Tiled Backgrounds: Is web style repeating itself?

When I started designing websites almost 7 years ago, tiled backgrounds were the way to go. Sites had everything from wonderfully hideous animated flames to spectacular twinkling stars that were the hallmark of sci-fi web pages. But as more and more people logged on to the internet and demanded legibility and sites that didn’t burn their eyes when they looked at them, tiled backgrounds became taboo. All the web design books from then on preached that backgrounds on web sites are bad things and they shouldn’t be used under any circumstances. This practice of shunning the dreaded tiled background continues on until today; In an entrepreneurship in eCommerce class I was taking, a guest lecturer came in and talked to us about web design do’s and don’ts and mentioned “don’t ever use backgrounds other than white.” As soon as she said that, it hit me that recently I’ve seen a lot of design websites introducing tiled backgrounds into their design. Sites like Spoono, simplebits.com, and asterisk are breaking the web design rules and proving that if done right a background image can be very effective in setting the style. Recurrences such as this happen all the time in the real world with clothes to music; something goes out of style only to be discovered twenty years later and often times improved upon. Now it’s a matter of years that has passed since the matter in subject became pass, but in internet years I guess its due time. Lets just hope that some practices die out for good and don’t come back to haunt us, cause I don’t think even Spoono could make blinking text and scrolling marquees look good.

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