56 Light & Clean Website Designs Using A Minimalist Color Scheme

By now I’m sure you’ve figured out that I love minimalist designs. I’ve featured many simple and minimalist websites on SpyreStudios before but this time I wanted to feature sites that not only have a minimalist layout but that also use very little colors.

I tried to find sites that use a greyscale color scheme but that also introduce a vibrant and/or contrasting color, usually for links and buttons. Most of the sites on this list use at most 3 or 4 colors (black, white, shade of grey, contrasting color) excluding pictures and images that are placed in the content area.

The websites are listed alphabetically. Hope you enjoy it!
*Warning: Lots of whitespace ahead! :)

5 Thirty One


72 Rivington Street




80/20 Studio


Aen Tan


Andy Rutledge


Anthony James Bruno






Beyond Standards


Big Kid




Bryan Culver


Cade Martin


Daniel Howells


Daniel Oliver


David Airey


The Deck


Eduardo de la Roque


Derek Bender




Feed A Fever


Fell Swoop




Header Footer


Hello Stefan


Jamie Gregory


Joni Korpi


Jon Tangerine




Made By On


Make Tea


Martin Hipp


Max Voltar


Middle Mind Project


Minimal Sites




Offset Media


Oh Deer




Peter Rozek


Pixel Bot


Rikcat Industries


Rodrigo Galindez


Shaun Inman


Site Inspire


Stefan Persson


Strange Beautiful






Thirty One West


Voce Antica


Welcome To HR


Year Of The Sheep


Yoo Tae Han




Your Turn To Talk

I hope you enjoyed this post! Please share your favorites with the rest of us – I love to read what other people like about minimalist designs and layouts. And what do you think of monochrome designs? Love ’em? Hate ’em?

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  1. says

    Fantastic collection of sites. I’m preparing to do a redesign of my own site and so many of these are so inspirational.

  2. says

    Excellent list – as always! Minimalist design is quite often more difficult to achieve and each of these sites accomplish the feat very well. Thanks for the inspiration! As an aside, let me also comment on Spyre’s new look…It has been awhile since I’ve visited and I like it very much!

  3. says

    I’m genuinely flattered to have three of my websites featured here (72 Rivington Street, my own blog, and siteInspire). Thanks so much!

    And also appreciate David Arias, Minimalsites, FRKT, and Human Resources… huge fan of all.

  4. says

    Nice collection. I couldn’t help but notice the similarity between “made by on” and “on wired”, what do you think?

    Logo: http://img.skitch.com/20090627-tk5n7r2em6d34nuc676cfj7821.png
    Shortcut: http://img.skitch.com/20090627-g2thqc7gqtbxd7ij2q7hkr4dni.png

    Shortcut: http://img.skitch.com/20090627-e6dmi5mc54wq69rw2byt36557p.png

  5. says

    Woot I appeared twice in this post. First as the fifth entry in the list and then as a screenshot within Minimalsites. RT, Dugg and thanks!

  6. Jim Cook says

    Such beauty in simplicity, but so hard to sell to clients. “It looks so plain,” is what I hear a lot.

  7. says

    Your ability to organize and present information is amazing. I would invest in a search engine that could produce results like yours. Another great post.

  8. says

    Sweet list! Thanks for the mention. Was actually just in the middle of making a small design/usability tweak this morning. Changed all sidebar links blue, not just on hover.

  9. says

    Quite the popular post here, Jon. Thanks a lot of the mention alongside lots of inspiring designs. Makes me want to show a little more black in mine, and less gray.

  10. says

    @All: thanks a lot everyone, I’m happy you liked the post! :)

    @Camille: Thanks! I really appreciate it. For some reason I keep changing the design, guess I can do stuff here that I can’t when I work for clients hehe

    @Andrew: humm, good catch! Yes, I agree, they do look very similar, though it’s a good thing both websites look completely different I guess.

    @Daniel Howells, Anthony James Bruno, Aen, Johannes, Stuart Hobday: You’re all very welcome!

    @LindenTibbets: You’re welcome! I have to say I do like the blue links better :)

    @Jim Gaudet: Sure thing! :)

    @Jim Cook: You got a good point there. A very minimalist approach won’t work for every type of site, but sometimes it does. It can be minimalist and still get pretty big and successful if you look at sites like emptees.com. Of course when it’s freelance work, it’s not about making it simple and minimalist just because you like that, it’s about what the client wants and needs and what his/her goals are with the site.

    @David Airey: You’re welcome buddy! Hey I like the shades of grey, I think if fits nicely with the orange you have (and as you can see I love orange hehe) :)

  11. says

    One or two examples here I would diss outrightly as a pile of poo, as they seem to break every rule in the book and leave me stranded trying to understand what the page is about.

    Others, considering they have no colour for most part, are in danger of being easily forgotten, hence missing out on important branding values which add so much to many businesses.

    It’s an interesting list of examples nevertheless.

  12. says

    I see these collections of minimalistic web designs all over the place, but it’s hard to find an actual GOOD collection of designs. Nice post, thanks for the inspiration!

  13. Dom says

    They’re nice, but all pretty similar. Minimalist doesn’t have to mean unimaginative.

  14. says

    Interesting collection! I appreciate your effort and eye for clean designs. I bookmarked this page and would really love to visit these sites in detail, probably pick up an idea or two:)

    Thanks again for the nice collection.


  15. iEnvironment says

    this is such a fantastic post!!! A big thank you Jon for sharing these sites with us. Simple yet so effective…nice!

  16. says

    I like the collection.

    Though most of them are just based on almost standard fonts, some of the templates look really nice..

    I surely have to make a separate section in my websites to post collections like this one.

    I’ve remarked, many are using a black color scheme – if you play a bit with other colors, some examples may be upgraded quite well..

  17. says

    Always interested in what others are doing since I am still in the learning process and tend to run with scissors and draw outside the lines — on purpose!!!!

  18. ChristianB says

    Nice collection! I love clean design. Here’s another one: http://hakki.com – I like how he keeps it so focused at the message, as minimalistic as it gets :)

  19. says

    Looks like I’m very late in discovering this, but nonetheless I humbly appreciate the inclusion of my website here. Also, thanks to Daniel Howells for the props. I’m a fan of this web development skills myself. Every time I come across other beautifully designed websites ( many of them shown here) it makes me want to re-design my own again. Thanks again. Beautiful collection here.

  20. says

    Wow…..this is something I was looking for. These websites look very clean and professional. Honestly, I was tired to of those bright and colorful designs. I am not saying that they are bad but seeing these sites with minimal color scheme was a treat to my eyes. Thanks.

  21. says

    minimalism can never become outdated, eh? one thing minimalism is, unlike high-end designs, it offers great platform for improvisations and modifications that can still be minimal!!

  22. says

    I really like the 80/20 Studios design. That, and Site Inspire. Those are my ideas of what clean, elegant professional websites should look like.

    The Cade Martin one looks really fantastic as well. Perfect for a personal blog, or perhaps a screenprinting service.

  23. says

    nice collection there buddy! I’m a big fan of minimalism in fact i’m also designing minimalist templates and this list gave me inpirations in most of my designs

  24. Max Hugh says

    Hi, I just left a comment on your article titled: “20-examples-of-dark-minimalist-website-designs-with-great-typography” which I thought was an excellent and inspiring piece. In the comment I said that dark websites are excellent, however because of “glossy” screens on new PCs and Macs, (and glass screens on mobile phones) fingerprints and dust or glare can detract from the overall web experience.

    With white/ light webdesign (even though I really like dark designs), for asthetic appeal they are much better as it reduces glare and screen dust/ fingerprint visability.

    Some good examples in addition to the excellent ones you have shown above are:
    http://www.teNriA.com | http://www.Apple.com | http://www.HugoBoss.com | http://www.CK.com | http://www.Dior.com

    These are some of my favourites and most inspirational as they look really classy.

    Great post–thanks for the inspiration!

  25. says

    Awesome designs I think I am going to redo my portfolio site using this clean minimalistic style. It never gets old!

  26. says

    These inspired me a lot…thanks for the list. It makes me think to collect minimalist design websites that use Joomla CMS as their platform. But it’s a little hard to find the sites with this design approach…

  27. says

    I tried to also keep it clean and simple by using as little imagery as possible and just letting the content be the design. Check out http://www.reversedout.com and let me know what you guys think and if there is an opportunity for me to improve or even simplify more. Thank you.

  28. says

    wow! i’ve bookmarked this page mate. each site is interesting and no wonder, i’ve already picked up an idea or two from some of them. I’ll closely watch through them once again..thx a lot

  29. egiova says

    Very few pages aren’t trapped by the “grid effect”. Many of these sites are inanimated, or static. I agree about “Minimal use of elements”, but you have to make your page moving anyway. Cade Martin, or PixelBot, or Voce Antica are good examples. Thanks for the showcase, very inspiring.

  30. sawyer says

    wow! i’ve bookmarked this page mate. each site is interesting and no wonder, i’ve already picked up an idea or two from some of them. I’ll closely watch through them once again..thx a lot


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