Inline links - block styling

19th October 2008

copyright © stu nicholls - CSS play


Have you ever wanted to style your inline links as if they were blocks? Well it will be possible when all browsers include the style 'inline-block', but until then this is one way to do it.

No messing around with 'display:block;' / 'display:inline; / float:left; etc. this method, seen above, uses nothing more than a 'textarea' which is basically an inline block.

It is valid to place a textarea within a link and then style this to remove the default styles and replace them with your own. This includes background images, width, height, font-size, font-family, line-height etc. and using these we can produce a rollover background image change (well a background-position change) and have lovely inline block links.

Tested in IE6, IE7, Firefox, Opera, Safari(PC) and Google Chrome. Opera doesn't quite get the vertical text position right.

21st January 2012

Now we can use inline-blocks in all modern browsers.


You may use this method on your personal 'non-profit' web site without seeking my permission. A link back to CSSplay is always appreciated.

Commercial usage is also permitted without seeking approval, but I would ask that a donation is considered to support my work on CSSPlay.

If you are having problems integrating any of my demonstrations into your website then I now offer a service to fault find and correct any errors that you may have introduced. Please email me for more information.

Please Support CSS play

Please note that if your donation is for a demo/menu then you will need to email me with the url of the demo/menu after making the donation

For more CSS demonstrations I recommend that you visit the Dynamic Drive CSS Library.

Free, practical CSS menus, layouts, and examples

Soft Geometry Creative Industries

Soft Geometry Creative Industries
is a music-based design company located in Bristol UK.
I create artwork for albums, singles, posters and t-shirts.
My work is influenced by punk and post-punk poster and flyer design,
lo-fi photocopy aesthetics,
Francis Bacon and Mark Rothko.

I can provide a start to finish service with my own art and photography, put together work from images provided by yourself, and collaborate on an idea.

Follow CSS play

Facebook   Twitter   Facebook Fan Page