Smashing Header Graphics Contest


In many blogs header graphics often takes a prominent position as bloggers try to impress visitors with distinctive and appealing visual elements. In fact, designed properly, header graphics can create an appropriate atmosphere and convey the style the designer has chosen. Well-designed themes can be as useful as templates, particularly if you can download them and experiment with them as you wish. However, you won’t find that many sources on the Web. That’s time to change it.

We’d like to create a small smashing gallery of blog header graphics which every designer could use for free and without any restrictions whatsoever. To achieve this we need the help of our creative visitors. To achieve this we need your help. Which is why we announce a Header Graphics Contest.

Update (02.02.2008): please notice that this contest is not about designing a header for the Smashing Magazine web-site. Your header graphics don’t have to be related to Smashing Magazine at all. This is about sharing your skills with fellows designers and creating a free repository of downloadable header graphics.

What is required?

In order to participate, your design should

  • contain up to 5 different graphics
  • have the resolution of 850×200 px
  • have the max. size of 60 Kb
  • be in the format PNG, JPG, GIF (if possible, please provide us with the source file as well — such as PSD, EPS, AI etc.)
  • be your own work — you must own the copyright for the designs you submit.

Send your designs via e-mail at editor at with the subject line [Header Contest Entry] YourThemeTitle, where YourThemeTitle is the title of your theme. Please mention your name, your URL and the country you come from.

If possible, please also provide us with the brief description of the theme and ideas which have been the driving force behind your design. Be creative, use unusual techniques, explore your skills, do whatever it takes — we’d like you to get really excited about it.


We’ll consider all designs we’ll receive until the 1st of March 2008. The best entries will be published briefly after the contest has ended.

Is there a reward?

Yes. First of all we’ll mention your name and your URL in the article which will contain the smashing examples of contest entries. Besides, we’ll randomly award as many participants as possible with tools, services and prizes from our sponsors. (Updated)


Let’s take a look at some excellent examples of how visually appealing header graphics might look like. The images are clickable and lead to the sites from which they’ve been taken.

Blog Header Graphic

Blog Header Graphic1

Blog Header Graphic2

Blog Header Graphic3

Blog Header Graphic4

Blog Header Graphic5

Blog Header Graphic6

Blog Header Graphic7

Blog Header Graphic8

Blog Header Graphic9

Blog Header Graphic10

Blog Header Graphic11

Useful Resources

Besides, here are some useful resources which might help you to design smashing header graphics.

Get creative, folks!


The contest is finished now. You can download the results for free in the post Blog Headers For Free Download14.


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Sven is the co-founder and former CEO of Smashing Magazine. He's now writing at his Conterest Blog, where he focuses on blogs, content strategy and publishing — all in German.

  1. 1

    Vitaly Friedman & Sven Lennartz

    February 5, 2008 1:41 am

    @kuldeep: we’ll regularly update the list of participants, at least once a week.

  2. 52

    Vitaly Friedman & Sven Lennartz

    February 5, 2008 1:44 am

    Update: We’ve received entries by

    Paulo Loreto
    Kisan Bhat
    Daniela Mincheva
    Nathaniel Heller
    Mikel D.Lian
    Yves Hellemans / Snyvo
    Rachelle Anne Miller
    Frank Mazny
    Alex Frison
    Wirdy Hamidy

    Thank you!

  3. 103
  4. 154

    François Marlane

    February 6, 2008 2:56 am

    Can we have an answer about the asked size of the headers (850×200 px)?

    Some found it very small, and it is true that most of the designs shown in the examples gallery above are bigger… These dimensions do not fit a 800×600 resolution and are too small for a 1024×768?
    Am I wrong?

  5. 205

    I take a lot from the web community and Smashing Mag, I am happy to give something back.

  6. 256

    I am not getting outta bed for less then a thousand euro’s.
    besides that Hema has a headache.

  7. 307

    Beautiful headers there! If anyone wants any sample ideas, you can get some from my blog. is another place to get ideas (lots!)
    Good luck to those who are entering the contest! :-)

    >>>>These dimensions do not fit a 800×600 resolution and are too small for a 1024×768? Am I wrong?

    Yep, you are right François. Many people are still using 800 x 600 resolution I think!

  8. 358

    Nice idea, nice submissions so far!

    But I do agree with the comment that the dimension request appears to be an “off size” and the amount of people using the 800×600 monitors has TREMENDOUSLY diminished over the past 2 years – the majority is at 1024 if not even bigger.

  9. 409

    I saw to may complains about rewards, and of course we all love to have some money prizes. But Smashing Magazine has been my University in how to build effective websites and thanks to SM I have been able to improve my webdesign. I always come here before start a project. I dont understand what those complainers are doing here, if u think smashing articles are not good for u or if Smashing magazine is not big enough to publish your link…. Relative to banners size I think its perfect and my advice for those who think its not is that you should start seeing mome examples of good websites and start thinking ‘outside of box’…. Good luck for all. CARPE DIEM

  10. 460

    Just sent an entry in :)

  11. 511

    Can we see a link of all the entries? :)

  12. 562

    Maybe I will give this a shoot, too, but I think my chanche of winning is minimal seeing the great designs all over your site.

  13. 613

    any news on this one or even an update? I’ve sent my headers 2 weeks ago but I hadn’t heard anything.

  14. 664

    Any news ?

  15. 715


    March 5, 2008 5:29 am

    hey there is no news. why?

  16. 766

    I saw this contest too late… :(
    [ ]

  17. 817

    Give please. We inhereit from our ancestors gifts so often taken for granted. Each of us contains within. this inheritance of soul. We are links between the ages, containing past and present expectations, sacred memories and future promise. Help me! It has to find sites on the: Free seminars on stock investing. I found only this – stocks for long term investing. Funds: particular funds, years and payments, distinguishing a price on returns.Provide selling the idea.This point has obtained to cash isolation for report trade and rely contains of preferred scavenger from students. The issue of rural and long-term market derivatives, uneven identity ratio and immediate name reality. Waiting for a reply ;-), Loughlin from Switzerland.


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