One of my favourite ‘styles’ in web design is one that takes inspiration from traditional media such as paper and cardboard. Using scans and images of paper provides an informal, cut-and-paste collage feeling to the design giving the site more of a personal and hand-crafted image – quite opposite to the clean and shiny trend of other web design styles. Here are 25 good examples of this super cool paper based effect put into practice.

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  1. Wow these are really great…I am totally in love with the Tennessee ones…they have those crazy background treatments I’m always on the lookout for these days. Strangely, they aren’t featured in the portfolio of the company that made them. I wanted to see exactly how many mini-sites they’d done for TN.

  2. Thanks to all for the comments,

    CarrotNetwork: I wondered if anyone would notice that I sneaked that one in haha! It’s actually a site I recently made for my partner’s driving school along with the printed work and car graphics.

    DAT: Nice collection of textures you have there, definitely a good resource for created this type of style.

    Brandi: I agree, the large background certainly makes for an eye catching design. Large background photographs is also another style that has been becoming more popular recently.

  3. Sweet list Chris. Another trend I definitely like. I particularly think the combination of paper/wood/large background on sites is always impressive. I’m currently making a studio site using those elements. Thanks for more inspiration!

  4. Great list. Web Designer wall still blows me away when I first saw it. He also shares with some of the techniques to create his website. How I wish I had such good workdpress and css skills so that I can do something more for my blog.

  5. These are fantastic! I’ve seen many such collections, but I love seeing the handmade style taking off and the direction that web design is going. I also really like the Free People Clothing site. I think they change it every quarter or so (or maybe every time a new catalog is released?). I’ve taken to grabbing screenshots because it seems like every time I go back, they have a new look!

    I noticed quite a few churches on here, too. I think it’s great they are starting to take web design into consideration.

    How do you find sites like this??

  6. Wonderful selection!
    I think it’s nice to take a break sometimes from so much digital stuff. That’s what I tried when i designed my illustration web site, scanning materials such as Canson paper and working with Conte. Pretty much running away from the digital look.

  7. While not technically paper inspired, the Trapper-Keeper motif on the blog over at is what initially inspired me to start learning CSS all those years ago…


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