I'm proud to be a CSS Architect

— 3 minute read

I'm writing this post because I stumbled upon the article Why the world needs CSS Developers and mostly agree with it. The article has a great introduction and evolves to the following statement.

In 2020, CSS is an important skill.

I don't completely agree because I believe CSS has always been an important skill. When I go back in time I remember giving a presentation about responsive webdesign and the attendees didn't know what was happening. Or that moment I changed employer to kick-off their front-end branch. The developers didn't know what was coming.

My career started with HTML and CSS. The first big project I did was rebuilding the Ikea homepage without nested tables as an exercise. That was quite the adventure I embarked on. With a lot of divs and floats it worked out pretty well. Nowadays, I would simply use flexbox and/or CSS grid to make it happen.

CSS has evolved into something that is easy to get started with, but very hard to master. I've had people act condescending towards the fact that I enjoy writing CSS and that it isn't a real job. But they are so wrong.

And it doesn't only stop at knowing how to handle CSS. Depending on your project you'll want to have a decent architecture. That's why I invested a lot of time in things like BEM and Atomic design and am an advocate of using or creating a Design System when you're going all in for your company application landscape (re)branding.

Despite what most people think, CSS is not only about look and feel. CSS can impact application performance, cognitive load of your users and yes, the budget you have for your project.

In the past I've had the opportunity to work on large and complex projects and even worked on a Design System for a B2B / B2C company. And it wouldn't have been possible if I didn't invest all this time in learning CSS.

I'm grateful for how CSS is evolving and I'm looking forward to all the possibilities we'll have in the future!

Oh and in case you were wondering why I named myself a CSS Architect, that's because of the following description in the article of which I think is a nice description of where I'm at right now.

CSS Architect — this category is for developers, like me, who, besides efficiently constructing the CSS, are experts in planning the division of CSS and its construction into an intricate building structure. Unlike CSS Developers, CSS Architects are more experienced and know how to cleverly scale big projects, with optional CSS Developers working on their team. Besides that, they communicate with other web developers, project managers, and web designers.