I am often a stickler for adhering to the norms in web design, particularly when it comes to site navigation. But there’s always room for exploration and experimentation. In this promotional site for the manufacturer of Aussie-style barbecue grills, we find that breaking the rules can work. Note how the main navigation is stacked down the left side of the screen. I believe this works primarily because the content area is also completely out of the norm and contained in such a way that it doesn’t compete with the navigation. In fact, that’s the real point to highlight: the navigation doesn’t follow the norms, but it is styled so that you simply can’t miss it.
Need more design inspiration? Check out the Web Designer’s Idea App for iPad, with hundreds of stellar websites selected by Patrick McNeil.