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Chapter 14. Site-Wide Styles: Design, Ac... > The Site-Wide Style Sheet

The Site-Wide Style Sheet

The idea of linking to a style sheet was touched on in Chapter 10, but not fully explored. If you’re designing a large Web site, particularly if you’re starting from the ground up and the appearance and professionalism of the site are important to you, I fully encourage you to begin with a site-wide style sheet. Not only will this keep the text of your pages cleaner, it will also make it possible to quickly change or update the styling of nearly every page on your site. In my own experience, I can tell you that it’s a pain to update all your older pages when a site goes through a redesign. If you focus your design efforts on a site-wide style sheet, however, you’ll find that making changes will be much easier in the future.

And if you already have a site you’re working on, you can transform it fairly easily into a site that relies on style sheets for its design. This has the added advantage of cleaning up the actual markup of the page, particularly if that page is littered with <font> elements and other elements that have been used for visual design. By removing those elements, you can make your pages easier to edit, update, and interpret when you return to the page at a later date—or, when another person goes in to update or edit the page. With a site-wide style sheet in place, the markup can look simpler because styles are defined separately for the basic block and text elements.


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