It may not apply to all things in life, but in design, limitations exist and there are always opportunities to work within them beautifully. Proving this, when it comes to tight spaces, pixel-wielding designers have a history of working with what they have to churn out surprising results — at least, that’s what we’ve found from observing Web design over the years.

Working at such a tiny level while keeping things instantly recognizable and clean is no easy feat, and so we gathered together this set of particularly gorgeous work to inspire you. Check them out (some are giveaways) and then let us know if you have any favorites in the comments below!

21 Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

musesglyphs Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

Screen Shot 2012 07 12 at 6.35.14 PM Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

iora shot Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designerscolored icons 2 Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

pixelift Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designers Source

tiny Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

flatline 32px by phs2 d31me95 Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

MacBook   UPDATE by PrekeshC Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

Screen Shot 2012 07 12 at 6.51.42 PM Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

Screen Shot 2012 07 12 at 6.55.46 PM Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

full Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

30 pixel snacks tiny icons master 520x185 Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

cloudtutor icons Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

tiny sliders1 520x280 Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

Media Icons PSD 520x280 Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

toupload Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

4fdbb076fdd2caad42000000 520x422 Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designers
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1 Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

tiny button Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

icons Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

tiny navigation Size matters: 21 Gorgeous petite icon sets crafted by pixel perfect designersSource

This list is just a starting point to gush over when it comes to all the awesome work out there. If you have anything to share, feel free to leave it in the comments. For more, check out TNW’s full Design & Dev channel.