What’s New for Designers, January 2015

Cameron Chapman By Cameron Chapman  |  Jan. 12, 2015

In this month’s edition of what’s new for designers and developers, we’ve included new apps for design teams, frameworks and boilerplates, new design resources, JavaScript resources, resources for startups, new podcasts, color resources, 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 high-value paid 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!



Cactus is a fast, free static website generator for Mac. Just pick a page template (portfolio, blog, or single page) to get started, and then focus on editing with live preview anywhere.



Material Design Colors

Material Design Colors is a web app that lets you more easily visualize material design colors. Just click on a color to see additional shades, along with both hex and rgb(a) color codes.

material design colors



Flakes is an open source design and frontend framework for creating internal business applications. It’s a combination of CSS libraries, JavaScript libraries, and design files with a no-nonsense approach to UI design.




Peplaunch is a startup launch service, that includes a 2-month program to get your startup off the ground with paying customers. They create a launch page, promote your startup to more than fifty relevant communities, and help you acquire customers. You’re charged a flat fee of $500.



Evil Icons

Evil Icons is a set of open source SVG icons, plus loading spinners, that are clean and simple. They come with code to support Rails, Sinatra, Node.js, Gulp, and Grunt.

evil icons


Write the Docs

Write the Docs is a collection of resources and information for writing better documentation for your projects.

write the docs



ApplePie is a modular CSS toolkit for building better web interfaces. It uses a semantic CSS approach, with better naming and organizing conventions built in.



UI Tiles

UI Tiles is a system for building site maps and visual flowcharts for web projects, with 72 screens included. It has an elegant and light design, and it’s easy to use and customize to your needs.

ui tiles


Muzli Jobs

If you’re a creative pro looking for work, check out Muzli Jobs. You can search for jobs by keyword and location, or post a job for free.

muzli jobs


3D Curtain Template

This 3D Curtain Template is a list of split blocks that simulate movement along the z-axis, reuniting when the user scrolls.

3d curtain template


Brand Style Guide Examples

These Brand Style Guide Examples are hand-picked by Saijo George, who has compiled not only style guide examples, bu also pattern libraries and design manuals.

brand style guide examples



Skeleton is a simple, responsive boilerplate that’s super lightweight at roughly 400 lines. It’s quick to get started, with no installation or compiling necessary.



Wonderful Client Feedback

Wonderful Client Feedback is a page you can use to try to get better, more usable feedback from your clients. It’s available as a web page or a PDF, and is a great way to improve your client relations.

wonderful client feedback


Dante Editor

Dante Editor is a Medium editor clone, with all the features of the real Medium editor. It’s easy to use and super intuitive.

dante editor


Material Palette

Material Palette is a Material Design palette generator that’s super easy to use. Just pick two colors and you’ll get a downloadable 8-color palette.

material palette


UX Check

UX Check is a Chrome Extension for finding usability issues. It adds a pane next to your website that shows Nielsen’s 10 heuristics to help you identify issues, with tools to annotate your work when you identify issues.

ux check



FourZeroFour is a Tumblr blog that collects awesome 404 pages from around the web. Check out their archive or submit your own designs for consideration.



Harvest Forecast

Harvest Forecast is a new app for planning your team’s time. You can visualize your plans and view by people or project, and make sure that everyone is on the same page.

harvest forecast



Snabbt.js is a lightweight, fast animation JavaScript library. It works at 60fps, even on mobile, and comes in at less than 4kb minified and gzipped.




MMXIV is a collection of the best designs from 2014, cureated by zitrusfrisch. Browse by month, and see not only the top three designs, but also the shortlist those designs were chosen from.



Dashboards by Keen IO

These Dashboards by Keen IO are responsive admin templates for Bootstrap. There are a variety of layouts available, plus examples, including a starter kit.




TheaterJS lets you mimic human typing, complete with support for multiple actors with their own unique characteristics.



The Design Details Podcast

The Design Details Podcast is a brand new weekly show host by Bryn Jackson and Brian Lovin that features the designers behind some favorite products.

design details


Landing Page

This free, multipurpose Bootstrap Landing Page from Creative Tim is a great choice for your app launch. It’s easy to integrate, good looking, and more.

bootstrap landing page


365 Awesome Designers

365 Awesome Designers features the work of a new designer every day, for all of 2015. You can follow them on Twitter or Facebook for regular updates. You can also check out the designers they featured back in 2012.

365 awesome designers


Developer Tea

Developer Tea is a web and software development podcast, with each episode clocking in at under 10 minutes. It’s hosted by Jonathan Cutrell, Whiteboard’s Director of Technology and author of Hacking the Impossible.

developer tea


Founder’s Cabin

Founder’s Cabin is a weekly publication for founders, startups, and entrepreneurs, curated by Josh Pigford, the founder of Baremetrics. Each installment includes tips, insights, and resources for running your business well.

founder's cabin


Titon Toolkit

The Titon Toolkit is a set of extensible front-end HTML, CSS, and JavaScript UI components for responsive apps. It’s mobile first, with semantic markup, flexible styles, and reusable code.

titon toolkit



Designapps.io is a master class in app design that lets you learn at your own pace and hone the skills you need to design both web and mobile apps.




Typesettings.css is a typography boilerplate for minimalist websites and blogs. Type styles are based on traditional graphic design fundamentals.




Cabana is a rustic, handmade font with a modern appeal, created by Adrien Coquet.




Besom is a hand-painted all-caps font that comes with basic punctuation, perfect for display use.



Retro Font Family

Retro is a free all-uppercase font family that includes both sans serif and slab serif styles, with Latin and Greek characters.




Bruss) is a handlettered brush based typeface designed by Aku Fadhi.




Rancho is a free Old West typeface that comes in three styles.



Farewell Pro

Farewell Pro is a funky display font with a futurisic, space-inspired look.

farewell pro



Vigneta is a feminine handmade script typeface that includes stylistic and contextual alternates.




Signale is a free display typeface with a funky geometric look.




Carioca is a funky typeface that comes as a multi-colored EPS file.




Turret is a display typeface that includes 72 characters and has a distressed, gothic style.