The work & fun of web designer Radu Chelariu.


Experiments, ideas & things done just for the fun of it

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Feel free to get in touch with me if you want to hire me (design work, speaking engagements, guest posting), interviews, if you have a problem with either Photoshop, HTML, CSS or Wordpress, or if you just want to talk about design. I'm also available on Twitter, Facebook or Google+, if that's more your game.

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CSS3 leather stitching

Yesterday, I came across this little post by Todd Dunham over at Developer Drive and thought to myself “well, that’s not a very convincing effect”. Sure, Todd was very clean about his markup and used just one element in his attempt to recreate a stitched effect, but are we to trade quality over purism? Sometimes the answer to that question is yes, but, to me, this time it was a resounding no.

So, I set out to pull off my own take on the whole CSS3 Stitched Effect. Take a look at the demo and below I’ll explain some of the code.


I used this image from SXC as a leather texture. The brown texture is the same picture, just scaled down and slightly edited in good ol’ Photoshop. The markup is really quite simple, just two divs.

<div id="stitch">
<div id="inner-stitch">Just a CSS leather stitch</div>


There’s a fair bit of stuff in the demo but it all boils down to two properties: border and outline. Use these two properties with the same width and alternate colors and you have yourself a stitching effect.

border: 1px dashed #000;
outline: 1px dashed #fff; }

Certainly, achieving this effect requires more than just the use of two properties, it’s got a lot to do with getting the right colors, maybe doing some rounding off at the corners, subtle stuff like that. It’s not a groundbreaking technique, of course, but it does prove one very important point: even a simple technique such as this one takes a bit of elbow grease to get right if quality work is what you’re after. Just slapping code in a project and hoping it’ll be brilliant right off the bat is a pipe dream.

Cheers, all!

2 Comments so far

  1. Matija says:

    Wow, very nice dude, I like it :)

  2. Patrick says:

    This website has an awesome design :D and thank you for the leather idea :)

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