Innovative (and Experimental) CSS Examples and Techniques
CSS doesn’t always have to be serious business. In this article, you’ll see 25 fun, novel, and experimental CSS techniques and demonstrations.
Note: some of the techniques and examples discussed here may not validate, cannot be rendered correctly by some browsers, and may not conform with standards-based design and development. Many of the techniques shown here are for exploration only.
Transparent CSS Menu Drop-down
In this example, you’ll see a nifty way to create CSS-based image maps with bubble tooltips.
This 3D puzzle was created using only CSS (this must have taken a LONG time to create).
This example involves a panoramic picture with "hot spots". Clicking on the hot spots displays a description and an zoomed-in image of the area on another panel.
Web Designer Wall shows us how to create fancier image galleries by using background images on images.
This example uses special HTML characters to display the suits of the cards and then CSS to style and position them.
In this example, Román Cortés recreates Homer Simpson with HTML characters/text and CSS. Check out the animated adaptation by Ned Batchelder.
Design Detector created this house by using Div’s and styling them with CSS.
This example by Chris Coyier of CSS-tricks reveals a "Secret Message" as you scroll down the web page.
How to create light-weight drop shadows
Here is another method for applying drop shadows to page elements (such as images).
In this demonstration, CSS guru Eric Meyer shows some transparency/opacity capabilities of CSS.
DVD Recorder Remote
Design Detector creates a remove control using HTML elements and CSS.
Stu Nicholls of CSSplay draws a pencil using CSS. Hovering over the pencil will draw a horizontal line.
CSS Text Shadows
Here is a pure CSS-based solution to applying drop-shadows to text. It involves duplicate text layed on top of one another, which isn’t good practice.
CSS Flashy Links
In this navigation bar example, hovering over a menu item causes the arrow on the left to zoom across the menu item.
This example showcases CSS image maps through a map. Hovering over hot spots reveals more information on the right.
This technique involves hidden Div’s that are revealed when you hover over the trigger link.
CSS Sticky Footer
Here’s a footer that is fixed at the bottom of the web page, regardless of height.
Using CSS, a simple shape (star) is drawn. It scales when the user resizes the font size using browser controls (at least for modern browsers it does).
CSS: Menu Descriptions
In this CSS-based menu, hovering over a menu item reveals more information about the menu item.
CSS Gradients Demo
This demonstration uses CSS-styled empty Div’s (not a good practice) and background-colors to mimic the effect of gradients.
Here is a technique for scaling background images (resize your browser to see how it works).
This example styles list items to create an accessible bar graph.