Lets Get Started
1. Open up Photoshop and create a new document with the dimensions of 1200×1000.
2. The first area we will start with is our background. Using your Paint Bucket Tool (G), fill your background layer with #FD6E8A.
3. We want to create a polka dot pattern we can add to our background. To do this we need to create a new document with the dimensions of 45×53.
4. Create a new transparent layer and delete your background layer. Next add two circles in the following manner with your favorite Ellipse Tool. I used the Elliptical Marquee (M).
5. Go to “Edit>Define Pattern” and then insert the name Polka Dot for your pattern name. You can then close out of this document and return to your template where we will be using our newly created pattern.
6. In your layers palette create a new blank layer and name it dots. Using your Pattern Stamp (S), find your Polka Dot brush in the drop down menu. Then proceed to brush with a large soft brush until you have results that look similar to the following:
7. Then lower the opacity of your dots layer to about 2%. This will keep it very subtle in our background.
8. Now using your Ellipse Tool, create a circle that looks like the following:
9. Then we want to use our Pen Tool (P) to create a shape on top of our circle that looks like the following:
10. Once you are happen with your results, select both layers and then right click and choose Merge Layers to put them onto one layer. Lower the opacity of your layer to around 19%. We then want to duplicate this layer twice by hitting Command+J. Move your shapes in the following manner. Make your second copy 24% opacity, and then make your third 42%.
11. The last touch we will add to our background is by adding a Starburst Effect. We will use one of the brushes from this brush pack. With a foreground of #FD6E8A, place it in the following manner. I lowered the opacity to around 22%.
13. On your “Rachel’s” layer, insert the following blending options:
14. On your “Candyland” layer, use the same drop shadow you used on the “Rachel’s” text layer. You will have something that looks like this:
15. Now we will move onto our user account bar that will float to the right. Using your Rounded Rectangle Tool (U) with a radius of 10px, and a foreground of #BC3D56, make a rectangle that is similar to the following:
16. We want to add a highlight around our Rounded Rectangle next. To do so we want to Command+Click our thumbnail of our Rounded Rectangle in our Layers Palette to make it an active selection. Then go to “Select>Modify>Contract” and input 1 in the dialog box. Fill your selection with #FFFFFF on a new layer, and then contract it by 1 again and go to “Edit>Clear”. You will be left with a white line that looks like this:
17. Change the blend mode to Soft Light on this layer, and then lower the opacity to around 38%. Now add the following blending options to your highlight layer:
18. Add some text to symbolize links with the color #FDDCE3, and you’ll have something that looks like this:
19. Now we need to create a search field. Using your Pen Tool, create a shape that looks like the following with a foreground of #72A0E5.
20. Use Command+J to duplicate your shape and then go to Edit>Transform>Flip Horizontal and align it in the following way. Once you have it like you want it, select both layers and right click. Choose Merge Layers from the drop down menu:
21. Now add the following blending options to your search box:
22. All that is left for the search box is to add an input field with your Rounded Rectangle Tool with a 5px radius. I then used a magnifying glass icon from the NIXUS icon pack.
23. The last area of our header is our main site navigation. Using your favorite Rectangle Tool, make a black rectangle that looks like the following for the back of your navigational menu. Our first link “Candy” is going to be #FFFFFF, while our non-active links will be #FDDCE3. The font used for the links is called “Chalkboard”.
24. For our active tab, we want to make a Rectangle in a similar shape as the following. The color doesn’t matter as we will be adding a gradient to it later:
25. Now on your tab layer, add the following blending options to give it a nice gradient.
26. To add a little extra detail to our tab, we want to cut out a little chunk on the top. Using your Polygonal Lasso Tool (L), make a selection similar to the following and then choose “Select>Inverse”. Then hit the layer mask icon in the layers palette with your tab layer selected.
27. The final touch will be to add a white highlight around the edge like we did for our account links section in step 16. We will then set it to Soft Light, and then lower the opacity to about 62%.
28. The last step for our header is to add our Candy Cane effect under the navigation. Using your favorite Rectangle Tool again make a rectangle that looks like the following:
29. Now add the following blending options to your layer:
30. To achieve our candy cane lines, we want to create another pattern. So to do so we want to create a new document with the dimensions of 600×600. Create a new layer and delete your background layer so you are left with a transparent document. Then add a bunch of rectangles in the following manner (I made my background black so you can see better, but yours will be transparent):
31. Then go to “Edit>Define Pattern” and name it stripes. Close out of your stripes file, and then go back to your template now. Command+Click your Candy Canes background to make it an active selection, and then use your Pattern Stamp Tool to brush your newly created pattern on a layer above:
32. Change the blend mode to Overlay, and the lower the opacity to 28% and your completed header will look like the following:
33. The content area will rely mostly on placement of images and text, and keep things simple. We will have a white background, and use the color #28140D for our body text, #AF3F55 for headings, and #5987CB for our links.
34. The last step is adding a footer. Using your Rounded Rectangle Tool with a radius of 15px, make a shape that looks like the following under your content layers:
35. Now add the following blending options to your newly created Rounded Rectangle layer:
36. I then proceeded to use the same candy cane effect we used in the navigation to add stripes to our footer. I changed the blend mode to Soft Light, and lowered the opacity to 15% this time.
37. All that is left now is to add some text and any icons in your footer and your final result will look something like the following:
This was written by Matthew Heidenreich