My name is Jack Wheeler. I’m a web designer located in Eugene, Oregon. I love to create beautiful, usable, accessible web sites, usually with WordPress, always with great care. You can view some of my work here. If you have a web project that could use some loving care, please contact me.

I also occasionally write about web design, WordPress, photography, owning and/or running a web site and whatever else strikes me as important or helpful.

Chosen- a JavaScript plug-in for styling select boxes

Styling select boxes is notoriously difficult. They offer only a few elements that can be styled and these are very inconsistent between browsers. To start with, it’s usually best to leave form elements close to their browser defaults for usability reasons. Users are familiar with the basic form elements and there are built in usability features such as keyboard control that make it easy to use the elements without a mouse for example.

However, there are situations where you want your forms to be a little more fancy. In these cases, the solution is to use JavaScript to hide the default form element and replace it with a styled version using substitute markup such as an unordered list. Enter Chosen by Harvest. This little plug-in will take a standard list box with a single class and make it awesome. Read more »

A Six-step web design process


I’m often asked about the process I use for designing web sites. If you are a potential client, hopefully this will give you some insight into how I work and what you can expect during the process. If you are new to web design, this should serve as a template for your own procedure. Each designer’s approach will be different. There is no one, best way.

It’s tempting for a designer to jump right into Photoshop and start creating a visual design comp. The truth is, the creative process starts long before actually putting color to pixels. Following an established web design method will dramatically increase Read more »

Case Study – Typography Design Patterns – Smashing Magazine

This is an interesting study on current practices regarding typography in web design. I’m surprised at how many of the sites are using san-serif body copy. I wonder if this is a reaction to the proliferation of good san-serif fonts available now that we have the ability to use web fonts. The freedom that web designers are now experiencing with responsive design techniques and typography options is exciting.



You may have noticed that things look a little different around here. A reworking of the structure and content of this site was long overdue.

In the process of redesigning, I made some profound changes to the content structure. The focus of the design is now much more heavily on the blog and less on Blue Hat Design as a web design company. Don’t get me wrong, I’m as focused as ever on the design company. However, I’m one guy (plus occasionally one of several amazing local designers and developers) and when someone hires Blue Hat Design, they’re hiring me. So one of the goals for the redesign is to create a much more cohesive and personal connection between myself, my clients and the web design community. Read more »