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10 cool free textures

The sterile, shiny and ridiculously reflective world of Web 2.0 design is fortunately suffering a backlash.

Design is becoming tactile again. Texture, grime and grit is now where it's at. High quality texture images abound on the web. Most of these are free and easily applied to any design using one of the blending modes in Photoshop. For best results use "Overlay" or "Multiply" and experiment with the opacity settings. Overlay texture upon texture to achieve unusual depth and substance. Here's our collection of top ten textures which you can download for free.

Dirty pottery closeup



This fantastically detailed texture from Mayang would look great blended over a flat print or web layout to add real tactile depth and texture.

Many lichens on stone



The colour and detail of this shot are stunning. Perfect for background detail effect for print or web work.

Tin foil metal chrome reflective

foil chrome


Add some textured shine with this reflective beauty from Image * After. Great for achieving that 1970s BBC sci-fi look€¦

Red plastic beads



These plastic beads on first inspection look like a bunch of red balloons. Fun, vibrant and detailed, it will add life to the flattest artwork.

Velour fabric



Like an extreme close up of one of the original Star Trek uniforms, this sparkly velour fabric from TextureKing will have your layouts beaming with vibrancy.

Cotton candy fabric



Almost good enough to eat€¦ This cotton candy type material has a fantastic blend of fluffy textured goodness.

Metal / Rust texture #805



The floral detail combined with rust and decay is perfectly juxtaposed in this boringly named texture.

Paper repeating textures



Perfectly tiled paper backgrounds will add real punch when used as seamless backdrops to your website designs. Here are 8 of them!

Texture 59

odd pink


Can you figure out what this is? Neither can we but we love the detail, colour and highlights. Mysterious and peculiarly pretty.

Music texture 8



Notes and bars on a distressed parchment background? There'll be a time when you'll need this for your best friend's wedding invites. Trust us.