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The All-New Design Shack Is Here!

It’s been a little while coming, but I’m pleased to let you know that the all-new Design Shack is now very much live! We’ve tweaked the design to be a little simpler and more streamlined, and added plenty of new features (with lots more to come over the next few weeks!)

Read on for a little explanation about what’s new in the latest iteration of the site, and what you have to look forward to over the coming month!

Broader Categories

We’ve thoroughly enjoyed publishing regular doses of web design inspiration over the past five years (yes, it’s been that long!). But I think that it’s time for us to expand a little further afield.

In addition to publishing inspiring web designs, we’re now also going to be focusing on beautiful interfaces, and gorgeous examples of branding. Both of these areas have lots to offer, remain relevant to our core audience of web designers, and look incredibly pretty!

We’ll be publishing a larger selection of different designs every day, retaining our high standard of inspiration but offering it on a slightly more regular basis. I really hope you enjoy it.

Design Shack Accounts

Another major new addition we’ve made is the ability to create a Design Shack Account. Why would you want to do that? Well, there are a few reasons:

  • Quickly and easily submit your designs to be featured
  • Access our exclusive weekly deals
  • Request free Design Dilemma advice
  • Receive our fantastic weekly newsletter

Is that enough of an incentive? Essentially, we’re wanting to kick off a regular series of weekly deals for designers in the New Year. This will require a solid membership system for the site, so we’ve implemented this now so that you can sign up in advance.

I’m also really excited about our weekly newsletter. This is going to feature top articles and inspiration every week, all wrapped up in a beautiful email. It will also be a great way to let you know about each weekly deal in the New Year!

What are you waiting for? Be one of the cool kids and get yourself signed up—it only takes about 10 seconds.

An Improved Gallery

In addition to the new categories, we’ve also made a few tweaks to the Gallery so that it’s far more enjoyable to use. You can now filter by several different attributes at any one time (viewing, just red, portfolio designs, for instance). This makes browsing the Gallery a lot more useful!

The different design categories have also been refined and expanded to accommodate the new types of design we’ll be featuring. Head over to the Gallery to see what’s changed.

As part of the upgrade, we’ve had to disable ratings on designs in the short term. These will be added again very soon, along with the ability to leave a comment on any of our featured designs. Over the next few days, I’ll also be adding a way for members to submit their own examples of branding and interface design to the Gallery.

Deals!

I mentioned our Weekly Deals project above, but I thought that I’d explain a little further… At the start of 2011, we’re going to be offering fantastic weekly deals to designers and creatives. Everything from graphics and themes, through to software and subscriptions.

These won’t be huge “bundles” of questionable quality, rather they’ll be hand-picked products we think you’ll really love.

I’m really excited about this, and I hope we’ll be able to offer something really useful to all our readers. I’m sure you’ll enjoy what we have in store!

Growing the Team

Last, but certainly not least, I’m pleased to welcome the third member of the Design Shack team—Joel Bankhead. Joel is going to be heading up the addition of new design content, and handling our weekly newsletter. It’s great to have him on board!

Thanks for Reading!

I’d just like to take a minute to say a big thank you to everyone that reads Design Shack. We’ve had an amazing twelve months, with traffic growing by 180% since this time last year. I’m really thrilled that you enjoy reading the site, and hope we’ve managed to inspire and inform you over the course of 2010.

I’m really excited about everything we have in store for next year, and look forward to sharing the next chapter of Design Shack with you. It’s our readers that make the site what it is!

If you have any thoughts about the new design and features, let me know in the comments. I’d love to hear your feedback.