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Style Switchers Contest Results


Three weeks ago we have announced the Style Switchers Design Contest1 where we’ve presented some ideas for style switchers design and encouraged our readers to create a style switcher for their own web-sites. One of the participants was to be awarded with an Apple Cinema 20 Flat Panel Display. Over 60 designers participated and — as in all of our earlier contests — the results are indeed pretty smashing. Now it’s time to review some of the best designs and, of course, announce the winner.

This contest has proved one thing: there are a number of possibilities for creative use of style switchers in your designs. They don’t have to be boring and can combine functionality with a beautiful and engaging design. Style switchers are back now; and we are glad that so many designers have participated in our contest learning how to use them and apply them to their designs.


The winner of the contest is Florian Pichler, the designer of the iamBlog3‘s style switcher. Congratulations, Florian, we are happy to smash you with an Apple Cinema 20 Flat Panel Display! We’ll contact you via e-mail over the next 24 hours.

And now let’s take a look at 60 excellent examples of style switcher designs created by the participants of our contest. Please notice that only those designers have participated in the contest who followed exactly the rules we’ve published in our announcement post.

Iamblog Link

Iamblog.de4 has put a lot of effort in designing an advanced style switcher. Hit the button “Hintergrund ändern” in the upper left of the page to open up the styleswitcher and choose a background you like. Previews, backgrounds and the switcher itself are loaded with Ajax, the list of available backgrounds is generated dynamically so every writer of the blog can easily add their own background. Currently 10 different styles are available. The Ajaxified style-switcher can be dragged across the site layout.




Komodo Media Link

Sometimes style switchers can also be extremely creative. Rogie King8 has designed a sliding foliage-o-meter. Visitors can select the intensity of the foliage in the design (from sparse to dense). The leaves appear not only in the header, but also in navigation options, bullets and headings. Beautiful design, excellent style switcher.



pure structure Link

Nigel O Toole11 offers an advanced and dynamic style switcher. At one, the presentation of items in Nigel’s portfolio can be adapted to user’s needs. Apart from that the background image of the site can be changed as well. The style switcher itself has two levels: the first level takes care of the structure. To access the second level you need to click on the visual at the right.




Engage Link

On Engage interactive15 you can change the theme via the button in the top right — there are 4 to choose from. All themes are completely different. Each one changes the site holder and also a few bits in the portfolio. Graphics are replaced as well.




Gnomdesign Link

Gnomdesign19 has three themes with different background images and blog headers.




Schillmania Link

Schillmania23 has an advanced mood switcher: visitors can adjust the brightness of the displayed header image and add a snow effect




Small Stone Link

Smallstone27 allows its visitors to “swap out the shelf” — exchange the header, visuals and links. The style switcher is placed right under the header and is also designed in a unique and professional way.




Kulturbanause Link

Kulturbanause31 has a quite unusual blog design with two artistic themes — Daylight and Sunset. As the designer says, you can “play god” with the themes. The style switcher is placed in the sidebar. When the theme is switched both graphics and visuals are changed.




Nofrks Link

Nofrks35 has a day and a night style. In both cases only background image is replaced.



Luke Larsen Link

Luke Larsen38 allows visitors to switch between the blue sky view and the goldfish tank view. The site layout is quite wide: when the style is switched, a number of design elements such as background and used images change as well. In the blue sky view dove is used, in the fish tank view a golden fish. The style switcher is placed in the navigation at the top of the page. The site didn’t have the text “Smashing Magazine” which is why it hasn’t been considered when selecting the winner.



Planatopija Link

Planetopija41 enables users to change the color of the header illustration. The style switcher itself is nicely designed (see the image below, the switcher is hidden behind “colour your world, oboji svoj svijet“).




Westin Melbourne Hotel Link

Westin Melbourne Hotel45 has an advanced mood switcher: visitors can adjust the brightness of the displayed header image and add a snow effect




Olidax Link

Since Olidax49 has a space theme, it allows its visitors to change the theme using a, well, space switcher. You can switch the styles while choosing a planet (you can find it on top of the right column). Earth, Saturn and Mars themes are currently available.




Lee Munroe Link

Lee Munroe53 has a style switcher that changes depending on the time of day. Visitors can also pick their desired style if they prefer. The style switcher is placed at the upper right corner of the content area. The shadows in the footer change with the changed theme as well.




Sam Gerdt Link

Sam Gerdt57 allows visitors to select one of three background patterns for the header. The styleswitcher appears when the button at the right upper corner is clicked.




Diego Valobra Link

Diego Valobra61 has two different antique designs. The background image is replaced. The style switcher is placed in the right bar of the layout.




Maikel Neris Link

Maikel Neris65 replaces background images: the style switcher provides visitors with an access to three blog themes.




John Scott Link

John Scott69 has a style switcher with 4 available skins. In each case the background image and the header are changed.




Thomas J Bradley Link

Thomas J. Bradley73 has a style switcher which is controlled by the Flash banner at the top of the page. When you click on the pink star you will be presented with a slider to glide through the different styles for the site. Each of the styles correspond to a time of day, and are displayed during that time period. As designer says, he wanted to have a fun hidden aspect so he provided this easter egg to slide through all the time periods / styles. 5 styles are available. However, the style switcher is not really easy to find.


GBot Link

Gbot75 has four different background images: earth, paper, tree and sky. Created using Mootools 1.2 Beta 2. The style switcher is placed in the footer of the layout.




Sitesquared Link

Sitesquared79 with a day- and night-theme of the design. The designers of the site love Smashing Magazine, we love your designs too!



Further solutions Link

Pegd82‘s style switcher is very minimalistic; it uses transparent png’s and background-color to save on loading different logos for each selected color. When the style is changed logo color and link color are changed. The style switcher is placed in the sidebar and is represented by colorful rectangles.


Peter Bucher84 has five style sheets, a styleshow which automatically changes the style and a font-size switcher. The style switcher itself is quite wide.


Timbix Media86 uses three color variations as well as a font size switcher in the left sidebar. Since the layout is elastic, not only text size is increased, but the layout increases as well.


Roy Quilor88 allows his visitors to switch from default text style to Serif fonts and to a “creme colour” design.


This switcher allows its visitors to change the width of the layout to fit an 800×600 or 1024×768 screen. It also has a font-increase functionality that also changes the size of the home and print icons on the side. The style switcher is placed in the sidebar. The icons are simple and easy to understand.


Viatrax91 has an automatic style switcher. The user can’t do anything here; instead WordPress loads a random style automatically when the page is loaded.


Lucia Vega93 has four color styles for his headers and the layout.


Minimal.ca95 present three versions for your best color contrast. The style switcher is placed in the sidebar.


Ledger pad97 has a sticky style switcher which has a fixed position at the right corner at the bottom of the page and remains there even when the page is being scrolled. Blue and black-white-styles are available.


On 2ndzenith.com99 three style themes re hidden behind the “Customize” button. When the button is clicked, the theme picker is sliding. With a changed style links, background and text colors are changed.


Flanisoft101 can switch between a dark and a light background.


Jimmyweb103 offers some color variations of the layout color and link colors.


VMP-Finanz105 offers a basic font-size style switcher in the sidebar.


Weiqi.nl107 with a dynamic style switcher which offers 5 different themes. When the theme is changed, links, header and background image are replaced.


Da Scritch109 has a black toolbar in the header of the page with font-size switcher (”dézoomer” and “zoomer”) and dark/light-switcher (”éclairer”). The visitors can also activate/deactivate fancy animations (”sans anim” and “déplier”).


Freeneedle111 offers 7 color variations for the site design, background images and link colors.


MSDevstudio113 offers 3 different stylesheets with a dfiferent color variations of the layout.


Color and background variations Link

Ganato Design Link


Spaksu Link


Firex-bg Link


Cnow Designs Link


deam0n Link


Chris Taulborg Link

Chris Taulborg120 has a weather-based style switcher — there are a clear, cloudy, snowy, stormy and night themes available.


Visual 28 Link

Visual28122 goes smashing. The site offers a Smashing-style design layout as alternative style.


rex Link

rex124 offers 5 themes — color and design variations — with font-size-switchers.



Liverpool Youth Service Link

Liverpool Youth Service127 with a text size switcher, high contrast version, text only version and a reset button.


Chimou Link


Ryan Harris Link

Ryan Harris’s styleswitcher is a little bit too complex: to activate the theme switcher users need to click on “change background” link: after that the theme of the design can be selected.


Salt Solutions Link



Anni 80 Link


90seven Design Link

90Seven133 offers its visitors two different designs.


Card Pac Link

Card Pac135 with a style switcher placed right in the content. Such style switcher is hard to find and hard to use as the color is selected via a not-so-user-friendly pop-up.


Now-Streaming Link

now-streaming137 with a tiny four colours-box under the logo — each of the colors stands for the corresponding design layout.


Hans Engel Link

Hans Engel139 has a tiny icon that allows users to expand the layout. The style switcher is placed at the top left corner of the layout.


Codesignville Link

Codesignville141 has 2 styles switchers, one for Text Size and other to change the theme (Day, Afternoon and Night).


due chiacchiere Link

due chiacchiere143 has a style switcher aimed at accessibility. Visitors can increase/decrease the font size, text alignment, layout and remove/add details.


Your site is valid Link

Your site is valid145 can switch from a dark layout to a light one.


How about a site that has fifty style sheets to choose from? YourWebPro147 offers 50 color schemes (authoritative, dependable, enchanting, energetic and unique) — the changes affect both the layout and the color of the links. Hint: energetic color schemes not only look energetic. Don’t try this at home.


Yuyu Link

A tiny layout switcher on Yutheme.cn149 changes the position of sidebar in the layout. The style switcher may be hard to find, though.


DinPattern Link

DinPattern151 uses a style switcher to display the tiled pattern to the user when the “preview” link is clicked below any pattern. It simply changes the body class to display the correct pattern tile.


We express sincere gratitude to all participants for a number of creative, beautiful and truly smashing style switchers. We hope to see you next time!

Footnotes Link

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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

    congrats to iamblog!

  2. 2

    Great inspiration you have here

  3. 3

    Now seriously…how you can run all over the internet to find stuff like this?

  4. 4

    The komomedia Styleswitcher is just awesome!

  5. 5

    Komodo Media’s is crazy! Great work.

  6. 6

    Thanks for feature my website. I’m sad because i don’t win the Apple Cinema Display… who knows in the next?

    Oh! My name you wrote wrong. Is not “Naris”, is “Neris”.

    Thanks again!

  7. 7

    Nguyen Trung Kien

    June 25, 2008 4:14 pm

    Great inspiration you have here

  8. 8

    Awesome! The Komodo one is my favourite – simply amazing.

  9. 9

    very nice!!!!

  10. 10

    How is the movement done on this website featured here: ?

    Is it flash – it does not seem to be. But flows like flash when you click on a button it flies off in another direction.

    Would really like to learn how to do this – maybe a tutorial exists out there?

  11. 11

    Very nice piece. The Komodo Media switcher is by far the best in my opinion though…

  12. 12

    Love the Komodo media design – one of my favorite site designs ever! :)

  13. 13

    gg Scott Schiller!

  14. 14

    Congratulations to Florian Pichler. Nice work! Site’s a little slow no doubt to traffic from this post, but killer job. Of course, my favorite is the super mario theme. :)

  15. 15

    I like how much work people have put into some of those. Hopefully more site will adapt alternative styles for people with needs.

  16. 16

    Tnx for feature my work.
    iam blog & komodo media, really hard to decide, they r both amazing, congratulation to the winner, enjoy your new Apple Cinema :)
    This has been a great contest.


  17. 17

    Nice job guys. Everything looks great!

  18. 18

    A lot of great things… Keep smashing…

    Komodo Media should be the winner I think. My vote for Komodo Media…

  19. 19

    I am impressed with the quality of some of the websites featured. No doubt this contest has improved the design of many participating websites – I only wished I had learned about the contest earlier!

    Komodo Media is my personal pick :)

  20. 20

    Congrats winner………

  21. 21

    This was a great contest and I am happy I got chosen. I just did want to mention that I did place the words “Smashing Magazine” in the site. I wrote an article about it in the articles section of the website. Click on articles in the nav and scroll down. When submitted it was the first article on the page.

    Thanks for a great contest though!

  22. 22

    Why? Seems like a way to do 3 times as much work to me.

    Do potential guests of the Westin Hotel really care if their site comes in pinkish, bluish or brownish hues? I don’t think so…

    Smashing article though, food for thought.

  23. 23

    Congratulations owner! :)

  24. 24

    Congrats winners! Awesome work!

  25. 25

    Congratulations.. and thanks for SM to nice contest..

  26. 26

    great post. thanks SM!

  27. 27

    Good to see Lee Munroe get a mention :) nice work!

  28. 28

    Oh damn, didn’t realise there was a contest on this. I would given you something very nifty. I’m writing a tutorial on this later today, i’ll update here for you all to see.

  29. 29

    Florian Pichler

    June 26, 2008 12:29 am

    Wow. Never thought this would be possible. Thanks a lot. I’m totally stunned.
    and yeah, the traffic makes my server slow, upgrade is on the way.

  30. 30

    Cool stuff guys! I just recently had my first go at adding a style switcher (5 background options) to my new site design…


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