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Have you started baking for the holidays yet? This is the time of year when I get out the family gingerbread recipe and make sure I have enough flour, molasses, cinnamon, and cloves to see me through this season of making hot mulled cider and baking cookies. If you’d like a little baking inspiration, try our new Sugar and Spice theme. The only thing missing is the delicious aroma of cookies fresh from the oven.
For more holiday fun, we have a theme of cheerful Snowmen in their native habitat.
‘Tis the season of ice and snow… at least in some parts of the world! Bring the awe-inspiring majesty of ice indoors to your desktop with the new Frozen Formations theme.
Ice can also be an artistic medium of exquisite fragility and translucency. The crystalline turrets, frozen chandeliers, and transparent walls in our new Ice Castles theme may someday melt away, but you can keep their pristine beauty on your Windows desktop for as long as you like.
For those of you with Windows 8 and a dual monitor setup, our new Glaciers panoramic theme smoothly extends the grandeur of glaciers across both your monitors.
Ice can be beautiful in small ways as well, as you can see in our new Wintry Webs theme.
If you’d prefer something equally delicate but a little less chilly, try the dewdrop-strung spangles in the Webs & Waterdrops theme.
If you’ve been a regular visitor to the Personalization Gallery, you may remember that we launched the extremely popular Magic Landscapes theme last February, featuring the gorgeous photography of Michael Breitung. Today we are happy to announce the release of his second theme, Magic Landscapes 2!
We are also happy to present several themes featuring the works of photographers who are participating in the Open Call. Photographer Brook Burling turns her camera towards the clouds, capturing moments of luminous color in her new theme Painted Skies.
Our next theme, Art of the Everyday, celebrates unexpected moments of beauty and humor to be found in ordinary life. This theme features the works of our community of Open Call photographers, and will be updated through an RSS feed with more images over time.
Our next Open Call artist is Chris Maynard, whose palette consists of an unusual medium – feathers! His first theme, Feather Photos, simply showcases feathers’ brilliant colors and delicate shapes.
Chris’s second theme, however, features artwork unlike anything we’ve seen before. He uses the medium of feathers to create inventive Shadowboxes that express the spirit of the birds the feathers came from. For more information on his artistic techniques and his ethical approach to gathering feathers, see his site.
There are also birds – and cougars and tigers and wallabies! – in our next new theme, which takes you on a virtual visit to the Cougar Mountain Zoo. This Western Washington zoo is dedicated to education and wildlife conservation.
Wildlife of another kind is featured in our new Snakes theme, which is intended to get your Windows desktop ready to celebrate the Year of the Snake in grand style, when it begins with the new year.
And, finally, if you’ve had enough ice and snow and enough of the holiday bustle, you might like to get away on a quiet cruise to Caribbean Shores. This theme visits the Virgin Islands, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Barbados, and more, in search of some of the most peaceful coastal views to be found anywhere in the world.
I hope these new themes will help bring color, serenity, and fun to your Windows desktop over the holiday season. If you’re new to the Personalization Gallery, be sure to check out all the other holiday and seasonal themes we have as well.
If you don’t have Windows 7 or Windows 8 and can’t use themes, don’t worry; we have something for you, too. I hope you’ll enjoy the new wallpapers we recently added, including images from many of the new themes I talk about in this blog post. There are also holiday and seasonal wallpapers we’ve added to the gallery in years past.
As always, keep checking back – we’ll have even more for you next month.
Some nice themes, although pretty much the lowest priority regarding things people want from Windows on a table :)
E.g. on phones we need full device backup: windowsphone.uservoice.com/.../3306540-wp7-8-device-backup
The best goodie will be a Start menu.
What Windows had up on the other guys was personability. There was many different ways to do things. The way you like it is the best. With Windows 8 I think Microsoft is unnecessarily restricting user's options, like Apple does. Not to be able to start Windows 8 to the desktop is one of these unnecessarily restrictions. It is not difficult to make this a personal choice. Taking away the start menu is one more user restriction. Make Windows personal again and have happy users:).
the Metro UI is fantastic. Just want to be able to control when I access it and not be forced to go to it every time I need to do something. If it accessible thru a right mouse click, start menu, short cut, charme it would be perfect.
i may be a slow typer, but getting into this progahm was simple, and easy and quick. maybe its just my computer. cuase iam no wiz : ) but my new avatar picture may say diffrent? hee hee. loved the themes and the advice. no matter what people think, when my son wakes and see's these on his screen. (cannon look out)=++++++++********??????.DECODE THAT.Happy holidays to all 4 and + 1? Richard