just synthetic ones. Synthetic flowers are good since that they don’t rot and don’t need maintenance (water, sunlight, and soil). But nothing beats the beauty of real flowers. They produce a scent that doesn’t just uplift the beauty of your living room but also provides therapeutic effects.
  • Create hand-painted wallpaper. Designing your wall with hand painted figures is easy as creating a stencil and painting it by hand. This can free you away from the messy effects of traditional wallpaper available in the market.
  • Get your chairs fixed. Wobbly chairs can cause great annoyance in your living room. The great thing is that you really don’t have to hire a handyman to get them all fixed. If the foam is the problem, you can replace it with similar foam that you can purchase from home stores. If you don’t like the covering, look for unused clothes in around your home. Fabrics with cute large and colorful prints work best for stools and single chairs.
  • Create an indoor garden. Is it too hot to make a traditional garden outside? Then do it in your very own living room! Consider planting potted herbs like basil, sage and rosemary. You can either buy or construct a plant rack to be placed in your living room.
  • Add slipcovers to your sectionals. A slipcover is the cheapest way to revamp your existing sectionals at home. Buy at least two sets of slipcovers so if you get tired with the old one, you can replace it easily! Don’t forget to measure the chairs correctly so you could find the best slipcover that perfectly fits it. Choose the design that suits the overall theme of your living room.
  • Update your window treatment. A change of draperies is another cheap way to lift up the beauty of your living room. If you’re used to traditional heavy, thick and dark-colored curtains, try something that’s lighter, thinner and more refreshing to the eyes. Consider using curtain rods. They are easy to install and remove and are very convenient to maintain.

Add a pattern on your floor. Vinyl materials are great additions to existing floors. You can also use wood panel to add an elegant touch. Another way is to place an area rug on different areas. They are cheap, easy to use and are very attractive!

Article by Jess Ross

Myself Jess Ross is graduated with a double major in English and Business Management from the University of Ohio. A Columbus native, I went back to my home city after graduation to work in several advertising companies, before striking it out on my own in Shanghai, China, working for an International furniture manufacturing company in East Asia. I helped increase the company’s sales by 30% and began expanding into Europe and North America. After working in China for a number of years, I moved back to Columbus. I worked for my family’s another store (www.SofasandSectionals.Com)(888-567-7632), and worked to expand their markets as well as their offerings into more like sofas, sectionals, couches, loveseats and much more.

Surprise Your Spouse With Handmade Gifts2

Surprise Your Spouse With Handmade Gifts

Is your spouse’s birthday coming soon? Or is your anniversary just round the corner? Or you would like to surprise your beloved one for no reason at all, just to manifest your love towards him/her. That means you will need a nice and original present to give to your sweetheart. But what exactly? The stores are filled with tons of ‘ready’ gifts you can just pick up and give to your spouse, but this somehow shows lack of character, so to say. In other words, you need a unique present that is not already owned by thousands of people. And a sure way to achieve this is to come up with a nice idea and actually make the gift yourself. Not only will this be cheaper but also tells a lot for you in terms of how much you care for you significant other. Here are some ideas you can find interesting.

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1. Cookies in a jar

What better way to show your love than through presenting sweets? If you and your spouse share the same opinion, try out this idea. It’s not actually the whole ready cookies, but rather all dry ingredients that constitute the cookies. They are to be layered in a jar and it will make up an attractive presentation. The jar can be decorated with ribbon and fabric and you can also use a small piece of string to attach the recipe to the jar.

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2. Homemade bath salts in a jar

Another jar-related idea. What’s good about jars is that you can re-use old jar you have laying around the house, clean them well with E17 whatever you like and also decorate them. This gift is inexpensive AND luxurious. A typical recipe includes baking soda, sea salt, food coloring (it would be best to use natural varieties), some glycerin (it’s better if it’s vegetable-based) and the aromatic poils you like the most. Presentation is the key. Again, the jar can be decorated whichever way you prefer.

3. A holiday wreath

A welcoming and impressive holiday gift, whatever the occasion, is a living wreath. They are quite easy to make – you just need evergreen boughs, wire and assorted greenery. Plus an hour or two of free time. Soon, you will have a couple of wreaths which would cost you more than $50 if you were to buy them off the store.

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4. A reusable shopping totebag

Now this is a nice gift that’s not only useful but also environmentally friendly. Nowadays,when there are literally millions of plastic bags used and disposed on a monthly basis, the use of a bag, made of fabric that one can carry to the store numerous times is more than encouraged. Basic sewing skills is all you need, as making such a bag is not that difficult.

5. DIY orange candles
It’s exactly what the name suggests – candles, made out of oranges. As with the previous projects, this one is also not to difficult to make. Get an orange, cut it in two half-spheres and scoop out the meaty part, leaving just the rind. On the bottom half-sphere, leave the stringy white part – it is to be used as a fuse. Fill the same half-sphere with olive oil and light the aforementioned stringy white part. Poke some holes into the top part and cover. You will not only have a romantic light, but also pleasant orange aroma.

Article Images are provided and/or licensed by the author.

Article by Cindy Davis

Cindy Davis is blogger, writer and housewife. She likes writing about home improvement and home maintenance topics, including household cleaning. Her present article includes helpful and useful tips on how to surprise your beloved one in untypical and original way.

Classic Hotel room featuring Natural color hardwood floor (Knotty Walnut)

The Art of Home Decoration after You Relocate

Moving to a new house needs the complete change up of living accessories and the stuff in the house. You have moved to a new home and left your old home. You have to start from the scratch decorating your home and setting it up for the house warming party and after living. It is recommended that you start decorating your new home after you have settled in for some time because you will get to know about the colors and the arrangement that will look good in your new home.

Turning your house to home is a tricky task and it involves the artist within you. Many people go crazy adding up all the artifacts and the antiques to the new home making it full of clutter. The key here is to keep the decoration natural and keeping it simple, because simple is beautiful. Below are some of the ideas that you can adopt to make your home more beautiful.

  • Clean the old house: After leaving your old home you must have cleaned the home and would have carried all the stuff to the new home using man and van service. It is important that at your old home you should categorize the items needed and the items that are of no use. So what’s the use of getting the stuff you do not need at all to your new home? You should hold a garage sale or donate the stuff to charity as you do not need to add clutter to your new home.
  • Start with bedroom: Bedroom is the place where you spend one third of the time when you at home. Assuming that you are on a tight budget then purchasing affordable bedding is the first thing to get. You can paint the walls of the bedroom with a color that compliments your furniture and the curtains. People who get up early should look for light and more translucent treatments. Your bed room should mirror your personality.
  • Don’t shop for all the things at once:  It is recommended that you should live at least for 2 months before you begin purchasing for the home décor items. Remember not to make your home a lifeless furniture showroom. Purchase the things slowly keeping in mind the theme of your home. You have to live in the house for some time before you have a hang of the theme.
  • Solve the practical problems without spending much: There might be some of the problems that arise while living in a place, like your kitchen cabinets are drab, then instead of getting a overly expensive cabinet will not be a good idea, instead you can paint it and change some hardware and a new looking kitchen cabinet is ready to be used.
  • Wake up the artist sleeping within: At the end of the day it is your home so you have to get your inner instincts to play some music. What I want to say here is that bring out the artist hidden inside and get some creative ideas and put them in place. You know best what your requirement is and what will go well in your home.

These were some of the tips which can help you to make your house a complete home. Rest anytime one can take the advice of friends or family members who recently moved, plus you can go through some of the home décor magazines and find some stuff over the internet.

Featured Image: CC Attribution photo by Mirage floors – source

Article by Tony Parker

Tony Parker is a writer and environmental enthusiast. Apart from writing about DIY guides, and home improvement tips, he is concerned about creating awareness about modern home décor ideas and storage ideas ,relocation tips some simple steps like Get the affordable services of Man and van Bath, saving money, using modern techniques and implementing right technology can help. That’s exactly what Tony loves to write about


CC Photo by Stephen Shellard

4 Ways To Upcycle Stuff into Art

Decorating your home and garden well can get pretty expensive if you don’t want your place to look like the inside of a dentist’s office, with generic Wal-Mart paintings in kitschy frames stuck to your walls and your backyard design looking about as inspired as the plot of Eragon. Here are a few of the newest awesome low-cost trends in epic décor.

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CC Photo by Stephen Shellard – Source

Eye Bombing

As far as cost is concerned, eye-bombing is by far the cheapest option on this list. Eye-bombing is the practice of gluing little plastic eyeballs onto everyday items that can be made to appear humanoid through their application. Check out the linked site in the paragraph’s opening sentence to see a bunch of hilarious examples of eye-bombing genius. You can eye-bomb just about anything, from your door knobs, to windows, to toasters, to broken piping.

Painting Upgrades

With the internet at your fingertips it’s extremely easy to get your hands on some cheap framed art. Grab something classic that people will recognize and see what kind of modifications you can make. If you can be subtle enough about it that people don’t notice right away you get bonus points. Check out this version of Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” and you’ll see what I mean. Besides taking a second to catch, this particular artist (Terry Lightfoot) made a direct reference to Doctor Who, which pretty much identifies them as awesome right from the start, but the best part is that the artist manages to mirror Van Gogh’s style near perfectly so that it really takes a second to figure out what’s going on.

Trash Eco-Art

In the last few years recycling has broadened from a planet saving initiative to a general movement centered around the cyclical use of resources for its own sake, which has brought us to the interesting world of garbage art. Check out this creative use of retired car tires for a great example. Different types of art range from old boots turned into flower pots, to cars filled with dirt and turned into gardens.

Creative Everyday Items

Getting creative to transform items that you use every day to express yourself artistically through your home is tricky, but if you can pull it off it’s the holy grail in DIY home décor. Check out this fork egg holder for a bit of inspiration. If you’re considerably more talented and crafty than I am you can consider attempting something more intense, like these toilet roll faces which might be the single coolest thing I’ve dug up on the internet today, or ever really.

With this type of art the sky is the limit. You’re only limited by the limits of your own imagination. If you’ve picked up nothing else from this article you’ll have notices that you can make some pretty amazing stuff out of otherwise innocuous everyday type of items. Don’t let this short list limit your options, get out there, pick a random item and turn it into your very own art.

Examples:

 

Article by Edward Stuart

Edward Stuart is an art and decoration enthusiast as well as an online publisher for cheap framed art supplier framedart.com. He frequently blogs on the topics of art, art history, design, and home decor.

Mix of CC Photo by Fashion my phone

4 Easy DIY Smartphone Covers

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Mix of CC Photo by Fashion my phone

Smartphone owners can protect their devices by keeping them in covers. If you can’t find a cover that you like, though, you have to get creative and make your own. Here are four homemade smartphone covers to inspire you.

Duct Tape Smartphone Cover

It doesn’t get much easier or cheaper than this duct tape smartphone cover. If you decide to make this kind of cover, double wrap the tape so that the sticky side is not left exposed. It’s easiest to cover your phone in paper and apply the tape to contour to the shape of your phone. Then you can simply slide your phone from the mold and apply tape to the interior of the case. Some even have carbineers on the back so you can attach it to your backpack or belt loop for safe keeping.

Remember to apply tape to the interior of the case as not tape your phone inside. A sticky interior will make it nearly impossible for you to slide the phone in and out. – Example

A Knitted Cover

You can keep any type of phone, from a BlackBerry 9310 to an iPhone, snug in this knitted cover. It offers cushiony protection from the elements and provides a bit of defense against those horrible accidental drops. Knitting requires a little more skill, though, so you might want to recruit help from someone with more experience.

Then again, this is a relatively small project, so you could use it to improve your own skills. If you don’t like the results, you haven’t wasted much money or materials. You can always start again and avoid the mistakes you made last time. Eventually you can even start to make your own designs. – Example

Bedazzling Makes Everything Better

It looks like someone got a little carried away with the Bedazzler. But hey, if that’s what you’re into, then give it a shot. This form of do-it-yourself creating allows for much personal flare to be channeled through the design of your case. Adding trinkets and personal effects that are important to you will help to make your case unique and special. You can make this project easy by purchasing a bland cell phone cover and decorating it with your own flowers and fake jewels. Just use a hot glue gun to spice up that drab cover. – Example

Sophisticated Leather Cases

Some felt smartphone covers have a little button and tie that offer more security for your phone. Choosing out the material and print makes the project even more significant and special. Cutting, sowing and molding your felt case yourself will make you proud of your uniquely designed smartphone cover. If you’ve already made the basic felt covers above, you might want to try a slightly more sophisticated design that uses buttons and a variety of fabrics. – Example

If you are feeling crafty or just want to save a few dollars, making your own smartphone covers could be the way to go. Use these covers for inspiration to help you create your own unique items. What kind of design would you like to make?

Article by DJ

DJ is a graduate student at University of Tampa. He is an avid gadget geek who spends his time writing about various topics including travel, technology, and current events. When he is not in school or working he likes to play soccer, watch movies, or text his friends on his new BlackBerry 9310.