Every now and again I’ll get a client who already knows exactly how they want their website to look. Now, sometimes this can be quite nice as it makes the design process quite a bit easier on my end, other times it can be a bit frustrating as their idea is either something that doesn’t quite translate well to the web or was a trend circa a decade ago.
I recently found myself in a meeting with a client asking to have his background be wood paneling. It made sense being that he was a contractor who dealt with using fine and exotic woods, but it was an idea that made me think of websites from a few years back.
I did a little digging around and decided that even if this was a trend a while back, it doesn’t mean that it can’t still be done or won’t look good. So, let’s take a look at these ten of the better-looking websites with a wood texture that I came across.
This site has a nice wooden textured background combined with 3D illustrated objects. It may seem a bit too crowded, but the website design matches the app’s branding and style. All in all, I thought this was a pretty clever layout for an app site, with good use of icons, and a nice color palette.
Merchand de Trucs has worked a bit of magic on their website and cleverly added a subtle touch of wood texture to their design. They avoid the need to make the wooden texture tile vertically by simply adding a gradient and making it fade to black.
This website design combines high-quality, realistic illustrations with vintage elements, such as the ones used as backgrounds for the main content block and sidebar block. This is another example of a nice, dark, color palette on a website.
Cottonseed Oil Tour is another great example of a site with a natural wood textured background. It also offers a brighter colored design than some of the other wood-textured sites.
The Cottonseed Oil Tour also does a good job of incorporating green-colored wood texture as the background to their main content header. Again, this may seem too cluttered, but it matched the website’s purpose. It’s fun to look at, definitely not modern, but unique nonetheless.
This site offers a refreshing and unique approach to websites with wood-textured backgrounds. Rather than tiling images to create a sort of fence-like look, they stuck with just the texture of the wood grain to give the background the appearance of a sheet of plywood. It also uses some vintage decorative elements and aged paper textures, to add a bit of vintage style to the design.
This is an example of how to use wood textures subtly in web design. The wood texture provides a nice contrast and is a good balance of bright and dark. This is a realistic website design with 3D photo objects, such as the sushi element at the top of the page, plus the paper texture which makes up the content background for the site.
This is another great example of a site that combines wood texture with large typography. I like the balance of the wooden texture in this site, it’s not overbearing and has just enough to spruce up the page and give the viewer a receptive first impression when the first visit.
This is an example of how wood textures can be used in modern designs. It is a more contemporary approach with a hipster vibe.
Galluzzo Communications is a creative agency that took the wood texture and old paper theme and added metal into the mix. The result is a very cool design and another perfect example of a site with a wood texture not going overboard with it. This example also combines the wood texture with metal and paper elements. is it too much?
This is a rather fun site. It uses wooden texture all over the background, combined with realistic images and 3D vector objects. This is another example of a more modern design that uses wood elements.
It has a retro theme, very well-chosen fonts, and lots of cool illustrations that caught my attention. The navigation menu is also cleverly designed and very user-friendly. Check it out to see the transitions as well!
This is another great example of a site that injects a lot of the wooden texture to add character to the site. They rely on a wood background. It’s a nice touch and works well with the earthy tones that decorate the rest of the site. The menu is quite simple and the content is displayed in a basic layout.
This site utilizes the wood texture to add a little life to its background, rather than relying on a solid color. This particular texture tiles nicely, both vertically and horizontally, and it also has a nice balance of bright and dark browns.
This site also has some uniquely shaped elements, which are inspired by retro designs. It’s simple, yet makes use of some decorative effects.
Though using wood textures was the new hot thing a year or two ago, it doesn’t mean that it can no longer be used. I think that when it’s used properly wood paneling can still make for an attractive site. See, for example, the modern website designs we featured somewhere in this list.
You can create some really cool website designs using realistic textures! And why shy away from it when your client’s business is a cabinet maker, contractor, door installer, or any number of other trades where wood plays a large part?
About the author: with over ten years in the freelance web design and writing fields, Scott Stanton has had his finger on the beating pulse of the industry’s hottest design trends and bends for the past decade. Scott regularly writes for Wix.com the free website builder. Follow him on Twitter @TheScottStanton.