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Steven Snell is a Web designer and blogger. In addition to maintaining his own blog and writing for a number of other top design blogs, he also manages an online shop that offers premium graphic design resources.

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35 Free High-Quality E-Commerce Templates

For website owners who are evaluating e-commerce solutions, there are several good options for powering websites and shopping carts. Regardless of which option you chose, deciding on a design brings with it even more decisions to make. Of course, a custom design is always an option, but for those who want to keep costs down, templates are a popular choice. Premium e-commerce themes are easy to find, but they can be expensive. Free e-commerce templates are difficult to find, and quality free templates are even harder to find.

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We've done the research for you, and in this post we present 35 of the highest-quality free e-commerce templates available. There are templates specifically for WordPress, Prestashop, osCommerce, Magento, Zen Cart, CubeCart, and CRE Loaded, as well as a number of general e-commerce templates. Please notice that these templates aren't intended to be used 1:1, but should rather be used as a skeleton for your own shop and hence saves a lot of work, because otherwise you would have to start from scratch.

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The Ultimate Collection Of Free Vector Packs

Designers love freebies that make life easier and help them create higher-quality work. Free vectors are useful, free vector packs even more so. Fortunately, there are plenty of talented graphic designers who are willing to give away their work (or samples of it) to benefit the rest of us. In this post, we feature 60 of the best and most useful free vector packs.

Live Music Vectors

Many of the vectors featured here would be useful for particular styles of design and specific types of websites. Take a few moments to browse through them, and you may find something that's perfect for a current or upcoming project. Before you use any of the freebies, be sure to check the license designated by the creator to stay within the stated guidelines.

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Mobile Web Design Trends For 2009

Web designers know that the industry involves plenty of change, and continuous adaption and development of skills is required in order to stay up-to-date. In the past few years one of the biggest areas of change has been the amount of internet users that are accessing websites via phones and mobile devices. As a result, web designers have a growing need to be educated in this area and be ready for designing sites that will accommodate this audience.

Digg

Because designing websites for mobile devices brings some unique situations and challenges into play, the subject requires a strategic approach from the designer/developer. In this article we'll look at the subject as a whole, including current trends, challenges, tips and a showcase of example mobile websites. Plenty of helpful resources and articles are also linked to throughout the post, so if you're interested in learning more about designing for mobiles, you should have plenty of information at your fingertips.

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Textures In Modern Web Design

If you look around at well-designed websites in CSS galleries or any other source of design inspiration, you'll see that texture is extremely common in modern Web design. One of the reasons it's so popular is because of its versatility. Textures can be used in countless different ways and in a wide variety of design styles. As you look around, you'll see how textures can be used in so many different ways by Web designers.

Jobs on the Wall

Textures in Web design can be very subtle, so that the visitor hardly notices, or they can be a focal point of the design. In some cases, textures are used to emphasize certain parts of the design. Because of the versatility of textures, they can be used in combination with many other design elements, such as typography, lighting and colors.

When examining exemplary Web designs that employ textures, you'll notice that textures are used in background images, headers, footers, sidebars, content areas and even fonts. Although texture is sometimes associated with a grunge style of design, its reach extends far beyond just grungy websites. Texture adds dimension to virtually any style of design, if applied properly. In this post, we'll look at 50 examples of websites that use textures in different ways.

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Joomla Developer’s Toolbox

Joomla is a popular free and open-source content management system (CMS) that can be used to power all kinds of websites. After we published developer's toolboxes for a variety of other CMS', many readers requested a collection of resources for Joomla users and developers, so here it is. Joomla grew out of the Mambo CMS and has since built a large and loyal group of users, much like the other popular open-source options. What this means for users and developers is that there is a wealth of information and resources available, and in this post we'll take a look at many of the best.

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Other developer's toolboxes from Smashing Magazine:

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Looking Back On 2008 With Top Web Designers

The start of a new year is often a time of reflection on the past year, both personally and professionally, as well as a time to look forward to the year ahead. With that in mind, we thought it would be interesting to do a New Year's group interview with a number of top designers and developers. We put together a big list of questions and posed two in particular to each of the participants.

Level 2 Design

We think you'll enjoy the insight this panel provides into 2008 and 2009. There's a wide variety of topics covered, including favorite resources, trend predictions, business lessons learned, upcoming events for 2009 and more. Let's take a look at a large group interview with top web designers that takes a look back on 2008 and presents some predictions for the year 2009.

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The Ultimate Collection Of Photoshop Custom Shapes

Photoshop users are able to benefit from the vast amount of high-quality resources that are freely available to the community. Brushes get a lot of attention, but custom shapes are also extremely useful in the right situations. Finding a custom shape that has already been created can save you some time and headaches in your design, and fortunately there is a very wide variety of custom shapes available.

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This post highlights 80 different sets of custom shapes (over 2,500 individual shapes) in several different categories. If you plan to download and use any of these shapes be sure to check to terms and conditions set by the creator of the shapes.

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Movable Type Developer’s Toolbox

Because we have published several other comprehensive resources for developers of other content management systems (CMSs), we didn’t want to forget Movable Type. Like the other CMSs we have featured, Movable Type is a popular choice for bloggers, website owners and those developing websites. Over the years, Movable Type has made many advancements and had many changes in its system. The current version is even capable of creating social networking websites with many users.

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The most recent version, 4.21, is available open source for developers. Individual bloggers (those who are not incorporated) can download Movable Type for free, while there are a few different licensing options for businesses.

This post provides you with a large collection of resources for working with Movable Type, whether you’re just getting started or have plenty of experience. We’ll feature some official resources, such as documentation, as well as plenty of tutorials, sources of inspiration, the best places to find plug-ins, resources for working with templates and styles and more.

For similar resources related to other CMSs, please see:

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