What is skeoumorphism? Even if you are not familiar with this concept, I’m firmly convinced that you deal with skeoumorphic design elements day by day. Take a look at your wardrobe. I bet you have some clothes (pants, dresses, suits, jackets, whatever) with fake, decorative pockets. These are skeuomorphic pockets, as they simply imitate real, functional pockets. Another catchy well-known example is cigarettes. The paper around their filter is printed to look like cork.
Turn your attention to various spoke patterns in automobile hubcaps and wheels. They resemble earlier wheel construction, wooden or wire spokes. Or do you remember flame-shaped light bulbs? Some of us probably still have those pompous antique style electric chandeliers with the light bulbs that look like real candles.
Image source: http://betweennapsontheporch.net/transform-an-ordinary-chandelier-with-resin-candle-covers-and-silk-wrapped-bulbs/
As you have already guessed, skeuomorphism means making design elements almost 100% look like objects from real life. Even a simple button with the slight gradient in GU interface design is a skeuomorphic design element. All Apple’s interfaces are also skeuomorphic.
Drop shadows, gradients, gloss, reflection, embossing, texture, the list seems to go on forever. And absolutely this all is merely a degree of skeuomorphism because it’s an effect of the real world. Skeuomorphic elements in web design make people feel more comfortable. Due to the 100% similarity, they give users a feeling that they know how these things work considering the experience with their analogues from real life. Visual metaphors evoke certain emotions and feelings that people have while dealing with similar objects.
Now we want to bring to your attention some attractive examples of skeuomorphism in web design. Below are websites that feature design elements resembling real life objects.