I live in an apartment that was built in 1924, and there are cherubs at the entrance to my kitchen. My previous apartment, (built in 1923), had carved oak cornerpieces in the doorframes. The cherubs have been painted over more times than I care to imagine so that you can barely see their eyes, and some of the oak cornerpieces were cracked and had never been replaced. These apartments were built by craftsmen of a different era, before mass production became the norm, and when “Good Enough” wasn’t. Dan Cederholm‘s Handcrafted CSS is for people who want to build websites the way my apartment was built, not the way it’s been maintaned in the since.
Dan starts by taking us through several advances that have happened in the world of HTML & CSS since he wrote Bulletproof Web Design, and shows us how we can use those advances to give some visitors, those who use modern browsers, a high-quality experience that wasn’t practical a few years ago, and still let the few folks out there running the browser-that-must-not-be-named or a less-than-capable mobile browser, a decent experience. There are discussions of rounded corners, (using CSS, not some image-based hack!), shading, shadows, and more.
Handcrafted CSS was an interesting book to read and inspired a will to do things the right way that often gets pushed aside when trying to meet deadlines and changing expectations. Read it, get inspired, and build great websites to be proud of.