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Retail websites, blogs, and social networks all embrace a change in their sites’ looks around this time of year, inundating the viewer with reds and greens, snowflakes and Santa hats, presents and pine trees.  You may even have a site of your own that you’d like to make Christmas-y, but how to do that without overwhelming the viewer with your holiday spirit?  Here are some do’s and dont’s for making your little part of the web a classy Christmas site.

Things to do

Do change your overall scheme, including colors and images.  Christmas colors are traditionally red, green, gold and silver.  If your website is normally blue, make it a nice ruby red with gold accents, or gold with emerald font.  Also make sure to change-up your banner (header) at the top of your site to match your Christmas colors.  Maybe add an ornament or snowflake to your usual banner to give it that Christmas pop. Kohls, Barnes & Noble, and Bath & BodyWorks are all retail sites that use Christmas colors and graphics to great effect.  Bath & Body Works is particularly interesting in its use of purple for its holiday-themed homepage, but it works quite nicely nonetheless.

Do have fun with making your site festive. If you don’t like it, no one will.  Work closely with an experienced graphic designer to give your site the right look.  If you are the one tweaking your site but perhaps have not much experience with coding and design, go simple with your changes.

Do change your linked graphics to Christmas-themed.  Have the little blue Twitter bird at the bottom of your blog?  Give that bird a Santa-hat.  Have a logo of your own?  Perhaps give it a nice red bow or add a pine tree.  This gives the viewer an even greater sense of your website feeling like Christmas. If you want royalty free graphics, check out this article: Top 15 Websites to Download Free PSD Files

Things not to do

Don’t add Christmas music to your site.  ‘Tis the season to be jolly, but most people find a blast of Jingle Bells to be more annoying than cheery.  Skip the soundtrack: your viewers (and listeners) will thank you. I cannot remember a time when I actually stayed on a website just because the music started playing. Consider/respect others, many people have music, podcasts, or audio-books running while they browse the web. Myspace has been dead for a while, please don’t bring it’s features back…

Don’t do excessive animations.  Such as: snow falling across the page, Santa popping up every time you click a link, or little gifs in every corner.  A little animation really goes a long way, and it’s best reserved for modest banners and flash slide-shows of products.  Going overboard on the animation makes for a headache for the viewer, and ultimately they will leave your site to go to one less busy. Tiffany & Co. is a good example of how a great little animation in the corner makes you want to click to find out more.  It’s subtle, uses their main color (light blue) but with a red Christmas ribbon for a nice bit of holiday cheer.

WordPress Plugins

Got a WordPress based blog? Great! Here are a few snowfall based plugins. Guaranteed to give your site a Christmas like feeling!

Social Media Icons

If you would like to use some beautiful icons for your website, we are positive you will be happy with the ones below. They were all hand-picked based on quality!

Smashing Christmas

E-maniacs – Christmas RSS Icons

Smashing Christmas Icon Set

Christmas Icons

Happy Holidays by The Iconfactory

The Polar Express by Anthony Piraino

Winter Holiday Icons

Iconka.com Icon Sets

A look at Christmas Ready Websites!

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Posted by Emily Matthews

Emily Matthews loves to read about new research into health care, gender issues, and literature. She lives and writes in Seattle, Washington.

One Comment

  1. Hi there,

    Emily again. Would you mind fixing the link in the bio of the article? I’d really appreciate it.

    Thank you!
    Emily

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