What’s new for designers, November 2014

By Cameron Chapman Posted Nov. 11, 2014 Reading time: 5 minutes

In this month’s edition of what’s new for designers and developers, we’ve included new apps for design, frameworks and boilerplates, new mobile apps, new jQuery and JavaScript resources, resources for startups, and much more. And as always, we’ve also included some awesome new fonts!

Almost everything on the list this month is free, with a few low-cost, high-value apps and tools also included. They’re sure to be useful to designers and developers, from beginners to experts.

If we’ve missed something that you think should have been on the list, let us know in the comments. And if you know of a new app or resource that should be featured next month, tweet it to @cameron_chapman to be considered!


Bootstrap Magic

Bootstrap Magic is an easy to use tool for creating your own downloadable Bootstrap themes. It includes contextual live preview, a typeahead function, colorpicker, Google Webfonts, and more.

bootstrap magic


Ionic Framework

The Ionic Framework lets you create hybrid mobile apps with HTML, CSS, and JS components. It’s built with Sass and optimized for AngularJS, and is native focused and beautifully designed.

ionic framework


Pronounceable Password Generator

This Pronounceable Password Generator lets you easily generate as many passwords as you need, and at a required length. Most of the passwords generated will have pronounceable parts, making them easier to remember.

password generator



Pawnmail is a free email host for custom domains. They offer up 2GB of storage and will remain free forever.



Cutlass WordPress Starter Theme

The Cutlass WordPress Starter Theme is a quick way to get started building WP themes using the power of Laravel’s Blade templating engine. It includes HTML5 syntax, Bootstrap, and Font Awesome.

cutlass wp starter theme



BeeFree is an easy way to create rich email messages. Just pick a template to get started.




Dropcap.js is a plugin from Adobe that lets you easily add drop caps similar to print documents. There’s an interactive demo on the site so you can try out the look.




Snap is an app from MailChimp that lets you send photo-based email campaigns straight from your mobile device. Snap a pic of something your mailing list would love, write a quick note to accompany it (you can include a link to the product or your website here, too), and pick an email template before sending it out to your MailChimp list.




Rooms is a new offering from Facebook that lets you create private group message boards for whatever interests you. Create a room, customize the look and feel, and then invite others who share your passion.




SoundKit is a professional audio library for your UI projects. It includes hundreds of royalty free sound effects that can be used in both mobile and desktop app designs.




uiGIFs is a library of animated UI inspirations in GIF form. They also have a weekly email newsletter for inspiration delivered straight to your inbox.




TypeGenius helps you pick the perfect font combinations for your projects. Just select a starter font, and then view matches. Each match even includes a link to the webfont.




Brackets is a modern, open source text editor from Adobe. It has focused visual tools, preprocessor support, and even a tool for extracting clean, minimal CSS straight from a PSD.




Monodraw is an ASCII art image editor for the Mac that makes it easy to create text-based art. And because it’s all just plain text, it’s easy to embed your creations virtually anywhere.



Beautiful Maps

Beautiful Maps is a Tumblr blog that features beautiful maps from around the world and from various points in history. It’s a great source of design inspiration for maps and related UI elements.

beautiful maps


Startup Notes

Startup Notes is a collection of doodle notes by Gregory Koberger taken during the Startup School talks from 2014. It includes the most actionable advice from each speaker, which include everyone from the founder of Indiegogo to the founder of Groupon, and many others.

startup notes



If you’re short on font and color inspiration, then Palettab is just the Chrome extension for you. Every time you open a new tab, you’ll get a color palette from ColourLovers and a series of fonts from Google Fonts to give you ideas.




FormKeep is form endpoints for designers and developers, with no iFrames, JavaScript embeds, or CSS overrides. It generates a URL for your form’s endpoint that you plug into your existing code to deploy.




Pleeease is a CSS post-processor that simplifies the use of preprocessors and keeps stylesheets smaller and easier to maintain. It adds prefixes, provides fallbacks for rem units, adds an opacity filter for IE8, and much more.




Bada55.io converts leet words for your CSS hex colors. Get hex codes that spell out everything from FBI (#FB1) and coffee (#C0FFEE) to idiots (#1D1075) and Tardis (#7A2D15).




Coolors is a super easy to use color palette generator. Just press the space bar to generate a palette.




Interchange uses media queries to load various responsive content based on the user’s browser and device.




Schema is a modular front-end framework for jumpstarting the process of building complex web interfaces. It’s perfect for everything from prototypes to production-ready applications.




BareKit is a front-end project starter that’s more of a structural guide and starting point than a full-blown framework. It won’t interfere with your custom styles and scripts, but has enough functionality to get you started.




MNML is a simple template for designing responsive sites right in your browser. The included CSS is under 2kb minified and just 1.2kb gzipped.




Twemoji is a set of all of the new Twitter emojis that appear on the Twitter website, packaged up as an open source icon set for your projects.



Face Detection

This Face Detection jQuery plugin works with images and videos, as well as canvases. It has various settings (including interval, confidence level, and more), and returns a variety of parameters for each face detected.

face detection



Muzli is a Chrome tab extension that gives you the freshest links about UI, UX, design, and interactive from all over the web. It gives you constant access to all the inspiration you need.




Themosis is a framework for building custom websites and applications with WordPress. It includes fine tuned routing for managing WordPress behaviors, better templating engines, and more.




L20n is a localization framework from Mozilla. Localizers can put small bits of logic into localization resources to codify the grammar of the language.



Student Developer Pack

GitHub’s Student Developer Pack is a huge set of resources available for free to students. It includes everything from hosting to crowdsourcing resources, and more, worth thousands of dollars.

student developer pack


Google Inbox

Google Inbox is a new email platform from Google that includes more than just email, including bundled messages (including promos, purchases, and custom bundles), and even includes reminders.

google inbox



Sunn is a free handwriting font that comes with a basic set of uppercase letters.




Jimmy is a free font family that includes four fonts: including regular and bold sans and serifs. It’s great for slogans and accent words, with a handdrawn aesthetic.



Eazy 3

Eazy 3) is a display font inspired by graffiti art. It’s free for both commercial and non-commercial use.

eazy 3


Anke Sans

Anke Sans is a simple serif typeface that’s suited to a wide variety of uses, from body type to headlines.

anke sans



Partout is a free art deco inspired font that’s excellent for display use.




Rakesly is a free sans serif font that comes in six weights, from ultra-light to bold.



Helv Children

Helv Children is a handwritten font that looks like it was created with marker scribbles filling in bold outlines.

helv children



Bizon is a handwritten sans serif typeface that’s free for personal and commercial use.




Shadow is an “accidental font” that comes in Latin and Cyrillic versions, and in regular and light (shadow) weights.




Barque is a display typeface that comes in regular and inline styles. It’s free for personal and commercial projects.