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If the font you're using has a small caps variant, just choose that. If the font you're using does not have a small caps variant, you can set your text in all caps in a smaller font size. However, if you do that, then the line weight of the letter forms is off--the upper case and "lower case" letters aren't made with strokes that have the same line widths because the font size scales line width along with everything else. Sometimes adding bold will help, sometimes not.
If you want to use small caps, then you should really look for one.
Read here, http://typophile.com/node/35915
Check this out: http://new.myfonts.com/tags/small+caps/
Also, you probably don't want to mix Helvetica and Arial. They're very similar, but there are subtle differences and mixing them might give your page a disordered look. Pick one and stick with it throughout.
Thanks. To clarify, I'm not mixing Arial and Helvetica, I am using Arial,
and specify Helvetica for my apple friends who may not have helvetica.
Here is what has me daffy, though - I created my first website
and managed to use Arial small caps in the banner. I didn't use photoshop
to create the effect, as I don't know PS at all. I can't remember HOW I
got the small caps into the FW design layout. It must be something native
cause the text fields "Custom Web Design and Marketing Services" and "Home"
and "About Us" are editable in FW. If I start typing in any one of those fields,
I get small caps! BUT, I can neither find a "small caps" option in the property
inspector or the "text" drop down menu. I'm too much of a beginner to have
done anything elaborate, yet for the life of me, I can't imagine how I managed
to get those text boxes to show up in small caps in FW.
I do know that I got them into DW by exporting them as images from FW.
any clue as to what this neophyte could possibly have done to get MS sans serif
Check the size of the letters when you type. Your site is quite clearly using a fake small caps: the initial letter of the main words is simply set in a larger font size. It's easy to tell, because the thickness of the strokes on the initial letters is wider. Typographically, this is not something you want to do. If you don't have a real small caps font, you're better off using regular mixed case in the same font size.
If you want to use small caps, invest in a small caps font. They don't even have to be very expensive. For example, from dafont's Basic/Sans serif group (http://www.dafont.com/theme.php?cat=501), here are five free fonts that are small caps:
Given that there are small caps fonts at this price, there's no reason to fake them (which never looks good, anyway).
Also, while I'm in critique mode, I have to say that I'm not a fan of the changing the font size on your buttons on mouseover.
Appreciate the input and the links to legitimate fonts. I am in the process of completely re-doing the site. Its too short on visuals and too
cluttered with a lot of words that no one will read. (Took my own mother 4 days to finally sit down and read it!) Instead of changing the font
size on mouseover, what about making the font color darker? Or better yet, what do you think are the preferred techniques for mouseover
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Some free fonts are better quality than others, so when you set text in them check that the letters kern properly. (For example, does the o tuck under the cross of the T in To?) Given that a Web site is the face of your business, there's nothing wrong with investing in a good, high-quality typeface. Prices range anywhere from $20-$50 for single, simpler faces to $100-$200 for sets or more complex faces. (I'm in love with http://www.veer.com/products/typedetail.aspx?image=FOT0000074, but just can't figure out what to do with it. If I win the lottery, though, it's mine! When I redo my own Web site, I plan on using http://www.veer.com/products/typedetail.aspx?image=UMT0000431. Both fonts have alternate characters. Fireworks can't access them, but Illustrator can.)
As for mouseovers, most people go for color changes in some form or other, either the color of the button text or background, or adding a glow around the text.
If you want to browse around for inspiration, have a look at DesignMeltdown: http://www.designmeltdown.com/
I also try to read Smashing Magazine regularly, lots of great info there: http://www.smashingmagazine.com/
If you're going to redesign, I would suggest not using a monochromatic color scheme. While it's very thematic, it's also very calming and relaxing. I think raising some excitement for your work in your potential customer's minds would be a good idea. For exploring color themes, I like these two:
Color Scheme Designer: http://colorschemedesigner.com/
I prefer Color Scheme Designer because I don't have to log in to save a color scheme. I just save the URL. Kuler has lots and lots of user-submitted presets, though, and I'm pretty sure there's a Kuler extension for Fireworks.
If you're using CS4, the kuler panel is part of the application. There should be a kuler panel extension at the Adobe Exchange for CS3.