Less noise texture mixin

If you’d like to add a little bit of texture to your designs adding a subtle amount of noise can work wonders. By using a repeated monochrome noise png as a background image you can add noise to any element no matter what colour by using opacity to blend it in.

The mixin below uses a base64 encoded version in the stylesheet which means you don’t have to worry about including the file on your server, the one trade-off to consider is that the base64 encoded image data weighs in at 2kb and the binary .png version is 1.5kb. I personally prefer the cleanliness of having the mixin self-contained, but each to their own.

The Mixin

We use a parametric mixin which has a sensible default opacity which you can change to suit your design and overridden when you need.

1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
/**
 * Adds a transparent noise texture as a background image to a given element.
 * Texture strength can be controlled with @opacity parameter.
 * By Paul Stanton (www.coffeepowered.co.uk)
 */

.noise(@opacity: .3) {
  &:before {
  bottom:0;
  content:"";
  left:0;
  opacity:@opacity;
  position:absolute;
  right:0;
  top:0;

  background-image:url(data:image/png;base64,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);
  }
}

### Usage

To apply noise to your element, just invoke the mixin!

1
2
3
4
.my-element{
  position:relative;
  .noise();
}
And override the opacity value if you wish

1
2
3
4
.my-element{
  position:relative;
  .noise(.5);
}

Here’s an example of two elements, one without and one with noise. It’s subtle, but that’s what I need for my projects, you could use a noise image with a higher contrast if you wish.

Thats it! If you use it, drop me a line!

comments powered by Disqus