How to Create Seamless Background or Tiled Patterns

One of the ongoing challenges web designers have is with background images. Background images are found within the background of a web page, specific DIVs, menus and navigation, sidebars, all over the place.

Example seamless pattern background image for tiles and tiling on web pages. Source -

A well designed pattern or texture that is seamless and tiles well is one that repeats gracefully in the background, complementing the purpose of the site and not distracting. A non-distracting background is one that is literally seamless, no distinction between the edges of the graphic. It doesn’t look like a bunch of repeating blocks. It is one smooth, evenly repeating pattern that is flexible, stretching into the background no matter what the width or length of the web page.

The process involves developing graphics that, when tiled together, appear as one single image, or a gentle repeating pattern. This is often done by selecting simple graphics and blurring the edge or positioning the elements to they bookend to each other, repeating the pattern over and over again.

You can make your own or find free seamless patterns to use for your own projects.
One of the fastest tools to accomplish this is with GIMP, a popular free graphic program. Creating Seamless Backgrounds with the GIMP from Gimp Tips lists the specific steps.

To make your own, you will need a graphics program. I’ve included a list of instructions for Photoshop, PaintShop Pro (Corel), GIMP, and other graphics programs.

If you wish to take the easy way out and find a seamless pattern all ready to go, check out these resources for free seamless patterns. Some of these are pattern generators, too, so you can use their online tools to make your own quickly.

Hat Tip to Fractured Sanity for the free pattern.

3 thoughts on “How to Create Seamless Background or Tiled Patterns

  1. Hi Lorelle, just wanted to add this seamless iconic pattern generator service – to your compilation.
    Originally we had created it for ourselves because it just was waaay to long to do this task in Photoshop every time but now we decided to release it in public so everyone can use it, hope you like it!

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