Grunge Style In Modern Web Design


Most design trends come unexpectedly, evolve over time, become pointless and finally disappear from the design landscape. This holds particularly for web design, which is — just as every other creative field — prone for over-hyping and over-usage of trends. Being used excessively (sometimes properly, but mostly without any reasonable purpose), trends lose their ability to communicate information, express something unique or innovative and consequently lose their visual appeal.

Web 2.0 style is an excellent example for this evolution in design. In the last months of 2007 we’ve observed a clear example of design abuse, as glossy buttons, colorful reflections, 3D-effects, rounded corners and xx-large font sizes could be found almost everywhere (and we’ve presented some examples1 a year ago). However, currently we’ve been observing a new step in this evolution. Web 2.0 elements start to disappear; they become more subtle, more user-centric, more content-oriented and less loud. Is it a sign for coming changes?

What is the Grunge style?

As Web 2.0 style passes way, it’s time for something new. Few weeks ago we’ve written about the hand-drawing style2 in modern web-design. And as Web 2.0 style is all about glossy and shiny look, another option would be something rather crude, radical and provoking. Such as the grunge style — dirty look with irregular, nasty, sometimes even ugly and crooked visual elements. Will it establish itself as a trend? Probably not. However, it may be used once some creative and unconventional design approach is needed.

Below we’ve collected everything you would ever need for a perfect design in a grunge style — design examples, free fonts, icons, textures, brushes and even few tutorials.

Examples of Grunge Style

Grunge doesn’t necessarily stand for dirty. Grunge designs may have subtle dirty elements, providing the content with the dominant position it deserves. Let’s take a look at some examples how it might look like. All screenshots are linked and lead to the sites from which they have been taken.

Texture Screenshot3
Web 2.0 meets Grunge.

Texture Screenshot4
Notice the clear, rigid structure of the site blocks, supported by the grunge style.

Texture Screenshot5
Visually appealing design with grunge elements.

Texture Screenshot6
Not that visually appealing, however unique and unusual. Wood in use.

Texture Screenshot7
Grunge can be used not only in personal web-sites, but also in galleries and blogs.

Grungy Free Fonts

5 Excellent Free Grunge Fonts8
A selection of free “grunge” or “eroded” typefaces.

Texture Screenshot9

Bleeding Cowboys Font10
Free for personal use. PC / Mac OS X.

Texture Screenshot11

Grungy Icons

Stretched, torn and dirty: grunge icons at its best. They don’t necessarily fit to all designs, however it’s nice to have them ready to hand once you might need them.

RSS Grunge Icons12
A set with Feed-Icons in blue, red and green. Sizes: 128 x 128, 64 x 64 and 32 x 32 px. In .png-format. One of the icons has an ornament embedded into it — you can see it in the right hand side of the screenshot.

Icons Screenshot13

Grungy Olive Icons14
This set by designed by Dryicons fits not only to grungy cloth and weapons. 28 icons in the .png-format. 16 x 16, 24 x 24, 32 x 32, 48 x 48 and 128 x 128 px. Released under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license. You can do with them almost everything you might ever need to.

Icons Screenshot15

Grungy Asphalt Icons16
Another set, in a different color.

Icons Screenshot17

Litho System18
A bright and well-worn system replacement icon set. This collection contains 99 individual icons with large resources for Vista & Leopard.

Icons Screenshot19

Grungy Textures

The Best Textures Flickr Group20 offers excellent textures, among them also pretty colorful grunge textures. More than 900 images offered in a variety of sizes.

Texture Screenshot

Torley Textures21 presents 11 sets with quite impressive images in the size 512×512 — available in the .png-format.

Texture Screenshot22

DeviantArt: Textures23 is probably one of the largest sources for textures. For instance you can find excellent textures by searching for rust24, grunge25 or wood26. The choice is enormous, so you better take a portion of patience with you: advertisements are annoying, but the search is worth it.

Texture Screenshot27
Example: Flaky Old Gold28

W-Enter Textures29
Three excellent collections of grungy textures. Preview30 (links on that page don’t work, use this31 link to download the textures)

Texture Screenshot32

Texture Screenshot33

Textures Download34
A number of textures: walls, dirty, wood, graffiti, metal, plastic, stone, sand and cloth. Feel free to use these (mostly dirty) textures for any project, personal or professional. Click any thumbnail and use your mouse to "save image as…"

Texture Screenshot35

Garden Grunge Macro Photos36
This is what the photographer Neil Creek explored in his garden under the macro-objective.

Texture Screenshot37

Urbandirty38 collects the dirty of cities. Virtually, of course, in form of textures. No, this is not beautiful, but real. The collection includes 291 photos in three sizes. Released under the Creative Commons License.

Texture Screenshot39

Free Grunge textures from TextureKing40
A growing collection of grungy textures, available for free download. 319 textures.

Texture Screenshot41

10 Grunge, Rusty and Dirty Tileable Textures42
This is a collection of ten 1000×1000 pixels seamless textures. These textures were created using Filter Forge plugin. And they are free.

Texture Screenshot43

Grunge Textures44
Craig Jewells texture set contains 211 photos on Flickr. Different themes: rock, wood, rust, floors and more.

Texture Screenshot45

24 Free High-Res Textures46
By Bittbox. There is also a set of Photoshop brushes47 made from these grungy textures. There are 12 brushes in the set, and they are all 2500px. Available for CS3, CS1, and in PNG formats.

Texture Screenshot48

Grunge Textures49
Huge choice, (mostly) high quality. For instance in categories Asphalt, Brick, Concrete, Drains, Vents, & Grates, Graffiti & Vandalism, Metal, Mud, Clay & Earth, Old Machinery, Paper & Cardboard, Peeling Paint, Rusted Metal, Spills & Splatter, Stone, Trash & Garbage and Wood Textures. Hotlist50 displays the most popular textures.

Texture Screenshot51

Grungy Paper Textures

Scanned Scrapbook Papers Set 152 with 14 themes, Set 253 with 12 themes.

Texture Screenshot54
Set 2

Lovelamp55 presents 7 textures which look like wallpapers (real wallpapers, not desktop wallpapers).

Texture Screenshot56

PapierScans57 offers more paper scans; 12 images in high resolution.

Texture Screenshot58

4 Free High-Resolution Grungy Paper Textures59
The full-size images are in the 2005x3000px resolution.

Texture Screenshot60

Grungy Brushes, Corners etc.

Jenn B’s Typographic Grunge Brushes
A random collection of grungy, decayed typographic brushes.

Texture Screenshot

Grunge Brushes61
Photoshop set.

Texture Screenshot62

50 Free Vector Grunge Corners63
Formats: AI, EPS, SVG, PNG, Ill8. Source grunge is also included to let you play around with.

Texture Screenshot64

RisingSun Brushes65
This set contains brushes of the size 1280x1024px.

Texture Screenshot66

Grunge Brushes67
Photoshop set.

Texture Screenshot68

Dumpster Brushes69
8 Photoshop brushes created from photos of old dumpsters. All brushes are over 800px.

Texture Screenshot70

Vector Ink & Paint Splatters71
Vector images that would make a niece background touch or even a nice finishing touch to top off a grungy piece of art.

Texture Screenshot72

15 icon with two large scratchy / grungy textures in .pat (Photoshop Patterns Format).

Texture Screenshot74

Grungy Tutorials

Grunge Photoshop Tutorials75
An overview of grungy Adobe Photoshop tutorials.

Texture Screenshot76

Grungy Cover Design Tutorial77
Learn how to create a nice grungy cover design with grungy textures.

Texture Screenshot78

Is Web 2.0 style here to stay?

What do you think? Please take part in the poll and comment on this article!


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Co-Founder of Smashing Magazine. Former writer, web designer, freelancer and webworker. Sven is now writing Science Fiction Stories.


Note: Our rating-system has caused errors, so it's disabled at the moment. It will be back the moment the problem has been resolved. We're very sorry. Happy Holidays!

  1. 1

    one of those trends/styles i cant stand.

  2. 2

    Graphic Design Studio

    January 29, 2008 9:27 am

    Great Collection. Keep up the good work

  3. 3

    Hello, thanks for including my 1000×1000 textures in this amazing guide.
    I’m trying to digg it but for some reason I can’t connect to Digg right now.

    I also have some rusty (rustic, dirty, whatever) high resolution textures at my site:

    Thanks again,

    Enrique Flouret
    The Photoshop Roadmap

  4. 4

    another great article.

    these make a nice change from the current clean/simple design trend

  5. 5

    I’m disappointed you mention a “Web 2.0 style” since there is no such thing. It’s impossible to create such a style since “Web 2.0″ has nothing to do in any way with styling.

  6. 6

    This is my absolute favorite style. So raw and earthy!

  7. 7

    The “web 2.0 style” just looks childish to me. The trend will hopefully die soon.

  8. 8

    I totally agree with you. Web 2.0 is not about a visual trend…

  9. 9

    Great list of grungy things, definitely a bookmark article. Always good to have some nice grunge inspiration and resources.

  10. 10

    I’m not a big fan of the grunge style. It’s more often not done very well. Though it does have its place, and if done properly can be very effective. I’ve dabbled with it before, but prefer other styles.

  11. 11

    grunge and dirty styles were long in use before this whole “web 2.0″ thing came about.

  12. 12

    I have been a huge fan/maker of grungy designs for a while now. However, I have continued to see it become more popular in web and print design. You said that the grunge look will most likely not become a trend, but I beg to differ. Many artists are using the grunge style when showcasing their portfolios. Perhaps it won’t reach to the global and multi-million dollar companies. However, it already has reached the artist community and is on the rise.

  13. 13

    Well, some of this textures quite look great. But I’m not a fan of this style. I love simplicity in webdesign and this grunge style isn’t simple. It really catches the eye, but it catches too much! The real content is no more the first member.

  14. 14

    I agree that there were recognizable themes in many Web 2.0 apps that came out between 2004-2006. And I’ve seen the grunge style emerge during that same time. But I don’t see this style in web apps, I see it on portfolio sites, brochureware sites, band sites, etc. The Web 2.0 style was created by web app designers for web apps. I have a hard time envisioning using a grunge style for a web app that is designed for ease-of-use by a broad demographic. Not saying the grunge style isn’t cool. Just saying I don’t see it as a replacement for the current web app style. Apples and oranges.

  15. 15

    Couldn’t be more true that web 2.0 has nothing to do with styling, however I think many people would agree that there are many elements such as the above mentioned “glossy buttons, colorful reflections, 3D-effects, rounded corners and xx-large font sizes” and the like have become synonymous with web 2.0, therefore earning this style the name “web 2.0 style” and unfortunatley, I think it’s a bit late to change it.
    Go folk style!

  16. 16

    Be sure to check out a href=”” title=”Grunge Style”> Grunge Style for a growing list of grunge style resources.

  17. 17

    Great post!

    The web in year 2000 was plenty of microtext and pixel fonts with ultra-small sizes. Ultra neat & tidy minimalist white websites where everywhere too. Today fonts are huge and webs are dirty. Trends evolve and change very fast. Just wondering what we’ll be doing in 5 or 10 years from now!!

    Keep up the good work!

  18. 18

    I see web2.0 becoming more of a niche, with new styles (like grunge) adding to the available genre’s for web designers. I don’t think it will ever leave, just become less popular.

  19. 19

    Grunge style allows the designer to captivate a specific audience on a modern medium. It gives a contemporary web presence without alienating the target audience, and possibly more important, the branding of your website. I could see this style implemented well on, say, Jeep’s website, or any outdoor gear/sports site’s front page.

    But don’t confuse Grunge with a “Web 2.0 Style.” If Web 2.0 had a style, it would most certainly adhere to usability and portability (almost like semantics). A grunge style allows you to embed usable applications to your website. But this style would most certainly not work to define an entire web service.

    In short: Grunge works for front pages and blogs. These include small ‘widgets’ like comment systems, email forms, etc. Actual, multi-page web applications need usable interfaces. That’s where a web 2.0 style would come in to play.

  20. 20


    Thank you very much for including my Rss Grunge Icons in your great List.

    And i am thinking that a new Trend will come. Because tastes change. That was always like that and will also always like that be.

  21. 21

    “grunge” style is nothing new – it was being done years ago.

  22. 22

    Very nice post for resources.



  23. 23

    I think this style is commonly known as “distressed”. Grunge, pfff! ;-)

  24. 24

    And punk is not dead !
    Nice post once again (I ramble on…)

  25. 25

    Grunge style can also be used in unattended websites: I mean, for example, in a food-blog… Have a look to the blog (in Italian) made by a friend of mine: He also won prizes for his grungy pictures… cool
    P.S. Fabien, you owe me at least a pizza for this comment :)))

  26. 26

    This is a great post! Looks like there are many cool things shown here that I will have to spend a couple hours to.

    About 2.0 “style” versus “grunge.” Web 2.0 started not as a style but more about new interactivity. But as time has gone by the web community seems to have adopted a “style” that is now called the web 2.0 style. That being said I don’t think that a grungy style can’t be considered “web 2.0″ just by its appearance.

    So in short: there is “web 2.0″ and “web 2.0 style” Grunge can be “web 2.0″ but not so much a “web 2.0 style”

    Thanks again Smashing

  27. 27

    Well, I dislike the style but that said This is one helluva resource for all of that information.

    Great job once again.

  28. 28

    Hi SM,

    Thank you very much for including icons in two of your most recent posts: this one, and “Best of January 2008″. We’ve been developing our sets for 4 months now and giving them for free. This recognition by you guys at SM is truly awarding and keeps us going.

    So, a big thank you from Dryicnons Team!

  29. 29

    It’s great to see this article here. I’ve just written a chapter on grunge style in my eBook about Blogger template customization, so now I can link my readers here to see even more examples of this style.

    I’ve always thought the grunge style is like Marmite: you either love it or hate it! Personally I love the grunge style. But it doesn’t work for all sites. Excellent resources here, thank you for publishing this article :)

  30. 30

    Thanks for the resources,
    but the news are old, examples of this style appeared as early
    as 1998…
    and it already made it to mainstream a while ago: etc.
    I don’t think its a “new” trend, just another side side of the
    “web style” coin.

  31. 31

    No trend on the web sticks around forever, and 90% of what is called “Web 2.0″ is simply a shinier minimalist style with a contemporary twist. A lot of the style is reminiscent of the 60’s modernist movement in print. And, to be honest, the last few clients I’ve worked for we haven’t done anything “Web 2.0″ styled for because it wasn’t right for the client. I’d like to think that this is where the future is going to be, where designers go, “Yeah, that is really pretty, however it’s not at all for you” and then go on to suggest a style that is more effective for the message. Web 2.0 is great for major corporations, but an indie band?

    What’s more, Web 2.0 ISN’T about visuals. It’s about interaction on the web and the enhanced communication between the user, the interface and the back-end in a way that makes the technical side complex but only so the usable side can be highly simplistic. And even this will change. It will become even more so than it is now, people will start doing even more with the web. It won’t stay because something new is always coming.

  32. 32

    So that’s what it’s called! Funny how you can like an artistic style without knowing it’s name (actually, it’s not funny at all. not even surprising). I love the grunge patterns. It has a very unofficial feel so it’s obviously more suited for private websites or compaines targeted at the teen/young adult demographic.

    Also, it’s worth noting that the widespread advent of broadband is mostly what made grunge possible because this style requires many large images with a wide palette, so I guess that does tie it in a little bit with web2.0 (IMO broadband is a significant factor in web2.0)

    Also also, thanks for all the great resources!

  33. 33

    I think Grunge is overdone, even though my own personal style relies on it, but I think you’ve come up with some decent items here. Grunge can be done VERY badly in the wrong hands.

    The only thing I disagree with is the grunge fonts. Anyone should be able to make their own grunge fonts using a printer and a scanner. Or you can use the brushes and textures here to manipulate fonts to make them grungy. There’s no excuse for defaulting to grunge fonts.

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    I think Grunge doesn’t look good for most sites . I mean you don’t want to use it for a shopping site or even a portfolio site. On the other hand it does look good if combined with a clean colorful look like this. In general, i find the dark dirty look annoying and childish

  36. 36

    Great list, awesome resources. Thanks a heap!

  37. 37

    I’m not that found of the grunge style. I’m not really found of the shiny-web2.0 style either.
    What I would love to see in the next years is something that would fake real-life materials : paper, smoothed wood, stone … (a little bit like the link posted by Mirza, but cleaner)
    Now I just have to cross my finger and wait. :)

  38. 38

    I love all of the examples, look nice and real grunge style ;)

  39. 39

    I love the grunge design and the web 2.0 design, but I agree. Web 2.0 is slowly dying, and I would love to see grunge take over.

  40. 40

    wow, I could spend a week browsing through those links. why must there always be soomeone waiting for some work to get done?

    Thanks heaps

  41. 41

    You just gave me so many ideas for my band’s website? (click on my link, say if you like the music)

  42. 42

    Nice grunge collection! You guys are always on a top! Keep it smashing!

  43. 43

    dont know, this style is good for some things, 2.0 style is good for others, in depends on the product your work with. I think 2.0 will live a bit longer, until some really nice and neat design is found different to it, but nice and neat style will always be alive, my first post , love the blog

  44. 44

    It can also be call ‘rustic’

  45. 45

    Call it whatever, but that style is simply inadequate for the web due to the graphics heaviness. Keep it simple, keep it clean, I say.

  46. 46

    Nice! Very nice!

  47. 47

    thx for this list an backlink. ;)

  48. 48

    Do Nguyen Minh Tuan

    January 30, 2008 2:07 am

    I so love these sites, i’ve been searching for such collections for months, love to see more interesting articles like this

  49. 49

    Great list

    Love the free fonts

    Don’t forget the free dirt texture at

  50. 50

    These are great examples of grungy designs that aren’t necessarily dirty. I love the raw & artsy feel of them.

  51. 51

    IMPRESSIVE resources!
    Thank you very much for this list and the inspiration.

  52. 52

    Thanks for this impressive list !

  53. 53

    Ah, this is why i so love smashing magazine, really awesome stuff guys.

  54. 54

    great post! impressive!

  55. 55

    Good point in this article.. Who said punk was dead anyway?

    Grunge style definelty wont be popular just like hardcore deathmetal or other extremes, but I think it is an importent thing, cause it will help keep things in balance.

    In this situation it hopefully will get the design away from the pretty plasticcard princess style, that im not a great fan of. Thx again for a great article.. much appreciated.

  56. 56

    Grungy Textures are also available at, for free.

  57. 57

    A very good style

  58. 58

    I personally am a fan of the glossy approach but only when used appropriately and if the brief calls for it, there will always be designers that just follow a trend rather than create work that is suited to the brief, some of the grungy stuff there is really nice, and can actually harder to pull off convincingly than the glossy ‘web 2.0′ look.

  59. 59

    I think the decision regarding what design style to use should be made based upon what best represents each client. Sometimes that will be what has become tagged as “Web 2.0″ style. Sometimes, whether we personally like the grunge look or not, it is the style best suited to some clients and their products/services. The one mistake I see being made in web design today is the frequent use of either of those styles applied to projects to which they aren’t relevant.

    The key is to represent each unique client appropriately, trying as best we can to disregard our personal style likes and dislikes. I admit it’s not easy to do!

  60. 60

    You know what is boring, when people say web 2.0 is not a style, yes it’s got more to do with how the web is used blah blah etc. But everyone knows what people are talking about when they use web 2.0 as a style reference….

  61. 61

    1. Punk’s hardly dead. And no, I’m not talking about what you’ll find on MTV, either.
    2. Grunge design has been around for a long time as far as modern web design goes, if that makes sense. To say it’s only a trend is ridiculous.
    3. I’m sick of hearing “web 2.0″ and people who don’t know what it’s about. It’s more so about user experience design than glossy buttons. Reflections, glossy buttons, and big text has been out for a long time and many principles of “web 2.0″ has been out for even longer. To relate the two is idiotic.
    4. I feel the vast majority of those designing the true core of websites today, the ones who make the waves, will ultimately mature in their design leaving a path for the rest to follow. You won’t find a vast majority of sites using grunge simply because of the lack of broadband support as someone already mentioned. Once broadband is a standard and dial up is phased out, you’ll find more graphic enriched websites such as any of Blizzard’s websites as a common “trend”.

  62. 62

    I was really into the grunge brushes so I used them in one of the WordPress themes i designed…

  63. 63

    Wow, great collection of textures indeed. Amazing. Liked the macro textures

  64. 64

    Ok so everyone has said that “Web 2.0″ is not about design but experience, interactivity etc…..Not to add fuel to the fire (only a little) but in all fairness we have to realize that the term “Web 2.0″ does obviously relate to higher interactivity with the users BUT we can’t fail to realize that it came about with a distinct look as well.

    I’m not saying that the interactivity associated with “Web 2.0″ can only be associated with the style of design (I admit a lot are obnoxious). But the two are not mutually exclusive. Of course you can find sites utilizing the interactivity popularized with Web 2.0 techniques without having the annoying gloss and gradient (the reverse also being true). But you are ignorant if you say that you can not call the glossy buttons and gradients “Web 2.0″ design….because in fact that is what they are called. Lets quit bickering over the terminology because “Web 2.0″ can mean BOTH a switch in user interactivity AND a set of design characteristics….

  65. 65

    I think that a lot of the elements we learned about from the “Web 2.0″ days will consistently show up in design for years to come. However, they will be intertwined with the new concepts being set into design today. Eventually you won’t even notice they are there anymore.

    Long live blink/marquee!!!

  66. 66

    My blog is grounge too?

  67. 67

    Actually, it’s my favorite. weathered and aged

  68. 68

    Ha..ha.. this is very funny
    I recived the link to this page from an friend as our site is listed above a site we designed maybe 4 years ago.

    My two cents

    #1 web 2.0 is not a style yes but there there is a style that has evolved that is associated with web 2.0 and as such according to pop culture there is a design style called web 2.0. like it or not it is a reality.

    #2 grunge as you call it evolved from the punk music movement in the 70’s with it’s origins coming from concert posters being created crudely and then crudely reproduced on fax machines. it has evolved over time David Carson turned it on it’s ear in the ninties and people started associating it with grunge music. In my creative career that spans about 20 years I have seen it flair into popularity 4 or 5 times. It has never gone away but you see it in things like wwf ads and the likes in the down years then it becomes the style of the moment and you start seeing it done mostly poorly all over for a year then fades again.

    There are some brands like which this loose style is in their dna and always will be.

    Don’t get me wrong I would love to see everybody stop copying each others glossy buttons and grunge as you call it may be a natural 180 degree departure for some but it is not new in the slightest.

    personally I believe that grunge is also over played to me fresh is big and graphic black and white or vivid color here is a good example

    but then again why follow trends thing of something new for yourself invent your own trend.

    anyway no matter what you do make it an adventure and push yourself that is what design is about.


  69. 69

    really like this article

  70. 70

    WOW I check/read this site everday and I was amazed to find one of my REM covers on todays story. So cool to be featured on SMASHING!

  71. 71

    Once again a very great list from you guys, and i think in the Web nothing stays for long so its just a matter of time till a new Trend comes in then Web 2.0 goes bye bye!

  72. 72

    Great article. No doubt that the “grunge” style originated with punk and moved onto different metal genres.

  73. 73

    Ohh… I planned redesigning of my site to web 2.0 but now I don’t know… You wrote that web2.0 era is over… Even don’t know what style to choose to use as corporate in this year…. :-(

  74. 74

    great,i like the icons

  75. 75

    this site is all-out when serve the review…
    I like this site!

    Grungy style gives me a little of mysterious feeling…

  76. 76

    This is brilliant, just what I was looking for to explain to a colleague why I didn’t want to do the usualy blog style site!

  77. 77

    Awsome Job… I guess that grunge style is becoming a new web 2.0 desiging technique..
    Rather than just another fashion stuff…

  78. 78

    @ Rob (#5)

    While you’re right that “Web2.0″ is’nt a design style, a lot of web 2 sites follow a very distinctive style, ie; gradients, rounded corners, reflect and shine. Creating a shiny looking site doesnt make it “Web 2.0″ but it’s a design trend that’s become synonymous with a lot of web 2 sites out there.

  79. 79

    awesome thanks!

  80. 80

    another nice showcase of grunge style would be – the blog of one of my friends, Floppy, a talented photographer and graphic designer.

  81. 81

    i always enjoy fresh designs that are not afraid to defy convention. these ‘grungy’ designs are just that in my eyes. thanks

  82. 82

    Great article. Grunge is very refreshing. The resources along with this article are fabulous and very inspiring!

  83. 83

    nice article as usual, thanks :)

  84. 84

    oh! Great, goot example!!!!

  85. 85

    Dallas Web Designer

    February 11, 2008 10:59 pm

    Dang! I was just getting into the Web 2.0 design and now I gotta switch roads…Hmmmmm. Great post!

  86. 86

    These grunge designs were already done a lot in the weblog scene of ’02-’03. I myself made at least a couple of these designs for my own (already dead) blog. I’d classify the style before the web 2.0 style, but that’s just a matter of perception probably…

  87. 87

    Excellent collection as usual from Smashing. We put put a texture CD about 10 years ago (texture portfolio), I’ll see if I can find the originals to put online somewhere.

    Anyone know a good place to upload lots of photo’s for this purpose?

  88. 88

    I love those grunge rss icons. I think this ‘trend’ may have some legs.

  89. 89

    These are super dooper cool list of Grunge Style! I always fascinated to this kind of style, and I wrote a tutorial related to Grunge Style about a week ago also. The more eratic your design look, then you’ll go rock!!!

  90. 90

    i like this grunge style, though its been around for a while. I was just reading another post on this site about the rise of patterns. I found it quite interesting as its something i had noticed myself recently. I reckon that trend would be more likely to get popular than the grunge look

  91. 91

    great article……..
    great design…….
    great for you ……
    thanks alot for give me an idea…… keep moving forward : >

  92. 92

    see American Eagle’s Website for an example of how corporate America is translating “Grunge” design. (in my opinion anyways… and I mean there’s quite a bit of the MTV slew hipster style incorporated. But they’re like ‘this is how white people do grunge’)

  93. 93

    What an excellent, comprehensive resource! Thank you very much for this fine post!

  94. 94

    Every time: great article with much ideas round of design, although is not all my taste ;)

    thanks a lot from germany


  95. 95

    I like it much more than the glossy stuff.
    Great collection again.


  96. 96

    StumbleUpon this blog from our Web Hosting Company Blog and just wanted to say the use of grunge style in modern web design looks refreshing good. To many web designers out there go overboard and make things just messy.

  97. 97

    I hate grunge… it looks like a pile of sht. and it looks worse when mixed w/ “Web 2.0″. I prefer clean design; Something light-weight and not rusty and dirty and gross looking.

  98. 98

    Please don’t ever delete this post…it’s great! I have it bookmarked and I come back constantly as a reference.

  99. 99

    Check out Auto Skinz Online Now and Save 30% on Select designs. Hiqh Quality digitally printed auto graphic kits for any vehicle. Many different designs and sizes to choose from. Made from easy to apply vinyl anybody can do it.

  100. 100

    Sweet! I didn’t know before you included my textures on Smashing Magazine. I’m clearly honored to be amongst such inspiring artists. I was using the search engine @ and happened to find this! Booyeah!

  101. 101

    Hi there. I’m Ali Tabatabaei, the designer of (the 4th web design example mentioned above). I live in Iran and until now I’m working and learning web design on my own. I’m looking forward to work in a creative design group and a fresh work environment in Europe or America. If have a job offer for me or know somebody who does I’ll appreciate if you let me know ;-)

  102. 102

    awesome stuff. I hope that the grunge style isn’t a passing fad, it’s a great counter to the soft and fuzzy “web 2.0″ style.

  103. 103

    I’m not a big fan of grunge style but I do see the artistic uses for something of that nature.

    To everyone mouthing off about there not being a “visual” web 2.0 style: web 2.0 is about ultra-usability and clear communication, but in order to achieve those goals certain visual elements did have to be taken into account which did lead to a Web 2.0 style. If you copy the visuals without the philosophy you end up with junk, but it will follow a recognized visual style.

  104. 104

    I don’t really call much of that stuff “grunge.” To me real grunge has a dark gothic feel and to say something is “grunge without being dirty” is just a contradiction of terms. It doesn’t even make sense. The essence of grunge is dirt, sleaze, dark, moody design. That is what grunge is.

    You can’t hijack the term and then try to apply it to some new age touchy feely commercial artsy type hybrid concept.

  105. 105

    love the grunge style.. but new styles will always come..
    i think grunge
    i love grunge
    i want a grunge girl

  106. 106

    Your post is really good & its look nice or good grunge style.

  107. 107

    It is even imagine anything! Here’s just a question of how all this should be potential visitors?

  108. 108

    I’m really happy to see some work that comes from Second Life residents such as Torley’s textures or Kim poster for Kill Bill.

  109. 109

    Eu estou usando esse seu material como fonte de estudos para o projeto que desenvolvo de sites de baixo custo. Trabalho em uma empresa mas digo que o projeto é meu pq abracei a idéia. No site pode ser visto alguns dos meus trabalhos em aventura pelo design. Ainda sou muito ruim é verdade. Acho que estou mais para “meia-colher” (se fosse pedreiro) ou um NO design.
    Mesmo assim muito obrigado.

    Até breve!

  110. 110

    I’m just suprised the grunge web design style is being written about here like it is something new. It was around WAY before this web 2.0 stuff. Grunge resources (brushes, fonts, etc) have been around forever, too. I remember making grunge designs for my websites back in 2000-2001, and the style had been around for at least a couple of years prior to that.

  111. 111

    Bravo! Great list and sources as always!

  112. 112

    Great stuff! I love this grunge style. I been designing in it since before it was cool. =P before Juxt.

  113. 113

    amazing work. thanks for putting this all together!

  114. 114

    I frequent this site often, but have never replied. Just wanted to say thanks for this post and for the Vivid Imagery In Modern Web Design post! *yay! found what I’ve been looking for, hehe*

  115. 115

    Benjamin Thompson

    February 19, 2009 5:09 pm

    this website is absolute dog n i hate it it suks my dogs nostrel n if u dnt like it then il suk ur cat n um.

  116. 116

    Karl Francisco Fernandes

    February 22, 2009 11:01 pm

    An extremely informative and inspiring article… Really influences my design style… Thank you SM!

  117. 117

    I noticed that the warning above my comment says no advertising, so does this mean I should not suggest a website with some great free grunge icons? Hope not, cause I think people should check out They have lots of icons, adding more all the time, and they are really free. Personally, I am not that much of a fan of grunge stuff, but that is a generational thing, I think, and I am definitely not of that generation….

  118. 118

    I understand that some people like clean contemporary styles, but as an artist grunge is the way to go! It has character, texture, color, and life. I personally would like to see more out there. Thanks for the article!

  119. 119

    I like the buttons but I’ve seen better ones

  120. 120

    I think grunge is a unique style that will last long-term online.. > maybe it’s an expression of the need of an at least natural appearance… and for webdesigners grunge is an easy was to show thier creativity and invidividual abilities.

  121. 121

    It is an amazing collection…you give more examples to a topic which keeps visitors to stay on your site.

  122. 122

    Saw some comments saying Web 2.0 is not a style. That’s true from a technical view, but I think there was a new look that was ushered in along with the increasing presence of web2.0.
    But I think the clean simple functional look that become more prevalent with web2.0 sites was a style which also resonated with the more professional corporate look. So we started seeing a lot of it. The grundge look this article discusses is visually interesting, but I would say outside of artistic circles it will not have the presence that the web 2.0 style has enjoyed. So while I am ready for something new, I don’t think this will be it, at least not to the same degree that we’ve seen with the web 2.0 style — whatever that is.

    Enjoyed the article. Thanks

  123. 123

    Nice article, Found lots of useful information about grunge style.
    That’s kind of stupid to relate design with web 2.0. I wonder what will be web 3.0. I guess we can call grunge style web 3.0. or may be some other styles will emerge with 4.0 or 5.0.
    every time when i read about web2.0 design i make me mad. Web 2.0 is a concept not a design aesthetic

    see this the guy who gave concept of web2.0

    also check this presentation by Elliot
    http:// ​elliot​jay​stocks.​com/​b​l​o​g​/​d​e​s​t​r​o​y​-​t​h​e​-​w​e​b​-​2​0​- ​l​o​o​k​-​f​u​t​u​r​e​-​o​f​-​w​e​b​-​d​e​s​i​g​n​-​n​e​w​-york/

  124. 124

    i like style vitor and backgrund too i 1 2 show alot style thank!!!

  125. 125

    I have been into web designing for many years now. I liked some of the textures that you have shown here in this page. This resource is really great! Can you give me a clue of the resource for the fonts of Grunge styles? we at websys – make RnDs in this mater

  126. 126

    well its certainly not a fad, i dont think its even a fashion, it is a style which will come and stay, perhaps not on the mass marked but its appeal wont fade very much at all. personally, i think that it looks better on print because it is not the most functional thing for web

  127. 127

    Its an informative article & we will definitely work on this style of website designing……great article!!

  128. 128

    I totally agree. It make me mad when i see design with web2.0

  129. 129

    Gothic is gothic. Grunge is grunge. Grunge, as a cultural form, has rarely been dark – not in music or movies or, as we’re now discussing, design.

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