Charmed Designs is the professional blog and portfolio of Alex Winton, a UK web developer currently working at Savvy Marketing in Leeds.

Along with plenty of experience on personal sites, I also have a number of years of commercial experience as a web developer and, in those commercial roles, have worked with a number of big name companies on some major National-scale projects.

Follow my blog for more on me and my work


From Wordpress themes to completely custom sites, all web design requirements can be fulfilled.

I like to make a point of following the latest developments in HTML5, CSS3 and javascript in order to provide the best user experience possible, but also strive for not only cross-browser portability, but device portability.

Check out my portfolio


I am an experienced PHP developer of over a decade.

Along with my day to day work with PHP, I am also working on a huge personal project at the moment in Zend Framework and am familliar with a majority of common open source PHP softwares (eg: CMS, BBS, etc) and frameworks (particularly Zend Framework, CodeIgniter and Laravel)

See some of my code snippets

Latest blog entries

Replicate Windows 8 Live Tiles

Live Tiles on the Start Menu

One of the interesting features of the Windows 8 start menu is how the ‘Live tiles’ display extra information by scrolling it up into view. On a recent project, with a design inspired by the flat UI of the interface-formerly-known-as-Metro, I was tasked with making a similar feature to these Live tiles a reality for the web. Here’s how I did it. Continue Reading »

Work in Progress

If you’ve visited the site in the previous months, you may notice it’s now had a bit of a facelift. The first design was always a bit of a preliminary ‘first pass’, and in general, the site is still a massive work in progress. There’s still a lot of content and polish that needs worked on – though all of it still needs to be done around my day-to-day work and other time-sucking projects, so it’s tough to get time to sit down and get it dealt with.

Over the next while, I’ll be fleshing out the snippets section with some handy bits of code I’ve picked up at work and in my own projects. This should hopefully be a handy resource for anyone coming across this site on a random search, but at the very least, an easy resource to grab them from myself without needing to work out where in my overly-complex bookmark system they’re hiding…

This summer will also see the first truly public announcement of the massive software project I’ve been developing for the past year and a half. I’ll be covering a lot more about it in on Charmed Designs in the run up to its first beta releases, and there’ll be a lot of new websites for the portfolio towards the end of the year as a direct result of this software’s release. If you’re intrigued, stick around for more info soon.

Game Closure – the jQuery of gaming?

Game Closure logo

Can the new Game Closure Javascript library make HTML5 gaming on websites as ubiquitous as jQuery for effects?

For years now, the jQuery library has been synonymous with the idea of Javascript development. For many, if you were working with Javascript, you were actually working with jQuery on top of it. It’s not hard to understand why. After all, Javascript is a notoriously complicated language and a lot of the basic effects and functions that jQuery handles for us would actually be a lot more complicated to put together on our own per specific implementation.

However, jQuery is very much a DOM manipulation library, and the rise of HTML5′s canvas element has given birth to a new world of accessible, device agnostic, browser games without the need for plugins like Flash and Silverlight – but without the clean, easy to use library support that has turned Javascript from a novelty used to make snow appear on your web page to the UX enhancing boon it is today. Continue Reading »

The all new Charmed Designs

Welcome to a brand new Charmed Designs. In the past, this site has never really received much focus from me. I’ve updated it a couple of times with new designs and not really had much to say that I wasn’t saying elsewhere.

However, this new iteration of Charmed Designs is going to see a change to that. Recently, I’ve been moving away from my original (more than 10 years old now) amateur website, Pokecharms, to full professional websites and web applications both on a professional and personal project level. Continue Reading »

My Other Sites

Pokecharms Logo